Last Sunday afternoon my wife and I went to the new hip megachurch for a baby dedication service for some friends. Since we have been away from evangelicalism for a while and never been to this particular church before it was quite overwhelming going back.
Pulling into the parking lot was like going to a theme park, I recommend they put up signs on the light posts so you can remember where you parked. Walking into the narthex area there were sliding doors like you find at walmart. Then looking around there is a coffee bar, book store and other stuff that I didn't care to investigate any further.
Walking into the nave or auditorium at this place was weird and not even church like. There were padded chairs, cup holders, 2 camera men on booms, 3 giant screens and a stage with a plexiglassed in drum set. The place was absolutely packed with young families and over 40 babies were dedicated at this service.
Once the service started the childrens pastor got up and droned on about families and the bible. Once he was done the middle school pastor got up and talked to us and was on the theological level of a 3rd grader. I guess they called him off the bench to talk since he was the pastor over children closest to infant. More inane drivel commenced until they called all of the parents and children up for the dedication. One of the key themes from both pastors was making every second count with your children which is humanly impossible. It is the guilt to get you on the hook and keep coming back for more simpleton captain obvious advice.
They showed a slide show of family pics of each baby and family to lousy music and then did a prayer to dedicate the children. I didn't pray along and watched the cameramen panning around during the prayer. The whole thing seemed trite and inane.
Once the service was over we talked with our friends and left. I will take my 200 attender mainline church any day over this American consumerist simpleton establishment. It is a reflection of our culture at large and frankly it scares me.