Church for ‘nones’: Meet the anti-dogma spiritual collectives emerging across the US

“These spiritual communities discard doctrine, prefer questions over answers and have no intention of converting anybody to anything.” - RNS


To have a group with any cohesion at all, you have to have some shared values at the very least—and probably have to have some shared dogmas as well.

I can identify a few of their doctrines right off the bat:

  • Long-held Christian doctrines must be discarded.
  • Dogma is bad (though we are dogmatic on this point).
  • Questions are better than answers.
  • “Love” means not only accepting people as they are, but approving of everything about them and rejecting any effort to change them in any way.

So, yes, they have doctrine and dogma. Remove even just those four core beliefs and the whole project would collapse, I think.

I’ll say one thing in their favor, though. People are hungry for communities where nobody is judging them. Places that feel safe and supportive. To a degree, biblical churches can’t be that—but to a degree they can. It has to do with what you emphasize, what you choose as your starting point in relating to people, and how you understand and teach the journey of Christian growth.

Jesus did say people would know we’re His disciples by our love (John 13:35).

Views expressed are always my own and not my employer's, my church's, my family's, my neighbors', or my pets'. The house plants have authorized me to speak for them, however, and they always agree with me.