In the modern church, by contrast, relationships are mostly through the pastor. This raises a size barrier, because most pastors can only keep track of about 200 people. However, the success of a church cannot be judged by the number of its members. People can easily be lost in a large church.   A truly successful church is one where believers are growing to maturity, and strong relationships are being formed.

Having all the relationships going through the pastor can make the church very fragile. If the pastor leaves, falls away or is arrested, the relationships are weakened because the person they all pivot on is gone.

Unless the pastor is quickly replaced, the church can easily fall apart.

This has been a frequent occurrence in recent years. A new pastor has often struggled to bring all the church back together again.

In the network model, if one elder falls away, the other elders can quickly close the gap and the rest of the church will be kept safe. The only ones who will be lost are those totally loyal to the fallen elder.

Back to What is a Church.