I was intrigued to learn that our youngest son, Techie, and his wife have changed churches—not beliefs—just churches. Belonging to an evangelical, Calvinist church is not the same as belonging to a hierarchically structured church such as the LDS. The doctrine at their new Reformed Baptist Church is basically the same as that taught at the Mars Hill Church they formerly attended. Their reasons for changing are social. Their former church had very few minority members and Techie and Techie II are in a mixed marriage. They find couples like themselves at their new church. Techie also likes the sermons better. The Baptist pastor has a Ph.D. in religion and is given to thorough dissection of biblical verses.
The interesting thing I found when visiting them, is that they still attend the Bible study group affiliated with the Mars Hill Church. This small group meets on Tuesday evenings in a member’s home to share a pot luck meal, Bible study, and prayer. Attendance is voluntary and the Techies enjoyed the group and continue to be part of it.
I saw the upside to participating in two different churches when I visited after their baby was born. Members from both churches brought meals in for two weeks or more after the birth. I was amazed at the plenty. The downside (at least for me) is that they belong to two groups to which they must now return the favor. Meal assistance in both churches is unassigned, so they can do it on their own schedule.
I see some real advantages to flexibility in attending the church or the portion of a church that meets the needs of individual families.