The use of social judgment involvement theory in the sermons of mainline and seeker churches




Drumheller, Kristina D.

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This study, through content analysis, uses social judgment involvement theory to determine if differences exist between the sermons of mainline Christian churches, specifically Presbyterian and Episcopal churches, and seeker Christian churches. Seeker churches target a specific segment of the population known as seekers. Seekers are identified as baby boomers who are not satisfied with mainline churches. It is suggested that the sermons of seeker churches should appeal to the latitude of noncommitment of seekers while mainline sermons would appeal to their latitude of rejection. This study concludes that there are differences between seeker and mainline sermons in their use of biblical references but not of secular references. It further discovers that while seeker sermons might fall into the latitude of noncommitment of seekers, they may also fall within the latitude of acceptance. Mainline sermons tend to fall within the seeker's latitude of noncommitment as well, suggesting that something other than sermons attracts the seeker to seeker churches over mainline churches.



Christianity, Christian sects, Independent churches, Sermons


Drumheller, K. D. (1998). <i>The use of social judgment involvement theory in the sermons of mainline and seeker churches</i> (Unpublished thesis). Southwest Texas State University, San Marcos, Texas.


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