Fast Food Church

This world we live in is hell-bent on convenience. Technological advances like WIFI, Bluetooth and Cloud storage allow us to wirelessly access all our digital content from virtually anywhere. We can use our computer, laptop, tablet or Smart phone to communicate with people from around the world at a moment’s notice.

Our markets are littered with ready-to-eat precooked and pre-packaged foods. The microwave and convection ovens, along with the induction stove top, have revolutionized food preparation. You can literally be eating in a flash.

If that’s not fast enough, there’s the Candwich. Who wouldn’t want a PB and J comfortably nestled inside a pop top can? Pick up a can of Pringle’s and you have a double-barreled lunch in an instant. Hey, watch where you point that thing. Pop, peel and eat. Now that’s convenient.

Many of the buses down here have a toilet on board. It seems like a convenience; a great way to make good time traveling. No stopping for Seat 10’s 6-year-old to hit the head, only to be followed a mile later by Seat 31’s grandma with an irritable bowel. However, having experienced a few of South America’s mobile public port-a-potties, I can say that this is NOT convenient. The unfettered stink alone will attest to that.

Streamlining is making its way into the church as well. Church services are timed to the second these days to make the most out of the time available. I’ve heard about drive-thru and drive-in churches and I know Las Vegas has drive-thru chapels for marriage. I’ve seen some comedy videos about church on the run. So the concept of making church easier to attend is not new.

I’ve got this friend that always shows up for church on the final chorus of the worship time. He’s just not a big song guy. He really likes the preaching and teaching time. He is basically saying—

“I’ll have a number 3 combo hold the singing.”

That’s a revolutionary idea. Fast Food Church. Place your order by number. Pick what type of church experience you would like to have by the combo you choose.

  • #1 Combo- This is the full Monty. Everything church has to offer on a Sunday. Pre-service coffee and chat. Sunday School. Announcements. Praise and Worship singing. Offering. Preaching. Altar time and shooting the breeze in the parking lot afterwards.
  • A # 2 Combo- Is a #1, hold the Sunday School. Many churches offer this combo, leaving out that morning teaching time.
  • The #3 includes Announcements to Altar time. It’s a #1, hold the pre- and post- game show. Pile in, get your God on, and roll out. Nice and clean and no idle chatter to clutter things up.

From here, with these three basic combos, you can add or delete items as you wish. It’s a “have it your way” environment.

So if you’re introverted you can order a #3, hold the Meet & Greet and the Turn-to-your-neighbor. You may also want to hold the point your hand at ______and pray.

If you love Praise and Worship, then order the #2. Go light on the Preaching and add an extra side of singing, just the way you like it.

Interested in the Stave-Off-Guilt special? Get a #3, add coffee time to give you the chance to make excuses for your recent absence, hold the announcements and go light on the preaching and add extra singing and altar time.

What would be your ideal church combo? 

11 thoughts on “Fast Food Church

Add yours

    1. I was going to work Mega-Church into this post somewhere but I forgot to and I didn’t want to single out a specific class of church.

      However you can “Mega-church” it for more of what you order. It will also be a little more techno savvy as well;-)>


  1. I can do the meet and greet and idle chatter, but I get positively queasy when I visit a church and they start laying hands on one another for intercessory prayer! If that came with my combo, I’d take it back and complain. 🙂


  2. Church a-la carte? You’re onto something here, Barba. You’re onto something–and I want in on the IPO.

    We could sell the concept, and make a killing!

    It will be like the seeker-sensitive church of the ’10’s!

    Whadaya say?



  3. My package must include a contemporary worship song, preferably in the David Crowder Band/Hillsongs United flavor, mainly to meet my husband’s requirement. My kids would probably rather have their own worship time, with music and dancing rather than worshipping to old fogey music like David Crowder Band/Hillsongs United, so could you create a church with a relevant youth package :-D. Oh, and long sermons a la John Piper.


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