Redefine the Word “Church” in the Dictionary

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Watermark Community Church in Dallas, Texas and The Porch (Watermark’s young adult ministry) are asking followers of Jesus Christ everywhere to help redefine the word “church” in the dictionary. 

Look up the word “church” in any English dictionary and you will find the first result saying something like this: “a building for public or Christian worship.” Right there, we’ve run into a problem…because when Jesus initially launched his movement, the “church” wasn’t a building or a place. He didn’t die on the cross to save a building. Jesus intended his “church” to be a people.

The Greek word we translate as church is ekklēsia. It was always used to refer to an ‘assembly’ or ‘gathering’ of God’s people. It meant believers “called out” of their homes and gathered together for worship of Jesus. But over the years… this changed. In the middle ages, translators replaced ekklēsia with the word kirche or cirice meaning “God’s House.” This gathering was redefined to be a place where you go, rather than a people that you are, and the word “church” became synonymous with a “building.”

However, if we primarily define church as a building, we miss the point of what God intended His Church to be: a group of people that are on mission 24/7 to bring hope and restoration to a broken world.

This could not be more important. We’ve let culture define what the church is, causing people to first think of walls and windows instead of men and women who love and care for them. That ends today.

This is where we need your help. In every dictionary, the first definition of “church” will always be a place. Brick and stone and steel. A few spaces down, you might see the correct definition, but we don’t think this is good enough. We’re petitioning Merriam-Webster and to redefine the word Church like it was always meant to be: the people of God, the whole body of believers. This definition should be the first result. We believe this generation will be the generation that flips the script!

Will you join us? Add your name to the petition and help redefine church!

What’s Next?

Join us for AWAKEN: a young adult conference about Redefining Church

This May 23-25, young adults from all over the country will come together for the AWAKEN Conference from Watermark Community Church and The Porch. The theme of this year’s conference is “redefining church” because we believe this will be the generation that redefines church back to what it was always meant to be. Learn more and join us.

Take to social media

Tell @merriamwebster and @Dictionarycom why they should redefine church. Be sure to use #RedefiningChurch and tag us @watermarkchurch and @theporch.

Note: We are not asking for any financial contribution to this cause. Donations on go toward their own advertising platforms. Simply share this petition with friends.