The “unchurched” prefer churches that actually look like churches.
No kidding… So do many “churched” people.
Aesthetics have a lot to do with religious experience. After all, a large part of religion is just that: experience. It’s not just about what we think or what we say we think—it’s about what we do and who we are.
We have lost some folks due to this very fact…no matter what we do to the storefront to make it look like a church, it is still a storefront.
You’re right about the “churched” people; I sent this out to my liturgical study group and have received several positive (in agreement, that is) responses back.
It’s also because we are flesh and blood, material beings. Space affects us. Who wants a church in the French Brutalist style? Not me.
The article kind of gives the game away when it refers to the more traditional churches as “aesthetically pleasing” (=not hideously ugly). Shocking that people would prefer that! :)