Hello friends, I am curious to learn what other PBers think about parachurch organizations. Specifically, do you think Christians, either individually or as a local church, should be supporting them with their time and/or finances? I don't doubt that many do great work supporting the work of the Church; however, I've grown concerned about the legitimacy of them and fear they siphon off resources that should be given to local churches instead. I'm also concerned they compete and rival the Church instead of being subordinate and under the authority of it. Does anyone know how parachurch organizations first started? I will likely irk some by saying this, but I often wonder whether baptist ecclesiology contributed to the proliferation of them in the U.S. I haven't thought this idea through fully, so please poke holes in it if you disagree. I'd also like to hear how you might define what a parachurch ministry is. Would you consider Christian book/magazine publishers, like Banner of Truth, to be a parachurch ministry? How about something like Ligonier Ministries, White Horse Inn, or The Gospel Coalition? Lastly, do you think the explosion of parachurch organizations has contributed to the Christian celebrity cult culture (C4) that exists today? There are a lot of questions shot-gunned in this thread, but I'd appreciate hearing what others think about this topic. Opinions for, against, or indifferent are welcomed. Thanks and have a joyful day in the Lord.