Members of the Stanton Churches of Christ will not like my use of the term “sect,” and I assure you, it’s not meant to be hurtful or derogatory. Here is the definition:
- a dissenting or schismatic religious body; especially : one regarded as extreme or heretical
a religious denomination
- a group adhering to a distinctive doctrine or to a leader
I think any fair-minded person would have to agree that all of these definitions apply. They were founded based on Merie Weiss’s dissenting views from the mainstream Churches of Christ in the late 60’s and early 70’s. As such they became a schism when she broke away and formed her own distinctive church body or “fellowship.” They adhere to a distinctive set of doctrines as well as a leader (or leaders, depending on who you’re talking to).
So again, please don’t be offended by the use of the term “sect.” I’m just using the English language to convey my thoughts, and I’m not trying to offend anyone with that word. In fact, to not use the term on this site would be to accept their premise that they are not, in fact, a division of the body of Christ, but the whole of it. I obviously can’t agree to that; so…we’re stuck with the word “sect.”