Vol 23 No 1 2016

A Faith of Our Own

Sharon Kim


Sharon Kim is a sociologist of religion who investigated the dynamics of second-generation Korean American churches in Los Angeles. She gathered a broad base of data from 22 churches over 10 years (1996-2006), using participant-observation, literature review, surveys and interviews. Two churches started in the 1980s, 15 in the 1990s and 5 after 2000. Ten are nondenominational and the others range from Southern Baptist to Presbyterian. Seven numbered less than 100 members, 9 had 100-200 members, 5 had 200-500 members and 1 had 3000+. The research is an insightful analysis of an innovative new grouping of churches that are mushrooming in number. Moreover, it has broader helpfulness with implications for culturally diverse ministry in other contexts.