I found this observation in my notes as if I was going to flesh it out more. I’m not going to now, but I think it stands relatively well on its own, so I post it here for consideration.

Since people in American culture are immensely diverse (both within the church and without), one would expect that American churches driven by a “missional” mindset would exhibit a similar diversity as they try to serve different groups. In fact, however, so-called “missional” churches tend to share a fairly narrow set of cultural signifiers: being “casual” and “contemporary,” valuing small groups over other kinds of church gatherings, sophisticated multimedia, etc. They also tend to converge on a middlebrow aesthetic centered around contemporary pop music. (Obviously there are cowboy churches and other exceptions to this observation, but if we conceive of a generic “missional” and “relevant” church we all know what it will look like.) This suggests that some criteria other than the “missional” is being employed.