Influencers in Church Ministry today – help!

According to the Barna Poll – The Top 10 Christian Influencers from pastors in the US:

Pastors named Billy Graham as the most influential Christian leader in the U.S. according to a new survey, and they say Graham is still the most trusted spokesman for the Christian faith. Pastors were each asked to identify three leaders; 300 total were named.

Graham was chosen by pastors of all denominations, with Purpose-Driven author and pastor Rick Warren second, but there was great disparity in their remaining selections, with each group more likely to nominate its own. Mainliners commended Martin Marty and Will Willimon; Baptists cited Jerry Falwell, John MacArthur, and Adrian Rogers; and Pentecostals tapped Benny Hinn, Joyce Meyer, and Paul Crouch.

Here are the top ten influencers, averaged from all pastors’ nominations:
1. Billy Graham
2. Rick Warren
3. George W. Bush
4. James Dobson
5. Bill Hybels
6. T.D. Jakes
7. John Maxwell
8. George Barna
9. Pope John Paul II
10. Max Lucado

from CT Online – here.

(my question – why isn’t PJ Harvey, Nick Cave, Tom Waits, or Denis Johnson on this list?!)

4 Comments

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  1. or maybe…BONO! (or were you just leaving him off so as to not raise jimmywhiteshoes’s ire?)

    One problem: this survey doesn’t really specify whether these are “Christian” “influencers” are influencing for good or for ill. For example, I’m right on board with nos. 2-4 (and 8) if you allow that these influencers might be leading people toward evil.

    Do people have to be alive to be “influencers” (obviously not – JPII)? Do they have to be from the USA (obviously not – JPII), or just have an influence on ministry IN the USA?

    So then: what about Bonhoeffer? Bob Dylan? CARMEN!? (just kidding on that one.) MLK? Henri Nouwen? Steven Spielberg, perhaps? Friggin OPRAH! Oh yes, I went there.

  2. this may be the most convincing argument I have ever heard for the reply “oh, well, I’m not a Christian.”

  3. This is extremely sad. Do you think the people who voted for Billy Graham know that he’s a registered Democrat?

  4. I’ll bet Rev. Graham voted for Bush, though. But maybe not. Isn’t he all tight w/ GWB?

    I’m counting down the days until my mom and I have it out, big and loud, over James Dobson…I’m not sure how much longer it can be avoided…

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