Of “Mushroom” and “Muchroom”: An Inquiry into the House Churches in 1 Cor. 16:19 Par and the Rise of Pentecostal Churches in Nigeria


In the 80s, the nascent Pentecostalism as Christian movement was novel to the erstwhile sublime, stereotyped nature and practices of the Mission Churches that have held sway for centuries in Nigeria. The older churches thought and called the Pentecostals “Mushroom Churches”, that is something that has no lasting nature. In response, the Pentecostals see and called themselves “Muchroom Churches”, that is, churches with more opportunities in doctrine, practices and spread. In the present, the Pentecostal Churches have not only spread, but have seemingly dominating the Christian landscape, dictating the direction, and becoming the image of Christianity in Nigeria, to the detriment of the Mission Churches. Employing contextual Biblical and phenomenological tool, this paper examined I Cor. 19:16 par which serves as the source of information on the origin, nature and practices of the Christian Church in the beginning vis viz Pentecostalism in Nigeria. Findings among others reveal that, in Pentecostalism, there is an attempt at rediscovering and reinventing of the Christian Church in Nigeria, though with much flaws, it is an indication of a movement that seems Biblical and therefore will last. To this end, the Mission Churches must respond to guarantee their continued existence in Nigeria.