World Accommodating New Religious Movements

The World Accommodating New Religious Movement (NRM) is one of Roy Wallis’ three types of New Religious Movement. As the name suggests, their orientation to wider society is one of ‘accommodating’ the world rather than rejecting or affirming it.

These type of religious movement have normally broken off from an already existing mainstream church or religious organisation, and they are thus very close to  Niebuhr’s category of the denomination.

Neo-Pentacostalism is a good example of a World Accommodating New Religious Movement.

Key features of World Accommodating New Religious Movements

  • They are typically offshoots of an already existing religion. For example, neo-Pentecostal groups developed from Protestantism or Catholicism.
  • These movements tend to aim to restore the ‘spiritual purity’ which they believe has been lost in the larger institutions they have broken away from.
  • The main aim of World Accommodating NRMs tends to be to provide members with ‘spiritual solace’ and a way of coping with their ordinary lives.
  • They tend to focus on helping individual members develop their own interior sense of spirituality and commitment to God.
  • Unlike world rejecting movements, they do not reject mainstream society, in fact most members of world accommodating groups tend to be actively involved with mainstream society – they have jobs and the like.
  • Unlike World Affirming Movements, World Accommodating Movements are not obsessed with ‘maxing out personal spiritual growth’, they are more about helping members cope with their ordinary lives, improving their quality of life within in society.

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