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They have a mixture of sect-like and denomination-like characteristics. existing today originated as sects breaking away from denominations (or Churches, in the case of Lutheranism and Anglicanism).
Examples include: Hutterites, Iglesia ni Cristo, and the Amish. Examples include: Methodists, Baptists, and Seventh-day Adventists.
Along this continuum are several additional types, each of which will be discussed in turn.
Many labels are commonly employed by non-sociologists to refer to religions and tend to be used interchangeably.
Johnstone provides the following eight characteristics of denominations: Sociologically, a "sect" is defined as a newly formed religious group that formed to protest elements of its parent religion (generally a denomination).
Their motivation tends to be situated in accusations of apostasy or heresy in the parent denomination; they often decry liberal trends in denominational development and advocate a return to so-called "true" religion.
An often seen result of such factors is the incorporation into the theology of the new sect a distaste for the adornments of the wealthy (e.g., jewelry or other signs of wealth).
After their formation, sects can take only three paths - dissolution, institutionalization, or eventual development into a denomination.
Most scholars believe that when sect formation involves social class distinctions, they reflect an attempt to compensate for deficiencies in lower social status.In the sociology of religion, the most widely used classification is the church-sect typology.The typology states that churches, ecclesia, denominations and sects form a continuum with decreasing influence on society.The adoption of denomination-like characteristics can either turn the sect into a full-blown denomination or, if a conscious effort is made to maintain some of the spontaneity and protest components of sects, an institutionalized sect can result.Institutionalized sects are halfway between sects and denominations on the continuum of religious development.
Sects are break-away groups from more mainstream religions and tend to be in tension with society.