Everybody’s religious values are different, and I certainly wouldn’t ever suggest that somebody ought to worship a particular way just because that’s what appeals to me.
But for me personally, my church meets at a public high school, and I am actually really proud of being part of a congregation that is very low-impact in its land use. Meeting in an auditorium has never made church feel any less spiritual for me personally, and I see it as a way of living out our values, and a lot of our community service is directed toward the school community.
Religious practices in America are changing rapidly, though, and many churches with large land holdings are attracting smaller and smaller congregations. It will be really interesting to see how those trends impact land use, as you’ll probably see a lot of churches (more so nationally than Raleigh specifically) decide that holding that much land is no longer the best way of fulfilling their spiritual mission. The knock-on effects of that could end up being really positive in some ways, but it’s a process than needs to run its own course in its own time, because the ability of people to worship as they feel moved to is obviously paramount in that.