Church growth

Dots Dying to Be Connected

Recent conversations with pastoral leaders in my home Conference (Wisconsin) about young adult ministry share a common theme: there simply isn’t enough interest in the area.  Apparently, young adults don’t want what the churches have to offer.  Except, this morning when I stopped off for my morning Buzz at Beans […]

Number Dumber

I listened to a Christian commentator rant about the moral decay of the nation and how Christianity “has lost its hold” on our country.  He was basing his rant on a report from the Gallup organization that indicates “only” 78% of Americans identify with some form of Christianity this Christmas.  […]

Time Warped

I read an article this last week that says our Council of Bishops approved a plan to make The United Methodist Church ten-year’s younger in a decade.  I thought, “That can’t be right.”  Just doing the math, we would need 70% of our existing over-50 membership to die or go […]

Mission: Impossible

Two recent conversations stick with me and stand in stark contrast to my understanding of the church.  Now, my understanding may be completely wrong, so take what I say with a grain of salt.  My personal belief is that the church exists to serve in the world — that we […]

Growth Exaggeration

“You’re against church growth, aren’t you?” asked a new, young pastor. I looked at him for a moment, pausing to reflect on the fact that I am often my own worst enemy.  I can fully understand how someone who reads my writing — books and blogs — might get the […]

The Measures of Our Success

In recent months I have visited a number of churches where leaders have apologetically said to me, “Our numbers are down.  We always lose them through the summer.”  Worship attendance is currently the primary metric for a church’s effectiveness — which is ironic because worship attendance has nothing to do […]

What Am I Missing?

I think I have simply evolved into an old fart.  Quite recently and suddenly I find myself at odds with a significant number of leaders in the church.  It is like we are speaking a different language.  No, not “like” we are speaking a different language — it’s a different […]

Bipolar Church

bipolar — characterized by opposite extremes, as two conflicting political philosophies When I began doing congregational consulting in the late 1980s, I made a distinction between two core strategies of healthy churches: growth or mission.  A growth strategy pursues more — more people, more programs, more money, more building, more […]