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Stop Worrying About Worship Attendance — Thrive Instead!

For a long time, clergy have taken credit when attendance rose and felt guilty when it fell. Most people assume that the best measure of a congregation’s spiritual vitality is the headcount at weekly worship. But some congregations have begun to think beyond that metric and focus more broadly about how their ministry transforms lives. […]

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Is the Era of the “Program Church” Over?

Everywhere I go, I hear complaints from congregational staff and lay leaders that their programs are not well attended. These leaders seek input about the kinds of programs members want. But then, too often, when programs are offered, attendance ranges between disappointing and none.

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Family or Institution?

by Dan Hotchkiss A church or synagogue always is two congregations at the same time. One is the formal institution, governed under bylaws by elected officers and ministers and staff. This congregation has procedures, rules of order (whether Roberts or some new alternative), and stated decision-making methods. Each newcomer who joins has the full rights […]

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