Who owns your congregation’s property?
You might be surprised when you find out. Most everyone would assume that the voting assembly of the congregation owns its real estate, buildings, and equipment. For many congregations that’s true. But some Baptist and Pentecostal church property is owned directly by the pastor and his family. And if you belong to a congregation in a hierarchical structure like the Roman Catholic Church, all congregational property belongs to the archdiocese, and everybody is expected to... Read More
Dear Mamas of little ones,
I sat behind you in church this week.
I saw you struggle with holding two kiddos because the one in your arms wasn’t happy when another one wanted to join.
I saw your son completely messing up your hair.
I saw you and your husband hand the toddler (who had a cold) back and forth because he couldn’t decide which lap he liked best.
I saw the look on your face as you jumped up... Read More
A few years ago, the Pew Research Center’s Religion and Public Life Project shared some serious (although probably not shocking) findings: millennials are less engaged in religion than any other generation in nearly one hundred years.
As a 20-something myself, the main problem that comes to mind is this: we expect millennials to love church just because they “should.”
It’d be nice if churches were overflowing on Sundays with 30-year-olds eager to worship despite being bored, ignored, and disengaged. Young... Read More
Are you a member of your congregation? Are you a customer of the services provided by your pastor and church staff? Are you an owner? Who really owns a ministry? Who has the last word?
Those questions rarely come up when everybody is happy, but when there is conflict, suddenly people start looking around the constitution and bylaws (if they exist). Does it surprise you to know that all real estate, buildings, and furnishings in a Catholic church belong either... Read More
Last week I blogged about the conclusions from some Christian observers that membership and attendance in Christian churches is in serious decline. I offered my own “top five” list of attitudes in congregations that can help growth. The 5th was this:
“You aren’t really ready to welcome new people unless you are willing to let them change your style and congregational culture.”
That comment drew some questions and pushback, and so I would like to expand on what I... Read More