I once heard a joke about statistics. The person giving the stats said – “73.267% of all stats are made up on the spot.” That may not be the case but it is difficult to trust every statistic that comes through your RSS feed.
Thom Rainer and the good folks at ChurchAnswers.com have provided some reliable stats that we can trust. Why? Because their only agenda is to help pastors and churches become all that God intended. The following statistics do not include megachurches since more solid quantitative data (that does not include online attendance) is needed.
Here are 3 stats that we should pay close attention to:
1. Before the quarantine, the median worship attendance was 65. Today it is 55.
We have to throw in a qualifier here because this data point was on a steep decline prior to the pandemic.
In 2000, the median worship attendance was 137.
In 2010 it was 105.
In 2020 it was 65.
Today it is 55.
So what does this mean? The median worship attendance has declined by 60% in two decades. After reading that statistic, there should be alarm bells going off in your head. If we do nothing except analyzing this number, we are part of the problem rather than part of the solution.
2. The occupancy rate of worship centers was 33% before the quarantine. Today it is 28%.
Per churchanswers.com – The median size of a worship center is 200. If the church has more than one service, the occupancy rate is even lower. With this in mind, we need to consider the massive implications for church facilities in the near and distant future.
If our churches are not being utilized each day for ministry, is there a way to open up the facilities for community usage? Could this be a way of building a relationship with those in your area?
3. The median year of church founding was 1950 before the quarantine. That has not changed.
Simply stated, we have not started enough churches to move the median founding date significantly in many years. New churches and new sites are crucial strategies for churches today.
I believe that revitalizing churches as well as planting life-giving churches are necessary to reach those who are far from Christ.
Dream with me…
What if every church (existing or newly planted) intentionally implemented a church planting strategy? Imagine if every church, whether as a sending church or partnering with other churches were able to plant a church within the next 2 years?
WOW!! We could gain ground with regards to the Great Commission and build momentum within the existing church! After all, people will get behind and support a mission and vision that is truly making a kingdom impact!
We can do this…
We must do this… for God’s glory!