Challenges and Opportunities
Yesterday during the worship service, I suggested big challenges offer great opportunities as well. There are certainly challenges present at North Danvers Mennonite Church as well as in other congregations across the country, but I think there are opportunities for us to continue reaching out in love.
Don’t forget that there will be a potluck fellowship meal after the worship service next week (September 25)! This is a great opportunity to invite a few friends and to encourage the kind of relationship building we talked about yesterday. Make plans to attend!
I promised I’d show you my research for part of what I said in yesterday’s sermon about the demographics of Church attendance. So prepare for an information dump. This study highlights the decline in Church attendance over the past two years: https://ifstudies.org/blog/the-decline-in-church-attendance-in-covid-america. This is the study I cited on burnout among people in full-time ministry: https://www.barna.com/research/pastors-quitting-ministry/. This is another Barna study on the recent increase in Church attendance among the Millennial generation https://www.barna.com/research/church-attendance-2022/. And here you’ll find an Interesting article on what Millennials are looking for in a Church here: https://careynieuwhof.com/5-things-millennials-are-looking-for-in-a-church/. Finally, if you’re interested on the study of the effects of Church attendance on flourishing relationships among U.S. adults, you can find that here: https://www.barna.com/research/churchgoers-new-metrics/ .
That is a lot of information to take in, but I think we need to think seriously about what’s going on in our society if we want to effectively respond to the changes in Church attendance. It’s a challenge, but NDMC has overcome challenges before.
Let me know what you think some of our primary challenges are and especially let me know if you have ideas of how you think we should respond.
God bless, Brian
Scripture readings for next Sunday 1 Peter 1:3-9—What role does hope have in our faith?
Proverbs 19:17-21—What do these passages teach us about the future?
2 Corinthians 4:16-18—What does it mean to “fix your eyes on what is unseen”?
Lamentations 3:19-33—What is the connection between suffering and hope?