A 3D rendered illustration of a bar graph on a white background showing a decline with a ornage arrow point downward

Majority of Denominations Register Decline in Attendance

Worship attendance on a given Sunday has dipped below an average of 100 for the first time since the Hartford Institute for Religious Research first started keeping track in 2000. In 2005, 47% of U.S. churches were averaging below 100 in attendance, but that number has jumped to 58% in 2015 as mainline churches and the majority of other denominations saw attendance declines as well.

Go here to read the full storyGet stories like this and more each week with Ministry Briefing! Order now and receive your first four issues for just $1!

Why this matters for church leaders:

Churches that hope to reach more people for the gospel need to know that overall attendance is declining across the board.

  • No longer a mainline problem: While previous declines in church attendance had been largely isolated to the mainline congregations and the loss of nominal Christians, this shift signals that the decline in church attendance throughout America should be on every leader’s mind.
  • How to bring more people into church? Research indicates that the most effective way to bring new people into church is to plant more churches, but the question remains whether plateaued ministries can be turned around effectively and efficiently.
  • What are you measuring? Of course you’ll never know if your church is a part of this negative trend if you don’t keep track of attendance, giving, small group participation, and volunteer involvement.

Is your church on the rise, decline, or plateau right now? Does something need to change?


Find this story interesting?  It’s just one of dozens of stories great leaders are reading about this week in Ministry Briefing! All readers of my blog can get the next four issues of Ministry Briefing for just $1!

logo_ministry_cSave Time. Lead Better.  Ministry Briefing finds only the top news items, cultural trends, and resources that you need to know about each week… stories that will help you save time and lead better.

Save Time.

Who doesn’t want to be a better leader, right? But it takes time to develop and learn new leadership insights. And it takes an intelligent plan. Ministry Briefing puts everything you need to develop your leadership in your hands each month. You’ll find the top 40 resources nicely summarized and fully linked so that you can drill-down on your specific areas of interest.

Lead Better.

Great leaders learn from great leaders.  Each week, our editors read hundreds of church leadership resources (the great, the not-so-great, and the ‘really’?) and pick only the best of the best to share in Ministry Briefing.  You’ll learn great concepts and ideas from really sharp minds… things that will stretch and mold you into a better leader for your local church.

Our Commitment.

We’re not in the business of selling a bloated program or complicated process that guarantees (or suggests) that we’ll make you the next Andy Stanley. We don’t claim to be the best thing since sliced bread. We simply have a passion for the church and ministry and collecting the best resources we think can help you be a better church leader, one idea at a time.
Great church leaders keep up on what’s happening in the big “C” church. We make it easy to keep your head out of the sand without wasting your time. Read this week’s full edition with your no-risk trial subscription now.

Leave a Reply

6 Total Shares
Current Events Humor Leadership Staffing
Declining and Growing Churches Differ in Theology

A study of growing conservative churches and declining mainline churches found...

NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 11:  A homeless man rests in a pew at a Times Square church where some area homeless take refuge from the cold on December 11, 2013 in New York City. New York and much of New England has been experiencing freezing temperatures with snow expected this weekend. According to a recent study by the by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, New York City's homeless population increased by 13 percent at the beginning of this year. Despite an improving local economy, as of last January an estimated 64,060 homeless people were in shelters and on the street in New York. Only Los Angeles had a larger percentage increase than New York for large cities.  (Phot
Churches Open Their Doors to the Homeless in the Winter

There are over 550,000 homeless throughout America, and churches throughout cities...

Printing Press Helped Martin Luther Go Viral

As Martin Luther posted his 95 theses against the sale of...