Euthanizing Small Groups

Pastor Brian Jones tells of the response he got from one ‘nationally recognized’ pastor when Brian told him that he hadn’t figured out the whole small group thing yet.  Brian said the pastor’s response was something like this: “Well, Brian, that’s because they don’t work. Small groups are things that trick us into believing we are serious about making disciples. The problem is 90 percent of small groups never produce one single disciple. Ever. They help Christians make shallow friendships, for sure. They’re great at helping Christians feel a tenuous...
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I Don’t Trust Pastors

Elizabeth Esther writes: I don’t trust pastors. I want to trust them – but I’ve experienced so much church-related devastation that I doubt if I can ever again believe the best about their motives, preaching or how they conduct their lives. My trust is utterly broken. Still, the last thing I want to do is pass that disillusionment on to my children. I don’t want to cheat them of having a solid faith identity simply because Mommy can barely sit through a sermon without having a panic attack. I know of families who drop their kids at church while they go have coffee or run...
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Churches find loophole to no permanent Nativities by hosting LIVE Nativities

Dateline Santa Monica. No ‘permanant’ Nativity displays is the new law. So… churches decide that the law really doesn’t apply to non-permanent LIVE Nativity displays. Here’s our take: What do you think?  Is this a good thing, or are the churches kind of thumbing their nose at the city on this one? Leave a comment below… Todd
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Should we allow our staff to use 20% of their time on side projects to help eliminate burnout?

Here’s an interesting commentary… what do you think?  Great idea, or horrible one? Many church staff in congregations perform several ministry functions even though they are not officially a “pastor”. Special attention to church staff (youth directors, associate ministers, musicians, office assistants, interns, educators, etc…) and their work wellness. Appreciating their work is not enough (a raise wouldn’t hurt). Pastors and church leadership need give more time off in a world where church staff have to do “more with less”. Micromanaging, low pay, unreasonable expectations,...
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How To Make $71 Billion A Year: Tax the Churches

The church has enjoyed ‘tax-exempt’ status in America for many years… but that doesn’t mean this will continue forever. In fact, this article claims that the US Government could make $71 Billion a year just by stopping this practice.  (Actually, I bet it’s much more). I think the day is coming that, at some point, the door will at least be opened to closing some of the tax benefits churches receive. My guess is that the first to go will be the clergy housing allowance. Anyway… read this from Derek Beres and let me know what you think… Derek writes: While the...
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Why your church won’t try new things

Here’s a gem (I think) from an article from FastCompany.com: “Companies resist innovation because it appears to be less profitable”. OK… let me re-phrase: “Churches resist innovation because it appears to be less profitable”. But the church is ‘non-profit’. Really? Most church leaders are always looking at the bottom line.  And you have to… because you’re responsible for it. But starting a new ministry when it makes little or no financial sense to do so? And if there’s not a way to justify, on the front-end, mind you, the expense to...
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United for Marriage

Leaders of some of the largest religious communities in the United States have joined together in an open letter to all Americans to voice their shared concern for marriage and religious freedom….Signatories include leaders from Anglican, Baptist, Catholic, Evangelical, Jewish, Lutheran, Mormon, and Pentecostal communities in the United States.  Here is the letter. Dear Friends: The promotion and protection of marriage—the union of one man and one woman as husband and wife—is a matter of the common good and serves the wellbeing of the couple, of children, of civil society and all people.The...
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Barna: What people experience in churches

Barna has a new survey out.  Most Americans have first-hand experiences in churches or parishes. What happens, if anything, in the hearts and minds of those who attend? Here are some of the findings: (66%) feel they have had “a real and personal connection” with God while attending church. (26%) who had been to a church before said that their life had been changed or affected “greatly” by attending church. Nearly half said their life had not changed at all as a result of churchgoing (46%). (61%) said they could not remember a significant or important new insight or understanding related to...
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Up 2.7% – Senior Pastor Salaries

According to Christianity Today,  Senior pastors reported salaries and benefits that, on average, were 2.7 percent higher than those reported for the preceding 2010-2011 Compensation Handbook for Church Staff: Read more here at ChurchJobs.tv… How’s that compare with your salary this year?  Up 2.7%?  More?  Less?  Pay freeze because of the economy?  How’s this hitting home for you and your...
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Our Staff Rarely Leave

Kevin East thinks that employees will, of course, come and go… but when they leave your church or organization, it’s much better that they be ‘launched’ than ‘leave’.  Here is how Kevin suggests you put yourself in the position to properly ‘launch employees’ when the time is right…          
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