Next week (on January 13 to be exact) I’ll be hosting an online workshop called “Five Signs of Congregational Decline (and What to Do About Them).” I got the idea for the topic from a blog post at tonymorganlive.com called “5 Attributes of a Church in Decline.” Morgan writes about talking with a denominational leader who had “personally been involved in consulting engagements with about 60 declining churches within his denomination.” Morgan asked the leader if there were any common themes among these declining churches, and “within moments, he rattled off…five attributes of churches he’s worked with that are in decline”:

  1. Lack of mission and vision clarity
  2. Failure to define a concise strategy to help newcomers become  fully-devoted followers of Christ
  3. Complex structure
  4. Inward-focused with little connection to the surrounding community
  5. Weak leadership especially in the senior pastor role

Now I don’t agree with every thing Morgan has here (“weak leadership” is a catch-all term I wouldn’t want to use, especially in reference to senior ministers!).  And of course UU congregations aren’t particularly interested in helping newcomers become “fully-devoted followers of Christ.” But there’s a lot that rings true here. So I’ve adapted them a bit for our liberal religious situation. If you’re interested in finding out more, consider signing up for the workshop, 6:45 p.m. Central Time, Thursday, January 13. For more information and to register, click here. By the way, the workshop will be repeated on Tuesday, January 18, so if you can’t make the first one, maybe we’ll “see” you at the second one.

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