As the world slowly transitions from a post covid reality (at least from the standpoint of a pandemic) there are many unknowns regarding our social connectivity particularly around the idea of large pockets of individuals gathering together for extended periods of time. Few areas of our collective culture were impacted like the “Cooperate Church.” Beginning with the social normality of a shared space, to the impact economically, to the intimate nature of worship. According to the Hartford Institute for Religious Research the “U.S has more than 1,500 megachurches which defines them as very active Protestant congregations with an average of 2,000 or more weekly attendees.” These huge edifices were designed to accommodate hundreds of thousands of people, but currently many remain dormant or only modestly filled due to social distancing. This affects both our faith as well as the church’s sustainability.
Interestingly, similar to our economy’s dependency on small businesses, it is medium/small churches that uphold and fuel our national spiritual experience. But even those are in jeopardy. Moderator Chuck Todd of NBC news quoted a study that discovered for the first time in American history less than 50% of the country reported being a member and weekly attendee of a physical church. We know that online services were already prevalent prior to covid 19 and have skyrocketed since. So, what does this mean for the proclamation of the Gospel and its economic viability?
Honestly there’s not a one size fits all approach to this current conundrum but there are some effective ways we believe the church can pivot and even flourish. As one of the few vestiges of hope the church must grapple with her voice in the midst of a global identity crisis. Outlined are a few suggestions for consideration in the context of church relevancy and growth…
Church Partnerships- Of course this is easier said than done but if churches within the same local with a similar belief system could share resources and even go so far as to periodically participate in joint services.
Utilizing space for other functions- Thinking outside the box the sanctuary can be used for more than just liturgical ceremonies. How about job fairs, community meetings, and social functions? (within reason)
Renting out space- Many churches already do this…it’s a surefire way to enhance the church’s bottom line as long as clearly defined standards are not violated.
Making investments in your church’s digital footprint- Every church should have an online component and if possible a social media czar to oversee its digital presence.
Utilizing the WING method, NClusive can assist your ministry with identifying the appropriate medium for your voice to be heard in the midst of a global identity crisis. Contact us to explore!