New Places for New People (Feb/Mar/Apr 2010)

The third issue in Circuit Rider's year-long series on the United Methodist Church's Four Areas of Focus. This issue offers ideas and insights into church growth and church planting, helping leaders attract and welcome new people, whatever their context.

In This Issue

Why Should They Come?

Why Should They Come?

By
Karen Greenwaldt
Recently I asked a young woman why she did not attend church. Her answer startled me: “It’s like going to someone else’s family reunion. Why would I go?” I …
Reaching Out Like a New Church, Whatever Your Age!

Reaching Out Like a New Church, Whatever Your Age!

By
Jacob Armstrong
As I made the drive from my house to a local city park on the Saturday before Easter, I noticed church after church hosting their annual Easter egg hunts. The parking lots were…
Incentives to Decline: Why Some Churches Really Don't Want to Grow

Incentives to Decline: Why Some Churches Really Don't Want to Grow

By
John Flowers, Karen Vannoy
Your congregation has been in significant decline for years. Members acknowledge that something must be done to reverse the decline. Plans are discussed and official votes are…
Welcoming Visitors with Children

Welcoming Visitors with Children

By
Rita Hays
Jeff and Sally Wright are the parents of newborn baby Zack and they are visiting your church for the first time. Jeff and Sally may come away from their visit to your congregation …
QUIZ: How family-friendly is your church?

QUIZ: How family-friendly is your church?

By
Rita Hays
Check the statements that accurately describe your children’s ministries. ___ We provide a nursery for infants and small children.___ Our nursery is regularly staffed with…
Institution v. Innovation: Can edgy churches grow and thrive within the UMC?

Institution v. Innovation: Can edgy churches grow and thrive within the UMC?

By
Arthur Jones
“CHURCH DOESN'T SUCK. WWW.GRACEPOINT.COM.” As some United Methodist pastors drove by this laconic sign, they cringed because they knew something about GracePoint that …
Why I Don't Go to Church

Why I Don't Go to Church

By
Erin Stanley
Once we know something, we fi nd it hard to imagine what it was like not to know it. —Chip Heath and Dan Heath, Made to Stick It is often hard for those of us inside the…
The Pentecost Paradigm: Creating a New, Multicultural Border Space

The Pentecost Paradigm: Creating a New, Multicultural Border Space

By
Jacqueline J. Lewis
The story of Pentecost is not only a story about Spirit but a story about borders. The people are gathered there from all over the known world; they crossed borders to come to…
According to Their Ability: Church Growth in Small and Rural Locations

According to Their Ability: Church Growth in Small and Rural Locations

By
David Oaks
After thirty-two years in pastoral ministry, I have come to see three great influences upon my experience. These might be summarized by that famous line from business that states…
Virtual Community, Real Relationships

Virtual Community, Real Relationships

By
Jacqui King
God is doing a new thing! That is the proclamation from the prophet Isaiah. In the world of technology, new things are happening every day. New technology offers the church new…
Achieving a Critical Mass of Young People

Achieving a Critical Mass of Young People

By
Donna Schaper
My congregation in New York City has experienced a very welcome generational shift over the last several years. From an average age of sixty, we are now an average age of forty…
Jesus Saves

Jesus Saves

By
Rebecca W. Dolch
Once a week for five years I drove fifty miles to Buffalo, New York. On a back road is a farm with a house near the road. A very small fruit and vegetable stand sits out front…