Posts Tagged ‘Faith Communities Today’

Tradition bound? Many Orthodox parishes struggle with change

Eastern Orthodox churches in the U.S. have several strengths, including awe-inspiring worship, a strong sense of theological identity and a willingness to embrace new technology. But a major new study also found that in an environment that calls on all houses of worship to be more creative in reaching new generations, Eastern Orthodox parishes seem particularly resistant.

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Lessons from Amazon: Being open to change can spur congregational vitality, growth

The majority of congregations are at a crossroad today: They must adapt to a culture where churchgoing is increasingly more of a choice than an obligation, or face a future of sustained decline. Yet many congregations have been reluctant to embrace any major changes in outreach to attract new members or retain younger generations. Instead, they appear to be cutting back, research indicates.

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The '1 percent' in mainline Protestantism? Congregations attracting young adults

Is there a point of no return for the resurgence of mainline Protestantism? As the movement enters its second half-century of precipitous decline, new research suggests that not only is there no end in sight, but there are few signs of hope for revival in rapidly aging, shrinking groups such as the Episcopal Church, the United Methodist Church and the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

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The Amazon effect: Worshippers flocking to larger churches

Just as one-stop shopping behemoths such as Walmart and Amazon are fulfilling the retail needs of America’s consumers, larger churches are increasingly meeting the spiritual needs of America’s faithful. New research indicates a decline in attendance at the great majority of the nation’s churches, while churches attracting 400 people or more on Sundays are dramatically increasing their market share.

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Reversing the exodus: 7 characteristics of congregations successfully attracting young adults

Eat, pray, read the Bible. Congregations with high levels of spiritual vitality and that placed a lot of emphasis on spiritual practices such as prayer and scripture reading were more likely to have significant numbers of young adults, according to a new report analyzing data from the 2010 Faith Communities Today study. The report provides insights into the distinctive characteristics of religious communities where 21 percent or more of participants were ages 18 to 34.

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‘Free riders’ and the recession: Churches face hard economic choices attracting new members

Is there a Groupon solution for houses of worship? Congregations struggling to emerge from the recession may be leery of encouraging “free riders,” individuals who use church services without paying the costs of providing those goods. But while attracting new members with free or reduced-price services may be risky investments, allowing some free riding also is necessary for the future of the church, some scholars conclude.

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