The Church often sees levels of membership, attendance, participation, and giving (even) as measures of its vitality (like, checking your vitals). That’s good. Numbers are important. But, in a time of decline, such numbers are not measures of anything but the past. What could be measures that are predictive of the Church’s future success?
If you might remember, last week, we ended on the thought that we have to know as much about what keeps the Church going as we do about what is causing its decline. That’s the only way that we are going to know whether or not our success is actually relevant to the future.
But, to climb out of a decline, it’s not devoted people that the Church needs – not part owners – neither that of clergy nor of laity.
Here’s our thesis: The Church needs devoted people to keep it going. Devoted people are those who see the church as their church – like, they are part owners of their church. So, to get devoted people, the Church offers people equity through membership. That’s how the Church gets people to be part owners.
But, to climb out of a decline, it’s not devoted people that the Church needs – not part owners – neither that of clergy nor of laity. Instead, what the Church needs are procreators: people who are willing to make a different version of themselves in order to build a whole new world.
Procreation is not often in the minds of denomination-minded thinkers; replication is, so often. The future belongs to the procreators.
James from PASTORIA
Head of Guidance