I read this recent article in Parade. Here is the main paragraph that stuck out to me...
"As a concrete measure of religious commitment, nothing beats counting how many bodies show up
to worship every week. So how often do Americans attend religious services? Thirty percent said
they attend once or more in a given week. But keep in mind that academic researchers who actually
count the number of participants believe that only up to one-half of those who claim to be in their
houses of worship are actually there.
Twenty percent of respondents said they go to services anywhere from once a month to a few times a year. Combine them with the 50% who rarely or never attend, and an interesting contrast appears. Although 45% of respondents considered themselves religious, 70% of them said they participate in organized religion sporadically or not at all. That means one-third of the people who identified themselves as religious were only minimally connected to traditional worship. "
Let me get this straight...70 percent attend church at maybe Easter, Christmas, or not at all. Let me catch my breath.
Here are some questions for you to ponder. Do I invite my friends to church? Do I feel my church offers something for my unchurched friends that would be worth their time? Do I consider regular church attendance (2-4 times per month) a vital part of my spiritual journey? If I knew that NO ONE would ever ask or care if I went to church, would I keep going? What keeps me from going to church every week?
I would love to hear your comments. As a church leader, if I am creating a worship experience that is not engaging, not relevant to unchurched people, not encouraging you in your spiritual journey, and frankly just a waste of your time, please tell me. I would really like to know.