Wednesday, May 12, 2010

So Those Growth Numbers...

In some of my posts, I've been talking about church growth and decline patterns across religious traditions.  Religious Educator Steve Caldwell just posted about another factor in growth and decline patterns: region.

I am so glad that Steve brought up the regional patterns because I think they have the potential to help us tease out a more accurate picture of the conditions that are currently creating growth and decline.

I am reminded, upon review of the stats Steve has brought forth, of something I learned from Alice Mann at the Alban Institute.  She indicated that when looking at factors involved in growth, understanding demographic trends is important in terms of being responsive, but that a congregation needs to be clear about what it can and can't control.  In looking at the issue from this angle, I suggest that the response to decline might vary regionally.

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