Are Church Programs Hindering Church Growth?

Are Church Programs Hindering Church Growth?

Posted on 08. Jan, 2010 by in Challenging Status Quo

Modern, North American church growth seems to focus on various programs. The church calendar is filled with special events designed to motivate members to invite those around them. Yet for all the energy and resources that go into these programs: do they actually help? Or maybe they have a greater limiting effect?

One of the dangers of church programs is they can hinder the growth of a church by creating a way of thinking that is contrary to what was exampled by the first church. Program based ministry establishes a limiting paradigm in the believer in the following ways:

1. A mindset that the major outreach or evangelism needs to be done at the church location.
2. A mindset that the leadership of the church needs to oversee the major outreach or evangelism.
3. A mind set that majority of ministry gifts are to operate when the church gathers at one location.
4. A mindset that we must create an event that will entice visitors to come to our location.

Now, before someone starts to hurl the rotten eggs and tomatoes, let me say: I am not against some usage of programs. I am against a program mentality. I am against the above mindset.

I believe, based on biblical example, that the first church empowered the born again believer. Their focus of ministry was not at a local assembly, after all, they did not have buildings called churches. Their method of evangelism was to preach Jesus and demonstrate the power of the Kingdom. This they did during their daily life and the Lord added to their numbers.

Just thinking out loud –
martin

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6 Responses to “Are Church Programs Hindering Church Growth?”

  1. Doug Rea

    08. Jan, 2010

    i think until we get back to “empowering people to empower people” then we are practicing rituals that will have little or no effect on actually cultivating a society

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  2. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Doug Rea, Martin Schmaltz. Martin Schmaltz said: Are church programs hindering church growth? http://tr.im/JMTf Your thoughts? […]

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  3. uberVU - social comments

    11. Jan, 2010

    Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by MartinSchmaltz: Are church programs hindering church growth? http://tr.im/JMTf Your thoughts?…

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  4. Vince DeMuth

    26. Oct, 2011

    Thanks Martin! Carol and I are stepping out in the local community where we just bought a home and getting some Bible studies and working on building a preaching point. The county we are in has no UPCI church currently. Pray for us as we step out to fulfill the great commission. We welcome any advice or words of wisdom from you. Already have plans, if the Lord allows, to have you come at some point down the road. Blessings!

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    • Martin Schmaltz

      27. Oct, 2011

      Great news Vince, excited for you. Would suggest two books: The Tangible Kingdom and Total Church. I really like their concept of being the church or being incarnational. Keep me posted.

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