I love it when churches of all sizes, cultures and denominations come together with innovative ideas to benefit the church nationwide and even worldwide! Churches all across the country are preparing for “National Back to Church Sunday,” on Sept. 16. “National Back to Church Sunday” is a community outreach program designed to invite the nation back to church! The program is supported by LifeWay Research, outreach.com, churchleaders.com and sermoncentral.com. Churches that participate receive tools and information to invite friends, family members and neighbors back to church. Also, churches are also encouraged to reach out to people who have never been to church before!
- Although 83 percent of American adults identify themselves as Christians, only about 20 percent attend church on any given Sunday.
- Studies show that 82% of unchurched people would attend if someone invited them! Yet fewer than 2% of Christians ever invite an unchurched person! National Back to Church Sunday was designed to change that.
- Last year 7600 churches participated from 34 denominations and together gave millions of invitations to church. It’s amazing to hear the testimonies of record attendance and the number of people that came to Christ through this powerful weekend. Churches responding to a post-event survey welcomed an average of 34 new visitors and increase of 25.4 percent in attendance. Survey results also show that 96% of participating churches would take part in Back to Church Sunday again.
- Since the initiative began in 2009, “National Back To Church Sunday” has seen increased success. Some 3,800 churches participated in 2010.
- It’s free – You can sign up your church for free on the roster. There are optional resources available to help you plan and equip your members to invite your community.
- “Our church almost broke the attendance record for the year and we beat Easter service. Definitely worth doing and pursuing.”–Northgate Wesleyan Church
- “We broke all our previous attendance records with 145 people including 20-30 first time visitors. That’s an increase of 70% over our normal Sunday attendance. There were multiple commitments/renewals and several others who requested more information about the church. ‘Back to Church Sunday’ is one of the most successful outreach events we have ever hosted.”–Victory Christian Church
And I love this rap video with pastors inviting people back to church, and it’s not even corny …It’s actually hilarious!
So if you have stopped going to church, why? And would you come if someone invited you? If you have never been to church, would you come if someone invited you?
In other religious news, seems like folk in the U.K. are losing their religion as a hotel in England is replacing the Bible with “Fifty Shades of Grey!” (Clutching my faux pearls! If you haven’t heard of the book, it’s a trilogy of erotic books that have been referred to as “mommy porn.”) I wonder what the Gideons (the organization responsible for putting Bibles in hotel rooms nationwide and even in other parts of the world) have to say about this! Read the story on msn.com.
Finally, the NAACP has developed a manual to help black church leaders speak with their congregants about HIV and AIDS, which haven’t been a topic for open discussion in the black church. According to “The Washington Post,” “African-Americans make up almost half of all new HIV infections, and blacks are less likely to get treatment and more likely to die of complications from AIDS than any other race.” Read the entire article at “The Washington Post.”