A United Methodist Pastor's Theological Reflections

"But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory (nikos) through our Lord Jesus Christ." - I Corinthians 15:57

Friday, March 27, 2009

180 Wrap-Up

Well, we just got done with the 180 Turn Around seminar held at Redeemer UMC in DeWitt, Michigan. Our group came the farthest so we got gifts - candy and a youth book!

The basic message of the seminar was that although church growth is not easy and can often be a slow process, it's well worth it! The key is to put our energy, focus, and resources into reaching the unchurched in our community through word and deed. Everything the church does needs to be filtered through the mission of the church which is to make disciples for the transformation of the world.

Here are some key nuggets to help make this happen:
  • Decrease the number of meetings to free up church members to be involved in hands on ministry and mission work.
  • To reach new generations, the church needs to change and adapt methodologies in order to speak their language.
  • Signs of growth and vitality will not happen quickly. Lay a foundation for the church to grow and don't give up! Redeemer UMC is an example of this point.
  • Program Staff should not do the ministry, but instead recruit, equip, and empower laity to use their gifts to be in ministry and reach the community.
  • This wasn't mentioned in the seminar, but the church is set up and decorated in such a way that a guest can easily find information and feel welcomed. It was easy for us to see that a ton of intentionality was put into the lay-out of the church. Their information center is a case in point. (see picture above.)

The brief video includes thoughts from our Youth Director and our Worship Chairperson on what they learned from the seminar.


Blogger said...

Great tips. Also having signage in the parking lot so visitors have a close place to park (which also makes it easy to spot them getting out the car so you can get your team ready for when they come through the door. I've started a website about church growth and would love more of your insight at www.growyourchurchshow.com

Robert McDowell said...

Thanks, Blogger. Great suggestion and point about the signage. I'll check out your site. Peace,