FROM THE BISHOP
R. LAWSON BRYAN
How are we doing with our emphasis on being Alive Together in Worship this year? I have good news to report and some specific examples to share:
- at least 75% of the churches in each district have identified their top 10 services in terms of worship attendance, and in some districts that number rises to 95%.
- our churches are recognizing attendance patterns and are using that knowledge to grow worship attendance.
- here are some examples of the significant increases in worship attendance we are seeing across the South Georgia Conference. I will be sharing more examples in the future.
|North Central:||Rockledge||30% increase|
|Northeast:||New Beulah||1000% increase|
|Grace (Vidalia)||60% increase|
|Sylvania First||45% increase|
|Southwest:||Cooks Union||60% increase|
|Coastal||Morgan’s Chapel||49% increase|
|The Chapel||7% increase|
|South Central:||Bemiss||45% increase|
|Northwest:||Buena Vista||20% increase|
|St. Luke (9 a.m.)||100% increase|
|St. Paul||5% increase|
Not all increases will be double digits. Remember, even a 1% increase means we are pointing in the right direction. That can lead to a 3% increase the next year. And then a 5% increase. So do not stress over the particular percentage, but celebrate taking the steps that lead to sustained growth in worship attendance. This is one of the most significant ways we make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.
Thanks to you we have been able to gather data about worship attendance for Christmas Eve services. On Christmas Eve we had more than 54,000 persons in worship throughout the South Georgia Conference. When all reports are received I believe Christmas Eve worship will be 20% higher than our regular weekly average attendance.
The bottom line is: it’s working. In 2016, our annual conference set a goal of increasing average worship attendance by 10%. In 2017, we read Lovett Weems’ book, "Overflow: Increasing Worship Attendance," and he was our teacher at our annual conference session. We handed out a toolkit of resources for increasing worship. Our district superintendents and our pastors and churches have seized this opportunity to be Alive Together in Christ through Worship. Thanks to each of you for your role in this conference-wide success story.
Alive Together in Christ,