Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Planting the Mega Church

Where do People Go When they Switch Churches? - Larger, More Contemporary Church

In the Study of Adults Who Switch Churches, LifeWay Research found a common theme: Church switchers often choose a new church that is different in several ways from their previous church.

The study was conducted among Protestant adult church goers who have attended more than one church as an adult. To understand the voluntary changes being made in the type of church people attend, 415 surveys were conducted among church switchers whose latest church change was for reasons other than a residential move.

Worship style
More than one in five church switchers move away from traditional worship when they move to their current church.

Previously, a majority of “Non-mover” church switchers (53 percent) attended traditional style worship. After changing, only 29 percent attend traditional services. Blended worship is the most popular, with 38 percent attending this style service. Contemporary worship attendance became the second most popular, with the numbers going from 24 percent to 33 percent after the switch.

Scott McConnell, associate director of LifeWay Research noted, “Clearly, selecting a new church with a more contemporary worship style is a current trend. These changes are intentional, as indicated by eighty percent finding worship style an important factor in selecting a new church.”

Church size
Three-fourths of adults who switch churches find a church of different size than they previously attended.

Forty-six percent of switchers go to a larger church, while 29 percent switch to a smaller church. Twenty-five percent choose a church the same size as their previous one.

Seventy-nine percent of those who attended a church with worship attendance of 100 or less switch to a larger church. In contrast, 57 percent of those who attended a church with more than 500 in worship attendance switch to a smaller church.

“The trend clearly shows church switchers are moving to larger churches,” McConnell said. “However, there is a smaller counter-trend among those who attended larger churches; some of them select smaller new churches.”

For full article click here.

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