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Pressthis seems to have no result at all.
is a problem in the Church of Jesus Christ in the United States of America.
Scientific pollster George Gallup stated that “North America is the only
continent where Christianity is not growing.”
John and Sylvia Ronsvalle discovered clear trends from 1968-1993 in giving and
membership data in twenty-nine mainline denominations; if nothing changes,
giving will entirely cease by 2032 and church membership “will fall to zero
percent of the U.S. population in less than one hundred years.”
United Methodist church growth expert George Hunter, III, considered America in
1998 to be the fourth largest mission field in the world.
There is no county within the United States where the percentage of church
attendance is higher than ten years ago.
Some growth in American churches is deceptive, as between 70-90% of new members
are received from other churches. This is not church growth, but the
accelerated decline of other churches to the benefit of the receptor church.
The basic problem facing the United Methodist Church today, as well as many
historically influential denominations, is a failure of the majority of
churches to thrive; a systemic homeostasis of not making disciples has become
normative within the traditional church.
Chapter 1 will examine the ministry context of the Illinois Great Rivers
Conference and thoroughly identify four systemic problems in historical and
Mission Spokane, “Why We Need to Plant New Churches . . . Nationwide,” Mission Spokane, http://www.missionspokane.org/needplant.html (accessed June 12, 2007). Cf. Gene Wood, Leading Turnaround Churches (St. Charles, IL: ChurchSmart Resources, 2001), 34.
Merton P. Strommen, The Innovative Church: Seven Steps to Positive Change in Your Congregation (Minneapolis, MN: Augsburg Fortress, 1997), 80. For more information on research by the Ronsvalles, see empty tomb, inc., http://www.emptytomb.org/ (accessed June 12, 2007).
George Hunter, quoted in David J. Gyertson, “Ministry in the New Millennium,” Ministry Magazine, (September 1998).
David Garrison, Church Planting Movements: How God Is Redeeming a Lost World (Midlothian, VA: WIGTake Resources, 2004), 160.
Carl F. George, The Coming Church Revolution: Empowering Leaders for the Future (Grand Rapids: Fleming H. Revell, 1994), 37-38.
Cf. Steven J. Goodwin, Catching the Next Wave: Leadership Strategies for Turn-Around Congregations (Minneapolis, MN: Augsburg Fortress, 1999), 17-31.