Most pastors are called to preach the Word and care for people. Those are the gifts that are needed in smaller churches.
3. Church leaders would be under less pressure
It’s hard to pastor a healthy church. It’s even harder to start one and nurture it to long-term health.
But it’s brutal to try to do that while under the relentless pressure to get bigger every year. And it’s unfair to expect it.
But being one pastor of 50, pastoring churches averaging 100? That’s setting us up for success.
4. Fewer pastors would quit in frustration and discouragement
Too many pastors leave the ministry without finishing the race.
How much of that is due to unrealistic expectations of numerical growth, combined with under-resourcing them to be healthy while they’re small?
Celebrating and resourcing healthy churches of all sizes might keep a lot more good people in pastoral ministry.
5. Our time and energy could be utilized better
I’ve seen it happen too many times. A young pastor starts out, excited about ministry. But very soon they discover that doing a good job within their pastoral calling isn’t enough. The pressure mounts to get the attendance numbers up. From the denomination, the church members, fellow pastors, and their own ego.
Soon, they find themselves doing less pastoring, more growth strategizing. Not that the two are mutually exclusive, but we all have limited time and energy, so when we push for numerical church growth we’re often stealing something from pastoring.
But if 50 pastors are expected to pastor churches averaging 100, that pressure diminishes and the time and energy they were spending on growth strategies can be poured into pastoral care.
6. It would require less overhead, land and resources
It’s far easier to find land and build facilities for 50 small churches than for one massive church.
And if the small churches work cooperatively, they can bear the mutual burden of other financial issues, too.
7. More people would get pastored by their pastor
The bigger the church, the fewer people can have access to the pastor. For some people, that’s okay. But for many, it’s not.
They’re not being demanding, invasive or petty to want to attend a church where their pastor baptizes them, dedicates their children, counsels them through marriage problems and visits them when they’re sick.