Jump directly to the Content

Ministry to Missing Members

When this article appeared in LEADERSHIP nearly a decade ago, readers appreciated its insights into a difficult task: working with people who are leaving the church or becoming inactive.

Several years ago while looking through slides I had used in an every-member canvass in my church, I was shocked.

Pictured in the first three slides were three couples who had held key offices during my first year. Now, four years later, those couples were totally inactive. They no longer attended worship, except maybe on Christmas or Easter, made no financial contribution, and had a negative attitude about the congregation.

How could people move from active involvement to total inactivity in just four years? I wondered.

I thought of times I had visited inactive members and seen absolutely nothing happen. In fact, often they were more convinced to stay away after I made the call. I needed to figure out how to keep current members active and enable inactive ones to return.

I went to work ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe to Christianity Today magazine. Subscribers have full digital access to CT Pastors articles.

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

Related
The Hopeful Reality of Church Scandal
The Hopeful Reality of Church Scandal
Humbled by recent events, the church has an opportunity to shine even more brilliantly.
From the Magazine
Is Jemar Tisby’s Bestselling Book About Racism a Fluke?
Is Jemar Tisby’s Bestselling Book About Racism a Fluke?
Publishers tried for years to get evangelical readers to care. Then one succeeded.
Editor's Pick
5 Ways Collaborative Sermon Writing Can Help Pastors
5 Ways Collaborative Sermon Writing Can Help Pastors
How a cross-cultural experiment with a half-dozen church leaders offered me a fresh perspective.
close