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Grow Your Church from the Outside In

Studying people who had and hadn't attended church in the previous six months, researcher George Barna says unchurched people were more likely to be self-sufficient, logical, assertive, daring, and to have tasted all the Christianity they care for. Barna concludes that the church's greatest enemy is not hostility toward Christianity, but apathy toward it.

"Most unchurched people figure they have gotten along just fine without church," he writes, "and until someone gives them reason to feel otherwise, they will remain spiritually unattached."

Barna's most important discoveries reveal what does give the unchurched reason to care. Worship services, he found, are a poor attraction, and few care about programs. They are, in fact, more likely to be attracted by intimacy, authenticity, and a heart for community building.

Above all, Barna found, it's not what a church does, or who its pastor is, but how its members care for one another that brings people into church. ...

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