I’ll be getting a copy of Karl Vater’s book Small Church Essentials. While the main cross-cultural issue is that characterising a congregation of under 250 people as a small church in Australia is an over-reach, the observations about group dynamics in groups of varying sizes should hold true. This excerpt about who shapes culture in …

Continue reading

Sam Rainer offers some observations about church culture: whether the pace of change can be attributed to complacency or other elements of culture that mean that change does not take place at the same pace as other places. Wise pastoral leadership will take the time to learn what is behind the church’s culture, and also …

Continue reading

Karl Vaters’ articles usually have some sharp takeaways. In writing about ten steps churches should take in order to remain vital he writes we should: Figure Out Why Your Congregation Should Survive If your church disappeared tomorrow, what would really be lost? Yes, that’s hard question. It might even feel cruel and uncaring. But it’s …

Continue reading

Thom Rainer outlines the cycle of vitality and decline that he has observed in growing and shrinking churches. Locally I deal with churches demonstrating the fourth and fifth of these stages. Even though being a growing church is especially challenging in country areas where population bases are declining, these churches have a culture that reflects …

Continue reading