Insights about a church's health from numerical data
- Understanding a church's health should involve utilizing
statistics as well as other information..
- Graphs depicting long-term attendance and membership
trends can provide valuable insights into a church's health.
Analyzing statistical data may help identify factors contributing to high points, valleys, and current
trends in a church's life and ministry.
What can statistics tell us about a congregation?
Numbers don't tell the whole story. However, numbers are one piece of information in an
evaluation of a church congregation's health. It is not the only piece of needed information. Still,
statistical data can be easily measured and analyzed and can help form a realistic picture. So,
don't ignore available statistical data in
trying to understand the health of a local church.
Construct a graph of at least 10 years of your church's attendance and membership statistics.
Why ten years? Well, that will help you see long-term patterns. With the graphs in hand, ask
questions. Lots of questions. As your look at numbers, look for answers to the following:
- What factors, circumstances or events may have contributed to:
- High points?
- The present trend?
- At the moment, what things are likely fostering health and driving growth in our
- What needs to happen to stimulate further outreach and assimilation?
- What are the unique and appealing things about our church's congregation, its ministry
activities and even its facilities?
- What kinds of human needs are being met by the ministries of our church?
- What bridges does the church have that facilitate people moving into Sunday
School, small groups and other ministries after they have begun attending worship events? [
More: "Incorporation and assimilation".
Sample graph analysis
-- Howard Culbertson,
More for you on analyzing a church