Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Troublemaker Series: No # As We Decide on New Church Metrics

Has anyone else read the article "Measuring Ministry Impact" in the recent special edition of "Outreach?" I can't find this online yet as it just arrived in my mailbox in the last couple of days. It's written by Dave Urbanski with focus on church metrics not giving the whole view of a church.

If you haven't seen the story here's how it starts:

Do attendance and budgets tell the whole story?
A growing number of churches are looking for a new tool to gauge their success.
Nickels and noses.
Cash flow and people flow. How much money is relocating from pockets to collection plates- and how many people are in the pews?
Gathering such data from week to week has long been the traditional method most churches have used to measure ministry effectiveness. But in a growing number of ecclesiastical circles, a new conversation is gaining momentum.

My favorite line in the article: "Church is a who, not a what."

The "bottom line" of the article is that many are looking for a new metrics that adds a spiritual dimension to the old institutional numbers. Some existing software is showcased that attempts such a goal.

All very interesting in light of the current UMC discussions on church metrics as we march on toward GC2012. Too much of our UMC talk is about institutional survival rather than following the Christ and giving ourselves away with enthusiasm such as the Wesleys, Asbury, and previous generations of Methodists have shown us.

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