March 6, 2019

It’s no secret that church attendance continues to decline.

An article caught my eye this week that supports this statement. “The Church of England has acknowledged the reality of shrinking congregations and overworked priests and lifted a 400-year-old rule requiring that all churches hold services every Sunday.

“Bishop of Willesden Pete Broadbent, who proposed the change, said it ‘just changes the rules to make it easier for people to do what they’re already doing.’”

The decline isn’t only in The Church of England.

Research numbers from actual counts of people in Orthodox Christian churches (Catholic, mainline and evangelical) show that less than 17.7 percent of the population attended a Christian church on any weekend.

The Bible says we need to attend church so we can worship God with other believers and be taught His Word for our spiritual growth “And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching, to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread, and to the prayers.” (Acts 2:42, HCSB).

To counter the decline, Pastors and staff should engage in Relationship Building by Walking Around.

RBBWA refers to pastors and staff member spending time before services, between service, and after services greeting and meeting the people in the pews. Many church staff members wait for people to come to them when the team should walk among the people listening to concerns, ideas, and the aspirations of their members.

Some staff members feel they don’t have time to meet the people of the congregation. Allow the four guidelines below to help change your perspective on RBBWA.

  1. Make RBBWA part of your routine. The more often you do it, the more benefits you will see. The continual stream of one-on-one relationship building conversation with individual members will reward you and your individual church members.
  2. Get to know everybody.  Ask them what is going on in their life?.
  3. Ask for each member for suggestions on improvements that could improve their worship experience.  Make a note of their proposal; a short pencil is better than a long memory.
  4. Follow up with action. People become excited when they see one of their ideas used.

RBBWA takes extra time and effort, but apart from any tangible payoff, it might yield, you might even find you enjoy it.

People will help the church grow in response to being acknowledged.

The idea for this article comes from management guru, Tom Peters and his concept of Management by Walking Around (MBWA)