Here is another Lifeway Report on the discrepancies between large churches and small churches. The report cites that churches with more than 250 in attendance represent only 10% of American congregations, but host more than 60% of all church goers.
The report, based on the 2020 Faith Communities Today (FACT) study, states that half of American congregations have 65 members or less, a decline from 137 in 2000. The number drops from 65 to 50 among Mainline Protestant churches.
While the report cites some obvious advantages to each category of church size, one quote stands out regarding the growing trend of large churches. Those involved in large churches have a greater willingness to change, a clearer sense of mission and purpose, and a greater sense of spiritual vitality. The numerical size and growth contribute other advantages and opportunities to these congregations.
I’m not sure this is anything new. Large, growing churches are concerned with protecting and advancing their mission, while smaller churches are concerned with protecting and preserving their traditions. We have known this information for a long time, so the question becomes whether or not churches are willing to take action on the data.