Dynamic Church Groups The Demographic Shift
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Dynamic Church Groups
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Alive Churches

One negative aspect of this drastic downsizing by 2018 will be the affect on community groups and organizations like AA, Brownies, Scouts and IODE who presently use church buildings at little or no cost. The few buildings left in the future will be in great demand. Many organizations presently relying on donated space will fold. In the coming years, the Diocese of Toronto will be engaged in the sale of a lot of real estate ($40+ million) as many churches close. At the same time, there will be new challenges in the planting of new churches in new housing developments at great cost (an estimated average of $2 to $3 million.) We can however learn from the Church of England where instead of closing churches they plant new churches beginning with households. Over twenty-five full-time professionals do nothing else but reestablish churches in redundant buildings in 21 Dioceses and growing. Once planted, a dynamic priest is appointed to take over its care and the church planters move on to another place and another redundant building. A body of research is already emerging in this area which could greatly benefit us.✞

Church Reserves

The Church's reserves built up over the last fifty years of plenty will be needed for the coming years of famine. What buildings are left must be luxurious, completely equipped and efficient with expansive parking lots, elevators and large illuminated signs in order to attract a very finicky segment of the population that is the Boomers and the Milleniums. They must be completely accessible, air conditioned, sprinklered and have full multimedia and sound facilities included for the hearing impaired. Boomers or X-Generation persons presently have little significant denominational loyalty so there is no guarantee that even church inclined ones would follow the choice of their Elders. They will "shop around" for the denomination or religious group offering them the best services and facilities. There will, I believe, be a proliferation of shop-front, TV and Internet groups of every type imaginable to meet this emerging need for spirituality but not institution.✞

Church Promotion

A much larger proportion of church budgets will have to be spent on advertising and promotion in newspapers, radio, the internet, TV and billboards in order to compete. At the local church level and maybe through TV adverts we might be able to win some "Boomer Rebels" through our emphasis on human rights, freedom and individuality, but these are also noted for their "skepticism of institution and authority". "Boomer Communitarians" on the other hand could be attracted through emphasis on family and community. Family orientated churches should do well with these people.✞

"Dynamic Church Groups"
by Ron Meacock © 2018

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