Church Size The Demographic Shift
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Church Size
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Family Pastoral and Program Churches

In his booklet "Sizing up a Congregation for New Member Ministry" the author Arlin J. Rothauge (1938-present) describes how congregations function depending upon size. There are three categories delineated. The smallest, with membership of 0-50, is defined as "The Family Church." This comprises the "Family Chaplain" (or clergy person) shown with a solid black dot, next to the "Patriarchs and Matriarchs," who so often determine the course of the Family Church, then the leaders and the congregational members. The circle below indicates the "Doorkeepers" who determine who comes in and is welcomed and finally the small circle represents the "Newcomer."

Family Friendship Circles

The second diagram (top right) describes the "Pastoral Church" of 50-150 members. This is composed of a series of "Family Friendship Circles" around the outside. The cleric or pastor sits at the center of the circles with the group leaders around him. The visitor relates directly to the pastor at the center and then to the Leadership Circle, the Fellowship Circle, and the Membership Circle.

Chief Administrator

The third diagram represents the "Program Church" of 150-350 members. The Pastor or Priest is at the center with a "Chief Administrator." The next outer series of circles represent the leaders of a number of groups. On the outer edge are the "Members" being served by the group leaders who are in turn organized by the Chief Administrator and the Pastor.

Family, Pastoral and Program Churches

"Church Size"
by Ron Meacock © 2019

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