Changes 2000.... 2010

I'm pondering the changes since 2000...

So what do you think?


Ken Schenck said...

We were emergent in 2000, emerging in 2008. Now I think it's submerged somewhere.

Will said...

I've read a few thoughts about trends in the church over the past decade, the most interesting by the Barna group. I think the massive changes in the way we communicate have been a large cause of the changes in churches- and that the churches that have refused to change will be slowly dying off over the next 20 years to make way for a new generation of Christians. As to what these guys look like, every blogger has a different opinion, but I think the reality is, we don't know yet. Some might continue the trend to abandon all semblances of historical Christianity and become "Christians" who pride themselves in being completely indistinguishable from the world. On the other hand, there could be a counter-movement as people attempt to reconnect with Jesus in a way authentic and unique to the younger generation. Those are my two most likely guesses (actually, I think both are likely to happen in different traditions of Christianity- the question is, which one will become the defining trend?)

Pete Vecchi said...

I wonder if perhaps the answer to the question of how "the church" has changed in the past 10 years varies from congregation to congregation, denomination to denomination, area to area, etc...

Before Keith even posted this column, I was already working on a message for Sunday that was looking at these issues as they pertained to our congregation. In the congregation which I currently pastor, some of the changes include:

There is a different pastor II began the pastorate in 2004);

While the average number of people who attend Sunday morning worship has stayed the same or slightly declined as compared with the year 2000, about 90% of the attendance consists of different people than those who attended in 2000;

There is more realization that fewer people can fit the "Sunday morning Sunday School-Sunday morning worship-Sunday evening worship-Wednesday evening service" routine into their regular schedules, to the point that we no longer have Sunday evening or Wednesday evening services (although there are music rehearsals and youth activities on Wednesday evenings);

There is a less rigid attitude regarding the "proper" way to behave in the church building (i.e., no more complaints if children run in the building, or if people eat or drink in the sanctuary, etc...);

All of the people who were in leadership in 2000 (i.e., serving on the church board)--most of whom had been long-time members of the congregation and/or long-time church board members--are no longer in those positions (and most of them no longer are members of the congregation);

The average age of the people who attend the congregation's services is significantly lower now than it was in 2000.

That's the experience in the local congregation I pastor.

Timothy said...

- Satellite campus' have become more of a household name and more popular.

- Campus pastor and Pastor of Assimilation (spiritual formation) have become as important to have on staff as the youth pastor...or maybe the youth pastor has lost some of it's foothold on important positions.

- The retirement age for pastors jumped about the same time as the stock markets tumbled.

- People (depending on the church) are excited about what "their" church is doing in their community and around the world, rather then being proud about what their actual church (or doctrine, or whatever) believes in or abstains from.

Erik Fisher said...

Technology isn't good or bad, but is definitely not neutral. Regarding your question: Two things stick out. The growth of using movie clips or mini movies in services for different effects and the growth of a seperate service for the College and Young Adult post college congregation member.

Duke said...

I've noticed a considerable warming attitude in writers from the evanglical stables (publishing houses) willing to embrace alternative sexual expressions as valid and acceptable for disciples of Jesus. In fact, I'm wondering if homosexuality is a must topic on their template for writers to address.

Keith Drury said...

Thanks for these immediate responses above…I’ll toss in a few here from my perspective—just from my exposure—like Pete above says, it varies from church to church… but here are five I’ve seen:

1. DECLINED: “You have nothing to do but to win souls.”
Serving the world now competes and overshadows “soul-winning;” Evangelism gradually is redefined as the broadened term, “outreach.”

2. DECLINED: “Getting-saved-at-the-altar.”
The altar call is diminishing as privatized routes to conversion emerge and gradual “journey models” take the place of the once-instantaneous approach to being saved—not just among the youngsters—but (functionally) among older people too.

3. DECLINED: Pastor-as-CEO-model.
The Moses-goes-to-the-mountain to get a vision then follows the capture-and-cast model of developing vision is being displaced by collaborative participatory vision development of pastor, staff and laity together.

4. DECLINED: “It all begins and ends with leadership.”
Related to the demise of the CEO-Pastor is the dying of the notion that a single leader is the key to everything that happens in the church has lost credibility and is being displaced by a systems approach that not only now includes “followership” and the surrounding environment and now even includes the Holy Spirit.

5. DECLINED: Youth pastors who works with teens.
“Youth work” now includes the whole range of adolescence from 5th grade through the exit years from adolescence at 30. The “critical years” for “saving the next generation” is no longer the teen years, or even college years… but extends to 30-32.