March 30th, 2016

Large Church Money Facts

Facts imageRecently we partnered with a leading church research firm to conduct a national survey of hundreds of churches exceeding 1,000 people in worship attendance. Below are some interesting financial learnings I want to pass on to you:

1. 100% of large churches are engaging capital campaigns as a funding strategy.

2. 57% of large churches desire training and will lead their capital campaigns internally rather than hire a traditional capital campaign firm.

3. The #1 named financial challenge was current church debt load.

4. The #2 named financial challenge was aging donor base and not engaging younger donors.

5. The #3 named financial challenge was no strategy in place to encourage generosity.

6. Churches founded prior to 1900 launched the highest percentage of capital campaigns in the last year.

7. Churches over 2,000 in worship attendance showed a higher concern for debt load and aging donor base.

8. Churches between 1,000-1,999 in worship attendance showed the highest concern for lack of a strategy to encourage generosity.

9. The longer the church had been in existence, the more concerned it was with an aging donor base.

10. Churches in existence since 1980 showed the highest concern for debt load.

Facts should lead to clarity. Here is some advice: 

1. Generous churches are led by generous pastors and leaders. Pursue staff wide training as a part of your ongoing culture.

2. Debt is consistently the most limiting fixed expense. Create a culture of generosity to prepare for your future instead of leveraging your future with a burdensome debt load.

3. Don’t exchange a capital campaign for possessing a strategy to grow a generous culture. A commitment card is not the same as a generous life.

4. Go digital to reach the younger generation. Strive for 50% of your receipts to be received outside of the plate or box at the door.

5. A clear vision that creates an unstoppable culture is a powerful tool every pastor needs to possess. Generosity follows opportunity, relationship, and passion.

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