My parents and their generation would define "regular church attendance" as "Sunday morning, Sunday night, and Wednesday night, every week." My generation defines it as "Sunday morning, fifty percent of the time or more."
Busyness in life, accessibility of travel, dispersion of families to various geographical areas, joint-custody, a consumer mentality, and a host of other contributing factors make this a reality. But it is a reality.
We can all agree that it's not a positive trend. In the future, I might blog about some ideas I have for how to turn the tide. But for now I just want to raise the reality and its potential impact because if you don't think about the implications, you'll fall down a slippery slope.
It affects communications: If you make an announcement about anything on one Sunday, bank on the fact that less than 1/2 the people who consider your church "home" will hear it.
It affects planning: If you need leaders for something that happens every week, you had better be good at either team-building or handling disappointment.
If affects preaching: The vast majority of your congregation will hear less than half of your series. If your message builds completely on last week's, you probably just ought to preach last week's message.
It affects turnover: The tendency is to over-use the extremely faithful because they're around every week. The result: they start showing up every-other week.
What else? I know I'm missing some of the implications. Some of you live in this reality like I do. What are you noticing?