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Diverse Methods Of Worship are also on the rise. New Ellison Research data reports U.S. Protestant churches worship in a more contemporary manner than 5 years ago. Over the past 5 years 44% report no significant change, 15% have moved in much more contemporary direction, while another 36% have become a little more contemporary. Only 5% have become more traditional. Pentecostal churches were more than twice as likely to be more contemporary (31% to 12%). Use of electronic media (Power Point, video clips, music videos, etc) has risen dramatically in the last 5 years (5% vs. 36%). The use of praise and worship choruses during services rose from 38% in ‘99 to 74% today. Use of drama, skits or sketches jumped from 23% to 42 %. Unchanged is the length of the pastor’s sermon…about 31 minutes on average. Pentecostals about 40 minutes while Lutherans and Methodists preach only 20 minutes. (PWB 3/20/04)
Tech @ Church: A new Barna Group survey reports 57% of Protestant churches now have a website. 62% use a large-screen projection system in their communications. 56% now rely on e-mail blasts for reaching their people. 62% integrate video content into their worship services, while 61% include live drama. Only 12% utilize electronic funds transfer technology and just 8% receive communications via satellite broadcast. The number of churches providing pew Bibles had declined (now 80%) due to use of big screens for projection of texts. (Barna.org 9/13/05)
Christian television and radio reaches across the airwaves to nearly every home, with late night, all night and almost any-time-of-the-day viewing. Our bookshelves feature the hottest and greatest materials from the latest and most celebrated authors. We have worship experiences with top-notch musicians, equipment, buildings and audio/video aids.
Irony – the growing numbers of people in Canada who have no room for God. Stats from religioustolerance.org, based on the 2001 population (29, 639,035): (http://www.religioustolerance.org/can_rel1.htm In 2001, 77.1% of our population called itself Christian. 6.4% did not consider itself Christian and 16.5% claimed no religious affiliation. What is most alarming is that in the ten years from 1991 to 2001, Christian population grew by 1.5% while non-Christian grew to 72.5% and non-religious increased to 44.2%.
Church Shopping Online Church consultant Tom Bandy says that as tools for reaching potential worshipers, church Web sites are growing in number and getting more sophisticated. One sign: 5 years ago, churches made up only 5% of clientele for StreamGuys, an Arcadia, CA based provider of streaming audio and video services. Today, churches represent more than 20% of the company's business. 82% of churches with more than 200 worship attendees have websites, vs. 29% of those with fewer than 100 found a 2006 Ellison Research survey. Efforts to leverage the Web for recruitment are paying off for congregations, says Hartford Seminary's Scott Thumma, who says church shoppers increasingly make the process a largely online experience. "I hear from people in churches that they're constantly running into folks who say, 'I saw your website. Now I'm here.'" (USA Today 10/16/07)