For those new to this blog, a little orientation might help. I pastor a small church (avg. 80-attendance) in a small town (1300/population) in a rural county in south central Virginia. Our growth opportunities are limited, our church is 151-years old, and we have our own set of blessings and challenges.
But, I have also planted a church that grew to 400, and pastored small churches in suburban areas that grew into larger churches running 400-600 in attendance with multiple staff members, and support staff. So, I understand that perspective as well.
I try to write for a broad spectrum of small churches and their leaders, but one-size does not fit all, and I am well aware of that. I write mostly about what I have experienced because that’s what I know. I don’t write many theoretical posts because I’m trying to be helpful, not academic.
I believe that small churches are a good thing. And, I also believe that not every small church will grow into a big church. Statistics bear me out on that. That might sound strange coming from someone who studied church growth at Fuller when it was at its peak, but I think that’s the reality.
Mostly, I’m writing to be encouraging. I believe that small church pastors are under-paid, under-appreciated, and under-recognized. I am also convinced that the small church community has ideas, insights, passion, and commitment that equals any you’ll find in the big-church world. We just don’t have the high profile forums big churches have. I’m not down on big churches, but I don’t believe that adopting big church methods to the small church world is helpful.
I’m writing this blog to share ideas, invite your participation, and build a small church community. One day I’d like for us to do our own small church convocation, conceived and led by small church leaders. I have the dream that a get-together like that would be free, and draw its content from the small church pastors and leaders who participate. We have a lot to offer each other. What do you think?