NACBA Weekly Update
Jan. 20, 2012

More stats on electronic giving patterns
Managing Your Church
Two separate reports released within the past week on electronic banking and giving patterns underscore the shifting preferences among adults when it comes to their finances. This shift to embrace electronic financial tools isn't new and it isn't going away. The takeaways for churches are many. As 2012 unfolds, what's the split between e-giving and more traditional methods, such as checks and cash, at your church?More

Super Bowl provides super outreach opportunity
Baptist Press
Last year, more than 111 million people watched Super Bowl XLV to see the Green Bay Packers defeat the Pittsburgh Steelers. That's a lot of people in one place at one time. This year, the NFL has given its blessing for churches to broadcast the Super Bowl, relaxing a previously restrictive policy and allowing public showings of the big game on TVs larger than 55 inches. Churches can now legally have a Super Bowl party without violating the league's copyright. As believers and church leaders, we should be asking questions like, "What is God up to?" and, "How can we use this opportunity to share the Gospel?" More

The church and social media
Church Executive Magazine
While many church leaders have adopted social media in some capacity, many continue to resist Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or even starting a blog. They cite lack of time, lack of knowledge or training, or lack of direct application as noble reasons not to allow any distractions from the work of ministry. The fundamental flaw is that ministry begins when we connect with other people. And people are increasingly choosing social media as their preferred method of interaction. Social media is here to stay and is no longer optional. Leaders must choose to break free of their preferences and adapt to new means of communication if they wish to be heard and to continue to be relevant. More

'Church diversity' movement aims to 'desegregate' houses of worship
The Christian Post
This week, Americans across the nation are honoring the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., a catalyst for the civil rights movement who advocated equality for all races. However, 43 years after his assassination, churches throughout America still face segregation – giving rise to a "Church Diversity" initiative to "see a more unified body of Christ." From Jan. 13-19, "Church Diversity Week" aims to open communication about the importance of diversity in places of worship. Pastor Scott Williams, author of Church Diversity – Sunday The Most Segregated Day of the Week, shared that this campaign, which he spearheaded, is about raising "awareness to help propel the movement." More

Mass exodus: How the church is losing the youth
Overprotective. Shallow. Repressive. These are all words some Christian youth have used to describe their faith experience. That perception undoubtedly explains why recent studies show more than half of all Christian teens and 20-somethings are distancing themselves from today's Church. More

Online Sunday school class offers 'easy-access Bible study'
Associated Baptist Press
On a recent Sunday morning at First Baptist Church in Richmond, Va., conversation was lively as members of a Bible study class explored the day's Scripture passage from the Gospel of Luke. But of the 15 people who responded to comments from the class's facilitator, only about half actually were in the room. The rest were scattered across the country, viewing a live stream on the Internet and offering opinions by email. The 3-month-old webcast Sunday school class is the church's first foray into real-time, Internet-based Bible studies, although First Baptist has live streamed its two Sunday morning worship services more than three years. More

Don't take faith for granted
Faith and Leadership
Men would rather watch Monday Night Football than go shopping. Eating too many Hardee’s Monster Thickburgers is linked to obesity. Texting while driving is a bad idea. There are times when research findings are so obvious they are almost beyond questioning. So it is puzzling that growing evidence showing the importance of congregations cultivating the spiritual lives of the faithful is so routinely ignored. More

Creative collaboration
Church Central
A group of regional ministry leaders met recently and used their creativity to figure out how to provide church planters and bivocational pastors with health insurance. The easy answer is to have them work for Starbucks at least twenty hours per week. Starbucks provides health insurance for employees who work that much or more. But what if you don’t know a latte from a frappuccino? Starbucks might not fit best. UPS also offers benefits to part-time employees. What other creative solutions are available? More

7 resolutions for your website in 2012
Christian Web Trends
The new year offers a clean slate, full of possibilities, and that includes opportunities to take a fresh look at your website and set some fresh goals for the new year. Have you set goals for your website and online communications this year? More

10 trends in the multisite movement
Outreach Magazine
The multisite model continues to grow in its acceptance as a legitimate and effective vehicle for outreach, volunteer mobilization, leadership development and regional impact with more than 3,000 expressions of multisite church across North America. Even though 50 percent of megachurches have multiple campuses and another 20 percent are thinking about it, the multisite movement has outgrown the megachurch movement. Each multisite church has a unique church-print but there are some common trends and buzzwords emerging from them as we enter 2012.More

Create an inviting environment for preteen ministry
Parents can often be heard clamoring around the church about their preteen child's disdain for church. They say that their kid doesn't like the teacher, doesn't have friends, or maybe he doesn't feel welcome. Parents want their kids to want to come to church. You, as a ministry leader, want their kids in church. Not only their kids, though, you want all preteens to feel welcome and loved in your church. More

10 ways to upgrade your leadership influence
Leadership is not about position. It is not about power. Leadership is about influence. Poor leaders don’t understand this, so they spend their time flexing muscles, raising their voices, and imposing their will. Good leaders do understand this truth, so they focus their attention on improving their ability to influence. Below are 10 practices you should consider to help improve your ability to influence the people you lead/ More

8 reasons to be a bivocational pastor
Baptist Press
Should any pastor be bivocational? It's a question that has been around for a long time. In order to give an informed answer, it would help to understand what we mean by "bivocational." The basic understanding of the term is a person who has two vocations. When used in regard to a pastor, it indicates the pastor has another source of income beyond the church. The term "part-time" is not an accurate way to describe a bivocational pastor. He may be receiving a partial salary, but he is still a full-time pastor. The best way to define a pastor who receives all of his income from a church is fully funded, not full-time.More