The Church Network Weekly Update
Dec. 12, 2014

7 times you should NOT hire more church staff
Church Leaders
Not too long ago, you could add staff according to a clear formula. Typically, that meant one full-time minister for every 100 to 200 in worship attendance. Unfortunately, it is no longer best to approach adding staff in a formulaic fashion. Most churches do not add staff according to a programmatic approach. Today, rather than following a strict guideline, the decisions are much more fluid and contextual. I thus offer seven occasions when a church should not hire additional staff.More

Message from The Church Network CEO Simeon May
The Church Network

As you look ahead into the new year, The Church Network (formerly the National Association of Church Business Administration) warmly invites you to the 2015 annual meeting! In this short video, CEO Simeon May shares the exciting site set for the 2015 conference.

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Church communication: A brave new world
By Jennifer Johnson
Do you remember attending church and only having a paper bulletin and an announcement from the pulpit as your main avenue of finding out what was going on? That wasn't all that long ago, but my how times have changed. Churches, along with the rest of the world, have been inundated with many avenues of communication. It can be an overwhelming experience to try and weed through exactly what is best for your church.More

Churches benefit from Amazon charitable donations program
Worship Facilities
At this time of year churches, like most charities, rely heavily on donations to cover budgeted expenses for the entire fiscal calendar. Of course churches also tend to spend more money at this time of year with benevolence programs and outreach ministry opportunities that flow out of the Christmas season. One way churches and other charitable organizations can obtain extra funds during this pivotal time is surprisingly through a program started by the online retail giant Amazon.More

5 easy tips to ramp up your December gifts
FundRaising Success
Are you ready for a huge spike in online gifts this month? Because the money — and the donors — are out there. To make sure your organization rasies as much as possible for your cause, here are some strategies will help you capture more last-minute online gifts from your generous donors.More

Charity tax-break effort falters as White House threatens veto
Bloomberg Businessweek
U.S. lawmakers' bid to permanently lock in three tax breaks for charitable giving faltered as the White House threatened to veto the bipartisan measure. Charities had been rallying supporters behind the $11 billion bill, which would have revived expired tax incentives for donations of conservation easements, money from retirement accounts and food inventory.More

10 ways your church can have a social media Christmas
Center for Church Communication
Let's face if, we have a hard time getting people to show up 10 minutes early to shake hands and greet people. Yet we hope they will engage in a meaningful way with us online. Christmas is a busy time of year for those of us working at churches, and for everyone in our community. With that in mind, here are 10 easy ways to get people engaging on social media this Christmas/Advent season.More

An Alabama church will start holding services inside Buffalo Wild Wings
Business Insider
An Alabama church is planning to start holding weekly services inside a Buffalo Wild Wings restaurant. The Rev. Wesley Savage, a youth pastor for Riverchase United Methodist Church in Birmingham, Alabama, is hoping the service will appeal to people who don't regularly attend church. The 45-minute service will begin before Buffalo Wild Wings opens for business, and end just as the restaurant starts serving lunch, Eater reports via The Birmingham News.More

Selfie with Jesus? Brooklyn Catholic church invites young people with witty ads
Deseret News
In a move to appeal to the area's under-30 set, the Catholic Church's Diocese of Brooklyn has launched an ad campaign that has raised some eyebrows. A the Huffington Post reported, the ads feature witty one-liners like "Come celebrate his birth — party like it's 1 A.D." and "It's never just a selfie," featuring a girl taking a selfie with Jesus smiling in the background. "These creative ads are our response to Pope Francis' call for a church of mercy and hope, 'where everyone is welcomed, loved and forgiven,’" said Brooklyn Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio in a statement.More

Thriving black megachurch, struggling white church merge to launch new church plant
The Christian Post
In a time of intense racial tension in the U.S., a megachurch congregation of predominately black members at a thriving Shiloh Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Florida, is making a powerful statement by merging with a struggling predominately white church to launch a second church 22 miles away from its current downtown location. Shiloh Baptist, led by Pastor H.B. Charles Jr., is merging with Ridgewood Baptist Church in Orange Park, pastored by Michael Clifford. Charles told The Christian Post that it was in "the providence of God" that the merger took place during such a racially charged moment in the nation's history.More

Church construction at 20 year low — the boom and bust in 3 graphs
Religion News Service
According to the U.S. Census, the U.S. spent $3.6 billion constructing religious buildings last year. This was the lowest in twenty years. It is also sharply lower than the apex of a decade ago. Construction on religious buildings in 2013 was the lowest in two decades of data. From 1994 to 2001, the value of religious construction nearly doubled. After remaining steady near $11 billion, religious construction has dropped steadily over the past decade to the current low of $3.7 billion. More

Why 1940s America wasn't as religious as you think — the rise and fall of American religion
Religion News Service
It’s common for people to believe that religion was always more vibrant in the past. Earlier generations weren't always more religious than we are today. Religiosity can rise and fall just like other things do over time. In fact, America of the 1940s was about as religious as America today. Coming out of World War II, America was not very religious. The war had put a halt on many of the things that increase religiosity, particularly marriage and procreation. Churches, just like other organizations, were slowed by a drain on resources and volunteers during the war. The post-war years turned this around. The economy improved. The baby boom ensued. And religion grew.More

6 steps to patient leadership
By Betty Boyd
Leadership is many things to many people, but is patience one of those attributes? How does a leader in an organization show patience to its workforce? When all is said and done, patience will help the organization progress in future endeavors, build better relationships, strive to inspire others and build a better culture for its workforce. Here are six steps toward being a more patient leader.More

5 radical things you can to do to motivate employees
Inc.
Motivation isn't always something that comes from within. Sometimes, it has to come from the boss. These techniques are a bit more radical than just handing out tokens to use at the company gift shop. They focus in on the core motivations of your employees.More

5 tips for effective leadership
Worship Facilities
Have you ever announced a reorganization effort, new weekly service, or a change in ministry programs and watched your staff cringe? Or worse, they didn’t exactly band together to make the new idea succeed? As much as we like to say we embrace change, that’s not necessarily the case. We like it when other people change to accommodate us, but not when we have to deal with the uncomfortable unknowns involved with change. So if it’s time to change it up at your church, how do you introduce it in a way that your team will enthusiastically support?More