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Evangelical Christian Credit Union

NACBA Weekly Update
April 10, 2009
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Be sure to check out the NACBA Product Showcases for churches:
ACS Technologies and Contemporary Research Corp.

Statistics Show Faith Institutions not Immune to Economic Downturn
from The News-Times
National statistics and surveys suggest all denominations and faith institutions are wrestling with how to retain members and rally resources against a depressed economy. In the first three months of 2008, one of out of every five households decreased giving to churches or other faith institutions, according to a survey of some 1,200 people across the United States conducted by The Barna Group. More    E-mail article


GuideStone Financial Resources

The End of Christian America
from Newsweek
The percentage of self-identified Christians has fallen 10 points in the past two decades. How that statistic explains who we are now—and what, as a nation, we are about to become. More    E-mail article

TLC Ministries

Michigan Church Walks the Word with Floor Scripture
from Times Herald via the Chicago Tribune
St. Paul Lutheran Church in Port Huron Township, Mich., is undergoing a renovation, part of which includes tearing out the sanctuary carpet, leaving a wide cement expanse for a floor. Instead of leaving the construction scene bare, Diane Merkau suggested something different: drawing favorite verses and prayers on the floor. More    E-mail article

For the Bible Tells Me So
from the Associated Baptist Press
Last year, sacred music composer Christopher Teichler noted a disturbing paradox. The widely observed decline in biblical literacy among American Christians has paralleled a growing interest in developing new and enriched ways of worshipping. Many church leaders who share Teichler’s concern believe they’ve found an antidote -- injecting worship with a bracing dose of Scripture, through systematic readings, carefully selected musical texts and thoughtfully crafted sermons. More    E-mail article

   Product Showcase:
   Doing More With Less

Churches are faced with greatly reduced contribution levels due to the weakened economy. But with wise budgeting, churches can still seek to maximize their ministry areas by doing more with less. For more info and stewardship advice, download the ACS ministry guide Setting the Stage for Good Stewardship. Download now

Stand and Deliver
from The Christian Century
No doubt there is a thin line between being a pastor and being a performer. Both stand up in public and try to capture a group's attention for a fixed period of time. Good ones value humor and have impeccable timing. Church may not be a fee-for-service activity, but pastors do get paid. Cicero's description of the three-part task of rhetoric applies equally to ecclesial and to secular performers: they seek to instruct, to delight and to move. More    E-mail article

Poll: Most Americans Still Christian; Half See Religion as Solution
from The Christian Post
A new Newsweek poll reveals that although most Americans are still holding on to their faith and describing themselves as Christians, fewer believe religion can answer today's problems. According to the poll of 1,003 adults, released this week, 60 percent of American adults say religion is very important in their lives and 78 percent say prayer is an important part of their daily lives. More    E-mail article


Dan Beirute Law


Passover, Easter Offer Canvas for Art of Telling the Lord's Story
from USA Today
Easter and Passover are the "story" holy days upon which believers retell their faith's central narrative of deliverance and hope. But words are not the only way to experience the stories of Passover or Easter. The creative arts also express and foster faith, say artists and religious leaders who serve them. More    E-mail article

Churches Reaching out when Times are Hard
from SignOnSanDiego.com
Though churches have a long tradition of establishing social ministries that feed the hungry and help the poor, a depressed economy has changed the landscape of charitable giving. The food drives and outreach programs of the past don't begin to address those facing foreclosure, job loss, a depletion of retirement savings and a lack of health insurance. More    E-mail article


   Product Showcase:
   232-ATSC HDTV Tuner

In many cities, there is more religious programming on local digital TV than satellite or cable. Tune in with the Contemporary Research 232-ATSC HDTV Tuner. Take control via RS-232 or IR. Tunes off-air and clear cable channels, analog or digital, and outputs HDMI, RGB, Component, and analog video.


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'Risky' Business
from Ministry Today
Every community faces challenges they can’t and shouldn’t run away from. For local churches, this provides significant opportunities to engage neighbors. Demonstrate the relevance of your ministry to the people you seek to reach by joining the discussions about issues they believe are important. And while you’re there, offer a solution. More    E-mail article

Making Church Essential Can Stem Decline
from Church Central
A church consultant who helped compile a national survey of more than 1,000 young adults told a recent conference that solving the dropout problem among young adults would go a long way toward closing churches’ back door. Sam Rainer said many of those 18 to 22 who leave church do so because it isn’t an essential part of their lives. Solving the problem starts with simplifying programs and procedures so people have a clearer path to discipleship. More    E-mail article

When Technology Comes to the Rescue of Being 'Too Large' a Church
from Church Executive Magazine
Inevitably a congregation will reach a certain size where care and spiritual supervision becomes overwhelming and unmanageable. How can churches find innovative ways to support their congregation as well as ease the burden of staff? Technology can be one of those solutions. More    E-mail article

eTapestry

Building Better Campus Pastors
from Pastors.com
Finding, training, and deploying effective leaders are essential to successfully building a church in more than one location. It seems simple, but people often underestimate the importance of leadership in building off-site campuses. More    E-mail article

Bad Economy Challenges Churches but Provides Opportunities
from LifeWay
Protestant churchgoers in America remain generous during difficult economic times, and their churches have increased their ministry to the needy. Despite the country being in an official recession for the past year, giving in 2008 was up an average of 4 percent over 2007 according to a survey of 1,000 Protestant pastors by LifeWay Research. More    E-mail article

 

Prepare Your Congregation for Sunday
by PinPoint Creative Group
Your congregation is captive to your message when they're in the pew, but what about throughout the week? E-Blasts are the most cost-effective way to prepare your audience to the message to come... More


Dallas Baptist University


Olan Mills


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