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Churches, sacred spaces — easy targets for thieves?
Episcopal News Service    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Google "church" and "robbery" together and the hits just keep on coming. Recent thefts of copper wiring, mostly from outdoor air conditioning units, as well as other less frequent instances of break-ins, armed robberies and embezzlement, have taught church officials a painful lesson — that even sacred spaces may be easy targets for experienced thieves. The trouble is, many unsuspecting church officials frequently don't think about security measures, or that they might be victimized, until they are. More

Possible new injunction may allow NY churches to remain in school buildings
The Christian Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Good news may be near for dozens of New York City churches currently out of a building to meet and worship in on Sundays following an "optimistic" hearing. Through the continued efforts of the Alliance Defense Fund, a new injunction may be granted by U.S. District Court Chief Justice Loretta A. Preska delaying the eviction of churches from city schools. A ban on churches using public school buildings for worship service in the weekends went into effect Sunday. More

NY mayor defends ban on church services in schools
The New York Times (blog)    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg strongly defended his administration's decision to ban churches from holding services in public schools, pushing back against criticism from some religious leaders and elected officials. Some lawmakers want to require the city to permit the services — the State Senate passed a bill that would allow churches to continue worshiping in schools — but the Assembly speaker, Sheldon Silver, has expressed concerns about the legislation, saying it is too broad. More

Effective Contribution Management
Efficient use of contributions and making wise budget decisions are two areas that churches often struggle with. For suggestions on ways to reduce unnecessary spending and raise money more effectively within the congregation and community with online giving, download the ACS Technologies ministry guide Setting the Stage for Good Stewardship.

How extension of payroll tax holiday will affect churches
Managing Your Church (blog)    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Congress appears close to passing an extension of the payroll tax holiday through Dec. 31 for millions of workers. Employers, including churches, need to make certain they're meeting the requirements of the temporary extension, withholding 4.2 percent for employees who are eligible for Social Security and 1.45 percent for Medicare, for a combined 5.65 percent on each paycheck. More

10 ways to become a plastic church
Church Leaders    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A plastic church is a church that looks like church from the outside: building, services, staff, etc. On the inside, however, the plastic church barely resembles a church at all. No real community of believers, no prayer, no real concern for people, no application of Scripture in real life, no transformation. These are all signs of a real, authentic church. Could you have a plastic church or be on your way? More

NJ church uses pop music during Sunday worship
The Christian Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
On the same day British singer Adele picked up six Grammys, a church in New Jersey started a "Pop God" sermon series by singing one of her songs during Sunday morning worship. "The church is talking about the same things the culture is talking about," said Pastor Tim Lucas of Liquid Church. Liquid Church, one of the fastest growing megachurches in the state, is using the new series to highlight themes from the biblical book of Hosea. More

Online giving to nonprofits grew 13 percent in 2011
Blackbaud (press release)    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
In 2011, online giving was up 13 percent on a year-over-year basis when large international affairs organizations are removed from the analysis. International affairs is the only sector that did not experience growth, because of the tremendous amount of online giving in 2010 in response to the Haiti earthquake. Fueling the growth in online giving is an increase of large gifts to nonprofits. In 2011, 87 percent of organizations had at least one online gift of $1,000 or more. More

93 Years. 35,000 Churches.

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Religious and secular audiences require very different approaches
Christianity Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A secular atmosphere presents challenges not only to living out one's faith but also to sharing the gospel. Reading Acts shows that different contexts require different approaches. Paul aimed to become "all things for all people," and Jesus himself employed different approaches to reach different people. Secular people do not stay away from church because the services or programs do not match their tastes. It's because many of them think Christianity is nonsense. More

Want more visitors? It has to get personal
Outreach Magazine    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Have you ever had that nagging feeling that no one was really listening to you? Churches are no exception. They have a message for the community but wonder if anyone is listening. So what should they do? Often the only answer has seemed to be: talk louder. For an organization, that often means mass marketing. But do these strategies work for churches? More

Complete Child Protection Policy

Protect My Ministry specializes in serving churches and faith-based organizations through comprehensive background checks that have been created to meet your needs. Protect My Ministry is trusted by many of the largest churches and denominations in the country and currently serves thousands of churches in all 50 states. MORE

Measuring spiritual growth: Using objectives and doorposts
Small Groups    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
There's an old saying in business: "Measured performance is improved performance." It also appears to be true of ministry. In church we measure what is important to us. Measurable goals are simple when tracking tangible things like attendance and offerings, but how do we effectively measure spiritual growth? More

Managerial hurdles can become a hurdle for leadership
Church Executive (blog)    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Much debate exists on the difference between managers and leaders. Some say the leader and the manager are mutually exclusive. Others see overlap between the two. Regardless of the technicalities of the debate, much church work must be managed. This managerial work — while important — can become a hurdle for the church leader. Listed below are several managerial hurdles that surface in church work. More

Scriptural Fund Raising for Churches
TLC’s ministry-oriented Scriptural Funding Campaign helps churches raise the most funds possible for their facilities, develops responsive stewardship disciples, and creates a very positive atmosphere.

Editorial: Solar power, recycling making a mark on worship community
Worship Facilities    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Industry observers say churches are poised to use the sun in the years ahead to reduce their dependence on the electrical grid. And that's not the only way that houses of worship will become "greener" in 2012 and beyond, observers say. From a growing reliance on automation software to stepped-up hazardous waste recycling efforts, churches are continuing to find ways to increase their environmental stewardship. More

How do your service efforts introduce people to Jesus?
Christianity Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Meeting physical needs is crucial, but it rarely leads to deep and lasting change. Integrating social action and evangelism is essential for reaching the whole person, physically and spiritually. Seven pastors and ministry leaders explain how they're serving their communities in ways that result in spiritual transformation. More

Simple tips for hosting a safe youth retreat
Church Safety    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Youth retreats can provide powerful, life-changing moments for students. If nothing else, retreats can be a lot of fun. But youth retreats can also expose a church (or even the students themselves) to unique risks that aren't typically part of youth ministry. Before hosting a youth retreat, it's important to understand the potential risks and to prepare accordingly. More

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