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Membership   Resources   Events   Certification   Chapters   Jobs   Teleweb     Jul. 27, 2012

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Liturgical Designs

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Contemporary worship not a fix-all
Church Executive    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
It's a recurring scenario in America's Christian congregations. As members grapple with their church's future — eager to increase attendance or renew spiritual energy — one suggestion inevitably emerges: It's time to start a contemporary worship service. But is the assumption invariably true? More

5 keys to avoiding a churchwide campaign disaster    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Want to connect more people this fall than ever before? Start a big wave of new small groups? Reach your community? Take your congregation on a faith-deepening journey? Maybe you're already thinking this way, but there is nothing more powerful than a well-conceived, well-executed churchwide campaign. Nothing else even comes close. Still, not every churchwide campaign delivers. More

Federal Appeals Court upholds Georgia ban on guns in places of worship
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A federal appeals court in Atlanta rejected a minister's argument that gun carriers had a constitutional right to bring sidearms to worship services, leaving in place Georgia's 2010 law that bans guns in churches, synagogues and mosques. The three-judge panel noted that, while the lawsuit said worshipers would like to carry firearms for self-defense, "there is no First Amendment protection for personal preferences; nor is there protection for secular beliefs." More

Improve Communication In Small Groups
Spiritual growth and relationship building are a key part of the small group experience, and church leaders need an effective way to keep the ministry organized. For practical advice on improving communication at every ministry level download the ACS Technologies ministry guide Planning For Big Success with Small Groups.

Do you celebrate those who give to your church?
Church Central    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Having generous givers, whether they give a lot or a little, during their lifetime or after their death, makes a difference in the life of a congregation. We often do little to acknowledge those who give. What can we do to thank givers and to celebrate what they contribute? More

Church no place for high school graduations
Religion News Service    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
One of the possibly unintended consequences of the megachurch phenomenon is that there are now all these huge air-conditioned, sound system-equipped auditoriums available for rental by public school departments for holding graduation ceremonies. And some have availed themselves of the facilities, as night follows day, there have been lawsuits challenging the practice as a violation of the First Amendment's ban on religious establishments. More

Mystery guests rank churches based on first-time visits
The Christian Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
First-time visitors to churches across the country say churches with 300 to 500 attendees perform the best when it comes to first impressions, according to a recent report. Their experiences at megachurches and smaller-sized congregations weren't quite as enjoyable. More

10 tips for leading under pressure
Church Central    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Anyone who has led a group or organization knows that tough times and tough decisions are inevitable. The issue is not whether leaders will find themselves under pressure; the issue is how leaders will handle it. Here are 10 suggestions for dealing with these pressures. More

Pay Now or Pay Later!
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NAACP develops HIV manual for black churches
The Associated Press via Jackson Free Press    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Houston pastor Timothy W. Sloan has felt for years that he needed to talk about HIV and AIDS with his congregation. But he worried the 3,000 mostly African-American parishioners at St. Luke Missionary Baptist Church in Humble, Texas, could be offended and leave the church or curtail their giving. Then, a year and a half ago, he joined a group of pastors organized by the NAACP to write a manual for church leaders on talking to their congregations about a disease that has a disproportionate effect on the black community. Sloan spoke to his congregation about the issue soon after. They surprised him with a standing ovation. More

Not ready for a church app? Make sure your site is mobile-friendly    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Your church might not be ready to build its own church app. There might be a number of reasons at play — you might not have the budget, the time or the people interested in downloading your church app. That said, it is more than imperative that your church website be mobile-friendly. More - Cloud Ministry Database

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What workers would trade for more vacation time
Business News Daily    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
American workers want more vacation time and are willing to give up a lot to get it, according to new research. Specifically, more than one-tenth of all employees who receive vacation time from their employer would prefer more time off over a higher salary or a promotion, while one-sixth of those surveyed would forgo a compensation bonus in exchange for more days off. More

Thousands stolen from Florida church
Orlando Sentinel    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Church members sat in stunned silence as Senior Associate Pastor Danny de Armas told them more than $40,000 had been stolen from Florida's First Baptist Church of Orlando. "To say they were surprised would be an understatement," de Armas said. "They were shocked, and so was I. It was a sobering moment at our church." The money, collected as an offering during the 9 a.m. and 10:45 a.m. services July 15, disappeared from a safe with a combination lock and was reported missing to police the next day, he said. More

Survey finds 19 percent without religious affiliation
USA Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Unbelief is on the uptick. People who check "None" for their religious affiliation are now nearly 1 in 5 Americans, the highest ever documented, according to the Pew Center for the People and the Press. The rapid rise of Nones — including atheists, agnostics and those who say they believe "nothing in particular" — defies the usually glacial rate of change in spiritual identity. More

When things go wrong: How to communicate about a pastor's exit
Center for Church Communication    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Often it is time for a pastor to leave or even be asked to leave. The sadness in a story like this is not that a pastor has to be removed, but in the lack of healthy communication. Much of what is seen publicly is the tip of the iceberg. People lose trust in leaders who lack transparency, so the key is planning with good ethics. People make mistakes. Sometimes an exit will not end up friendly, even given best intentions. Preparation trumps reaction in communicating bad news. More

Why listening is the most important leadership skill and how you can improve
Common Sense Leadership    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Attentive listening has been the No. 1 key to many leaders' effectiveness. And, not surprisingly, when surveying team members of leaders who were seeking to improve their leadership skills, listening was frequently cited as the needed area for improvement. While many people think that they are good listeners, they're actually not. Fortunately, listening, like all other skills, can be improved. More

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