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Membership  Resources  Events  Certification  Nat'l Conference  Chapters  Jobs  Teleweb Dec. 31, 2010

As 2010 comes to a close, NACBA would like to wish its members, partners, and other industry professionals a safe and happy holiday season. As we reflect on the past year for the industry, we would like to provide the readers of the NACBA Weekly Update, a look at the most accessed articles from the year. Our regular publication will resume next Friday, Jan. 7, 2011.

ACS Technologies
Church contributions, budgets recede in poor economy
USA Today    Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
From Jan. 15, 2010: Recession pain has hit widely and deeply among U.S. churches — driving down contributions and limiting budgets, according to surveys from two groups specializing in Christian research. Meanwhile, pleas for assistance rose sharply in 2009. Although pastor Rick Warren, a best-selling author, raised $2.5 million with a New Year's Eve appeal when the budget for his Saddleback Church came up $900,000 short, few pastors have his fame or his affluent Southern California base. More

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Why do people leave churches?
Associated Baptist Press    Share    Share on
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From Nov. 5, 2010: Many churches and denominations put a lot of effort into attracting new members only to lose many of them through a “back door” -- a term used to describe people who regularly attended a church in the past but stopped. “Churches have gone to great extreme effort to get people in the front door of the church,” Brad Waggoner of LifeWay Christian Resources said in a 2006 podcast. “There’s been some success numerically in that strategy, but very few people are talking about the back door of the church. That is: ‘Where do the people go that slip out of the life of the church?’ The back door is just as important as the front door in determining the health of a local church.” More

Tithing reduced in tough times? Yes and no
The Bulletin    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
From Jan. 8, 2010: For many people, the money they to contribute to their churches is a regular part of their budgets. Job losses and reductions in income have forced some members of local congregations to reduce how much they give their churches through individual gifts or by tithing -- the practice of giving 10 percent of one's income to the church -- and some local churches have cut their budgets in response. At other churches, large gifts from a few people or increased membership have buoyed their finances. More

Churches suffer losses under new FCC rule
The Christian Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
From March 19, 2010: As the Federal Communications Commission seeks out more broadband space, the agency is being asked to consider possibly the largest group that would be affected by the move – that is, churches. Churches across the country that use wireless devices have already been affected by FCC's 2008 decision to auction off rights to the 700 MHz band. But their new push for even more spectrum is sure to create more losses and interferences. "I assure you the number one use of wireless systems in this country is churches," Reed Hall, director of Audio & Technical Production at Lakewood Church in Houston, told The Christian Post. "Ninety percent of them have at least one wireless system. You compare that to Broadway, which is like a three-block area." More

A church staff meeting covenant
LifeWay    Share    Share on
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From Jan. 22, 2010: Your weekly church staff meeting is the most important meeting of the week. It is an opportunity to gather key staff leaders to celebrate victories, identify missed opportunities, communicate dates and plans, and keep focused on your stated vision and purpose. Consider adopting a covenant with your staff about how you will handle your staff meetings week to week. Here are elements you may choose to include along with explanations and rationales. More
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Centerville Baptist Extended Childcare Receives PLAYTIME Scholarship

“We were attracted to PLAYTIME by your creativity,” says Norma Harrington, Centerville Baptist Extended Childcare, Chesapeake, VA. “The PLAYTIME scholarship money will be put to good use for the students enrolled in our Sunday school and weekday childcare programs.” PLAYTIME awarded four childcare scholarships in 2010 and plans to award more 2011. READ MORE
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Declining donations force churches to adjust strategies
The Dallas Morning News    Share    Share on
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From May 28, 2010: Nearly 40 percent of U.S. churches experienced declines in church giving and offerings in 2009, the second consecutive year of significant funding drops, according to the 2010 State of the Plate surveys conducted by the Maximum Generosity ministry and Christianity Today International. "What normally happens is a downturn hits churches about six months after it hits everyone else, and it takes about six months after the recovery starts for churches to see that," said Simeon May, chief executive officer for the Richardson-based National Association of Church Business Administration. "We aren't seeing much improvement yet." More

5 things your church can do immediately to increase giving
LifeWay    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
From Oct. 22, 2010: Recently, Keith Hamilton of Church Financial Services of the Georgia Baptist Convention surveyed 1,800 pastors to discover if their church offerings had increased in 2009. Keith wanted to discover what churches were doing during these difficult economic times to increase giving. Pastor after pastor reported how unemployment had hit their church hard, but survey respondent Pastor Matt Stacy voiced their collective belief; "The cure for our current economic hardship is not to wring our hands over pitiful funds, but to wrap our arms around our Providing Father." Matt was on target with his response and words of encouragement. The responses from the churches that had increased their giving recently fell into the following five common categories. More

Study says larger churches hit harder by economy
Associated Baptist Press    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
From Jan. 15, 2010: The economic recession has hit larger churches harder than it has smaller ones, according to a new survey by the Barna Group. Percentage-wise, churches with fewer than 100 members lost more of their income than churches larger than 1,000 adults (16 percent of income for smaller churches versus 9 percent for large churches). Large churches, however, were more likely to report being under financial duress. Researchers speculated that belt tightening may feel more painful for larger churches, because since they have larger budgets, in actual dollars their cuts are larger. More

Walking away from church
Los Angeles Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
From Oct. 22, 2010: The most rapidly growing religious category today is composed of those Americans who say they have no religious affiliation. While middle-aged and older Americans continue to embrace organized religion, rapidly increasing numbers of young people are rejecting it. As recently as 1990, all but 7 percent of Americans claimed a religious affiliation, a figure that had held constant for decades. Today, 17 percent of Americans say they have no religion, and these new "nones" are very heavily concentrated among Americans who have come of age since 1990. Between 25 percent and 30 percent of twentysomethings today say they have no religious affiliation — roughly four times higher than in any previous generation. So, why this sudden jump in youthful disaffection from organized religion? The surprising answer, according to a mounting body of evidence, is politics. More

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IRS delays mandatory W-2 reporting of health care coverage costs
Journal of Accountancy    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
From Oct. 15, 2010: In October, the IRS issued a notice providing interim relief to employers regarding reporting the costs of group health plan coverage to employees (Notice 2010-69). Under the notice, notification to employees on Form W-2 will not be required for 2011. The IRS also posted a draft 2011 Form W-2on its site. The health care reform legislation enacted in March requires employers to include the aggregate cost of applicable employer-sponsored health care coverage on employees’ W-2s for tax years starting on or after Jan. 1, 2011. More

Top 6 tax mistakes made by ministers
LifeWay    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
From March 19, 2010: According to the Internal Revenue Service, ministers are unique. Sometimes, church members and other individuals incorrectly assume ministers pay fewer taxes than the average tax payers. This is an incorrect assumption. Generally, ministers actually pay more taxes than the average tax payers. If the church does not handle its ministerial taxes correctly, the mistakes could cost the church and minister a lot of additional money and headaches. Here are some of the common tax mistakes often made by churches and ministers. More

Joblessness hits the pulpit
The Wall Street Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
From May 21, 2010: While the economy appears to be recovering from the worst downturn in generations, more clergy are facing unemployment as churches continue to struggle with drops in donations. In 2009, the government counted about 5,000 clergy looking for jobs, up from 3,000 in 2007 and 2,000 in 2005. The official unemployment rate among clergy sits at 1.2 percent, far below the national average jobless rate, but layoffs can be particularly painful for ministers. Churches aren't subject to unemployment taxes, so laid-off employees can't collect the benefits available to other workers. More

Steak on a paper plate: A reflection on worship
Kingdom People    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail
From Aug. 20, 2010: When it comes to the atmosphere of worship services in the next generation, something’s got to give. More and more churches are focusing on the centrality of the Word in worship. The resurgence of Reformed theology among younger evangelicals, the reestablishment of a rock-solid belief in the inerrancy and inspiration of the Scriptures in the Southern Baptist Convention, the revival of expository preaching… this wave that we’re riding is about to collide with an even bigger wave: the dominance of contemporary worship styles across the U.S. and the world. More

Taking a break from the Lord's work
The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
From Aug. 6, 2010: The findings have surfaced with ominous regularity over the last few years, and with little notice: Members of the clergy now suffer from obesity, hypertension and depression at rates higher than most Americans. In the last decade, their use of antidepressants has risen, while their life expectancy has fallen. Many would change jobs if they could. Public health experts who have led the studies caution that there is no simple explanation of why so many members of a profession once associated with rosy-cheeked longevity have become so unhealthy and unhappy. But while research continues, a growing number of health care experts and religious leaders have settled on one simple remedy that has long been a touchy subject with many clerics: taking more time off. More

NACBA Weekly Update
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