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thom rainer

Created on Thursday, 20 November 2014 / Administration
Tags: Thom Rainer, sabbatical, paid leave, rejuvenation, deeper study, churches, pastors, break, vacations, vocations, highs, lows, on call, uninterrupted study, tenure, affirmation
The word "sabbatical" has different meanings, depending on the context in which it is used. It has one meaning in the academic community, another meaning in its biblical usage and still another in many ... [ +++ ]
Created on Tuesday, 18 November 2014 / Church Growth
Tags: Thom Rainer, genuine, friendly, church, guests, return rate, intentional, warmth, humility, worship service, website, clear signage, greeters ministry, information places
Several years ago, when I was involved in active church consultations, I assembled data on what I called GFCs, genuinely friendly churches. I set certain parameters for GFCs, and then I attempted to measure ... [ +++ ]
Created on Thursday, 06 November 2014 / Church Growth
Tags: Thom Rainer, LifeWay, church service, first-time guests, greet, worship, unfriendly, unsafe, unclean, children's ministry, information kiosk, insider church language, church website, poor signage, ...
If you attend a church regularly, you've probably noticed the phenomenon. A guest shows up for a worship service, but he or she never returns. It is, unfortunately, a common issue in many churches. I did ... [ +++ ]
Created on Monday, 03 November 2014 / Money
Tags: Thom Rainer, money, stewardship, struggling, finances, scarcity, budget, programs, impact, church, community, expenditures, accountability
A consistent theme of concern I have seen in many churches is in the area of church finances. Many church leaders operate out of a mode of scarcity instead of abundance. While I realize that churches cannot ... [ +++ ]
Created on Monday, 27 October 2014 / Ministry Leadership
Tags: Thom Rainer, revitalization, churches, resistant, pastors, decline, growth, communities, fearful, comfortable, denial, coasting, resources, hope, possibilities
You've heard my dire statistics from time to time. For example, nine out of 10 churches in America are either declining or growing more slowly than the community in which they are located. The overwhelming ... [ +++ ]
Created on Monday, 20 October 2014 / Social Media
Tags: Thom Rainer, LifeWay, social media, harm, good, church, communication, encouragement, attack, leaders, criticize, share the gospel, prayer requests
On a few occasions, I have addressed the topic of church leaders on social media. I obviously have a fascination with this form of communication. Indeed, I see it as one of the great modern-day vehicles ... [ +++ ]
Created on Tuesday, 14 October 2014 / Money
Tags: Thom Rainer, LifeWay Christian Resources, Richard R. Hammar, compensation, pastors, church staff, Southern Baptist Convention, church income, gender, worship attendance, longevity, education, geographical ...
Some of the current trends in pastor and church staff compensation are surprising to me, while others are about what I expected. I relied on several current compensation studies to assemble these nine ... [ +++ ]
Created on Tuesday, 07 October 2014 / Personal Character
Tags: Thom Rainer, church leaders, healthy, toxic, poisonous, pastors, fruit, Spirit, minimalist, structure, accountability, behavior, favoritism, critical, anger outbursts, manipulation, transparency, ...
Most church leaders are godly and healthy. A toxic church leader, one that figuratively is poisonous to the organization, is rare. But it is that church leader who brings great harm to churches and other ... [ +++ ]
Created on Wednesday, 01 October 2014 / Personal Character
Tags: Thom Rainer, LifeWay Christian Resources, tenure, pastor, church, traits, prayer, staff, family time, ministry, community, battles, accountable, conflict, criticism
Imagine what might take place if pastors consistently stayed at churches for 10 or more years. Imagine that their tenure was largely healthy. Imagine what would happen in our congregations. The median ... [ +++ ]
Created on Tuesday, 30 September 2014 / Administration
Tags: Thom Rainer, pastoral vacancy, job interviewing, search, months, qualifications, candidates, traditional processes, internal candidates, trend, screening, awkwardness
Hardly a week goes by that I don't hear from a church searching for a pastor. As I have taken mental notes from these conversations over the past few months, I have noticed common themes. Here are the ... [ +++ ]
Created on Tuesday, 23 September 2014 / Money
Tags: Thom Rainer, consulting, offering, money, financial stewardship, churches, congregation, pastors, key leader, worship, communication, vision, mission, gifts
I have been visiting and consulting with churches and church leaders for over 25 years. Do you know what that means? Mostly, it means that I'm old. But it also means I have seen a lot of what takes place ... [ +++ ]
Created on Tuesday, 16 September 2014 / Church Growth
Tags: Thom Rainer, LifeWay, church leaders, pastors, multisite churches, research, Leadership Network, Generis, Warren Bird, study, evangelistic strategy, campus pastor, staff ministers
... looked at multisite churches in recent years. Scott McConnell, the director of LifeWay Research, wrote Multi-site Churches in 2009, an excellent analysis of the movement. Now a study by Leadership Network ... [ +++ ]
Created on Tuesday, 09 September 2014 / Relationships
Tags: Thom Rainer, volunteer, recruitment, retention, churches, vision, ministries, specific, end dates, member's passion, pastor, leaders, communication, relationships, checkups
Without volunteer labor and ministry, our churches would not exist. The recruitment and retention of volunteers should be one of the highest priorities of church leaders. While we typically honor our paid ... [ +++ ]
Created on Tuesday, 02 September 2014 / Adversity
Tags: Thom Rainer, resign, quit, seasons, relationship, marriage, pastors, church staff, lay leaders, clarity, gratitude, joy, critics, discouragement, difficulty
You are frustrated. Or hurting. Or just don't know if you can take it any more. You may be in a difficult relationship. You may be in a job you hate. You may be the pastor of a church, and ... [ +++ ]
Created on Monday, 25 August 2014 / Vision
Tags: Thom Rainer, LifeWay Christian resources, breakout pastors, breakout churches, hopelessness, hopefulness, possibilities, reality, long term, perspective, increments, setbacks, intentionality, outward ...
If you want to experience an "a-ha" moment about revitalizing churches, this research may be the near the top. Most of you have heard the dire information and statistics about congregations in North America. ... [ +++ ]
Created on Tuesday, 19 August 2014 / Culture
Tags: Thom Rainer, Millennials, Baby Boomers, generation, local churches, smaller venues, enemy, denounce, culture, cooperation, worship wars, communities, involvement
... the Millennials are from 1980 to 2000. So the oldest member of this generation is 34, while the youngest is only 14. But their impact is already noticeable, and it will be for years to come. Here are 10 ... [ +++ ]
Created on Friday, 08 August 2014 / Relationships
Tags: Thom Rainer, LifeWay Resources, unleadable, church members, pastor, overt negativity, pray, blessings, families, attitude, mentor, recalcitrant, new members class, influencers, consistency
"I am so frustrated. I am ready to leave this church and the pastorate altogether. The church members are unleadable." The email came to me just as I quoted. Though I didn't think "unleadable" was a word, ... [ +++ ]
Created on Wednesday, 06 August 2014 / Preaching
Tags: Thom Rainer, sermons, length, LifeWay Christian Resources, trends, social media polls, anecdotal information, no constraints, shorter, longer
What is the trend? Are church members and church leaders saying sermons should be longer or shorter? The answer is "yes." If my answer is confusing, I understand. But the reality is there are two major ... [ +++ ]
Created on Friday, 25 July 2014 / Administration
Tags: Thom Rainer, congregations, search committees, pastors, elder board, lay leaders, contact, stay in touch, limbo, issues, strengths, challenges
On occasion, I provide updates on issues and strategies regarding pastor search committees. Congregations across America call pastors to their churches in a variety of ways. As church polity varies, so ... [ +++ ]
Created on Monday, 21 July 2014 / Administration
Tags: Thom Rainer, pastor, ministerial leader, leave, church, mistake, call, conflict, criticism, match, family needs, skills, fired, forced out, ministry, denominational, parachurch, paycheck
I am reticent to write this article. I do not want to encourage pastors to leave churches too early. Frankly, many pastors have shared with me that, in the aftermath of their departures, they realized ... [ +++ ]
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