5 Facts About Money in Large Churches

Recently we partnered with a leading church research firm to conduct a national survey of hundreds of churches exceeding 1,000 people in worship attendance. Below are some interesting financial learnings I want to pass on to you:

  1. 100% of large churches are engaging capital campaigns as a funding strategy.
  2. 57% of large churches desire training and will lead their capital campaigns internally rather than hire a traditional capital campaign firm.
  3. The #1 named financial challenge was current church debt load.
  4. The #2 named financial challenge was aging donor base and not engaging younger donors.
  5. The #3 named financial challenge was no strategy in place to encourage generosity.
  6. Churches founded prior to 1900 launched the highest percentage of capital campaigns in the last year.
  7. Churches over 2,000 in worship attendance showed a higher concern for debt load and aging donor base.
  8. Churches between 1,000-1,999 in worship attendance showed the highest concern for lack of a strategy to encourage generosity.
  9. The longer the church had been in existence, the more concerned it was with an aging donor base.
  10. Churches in existence since 1980 showed the highest concern for debt load.

Facts should lead to clarity. Here is some advice:

  1. Generous churches are led by generous pastors and leaders. Pursue staff wide training as a part of your ongoing culture.
  2. Debt is consistently the most limiting fixed expense. Create a culture of generosity to prepare for your future instead of leveraging your future with a burdensome debt load.
  3. Don’t exchange a capital campaign for possessing a strategy to grow a generous culture. A commitment card is not the same as a generous life.
  4. Go digital to reach the younger generation. Strive for 50% of your receipts to be received outside of the plate or box at the door.
  5. A clear vision that creates an unstoppable culture is a powerful tool every pastor needs to possess. Generosity follows opportunity, relationship, and passion.

> Read more from Todd.


Learn more about the importance of these financial learnings for your church. Connect with an Auxano Navigator and start a conversation with our team.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Todd McMichen

Todd McMichen has served for over 30 years in a variety of roles in the local church, doing everything from planting churches to lead pastor. While on staff he conducted two major capital campaigns helping to guide his local churches through sizable relocation projects. Those two churches alone raised over $35,000,000. Since 2000, Todd has been a well-established stewardship and generosity campaign coach, as well as a conference leader and speaker. Todd is a graduate of Palm Beach Atlantic College in West Palm Beach, FL and Southwestern Seminary in Ft. Worth, TX. He lives in Birmingham, AL with his wife Theresa, and their two kids, Riley and Breanna. You can contact Todd at todd@auxano.com or 205-223-7803.

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comment_post_ID); ?> I like it Mac and do agree with your opinions on the matter. Thanks much
 
— winston
 
comment_post_ID); ?> In this era, we have the opportunity of professional church staff today who utilize their gifting to shape the image and atmosphere of the church organization. But the 100% real impact on the church visitors is genuine evidence of changed lives by the gospel and the active growing discipleship (just as it was in the first century church). One demonstration is financially rich believers ministering equally together with poor believers (how odd, and incredibly miraculous; all humble and bow at the foot of the cross.). It is the awesome contrast of church members vocations, race, gender, age, maturity, gifting, humility that demonstrates to visitors "there is a Spirit in the place". That first-time guest list of 10 are "physical excuses", not spiritual excuses. Those don't tell the story. The condition of facilities and publicly greeting people have zero to do with it. The power of God in and through believers lives dedicated to impact other people with their relationship bridge-building of acceptance of the lost around them. Empowered believers are infectious, loving, helpful, giving, self-less, dynamic, compelling, bold, Christ-filled. As I have been in many church settings domestically and internationally, the facilities can be poor, and yet the fellowship can still be rich. We need to operate with first church humility. People come to Christ on His terms, not on our human abilities of hospitality. A huge catastrophe in a community, disaster relief brings lots of people into churches – many come to the church in those terrible conditions no matter the physical condition of the local church. Off the condition of facility, and onto the condition of God's people (living stones).... and everything else will grow.... and the other physical issues will be corrected by the staff.
 
— Russ Wright
 
comment_post_ID); ?> "While I understand the intent behind this phrase" Expound please. What do you understand to be the intent behind that phrase?
 
— Ken
 

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