Discerning Mission

Should numbers count?

Festival of Homiletics - photo by LutherSeminary

One of the terms from the Luther Seminary "insider language" book that used to be bug me a lot was when people would start their description of their church by saying something like "we worship 200 on Sunday." I would immediately wonder: 200 what? Who are you worshiping?

Eventually I began to understand what people meant by that phrase, or perhaps just got more inured to it. In any case, the issue of "numbers" continues to fascinate pastoral leaders. Consider this post, for instance, where James Howell muses about the radical drop-off in numbers of the so-called "low Sundays" of the year. Or this reflection by Rob Moss, about how the pursuit of numbers can become a hidden agenda that warps a missional stance. 

What do you think? Should we be paying attention to numbers in a missional congregation? Why or why not?

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