Outreach’s website reports in “Coming Home – Outreach & Evangelism (link broken)” some statistics about why people leave churches and what churches can do to reach back out.
Why people drop out of church
The Number One reason people drop out of church is a change in life situation (almost 60%).
I think of the couple that I wrote about in Hospitality is a Piece of Evangelism reflects this. They moved to a different city, tried a a few churches, and then just got too busy to return.
It appears the second biggest reason was disillusionment with the church (37%).
I’m sure each of us can think of folks who just “drop out.”
I once read a statistic that suggested it only takes about 3 weeks of not going for a person to feel disconnected, and then very hesitant to return. With every week that passes, the hesitancy to return is much greater. I would agree based on my personal experience of dropping out of a church.
Close the Back Door
The article goes on to suggest solutions to closing the back door.
Their research shows that 41% would return if someone invited them.
In the 18-35 age group, 60% suggest an invitation would bring them back.
“A simple, yet powerful invitation is all it may take to prompt a homecoming for the dechurched.
Is the church equipping people to invite others back?”
In other words, a personal invitation to church is the best way to keep people coming back.
Let me ask you this?
Who do you know that needs an invitation back to church?