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Stories tagged with: lifeway research

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  • Why Americans go to church -- and why they don't

    by Bob Smietana, posted Friday, August 03, 2018 (13 days ago)

    NASHVILLE (BP) -- Americans who attend religious services and those who skip them may be looking for the same thing -- a connection with God, according to a new survey from Pew Research.

    The most common single reason for attending services is that people want to be close to God. And the most common single reason for skipping services is that people found some other way to practice their faith.

    Eighty-one percent of those who attend services at least once a month say becoming closer to God is a very important reason they attend services. Read More

  • Prosperity theology, path to 'good life' draw study

    by Bob Smietana, posted Tuesday, July 31, 2018 (16 days ago)

    iStock
    NASHVILLE (BP) -- For some Americans, dropping a check into the offering plate at church may seem a bit like having a Discover Card. Both offer a cash-back bonus.

    About a third of Protestant churchgoers say their congregation teaches that God will bless them if they donate money. Two-thirds say God wants them to prosper. One in 4 say they have to do something for God to receive material blessings in return.

    Those are among the key findings of a new study on so-called "prosperity gospel" beliefs from a LifeWay Research study conducted Aug. 22–30, 2017. For the study, released today (July 31), LifeWay Research surveyed 1,010 Americans who attend a Protestant or non-denominational church at least once a month. Read More

  • Survey: 2/3 of churchgoers invited someone to church

    by Bob Smietana, posted Thursday, July 12, 2018 (one month ago)

    LifeWayResearch.com graphic
    NASHVILLE (BP) -- America's Protestants like to invite their friends to church.

    At least once in a while.

    Nearly two-thirds of Protestant churchgoers say they've invited at least one person to visit their church in the past six months, according to a new LifeWay Research study.

    "It's a fairly easy thing for churchgoers to do," said Scott McConnell, ... Read More

  • Churches looking 'more like their neighborhoods'

    by Aaron Earls, posted Thursday, June 28, 2018 (one month ago)

    iStock
    NASHVILLE (BP) -- More American churches are multiracial, but still less so than the neighborhoods surrounding them, a new study shows.

    A Baylor University study, released June 20, found the percentage of multiracial congregations in the United States nearly doubled.

    From 1998 to 2012, the most recent year for which data is available, multiracial churches grew from 6 percent to 12 percent of all U.S. congregations, according to the report. Multiracial congregations are places of worship in which less than 80 percent of the congregants are of the same race or ethnicity. Read More

  • Churchgoers sticking around for theology, not music

    by Bob Smietana, posted Tuesday, June 26, 2018 (one month ago)

    iStock
    NASHVILLE (BP) -- Most churchgoers will put up with a change in music style or a different preacher, according to a LifeWay Research study released today (June 26). But don't mess with a church's beliefs or there may be an exodus.

    The study of Protestant churchgoers found most are committed to staying at their church over the long haul. But more than half say they would strongly consider leaving if the church's beliefs changed, according to the study, which was conducted Aug. 22–30, 2017.

    Pastors often worry about changing church music and setting off a "worship war," said Scott McConnell, executive director of LifeWay Research. But few say they would leave over music. Read More

  • Survey: VBS remains popular among American parents

    by Bob Smietana, posted Thursday, May 24, 2018 (2 months ago)

    NASHVILLE (BP) -- Back in the 1890s, a pair of Sunday School teachers -- D.T. Miles of Hopedale, Ill., and Virginia Hawes of New York City -- both had the same idea.

    School kids were off for the summer.

    Why not invite them to church to study the Bible? And maybe sing a few songs and have some fun along the way?

    The idea was a hit. Read More

  • Personal touch drives churchgoer giving, study shows

    by Bob Smietana, posted Wednesday, April 18, 2018 (4 months ago)

    NASHVILLE (BP) -- When it comes to charity, a personal touch works 10 times better than Facebook -- at least for churchgoers, according to a study released April 17.

    A new report from LifeWay Research found more than half of Protestant churchgoers say a personal connection inspired them to give money to a charity for the first time. The evangelical research firm conducted the survey this past Aug. 22–30.

    Social media such as Facebook inspired only 4 percent of similar donations.

    Three-quarters of churchgoers support at least one charity besides their church. According to the survey, nearly half do volunteer work, while a similar number have made changes to the charities they support. Read More

  • Church discipline focus of new survey

    by Bob Smietana, posted Thursday, April 05, 2018 (4 months ago)

    iStock
    NASHVILLE (BP) -- More than 8 in 10 Protestant senior pastors say their church has not disciplined a member in the past year, says a new study released today (April 5) by LifeWay Research.

    More than half say they don't know of a case when someone has been disciplined, which can include being asked to leave the church for misconduct, according to the study conducted Aug. 30-Sept. 18.

    "It's one of the topics that churches rarely talk about," said Scott McConnell, executive director of LifeWay Research. Read More

  • Diversity & churches: Progress being made, study says

    by Bob Smietana, posted Tuesday, March 20, 2018 (5 months ago)

    iStock
    NASHVILLE (BP) -- Protestant churches may be a little more diverse these days. And that's a good thing, their pastors say in a new study released today (March 20).

    Eighty-one percent of Protestant pastors say their congregation is predominantly made up of one racial or ethnic group. That's down from 86 percent four years ago, according to the study conducted this past Aug. 30-Sept. 18 by LifeWay Research.

    It's a small but significant step, said Scott McConnell, executive director of LifeWay Research, in a nation where Sunday mornings often remain segregated. Read More

  • Greeters and gifts: How churches welcome guests

    by Aaron Earls, posted Wednesday, March 14, 2018 (5 months ago)

    iStock
    NASHVILLE (BP) -- If the average pastor has anything to do with it, church guests can expect multiple greetings and may even leave with a gift, a new study released today (March 14) shows.

    A study from LifeWay Research, which was conducted Aug. 30-Sept. 18, asked 1,000 Protestant pastors what their churches do to welcome guests.

    "The Bible is full of verses on hospitality, so churches should be full of hospitality as well," said President and CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources Thom S. Rainer. "Congregations should strive to create environments where guests are fully welcomed."

    According to the study, the average pastor says their church does six different things to welcome guests. Read More