by Jac La Tour

Outreach magazine’s recent “100 Largest and Fastest-Growing Churches” special issue is loaded with statistics, facts, and figures. One article, titled “Learning from the Great Recession,” offers Leadership Network survey results that reveal “how churches have fared and responded in the economic crisis.”

One question asked: What shifts have churches made in their operations/budgeting/stewardship during the current “Great Recession” that they will likely continue even if the economy recovers? From a list of 10 options, here are the top four answers:

  • Greater use of volunteers instead of additional paid staff (65 percent)
  • Increased emphasis on financial training classes (45 percent)
  • More electronic/online giving options (41 percent)
  • More financial cushion in church bank account (39 percent)

As for changes to their 2011 budgeting, 58 percent of churches plan to increase their giving to missions.

How about your church? What shifts have you made over the past two years that are likely to continue into the future?

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