Disciples of Christ denomination reports large decline

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This doesn’t come as a surprise to me as we are seeing similar reports involving just about every mainstream — and especially legacy — Christian denomination.

In fact, The Disciples of Christ could lose half their membership within ten years if the current rate of decline remains the same, according to a report by the Institute on Religion & Democracy.

A statement made by Jeff Walton, who authored the report, is especially telling and one that should alarm all Christian churches.

“The denomination is aging out, shown in a steep decline in baptisms. A universalist theology appears to be sapping the evangelistic vigor of clergy,” said Walton.

In other words, membership is in decline because the church is caving in to pressure to make their messages more relevant to the times, rather than maintain the high standards of thought and action that Christians should aspire to achieve.

If a watered down theology is sapping the evangelistic vigor of clergy, imagine what it is doing to membership trying to overcome sin issues in their lives.

Becoming all things to all people is not enough to attract and maintain interest in a movement, let alone a lifestyle like Christianity. People want to be a part of something that is larger than themselves — something that empowers them to change, grow and to step into their destinies.

From The Christian Post:

Also known as the Christian Church, the Disciples saw their membership decline by 7 percent, going from approximately 411,000 in 2017 to approximately 382,000 in 2018.

Worship attendance fell 11 percent, going from about 139,000 in 2017 to about 124,000 in 2018, and baptisms declined by 13 percent, from approximately 4,300 in 2017 to approximately 3,700 in 2018.

“This annual rate of decline exceeds that of the Presbyterian Church (USA) which reported a nearly 5 percent membership drop for the year 2018 and held the distinction of ‘fastest declining’ for much of the decade,” Walton wrote.

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Greg Gerber

A native of Wisconsin who moved to Arizona in 2009, Greg Gerber is a DODO -- Dad of Daughters Only -- to three grown daughters. He worked as a journalist for many years before pursuing a career as a faith-based writer, author, coach and speaker. Greg is the author of Pornocide: How Lust is Killing Your Faith, Stealing Your Joy and Destroying Your Life.

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