17 Signs Of A Fast Growing Church

Are there indicators that your church may be ready for a period of sustained growth? After speaking with literally thousands of church leaders, I have discovered some common threads among fast growing churches.

Some on this list are self-explanatory while others have supporting comments.

  1. Fast Growing Churches Are Unashamed To Preach Jesus – It is a common misconception that large churches water down the gospel.   
  2. Fast Growing Churches Have A Great Senior/Lead Pastor
  3. Fast Growing Churches Are Staff Led – This is necessary for making quick decisions that are transformational, not simply transactional.
  4. Fast Growing Churches Have Stable, Unified Senior Leadership
  5. Fast Growing Churches Have A Volunteer Culture – The ability to integrate, equip, resource, and cheer on volunteers is critical to church health.
  6. Fast Growing Churches Reach Young Families
  7. Fast Growing Churches Have Incredible Children and Youth Departments – Most parents will put up with a lot if their children are happy.  Been to a recital or baseball field lately?
  8. Fast Growing Churches Have Ministry Needs That Outpace Ministry Resources – Another common false belief is that churches only want your money.  Many young families come to a church with a house note that stretches them, two car payments, and credit card debt.
  9. Fast Growing Churches Are Clear On Vision and Strongly Defend It – Clarity on why we exist and what we are about is critical for creating ownership.
  10. Fast Growing Churches Connect Every Ministry Activity Back To The Overall Vision – Successful ministries tie everything back to the big picture for their people.  Mistakes can be made when the various elements of ministry seem disconnected and autonomous.
  11. Fast Growing Churches Struggle With Connecting People Into Community – Growth is happening so fast  that making sure everyone is in a small group is extremely difficult.
  12. Fast Growing Churches Preach About Money – Churches must answer the questions that people are asking.  Jesus preached more on money and possessions than love and prayer.  Get the picture.
  13. Fast Growing Churches Develop Financial Leaders Spiritually – Wealthy people can provide significant fuel to the ministry.  Great pastors know who their wealthy people are and disciple them accordingly.  See 1 Timothy 6:17-21.
  14. Fast Growing Churches Have A Congregation That Trusts The Leadership
  15. Fast Growing Churches Are Multi-Generational – The third misconception is that there is no place for older people in these new, fast growing environments.  While the large percentage of the audience is younger, fast growing churches have a strong portion of their faith community that is seasoned and experienced.
  16. Fast Growing Churches Are Passionate About Unchurched People – No perfect people are allowed at fast growing churches!
  17. Fast Growing Churches Serve The Poor, Marginalized, and Under-Resourced – Young people especially are passionate about joining movements and faith communities that address social justice issues.

It’s Christmas and I am in the giving mood.  The following are some quotes you will NEVER hear in fast growing churches:

  1. “Pastor, now we don’t want to get ahead of God.”
  2. “Can we sing that fifth verse again?”
  3. “We let the preacher preach and we handle everything else.”
  4. “Son, now that’s not how we do things around here.”
  5. “Pastor, you want that slooooooow growth.  You don’t want that fast growth.”
  6. “I wish he would wear a tie.”
  7. “All we hear about is lost people.”

This post demands additional thoughts or debate.  So let it begin!!!

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About Brian Dodd on Leadership

I am a church stewardship and leadership consultant for INJOY Stewardship Solutions. This blog combines my personal passions of church, sports, pop culture and family into a single leadership resource. I trust your time on this site will create conversations and add value to your life.

17 Responses to “17 Signs Of A Fast Growing Church”

  1. danbrubacher .@briankdodd has a great blog post on “17 Signs of a Fast Growing Church.” Does this describe your congregation? http://tinyurl.com/2et979p

  2. mikeymo1741 17 signs of a fast-growing church. Good stuff! (via @briankdodd ) http://j.mp/fNGtzK

    • leah natasha pryce Reply 06/26/2011 at 12:48 PM

      i have given alot of money to church i find that it should go to the new holy bibles in church i have kids and husbands which are my childrens dads i need to feed them i also need to feed myself i don,t want to go poor. churches are very important to god that’s why we go to the place we also would love to go to take away the anxiety of earth away which is the kingdom read more and think carefully the holy bible jesus came and said by now.

  3. Point #11 shows the struggle with fast growth and plugging people into small groups. If people aren’t getting plugged into small groups and being discipled, then the fast growth is building a lot of people but not necessarily building a church.

    Is fast growth what we should be aiming for? You can’t build a city unless you first build the infrastructure to sustain it. I suspect fast growth is often times followed by fast fall off.

    I would like to see the 17 signs of sustained growth.

  4. NYC_CoachO @BrianKDodd Nice post Brian, alot of those things exist in our church… good article

  5. ikereighard Good blog by @brianKDodd! 17 Signs Of A Fast Growing Church: http://t.co/1dnR203

  6. Very interesting and helpful information in this article. Thanks a lot for posting. I like the way of your mind thinks and Im lookin’ forward to future posts.

  7. Very practical but wise insight, thank you!


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