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Published by FLCOGOP, 2021-11-05 14:13:21

November 2021 Pastor Mailing

November Mailing Pastor

A resource initiative of Florida Ministries .
6001 Monarch Blvd.

Leesburg, Florida 34748

Equipping pastors to equip leaders for life.
Encounter & Encourage, Equip & Empower

Measuring What Counts

By William Vanderbloemen
-October 20, 2021

Tracking Church Growth in a Post-Pandemic

The past year and a half has been truly
unprecedented in the history of Christendom.
Never before has there been an Easter when
almost every church on the planet had to cancel
in-person worship. Never before has there been
a faster adoption of online worship. The question
now is how will we gauge growth going forward.
Was COVID-19 the “Great Disruptor” that will
change everything we do in measuring the size
and health of our churches? What will be the new
metrics of growth?

For the last several months, I’ve been learning how pastors and churches are determining
growth, and how they plan to calculate it in a post-pandemic world. However, most of the
churches that the Vanderbloemen Search Group works with are relatively healthy
churches, so our sample size is not a complete picture of the church in the United States.
Barna Group has predicted that as many as 1 in 5 churches will close in the coming year.
That is likely an acceleration of what was already happening in churches rather than a
direct result of the pandemic. So with that caveat in place, let’s look at what churches that
are relatively stable or growing are doing to measure growth in the years to come.

Online Worship Is Here to Stay.

Online worship was easily the biggest story for the church in 2020. Nearly everyone I
have talked to agrees that weekly online worship offerings will continue in the future and
must become increasingly more engaging. Churches that refuse to continue and
accelerate what they offer online will quickly find themselves irrelevant in the years to

This change had been coming for some time, and many of the churches already
accustomed to having some online presence simply flipped a switch and went fully digital.
However, the pandemic forced other churches to adapt to this change much more quickly
than they ordinarily would have. In this regard, and in many others, COVID-19 was more
the Great Accelerator than the Great Disruptor.

Equipping pastors to equip leaders for life 2|P a g e

One recent study claims that before the pandemic, around 10% of all Protestant churches
in the U.S. were streaming live worship each week. Now that we are hopefully past the
pandemic, something like 10% of all Protestant churches are not streaming their worship
online. That’s a change that ought to take years but only took 12 months.

My favorite example is my mother’s home church in a small town in North Carolina. The
church dates back to the 18th century, and their worship has been predictably the same
for a long, long time. Enter 2020. They had never had online worship before, but during
the pandemic their brand-new pastor introduced weekly online services.

Imagine, however, if there had been no pandemic and the brand-new pastor showed up
at my mom’s church with a newfangled idea of doing weekly online streaming worship.
I’d wager that the board of elders might have told him, “Thanks, but no thanks.” But to
their credit, they pivoted (as did thousands of congregations). The shift to digital has been
a marvelous testimony to the agility of the church, and all indicators are that this change
is here to stay.

The New Front Porch

Nearly every pastor I have spoken with has said they will be paying more attention to their
online numbers. The vast majority of pastors we surveyed acknowledge that members
will be logging on to digital services when they are out of town or have other commitments.
However, the overwhelming number of those I interviewed agreed that the biggest reason
to increase attention to online worship is to reach new people.

Online attendance is the new “front porch” to the local church. Much like when consumers
check out a store’s website before visiting a physical store, the pandemic has created a
new reality where people are far more likely to attend a service online before ever entering
the building. Smart church leaders are realizing that and are finding new ways to track
the trend lines of their online effectiveness. And unlike the days before the pandemic, this
applies to churches of all sizes, not just the bigger congregations who are already

The Digital Dilemma

Many pastors I spoke with agreed that while the acceleration of online worship is good,
figuring out how to count its attendance is terribly complex. When asked how many would
be counting virtual attendance, nearly everyone said yes. But when I asked if virtual
attendance would be included in overall attendance, the overwhelming majority said no.

Some respondents said it’s hard to know how long a person needs to be present to
“count.” Do you count more than one attendee per IP address/device that is dialed in? Do

you count a three-second view? Or is the threshold 20 minutes? Or do you only count

Equipping pastors to equip leaders for life 3|P a g e

those who are present during the whole service? Others worried that online “reach” gives
the appearance of a much larger church than a true representation of people who make
the effort to be present.

The overall trend I discovered is that the beginning of the 2020 lockdowns gave most
pastors hope as their online numbers skyrocketed. But the following months tempered
that optimism as the online numbers they were measuring began to decline. Engagement
is becoming the key litmus test for counting online effectiveness, but until there is an
accepted universal understanding of what the online engagement metrics are, in-person
attendance will likely remain the primary measuring stick for growth.

Measuring In-Person Attendance

The pandemic didn’t just accelerate online church trends—it accelerated declines in in-
person attendance, which has changed the game for measuring health and growth. With
that in mind, here are some new metrics and trends for measuring in-person attendance.

1. Measure frequency of attendance.

In years gone by, people who identified themselves as actively involved in their church
attended somewhere between 40 and 50 weekends per year. That number has been
dropping steadily over the last decade. Some say that the new average is 1 1/2 to two
visits per month.

COVID-19 has only fast-tracked that trend. Now that nearly every church in America has

an option for people to stream online, the frequency of in-person attendance will continue
to wane. Most pastors I have spoken with say that’s not something to get angry about,

and certainly not something to get excited about, but it is a development that is here to
stay—and that means changing the way we measure church involvement. Thom Rainer,

CEO of Church Answers, and his team are advising that in-person attendance will come
back, but a new set of metrics for what is “normal” and “growing” going forward has to be


While more difficult to accurately measure, I am seeing more and more churches try to
determine people’s frequency of attendance. For example, how many different families

attended last year? How many families attended more than 10 times in a year? How many

families attended more than half of the weekends during the year?

This shift has required more churches than I expected to revert to old school methods like
a weekly attendance pad. It’s also meant looking for new ways of seeing who is coming

and when. I was surprised to find that very few churches are requesting permission to

geotag attendees on their apps as a way to measure the frequency of attendance.

Equipping pastors to equip leaders for life 4|P a g e

Universities and schools have been doing this for a long time to track alumni’s visits to
campus, to sporting events and, yes, for donor development. I believe that in the not too
distant future, we will see churches asking permission to use location and geotagging
families. This step would give churches an opportunity to see who is on campus without
the privacy concerns of other methods like facial recognition software (which I have found
a few churches experimenting with).

2. Measure the high holy days.

In my time as a senior pastor in the Presbyterian Church, we kept membership rolls, which
were always a lot bigger than the weekly attendance numbers. In fact, I knew that on a
normal week, we would likely only have 42% of our membership in attendance.

The one exception was the high holy days of Christmas and Easter. And we paid attention
to those days to get a real read on how many people called our church home. We would
expect (and usually see) holiday attendance that matched our membership roll. And we
paid attention to trends year to year. Today, particularly as the frequency of attendance
drops, the old school method is gaining steam in churches throughout the country.

I know that measuring holiday attendance doesn’t necessarily give an accurate read of
regular attendees. I think everyone has heard the joke about the person leaving church
on Easter and saying to the pastor, “Great message pastor, but it seems like every time
I’m here you’re either talking about him being born or getting out of the grave.” Yes, some
people only show up for the holidays. Notwithstanding the Christmas- and Easter-only
attendees, measuring your biggest days can give you a fair reading of how many people
are actually part of your church family. The pastors I surveyed overwhelmingly agreed
that they are paying attention to this trend.

3. Measure the money, but differently.

Giving trends have always been regularly monitored in churches, but historically tithes
and offerings haven’t been a critical metric for determining the size of the church. That is
changing as more churches focus on the size and makeup of their donor bases.

Jim Sheppard, CEO and principal at Generis, says that most churches he knows are
paying a lot of attention to how many first-time donors they have per year, and how many
donors are falling out of their donor base per year. They are using that as a metric for
church growth and health.

With the pandemic, which sped up people’s use of e-commerce, came a marked increase
in electronic giving. Last year was one of the highest growth years that PushPay has had
in the history of the company. Now that people are more accustomed to giving
electronically, I believe that the growth of the number of donors, not necessarily the

Equipping pastors to equip leaders for life 5|P a g e

amount given, will become one of the hallmarks of measuring congregational growth and

4. Measure attendance, but celebrate volunteers.

Chris Hodges, founder and senior pastor of Church of the Highlands in Birmingham,
Alabama, was one of the last pastors I know to agree that the church needed to quit
meeting in person for a period of time during the pandemic. He really values being in
worship together.

However, when I asked him about how he will measure church growth going forward, he
was quick to answer, “I know we have to pay attention to attendance. I know we have to
pay attention to giving. But the one number that really encourages me about our growth
is when the number of our volunteers—we call them our Dream Team—increases. If the
Dream Team numbers are going up, it’s almost a given that all of the other metrics will
follow suit.”

This strategy is very similar to the one long employed by Christ Fellowship Miami in
Florida. For years, they have believed that if they wanted to grow a ministry, they needed
to increase the number of committed volunteers by 25%. Rather than, “If you build it, they
will come,” they take an “If you staff it with awesome volunteers, they will come” approach.

5. Measure one-on-one discipleship.

Richard Kannwischer, senior pastor at Peachtree Presbyterian in Atlanta, says they have
a brand new metric they’re measuring, which he calls their “moon shot.” Peachtree is
praying and planning for every active member to be mentoring at least one person and to
be mentored by one person. Yes, they will continue to pay attention to attendance and
the budget, but one-on-one mentoring has become their new standard.

They have been talking about this for quite a while, and the pandemic has made this their
No. 1 goal for the foreseeable future. Kannwischer believes that if this goal is met, all
others will take care of themselves. And even more, he believes it will usher in more life
change than a goal of growing church attendance ever could.

Not Good to Be Alone

Virtual worship is certainly the big story of change since the pandemic, and it will likely
have the most lasting impact. But while online church will be a critical supplement to
church going forward, it won’t replace getting together in person.

Of the pastors I surveyed, 100% agreed that in-person attendance is qualitatively better
than virtual attendance. When churches reopened, tears were shed, smiles were bigger

Equipping pastors to equip leaders for life 6|P a g e

than ever and people were ecstatic to be in the same room with their church family for the
first time in over a year. Is that because church families are made up of such wonderful
people? Is it because the church is such a blameless, spotless example for the world? I
don’t think so.

We were not meant to be alone. 2020 has reminded me more than ever of the first “not
good” proclamation in the Bible. The creation narrative starts with God doing a lot of
“good” pronouncements. He creates light, and it’s good. He creates vegetation, and it’s
good. He creates humans, and we are pronounced very good. Positive pronouncement
after positive pronouncement, until we get to the first negative pronouncement: “And
the Lord looked at Adam and said, ‘It is not good that man be left alone.’”

God, who has always been in triune fellowship, didn’t make us to be apart from one
another. He was so adamant about this that the first negative pronouncement happened
even before sin had entered the world. That’s a powerful principle. George MacDonald,
a mentor to C.S. Lewis, is known for saying, “Hell is God’s granting of our final wish to be
left alone.” God does not want us alone in worship; we just aren’t wired for it.

By way of illustration, years ago, Vanderbloemen Search Group decided to try doing
searches totally virtual. We thought that if we cut out all in-person interviews and onsite
interviews, we would revolutionize search. We would lower our costs, make search
available to churches that couldn’t afford a full search and—as a selfish benefit—it would
allow our team to sleep at home every night. It was a grand experiment and a colossal
failure. Our client satisfaction dropped from the high-90th percentile to the mid-60th

My big theological takeaway, which I still stand by, is this: If virtual were all it was cracked
up to be, why didn’t Jesus just Zoom it in?

One of the best explanations I’ve heard about virtual worship versus in-person worship
comes from Eric Geiger, senior pastor at Mariners Church in Irvine, California. He told me
early on in the pandemic, “You know why we like worship services so much? It’s because
even though we’re not as diverse as heaven will be, and even though our singing is
nowhere near the singing we will hear in heaven, worship services—when they’re at their
best—are an echo of heaven. The problem with online worship is that it’s an echo of the

Together Again

For all of the change in the church, I believe that the new metrics for measuring growth
will look remarkably like the old metrics. And that should give pastors a measure of

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I’m very bullish about the beginning of the next era of church. Because of online growth,
big churches will get much bigger, but average-size local churches will also matter more
than ever. New metrics will mean new methods. But concurrent to those solutions will
come the desire to be with one another. Alongside new methods of reaching people will
come a return to the gold standards of what it means to be a pastor, to be part of a family
of faith and to have an impact on our local communities. And your ability to relate to,
communicate with and pastor your people, in person and in a live relationship, will make
all of the difference in a world that is tired of being quarantined, and is really, really looking
forward to being together again.

Equipping pastors to equip leaders for life 8|P a g e

The Jesus Way Vs. The American Way

By Eugene Peterson

In this short excerpt from his book The Jesus Way, Eugene Peterson encourages
Christians to attend not only to the “the truth” and “the life” of Jesus, but also to “the
way” of Jesus—and he explains why he believes that the way often followed by North

American Christianity and its consumer-driven churches is not the Jesus way at all.

Here is a text, words spoken by Jesus, that keeps this in clear focus: “I am the way, the
truth and the life.” (John 14:6) The Jesus way wedded to the Jesus truth brings about
the Jesus life. We can’t proclaim the Jesus truth but then do it any old way we like. Nor

can we follow the Jesus way without speaking the Jesus truth.

But Jesus as the truth gets far more attention than Jesus as the way. Jesus as the way
is the most frequently evaded metaphor among the Christians with whom I have worked
for 50 years as a North American pastor. In the text that Jesus sets before us so clearly
and definitively, way comes first. We cannot skip the way of Jesus in our hurry to get to
the truth of Jesus as he is worshiped and proclaimed. The way of Jesus is the way that
we practice and come to understand the truth of Jesus, living Jesus in our homes and
workplaces, with our friends and family.

A Christian congregation, the church in your neighborhood, has always been the
primary location for getting this way and truth and life of Jesus believed and embodied
in the places, and among the people, with whom we most have to do day in and day

Equipping pastors to equip leaders for life 9|P a g e

out. There is more to the church than this local congregation. There is the church
continuous through the centuries, our fathers and mothers who continue to influence
and teach us. There is the church spread throughout the world, communities that we are
in touch with through prayer and suffering and mission. There is the church invisible,
dimensions and instances of the Spirit’s work that we know nothing about. There is the
church triumphant, that “great cloud of witnesses” who continue to surround us (Heb.
12:1). But the local congregation is the place where we get all of this integrated and
practiced in the immediate circumstances and among the men, women and children we
live with. This is where it becomes local and personal.

The local congregation is the place and community for listening to and obeying
Christ’s commands, for inviting people to consider and respond to Jesus’ invitation,
“Follow me,” a place and community for worshipping God. It is the place and community
where we are baptized into a Trinitarian identity and go on to mature “to the measure of
the full stature of Christ” (Eph. 4:13), where we can be taught the Scriptures and learn
to discern the ways that we follow Jesus, the Way.

The local congregation is the primary place for dealing with the particulars and people
we live with. As created and sustained by the Holy Spirit, it is insistently local and
personal. Unfortunately, the more popular American church strategies in respect to
congregation are not friendly to the local and the personal. The American way, with its
penchant for catchy slogans and stirring visions, denigrates the local, and its
programmatic ways of dealing with people erode the personal, replacing intimacies with
functions. The North American church at present is conspicuous for replacing the Jesus
way with the American way. For Christians who are serious about following Jesus by
understanding and pursuing the ways that Jesus is the way, this deconstruction of the
Christian congregation is particularly distressing and a looming distraction from the way
of Jesus.

A Christian congregation is a company of praying men and women who gather, usually
on Sundays, for worship, who then go into the world as salt and light. God’s Holy Spirit
calls and forms this people. God means to do something with us, and he means to do it
in community. We are in on what God is doing, and we are in on it together.

And here is how we are in on it: We become present to what God intends to do with and
for us through worship, become present to the God who is present to us. The operating
biblical metaphor regarding worship is sacrifice—we bring ourselves to the altar and let
God do with us what he will. We bring ourselves to the Eucharistic table and enter into
that grand four-fold shape of the liturgy that shapes us: taking, blessing, breaking,
giving—the life of Jesus taken and blessed, broken and distributed. That Eucharistic life
now shapes our lives as we give ourselves, Christ in us, to be taken, blessed, broken
and distributed in lives of witness and service, justice and healing.

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But that is not the American way. The great American innovation in congregation is to
turn it into a consumer enterprise. We Americans have developed a culture of
acquisition, an economy that is dependent on wanting more, requiring more. We have a
huge advertising industry designed to stir up appetites we didn’t even know we had. We
are insatiable.

It didn’t take long for some of our Christian brothers and sisters to develop consumer
congregations. If we have a nation of consumers, obviously the quickest and most
effective way to get them into our congregations is to identify what they want and offer it
to them, satisfy their fantasies, promise them the moon, recast the gospel in consumer
terms: entertainment, satisfaction, excitement, adventure, problem solving, whatever.
This is the language we Americans grew up on, the language we understand. We are
the world’s champion consumers, so why shouldn’t we have state-of-the-art consumer

Given the conditions prevailing in our culture, this is the best and most effective way
that has ever been devised for gathering large and prosperous congregations.
Americans lead the world in showing how to do it. There is only one thing wrong: This is
not the way in which God brings us into conformity with the life of Jesus and sets us on
the way of Jesus’ salvation. This is not the way in which we become less and Jesus
becomes more. This is not the way in which our sacrificed lives become available to
others in justice and service. The cultivation of consumer spirituality is the antithesis of a
sacrificial, “deny yourself” congregation. A consumer church is an antichrist church.

We can’t gather a God-fearing, God-worshipping congregation by cultivating a
consumer-pleasing, commodity-oriented congregation. When we do, the wheels start
falling off the wagon. And they are falling off the wagon. We can’t suppress the Jesus
way in order to sell the Jesus truth. The Jesus way and the Jesus truth must be
congruent. Only when the Jesus way is organically joined with the Jesus truth do we get
the Jesus life.

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By Carey Nieuwhof | 14

The fall is always significant for leaders in local churches because it represents the
launch season of your annual rhythm. This year, as you inch our way out of the
pandemic, the fall kick-off season has ministry leaders excited, anxious, and bit puzzled
as churches seek to rebuild momentum in their communities.

The rush back has been underwhelming for many leaders.

Momentum is measured by numbers—often referred to as the “metrics” or “Key
Performance Indicators” (KPI’s). As you re-launch ministries in a season that, for many,

Equipping pastors to equip leaders for life 12 | P a g e

feels like we’re re-planting our churches, those metrics will invariably get even closer
attention than usual.

The question is: as local church leaders, what are you measuring? And, what do the
things you measure say about what it is you’re actually building? How do you measure
“success” in the Body of Christ?

Traditionally, pastors have defaulted to what’s known as the “ABC’s” of church:
Attendance, Buildings, and Cash. Even through the pandemic—with the twist of pivoting
online—many of the church leaders I’ve spoken with have focused their attention most
closely on these aspects of church life.

But when you think about the purpose of the Church—to incarnate the love of Jesus
Christ in the world—is that what matters most? Is simply drawing a crowd, filling
buildings, or paying the bills the full extent of what Jesus lived, died, and rose again to
empower? Is this what Jesus really meant when He said, “I will build my church”?

Old Metrics, Meet New Metrics

In our local church, these questions have ravaged us. In the early years of my church
leadership, we felt like we had the ABC’s rolling: growing 35-40% year-over-year-over
year, repeatedly doubling our church population, adding multiple services and facility
expansions, and seeing booming budget surpluses. It was a great time to be talking to
my pastor buddies!

But then, unexpectedly, we were confronted with an agonizing question: “If your church
suddenly disappeared, would anyone in your surrounding society really notice?” All of a
sudden a new number appeared: the number zero. Because, at that time, that’s about
how many people in our surrounding community would have noticed if we
disappeared—in spite of rocking out the ABC’s of church.

So, instead of further expanding our existing facility, that question drove us to relocate
our church closer to the downtown core of our city so we could be in greater proximity to
the people our society typically ignored. A couple years after moving, we opened what
is now the largest 24-7, 365-day/year homeless shelter in our region, right in our church

Fast-forward a few more years, when we were becoming multi-site, and we started
launching new locations around a “shelter-equivalent” initiative that now defines each of
our church locations. Referred to as our “Anchor Causes”, these primary programs of

compassion and justice now define what each of our church locations is ultimately


Equipping pastors to equip leaders for life 13 | P a g e

Over the decades, as we’ve continued to grow in our capacity to reveal Jesus to our
world, we’ve awakened to some new KPI’s—these days, we focus on some different
numbers to measure our effectiveness, other than the traditional ABC’s of church or
online metrics. The new metrics help us measure impact in ways that other metrics
simply don’t capture.

For us, some of the most critical numbers we now monitor are:

1. Our “budget pie”: rather than fixating on the amount of money coming in, we now
focus on the percentage of funds we invest into our surrounding society in the form of
compassion and justice activity. Before moving our church, there were literally zero
dollars stewarded to share Christ’s love in practical ways. But, this past year, over 70%
of the money we’re spending is being invested into fostering compassion and justice in
our communities (both locally and globally). Since your expenses reveal what you value,
this metric matters very much to us because it gives us an indication of how much we
value the people Jesus most values.

2. “Engagement rates”: possibly even more critical than money is people’s time, so we
also seek to measure how many of our weekend service attenders are actively
participating in the Way of Jesus—as opposed to simply living out a “church-goer” kind
of faith. To do that, we have more critical KPI’s than our attendance rates. The most
important of these is what we call our “Engagement rate”, which tracks the percentage
of our attenders involved in one of our locations’ Anchor Causes. We’re working to get
our engagement rates over 100%, where more people would access the “front door” of
our church through the Anchor Cause before even attending a weekend service!

3. “Integration rates”: to us, this statistic is next-level, because when we engage
people in our Anchor Causes, we’re seeking to foster what we call a “friendship that
makes the difference” through fostering reciprocal relationships with the marginalized
people we’re serving. As a church, then, we’re not just looking to one-directionally serve
people in need, but to create mutuality as we explore, experience, and express Christ’s
love together. So—kind of the inverse metric to engagement rates—we want to know
how many people that we’ve served in our Anchor Causes (like our friends who’ve
experienced homelessness) have been welcomed, included, and integrated into our
other core programs (i.e.: our weekend services and Life Groups).

4. Community feedback: you’ll never really know if your surrounding society would
notice if you disappeared unless you ask them. This can happen conversationally,
which we often do with civic officials and friends outside of our community, to get their
candid opinion on our church’s effectiveness. But, at times, it can also happen
statistically, through outside surveys and feedback generators. Would people outside
your church “strongly agree” that you add positive value to your surrounding society, or

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would they “strongly disagree”? By simply asking that question—through a measured
survey—you can clearly know the answer!

As you consider your fall launch season—and rebuilding momentum as a local church—
what is it that you and your leadership are most measuring? What KPI’s do you most
care about? And: what do your most critical metrics say about what your church and
leadership values most?

If we’re going to be people—and communities—who live out the primacy of Jesus’ Law
of Love, we’ve got to figure out how to measure it. But, to be clear: measuring the
degree to which we exude Christ’s love can’t be captured through the traditional ABC’s
of church.

As we reopen coming out of this pandemic, is it time for you and your ministry to re-
evaluate how you measure success? I dare say, you won’t be able to really build
momentum—Jesus-expressing, Kingdom-expanding momentum—without it!

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We are blessed beyond measure! We were sinners separated from God, yet in His mercy and grace, He redeemed us and
promises us eternal life. That’s the Gospel... my guilt, covered by His grace, produces gratitude. Isn’t it interesting that
we so readily associate being blessed by what we possess, as in material, tangible, commodities. Although God’s blessings
are realized both spiritually and physically, it would be beneficial to consider the meaning of the word blessed.
The most frequent Old Testament word for blessed is barukh. When applied to God, it has the sense of praise, as in ‘Bless
the Lord, Oh my soul”. When used in referencing man it denotes favor, happiness, and living according to God’s ways.
A New Testament Greek word for blessed is makarios, and has a strong spiritual content and carries the idea of happy, for-
tunate, or to be envied. In studying New Testament references of bless, blessing, or blessed, it would be important to note
that none connect blessing specifically to material prosperity. For example: Blessed are ...the poor in spirit, those who mourn, the
meek, those who hunger and thirst after righteousness, the merciful, pure in heart, the peacemakers, those who are persecuted because of right-
eousness” (Matthew 5:3-10). In multiple passages referencing bless, blessing or blessed, Jesus taught and emphasized ‘virtues’ and
‘values’ rather than vacations, vanities, and valuables.
Like you, I am incredibly grateful for provision of a home and monetary means that enable me to eat out, travel, celebrate
life and enjoy material things. Yet, it’s the virtues and values of the Kingdom of God that truly yield a blessed life. Ephe-
sians 1:3 reminds us, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual bless-
ings in heavenly places in Christ.” Here, the word blessed is eulogetos and it means ‘to speak well of’ God’, and blessings means bene-
fits bestowed upon (us). So, in our November ZOOM meeting we are going to bless God and speak well of Him for He has
indeed, lavished us with His love. We’re going to speak of His kindness, grace, mercy, and bountiful blessings! Come pre-
pared to bless our good and gracious God by expressing your gratitude for the benefits you enjoy as a byproduct of your
relationship with Him. #PRAISEPARTY!

Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. Bless the LORD, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits: Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases;

Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies;
Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle's.

ZOOM Connecting Conversations
Monday, November 29, 7 PM

A Virtual Experience!
“Let my mouth be filled with thy praise…” (Psalm 71:8).
Come prepared to thank God for spiritual, physical, relational, emotional, and spiritual blessings,
in song, in word, in dance (well, maybe!) and with our prayers.


Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness
and his wonderful works to the children of men
(Psalms 107:8).

If you have sufficient food, decent clothes, live in a house or apartment, and
have a reasonably reliable means of transportation,

you are among the top 15% of the world’s wealthy.
If you earn $25,000 or more annually,

you are in the top 10% of the world’s income earners.
If you have any money saved, a hobby that requires some equipment or supplies,

a variety of clothes in your closet, two cars (in any condition), and live
in your own home, you are in the top 5% of the world’s wealthy.

If you earn more than $50,000 annually,
you are in the top 1% of the world’s income earners.

Source: Money

• Develop the spiritual discipline of gratitude.
• Give thanksgiving for ordinary things that you wouldn’t typically consider.
• Thank God for the glimpses of His grace in the midst of difficulties.
• Examine your personal gratitude quotient from time-to-time.
• Express gratitude daily.
• Journal God’s faithfulness to you.
• Show gratitude toward others and give generously out of your increase.
• Reflect God’s faithfulness, goodness, and grace through a grateful heart and words.
• Ask God for His forgiveness for the sin of ingratitude.
• Seek to not be situational or seasonal with your gratitude.

Gratitude is a choice. If we fail to choose it, by default we choose ingrati-
tude. And once allowed into the heart, ingratitude does not come by itself,
but with other seedy companions that only succeed in stealing joy.
Derived from a popular Revive Our Hearts radio series, Choosing Grati-
tude: Your Journey to Joy challenges and equips the reader to live a life of in-
tention, a life based on thankfulness for the freedom Christ has provided
and for the blessings of others.
By intentionally thanking God and others, bitterness and entitlement are re-
placed with joy and the humble realization of just how undeserving we really
To not choose gratitude is more costly than we usually realize. When we do
choose a lifestyle of heartfelt, humble gratitude, we are mindful of the bene-
fits received from our gracious Savior and those He has placed around us,
and our joy becomes full. Choosing Gratitude by Nancy Leigh DeMoss

Participants of the Praise Party on Monday, November 29th will have an opportunity
to be the recipients of these two resources.

Scripture says, “In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ
Jesus concerning you.” But we could all use a little help actually making room for
gratitude among our everyday busyness and concerns. 52 Weeks of Gratitude offers
you a space to record and reflect on your blessings each week as you focus
through the year on four major themes: Home, Community, Faith, and Beauty.

With its lovely full-color photographs and illustrations, this textured hardcover
book is a perfect keepsake. The weekly format offers just the right amount of
encouragement to inspire, motivate, and create a grateful heart in all who write in
its pages.

Infuse spirituality and thankfulness into your daily life with this gratitude
journal that offers a simple way to lower stress and improve happiness.

52 Weeks of Gratitude—A One-Year Journal to Reflect, Pray and Record
Thankfulness, Ink & Willow




DECEMBER 15, 2021

From my heart to yours…

Pastoral Care Letter
November 2021

Dear Pastoral Care Leader,

It is almost impossible to believe that I am writing you regarding Christmas
for your pastor and yet the time is rapidly approaching, whether we are ready
or not!

We are entering the single most important of holidays and that is the birth of
our wonderful Savior Jesus Christ. This is a time to show our love and
appreciation to our pastors for all they have helped us navigate through this
year. Please try to encourage your congregation to go above and beyond
anything they have done in the past. In doing so, you will not only bless them
but you will receive a blessing as well. We are told in the Scripture that what
we sow, we shall reap also. It’s not too early to begin making plans for a
special “Christmas Love Offering.”

As we close out another year, I want to say a great big “Thank You” for
allowing the Lord to use you in this very important position of service to your
pastoral family. I am certain that you will be greatly rewarded for all your

It is also time for our church families to show our love and appreciation to our
State Bishop Scott Gillum and his wife, Brenda. This is an opportunity to bless
them by receiving a special “Christmas Love Offering,” for all they do for us
throughout the year.

May you and your family have a wonderful Christ-filled holiday season.

Merry Christmas With Love,
Frankie S. Dotson
State Pastoral Care Director


Christmas Love Offering

Pastors and their families
are God's gifts to us.
Let's bless them this

Christmas and let them
know how much

we appreciate them
and all that they do for us.

Thank you for caring for these
precious men and women of God.

Frankie S. Dotson
State Pastoral Care Director


Happy Thanksgiving!

Even with all that is going on in the world,
we still have a lot to be thankful for. We have food,
clothes, and a home with a roof over our head. That is
much more than a lot of others have. Let me reiterate,
we have a lot to be thankful for!

The purpose of this letter is to inform you that we will
not be having a state-wide Prayer Conference this
coming January because there will be a State Leadership
Conference January 28-30, 2022.

Even though we're not having the Prayer Conference, I
want to encourage you to continue with the world-wide
three weeks of prayer and fasting in January. I will be
doing mine January 3-24.

And, as always, if you need a revival, or need me to fill in
on a Sunday for you, please give me a call at 912.467.8188.

May God richly bless you is my prayer,

Kay Osban

State Prayer Coordinator

State Evangelist


From : Evangelist Zach Teasdale

Revive New Believers (RNB)
2 - Management 101
Last we spoke I was bragging about my amazing team 3 - 2020 Trends
that has put together something I call GTO (Gospel Truck
Outreaches ) an initiative within our ecosystem of
ministry which simulates a CFAN Great Gospel Crusade.
So far we have seen over 388 decisions for Christ in
only 4 events but thats not all, these people are being
added to the number of the church. They join through
our powerful group RNB and here the holy spirit breaks
chains and builds the converts in Love , here they
become family and then meets Jesus in a real way .

Right now 35% of the converts have joined our group ,
the church , tithe and are now currently plugged into
small groups within the church umbrella .


How to Manage Team NOVEMBER 2021
These groups are saving so many
Keeping it Brief and Productive lives it breaks my heart hearing the
testimonies ! Listen to Wilmas
When sending out a company newsletter, keep in mind testimony .
these three things. First, send out your newsletter
regularly. Stick to your promise if it's going to be Wilma (on floor to the left ) states:
weekly, monthly or quarterly. Second is to have a proper
layout. Make your newsletter is interesting and easy to ":Last night my heart was completely
read. Lastly, ensure the quality of the content and healed , its amazing because I hated
images you will share. being around people and couldnt
stand having friends . But now I
have a family and I am getting
baptized this sunday , the day of my
fathers death 1 year ago. I didn't even
notice that until I was preparing
this, Gods little miracles are every
where I look !
Thank you Jesus and thank you
Zach for speaking what the Lord
speaks to you , I have found my
home !!!!!!!!"

To Invite me to your church , email me at
[email protected] or call

To connect with us on social media and
sow into fruitful ground .

1.Go into your camera setting
2.Hover your camera phone above this

QR code and click on the link
that pops up in your phone .

Thank you and Godspeed !

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