Lay people active in leadership

A church where lay people as well as ordained clergy are active in leadership and other roles

The research shows that good quality lay leadership and active involvement from lay people are linked to growth. Churches are more likely to be growing where volunteers are involved in a variety of roles in church life.

It is important that roles (including PCC membership) are shared among a wide range of people, inlcuding newcomers and younger people, and that there is some rotation.

Key facts from the research:

In the survey of growing churches, the following question was asked:

'Do the same people tend to serve in volunteer leadership roles year after year or does your church rotate volunteer service among a larger number of people?'

  • Of those who answered that the same people tend to serve, 8% reported growth.

  • Of those who said that there was some rotation, (tending to be among a limited number of people), 19% reported growth.

  • Of those who said there was a lot of rotation among people in volunteer leadership roles, 47% reported growth.

  • The majority of churches in the sample fall into the middle category and only 7% in the last.

  • The research into fresh expressions of Church, which have shown significant growth highlighted that over half (52%) of these new worshipping and witnessing communities are lay led.

Now you are the body of Christ, and each one fo you is a part of it. And God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues. 1 Corinthians 12:27-28

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Teamwork in a parish: St John's, Chipping Sodbury, Gloucester Diocese

This case study describes how lay people and clergy worked together to organise a Nativity Crib Festival in Chipping Sodbury.

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