A church that is willing to change and adapt
The research showed that it's more important for churches to look regularly at what they are doing and not to do things just because they have always been done that way.
'Vitality comes with reflection and choice. The particular style is less important than the fact that it has been considered and embraced rather than adopted by default.'
Change is not always easy but for there to be growth it is often necessary for the existing congregation to be willing to change and adapt.
Key facts from the research:
'...at a minimum, the arrival of new people disrupts what might be a cosy club.'
- The research shows that it's not essential to adopt a particular tradition or style to grow; what does matter is that you embrace your tradition wholeheartedly and that your particular worship style is chosen rather than inherited and accepted because it's easier not to change.
- The researchers described sucessful churches with a 'let's give it a go' attitude. These churches try different initiatives as experiments, if they work they invest in them; if they don't they drop them.
'To live is to change; and to be perfect is to have changed often...' John Henry Newman