David Ripley, President

David Ripley, President

Vision Statement #8

“Double the number of churches in our mission territory, double attendance.


For the next few Mission notes we will explore the potentially best way to grow the church.  Untapped in so many ways!

A “Lightless Lighthouse”

Lightless LighthouseOne time in a conference far, far away from Central Canada I was visiting with a small church. In the past, they had been a vibrant lighthouse in a small community. Over time, the church had slowed and stopped growing. The building was in disrepair, with dusty corners, cluttered tables and messy, unused Sabbath School rooms. Even a broken lightbulb hung from one of the extended light fixtures in the sanctuary. It felt empty with the dozen people sparsely spread out in a room that could easily hold one hundred.

Fear and Excuses

lightstock_153530_full_user_39147891 PNOI had been asked by the Conference President to go and share with them and perhaps encourage them to grow their church. We discussed the Great Commission, and how God had placed them in their community to share of Jesus soon return. We talked about what it means to be a Seventh-day Adventist church, about the urgency of sharing with their friends and neighbours.

As I urged them to look to a future with many more in attendance I could sense that they were afraid of who might join. “Pastor! What if people come and they don’t dress right? What if they try to bring that funny music into the church? What if they have children that run around and make noise during worship? What if . . .” The excuses and fear escalated in the room.

I suggested that they may want to hold an evangelistic event. One saint said, “Yes! We should do evangelism! We should not be afraid of new people coming to church!” I was so happy to have a voice of hope in the group. Then, I heard this. “Yes!We need to do evangelism so we can bring people in so we can pay our electric bill!”

That is one of the worst reasons I’ve ever heard to increase your worship attendance! I believe that we need to double the attendance in our churches because that will allow people to be in an atmosphere where they can meet with Jesus and learn of His soon return!

Making it Practical

lightstock_203698_max_user_39147891_PNO 200If you and your church agree that the primary reason for increasing attendance is so more people will meet Jesus, I have a practical question for you. If you were to meet together and ask the question,“How do we double our attendance?”…what answers might be shared?

To help you, take time to look at the categories below and fill in things that you believe should be important for increasing your church attendance. Next time I will expand on the categories and discuss why the items may be important to doubling your attendance, and thereby doubling the number of people your church is connecting to God.

What are some important items to consider for increased church attendance in each of these categories?

  1. Infrastructure
  2. Atmosphere/Programming
  3. Guest Care
  4. Discipleship
  5. Relationship
  6. Local Church Culture
  7. Local Church Governance Structure


Stay tuned! Let us discover together!
David Ripley, President


Mission & Vision_08AUG2016_Page_1_edit

Learn More: This article is part of a series focused on making the new Man-Sask Mission & Vision practical and applicable.

– Where did this Mission & Vision come from?
– How will it make a difference?
– How will it impact you?

Check out previous articles in the series here