To view this notification widget you need to have JavaScript enabled. This notification widget was easily created with NotifySnack.
Home Tour About Read What's New Help Forums Join Login
My Account
Shop
Save
Support
E
Book
Store
Learn
About
Jesus
  




The HOME for Christian writers!
The Home for Christian Writers!

Forums

This area is only a small portion of FaithWriters. The main site can be joined HERE.
Shop & Save to SUPPORT FaithWriters.
Upgrade to SUPPORT FaithWriters.

Church Attendence

A place for general chat (non-writing related). Please keep political discussions to the relevant neighborhood forum.

Moderators: cori67, RedBaron, Shann

Ltfaulds
Pencil 1 (1-49 Posts)
Pencil 1 (1-49 Posts)
 
Posts: 9
Joined: Thu May 01, 2014 1:05 pm

Church Attendence

Postby Ltfaulds » Mon Jun 02, 2014 9:45 am

I am doing some research and was wondering if someone could give me reasons why some people only attend church on Sunday mornings. Is it because that is all our parents attended so it is a learned response from them or are there other reasons?

User avatar
Deb Porter
FaithWriters and Site Admin
FaithWriters and Site Admin
 
Posts: 15820
Joined: Mon Nov 14, 2005 4:02 am
Location: Sydney, Australia

Re: Church Attendence

Postby Deb Porter » Mon Jun 02, 2014 10:16 am

Interesting question.

We spent many years in church pretty much for everything (whenever the door was open). It nearly killed us, particularly when the line of the church we attended back then was that you were to attend two out of three services every weekend, attend a home group as well, plus any leadership and other mid-week meetings.

My husband was never one to be guilted into anything. My personality is exactly the opposite. One Sunday night, after a really big week, I left my husband at home and started driving to the Sunday night service at the main church (our local congregation was an outreach service of the main church, which you would know if I mentioned it by name). As I was driving, and feeling absolutely miserable about it, I felt that gentle whisper saying, "Go home, Debbie."

Of course, I fought that gentle whisper, and kept driving (the main church was about 30 minutes drive), all the while telling that gentle whisper that I had to go because we had to go to two out of three services every weekend.

That particular service was a disaster for me personally, to the point where someone actually asked me if I wanted to give my life to Jesus during the altar call at the end. I guess my bad attitude was kind of obvious. LOL. I didn't want to be there and was just doing the "right" thing, and God definitely didn't want me there with that attitude.

I learned a very big lesson that night, but God still had to do a lot of de-programming. It took a near nervous breakdown, eating disorder, and depression before I finally got the point. I could not live up to other people's expectations of what makes a "good Christian." I just had to be what God wanted me to be, and do what God wanted me to do. Grace became the word I clung to, and still do. I was determined never to let any person put those sort of demands on me ever again, and with God's help, I've been able to do that. As soon as someone says "you must" or "you should..." I know it's probably not something I need to be doing at all.

The final straw for me came in a Saturday night service when the main pastor (again, a name you would probably know if I said it) said this unbelievable statement:

"Mediocre Christians only attend church once a week."

That was it. I was officially over it. That statement was the final push for us to leave and get back to where we came from. We found a community based church in our area, full of lovely, normal, people, and we sowed in.

So that's a long story, but that is why I don't feel compelled to attend more than one service a week. You can go to church twenty times a week and not be any better as a Christian. In fact, it may be doing more damage than good. The balance is just right for me now.

Having said that, different personalities thrive on different things. I need space and solitude--and lots of it. That's the way I'm wired. I'm not someone who needs lots of activity and events. Others do. So where that demand to attend church, meetings, home groups, etc., was toxic for me and actually damaging to my Christian growth, the same thing may be exactly right for someone else.

You asked, and there you have it. I suspect you aren't going to get a one size fits all answer.

(I should add, we've been out of that large church now for over 12 years. It continues to thrive, and we are pleased for them. It just wasn't right for us.)

Love, Deb
FaithWriters' Writing Challenge Co-ordinator


Breath of Fresh Air Press - a little publisher with a lot of heart

Image

Ltfaulds
Pencil 1 (1-49 Posts)
Pencil 1 (1-49 Posts)
 
Posts: 9
Joined: Thu May 01, 2014 1:05 pm

Re: Church Attendence

Postby Ltfaulds » Mon Jun 02, 2014 10:34 am

Deb,

That response made a lot of sense. I guess going to church every time the doors are open is a learned response as well. My parents and the church that I was raised in, felt as your ex-pastor felt. And my interpretation of "forsake not the assembling of yourselves together," is just that MY interpretation and should not be imposed on anyone else. Thank you!

User avatar
Allison
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 3719
Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2005 2:45 am
Location: St. Peters, MO

Re: Church Attendence

Postby Allison » Mon Jun 02, 2014 11:10 am

I am one who attends on Sunday, but I also have choir practice on Tuesdays during the school year (Aug. to May) and on Thrusdays during the summer for the children's musical I always help with. I also help in the nursery one Sunday a month. But that, for the most part, is the extent of my involvement. I have had to learn to say "no" even to things at church, because doing for the sake of doing is not what Christianity is all about.

Actually, my experience in saying "no" is almost all courtesy of the church, because I've attended the church my whole life and so most of the church knows who I am. Which means I can sometimes be one of the "go to" persons.

If you feel connected to your church going only on Sundays, then by all means, only go on Sundays. If you feel you need more, then go more. But make sure you NEED more and don't just feel like you HAVE to do it.

Right now, I'm also teaching Sunday School this summer. So if anyone asked me to do anything else right now, my answer would be a very firm "no" because I know I'm already pushing my limit as to how much I should be doing.

So kind of like Deb said, know yourself, and don't feel pressured to do more.
Image
Isaiah 40:30-31 (NIV)

User avatar
itsjoanne
Moderator
Moderator
 
Posts: 10149
Joined: Fri Jul 14, 2006 9:52 am
Location: West Michigan

Re: Church Attendence

Postby itsjoanne » Mon Jun 02, 2014 12:53 pm

I go Sunday mornings. I don't attend Sunday evenings, but do go to the Wednesday evening service (AWANA during the school year - where I help - and prayer meeting/kids/teen activities during the summer). Though my husband does not.

The main reason we don't go in the evening is that my husband is disabled in a handful of ways, and generally has no energy by evening for anything of that nature - which is also why he stays home Wednesday nights. I could go with just the kids (and am debating it), but (and this is TOTALLY silly LOL) I am completely and totally a creature of habit, and our dinnertime almost every single night is at 6pm - which is the same time as our Sunday evening service.

This has nothing to do with my upbringing, as I was raised Jewish. I found this question especially interesting, and timely, as for the past month or so, I have been debating attending the Sunday evening service (and changing our Sunday dinner time :::gasp!!::: ). Still unclear on whether I would "force" the kids to go or not. It's just in the pondering stage. Will definitely be keeping an eye on this thread!

User avatar
Shann
Moderator
Moderator
 
Posts: 5741
Joined: Wed Jan 06, 2010 7:35 pm
Location: Western NY super rural

Re: Church Attendence

Postby Shann » Mon Jun 02, 2014 1:00 pm

I live in a small rural community and we only have one choice of times. Sunday at 11. There are other denominations that might offer varying times on Sunday, but I have a minister who I connect with. At one point he tried a contemporary service, but it was so early on Sunday morning that it didn't get many members. Today is Bible study and I am going to that.
Shann

Shann's Profile

Sometimes God calms the storm; Sometimes He lets the storm rage and calms His child

User avatar
lish1936
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 2001
Joined: Sun Aug 01, 2010 9:21 pm
Location: New York

Re: Church Attendence

Postby lish1936 » Mon Jun 02, 2014 9:58 pm

LtFaulds wrote:why some people only attend church on Sunday mornings. Is it because that is all our parents attended so it is a learned response from them or are there other reasons?


No, quite the opposite. As a child, my parents attended at least three services a week. And during my teenage years, I attended youth services on Friday night, services on Saturday night ( radio broadcast night), and Sunday morning and Sunday evening. Today, I'm down to Sunday morning services and currently considering Wednesday morning Bible study. I think it's because at the end of the day, I'm thinking bed. :D

If this would contribute to your study, let me suggest other reasons:

1) Health reasons as Joanne suggests.
2) Job responsibilities. Many people commute to work. They come home too late to attend mid-week services.
3) Cost of babysitting (Some churches don't have childcare for mid-week services)
4) Church burn-out as Deb suggests.
5) And sadly, lack of interest due to misplaced priorities and cultural influences...even Sunday morning attendance is declining among the "millennials."

Lillian
E-Book - Retirement Lane - How to Celebrate Life After 60

Fortunate 500


I write even when I think I can't, because I must. :-)

I love to write. Nothing escapes the crush I have on the written word. I'm hooked on words!!

"Let words bewitch you. Scrutinze them, mull them, savor them, and in combination, until you see their subtle differences and the ways they tint each other." Francis Flaherty

User avatar
deejay
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
Pencil Plus (Over 500 Posts)
 
Posts: 5388
Joined: Mon Jun 05, 2006 8:16 am
Location: SoCal

Re: Church Attendence

Postby deejay » Wed Jun 04, 2014 1:45 pm

Of course, there are churches that have only a Sunday morning service, such as new churches just starting out or beginning to grow. I attend both of our Sunday morning services, because I have a few chores to do before first service--picking up trash in the sanctuary, foyer and out front, as well as vacuuming the mats in front of the platform as well as the foyer mats, plus lighting the candles on the communion table; after the second service, I blow out the candles--before second service I have to replace the votive candles--and if we've had communion, I put away the communion supplies. Plus currently I am in one of our Soundtrack discipleship classes which meets in the early afternoon on Sunday. I also lead the Thursday night Bible study. We only went to two services 2 years ago. Pastor says we're growing at the rate of 12% a month, so it wouldn't surprise me if in a few years we added a third Sunday service, though that would inconvenience one of our renting churches, a Spanish congregation which meets at 1:30-3:30 pm on Sundays.

User avatar
Come forth
Pencil 6 (300-499 Posts)
Pencil 6 (300-499 Posts)
 
Posts: 499
Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2012 7:34 pm
Location: Innisfail, North Qld, Australia

Re: Church Attendence

Postby Come forth » Wed Jun 04, 2014 6:19 pm

Every time the church doors are open, my wife and I are there... but then again, we are the pastors. :lol:

I'm certainly in agreement with most of what has been said about time restraints, burn out, children responsibilities etc. But, sadly, there is a far more pressing reason.

If we were in a courting relationship we would not miss a single opportunity to be with the one we loved. And before you say, "OH yeah, here we go. I can feel a guilt trip coming on!" hear me out.

Our life with Jesus is not just about responsibility or obligation; IT IS a love relationship. Sadly, and many pastors are to blame for this, it has become an obligation with guilt piled upon condemnation and warped messages about tithing, attendance and service.

And yes, you don't need to attend church to love Jesus. But I bet you visited your fiancé's
house a lot before you were married.

So here's a big part of the problem.

Mat 24:12 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.

That word iniquity, when broken down and understood in context, basically means 'not subject to the law of God'... not understanding Torah, the Law.

We have the wrong concept of the Law. We say we are under grace, not Law... but that is because we only think of the Law in terms of dos and donts; the verbal law passed on down through the ages. But actually the Law still exists if we believe in it or not. The law of gravity does not change because you stop accepting it as truth; nor does the Truth of the Law of God.

Deu 6:5 And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.

Lev 19:18 Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the LORD.

1Jn 4:19 We love him, because he first loved us.

Gal 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

The Torah, the True Law of God, is not about what we do or don't, it's about the way in which He loves us and reveals Himself to us. Part of the Hebrew concept of Torah is about God revealing His character to us so that we can become like Him; just as any kid looks up at their daddy and say; "When I grow up I want to be just like you."

Rev 2:4 Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.

I don't want anyone to feel guilty about not attending church. I don't want people to get all heated up, frustrated and worn out BY attending church.

But love isn't really preached in Truth today. Love has become acceptance. We accept you no mater what. Jesus accepts you no matter what. That just simply isn't true... ask the goats who walked up the hill to meet Him on judgment day.

Imagine one of your kids gets into drugs. Of course you still love them and accept them; but I bet you love them enough to help them to get off those filthy things and to change their life around. YES! Jesus accepts us as we are, but He loves us too much to leave us that way.

Bring back true love to the pulpit, without being legalism, a really tough balance to achieve, without trying to push attendance and attendance will take care of itself.

Seek ye first.

Blessings, Graham.
May we all get eyes to see and ears to hear,
A Revelation of His Word, crystal clear.
Admitting our need to be drawn in,
Less of self, more of Him.

My prayer for us all.
God bless us with the Revelation of His Word, Graham
http://www.shekinahcloud.com/page/page/8464330.htm

User avatar
Deb Porter
FaithWriters and Site Admin
FaithWriters and Site Admin
 
Posts: 15820
Joined: Mon Nov 14, 2005 4:02 am
Location: Sydney, Australia

Re: Church Attendence

Postby Deb Porter » Wed Jun 04, 2014 7:32 pm

Come forth wrote:Every time the church doors are open, my wife and I are there... but then again, we are the pastors. :lol:


That made me laugh.

I do agree with what you're saying, for the most part Graham, but after all these years, I don't believe going to church is the only place I can build my relationship with the Lord (and I know you aren't saying that). In fact, all the "work" of church sometimes hinders the relationship--even in the most loving congregation. The people who preach from the pulpit in our church are incredibly loving and grace-filled. There is never any condemnation (or we wouldn't be attending there).

I think it's mainly my personality. I need space. I am a loner, and very happily so (apart from my time with my family). So when I'm sitting in church and they start reading all the activities on for the week (and all very good ones and not really excessive), I feel myself cringing inside. I don't need activity. I find a greater closeness to God, to be honest, when I'm just being me, at home, talking to myself and Him in the general day to dayness. I also find Him, many times, through my online friends and the things they say and post. :D

Just to show how over activity impacts me, this week Steve and I have had to practice music every afternoon because we're leading worship on Sunday. I used to do it weekly, but it became too much to handle with the other work I believe God has placed in my hands to do. So we now try to do it just once every three weeks, and this is our week on. That means I have to stop work once Steve gets home at 3 and spend a couple of hours practicing before preparing dinner. It then means late nights catching up on the work I've missed in those couple of hours, but that's okay for a week.

BUT this week we have a very special 80th birthday in our church (a "retired" pastor's very precious wife's birthday). Now we probably would have attended her birthday on Saturday night anyway (or maybe it's possibly), but Allison asked if we could do an item for her. How could we say no? So Steve and I have also been practicing two extra songs for Allison's birthday.

Then the women's group (which I never attend--been there at the other church, led that, bought the t-shirt, and don't really feel a need to do it again) asked if I'd lead the praise and worship for a special group on Friday night. Of course, I said yes. So now I have Saturday night, Sunday morning, and next Friday night.

BUT then, LOL, the roster had to be juggled around a bit, so we are only getting one week off this time instead of two before we lead for Sunday again, and that means I'll need to start preparing the music again the Sunday after the women's group meeting, which means another week of practicing every afternoon.

I do these things out of service to God and to our church, but I find it hard to explain how it makes me feel inside when the commitments start to pile up (at least, pile up for a personality like me). The pastors have told me, several times, to let them know whenever I want to preach again, but it's one thing I've had to pull back from because of the time involved in preparation.

So that's why I'm saying that attending church isn't really where I find the most relationship with God, although I do believe that we need to attend regularly for the corporate worship and to encourage one another (and also to keep us from wandering down theological bunny trails on our own). After all these years, though, I've learned balance. I know that attending something purely for the sake of supporting the church doesn't really work for me. I'm also of the opinion that if something needs to be supported because otherwise no one would attend, then it probably is something God isn't calling us to do.

Just some thoughts today based on the mood I'm in because of the increasing amount of activity over the next few weeks. These days, though, I recognise the signs and know that I will get through it just fine and will enjoy the relief once it's all over.

Love, Deb
FaithWriters' Writing Challenge Co-ordinator


Breath of Fresh Air Press - a little publisher with a lot of heart

Image

User avatar
Come forth
Pencil 6 (300-499 Posts)
Pencil 6 (300-499 Posts)
 
Posts: 499
Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2012 7:34 pm
Location: Innisfail, North Qld, Australia

Re: Church Attendence

Postby Come forth » Wed Jun 04, 2014 7:56 pm

Well said, Deb. I have no disagreement with you at all. And my previous post was not meant to imply I did.

I don't see anything either of us have said as being on opposing sides.

Blessings, Graham.
May we all get eyes to see and ears to hear,
A Revelation of His Word, crystal clear.
Admitting our need to be drawn in,
Less of self, more of Him.

My prayer for us all.
God bless us with the Revelation of His Word, Graham
http://www.shekinahcloud.com/page/page/8464330.htm

User avatar
Deb Porter
FaithWriters and Site Admin
FaithWriters and Site Admin
 
Posts: 15820
Joined: Mon Nov 14, 2005 4:02 am
Location: Sydney, Australia

Re: Church Attendence

Postby Deb Porter » Wed Jun 04, 2014 8:13 pm

Come forth wrote:I don't see anything either of us have said as being on opposing sides.

Blessings, Graham.


Thanks Graham. That's why I said I knew you weren't actually saying that at the start. :D LOL. Think I'm just feeling a bit overwhelmed this week (and tired after the late nights).
FaithWriters' Writing Challenge Co-ordinator


Breath of Fresh Air Press - a little publisher with a lot of heart

Image

User avatar
glorybee
Moderator
Moderator
 
Posts: 6098
Joined: Thu Nov 10, 2005 11:46 pm
Location: Michigan

Re: Church Attendence

Postby glorybee » Wed Jun 04, 2014 8:15 pm

Well, how odd. I thought I posted a reply to this thread, but now I can't find it. I'll bet I posted it in another thread, where it makes no sense at all!
Jan Ackerson

User avatar
Deb Porter
FaithWriters and Site Admin
FaithWriters and Site Admin
 
Posts: 15820
Joined: Mon Nov 14, 2005 4:02 am
Location: Sydney, Australia

Re: Church Attendence

Postby Deb Porter » Wed Jun 04, 2014 8:28 pm

LOL @ Jan. More likely it didn't post. Haven't had anyone saying "Huh?"
FaithWriters' Writing Challenge Co-ordinator


Breath of Fresh Air Press - a little publisher with a lot of heart

Image

User avatar
RedBaron
Moderator
Moderator
 
Posts: 24965
Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2005 9:41 am
Location: Ohio

Re: Church Attendence

Postby RedBaron » Wed Jun 04, 2014 9:49 pm

Ltfaulds wrote:I am doing some research and was wondering if someone could give me reasons why some people only attend church on Sunday mornings. Is it because that is all our parents attended so it is a learned response from them or are there other reasons?


I have not read the other responses, but I wanted to clarify "only attend church on Sunday mornings". Do you mean only going once a week, on Sunday mornings, instead of any/all other available services, or going on Sundays instead of an alternative day, like Saturday (as the Sabbath) as a regularly offered service instead of Sunday morning?
<><
Shari
FW 500 Member

"...hunt like a spider..." Cori - FW Con '07

Next

Return to The Water Cooler

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests


© MeasurelessMedia. All rights reservedTerms of Service



Jesus - True for You But not for Me      Website Builder     Build Website     Is Jesus God?    
Does God exist?     Build a writers website     Does truth exist?     Website online in minutes