Where Have All the Churches Gone?
For the past several weeks we’ve had the privilege of being part of an informal committee. This committee was comprised of pastors, and other interested individuals, to discuss how to utilize a church building, that is about to close, here in the Village of Lockland. Several times it was mentioned that large numbers of Biblically-based churches are closing weekly in the United States. So I did some research and found out that the numbers are quite staggering.
“Between 6,000 and 10,000 churches in the U.S. are dying each year. That means around 100-200 churches will close this week. The pace will accelerate unless our congregations make some dramatic changes.” – according to research done by Thom S. Rainer and reported in an online news article January of 2018. These numbers caught me off guard! I thought they were high – but not this high!Read the Full Article
The decline of the presence of the church, in buildings and bodies, in urban communities is evidenced by a drive through our urban streets. Church buildings that were once home to 100s and 1000s of worshipers are now home to a few who are struggling to keep the lights on and the doors open. Certainly part of the urban decline is due to the ongoing flight from our cities to the suburbs and is wrapped in many, if not all, of the same reasons people, who can, vacate the city for the suburbs. In Thom’s article he offers insight and challenges, such as “We must cease seeing the church as a place of comfort and stability in the midst of rapid change. Certainly, God’s truth is unchanging. We do find comfort and stability in that reality.”
More and more churches, especially urban churches, are sharing that their worshipers and members no longer live in the community where the church building is located, nor do their pastors and other church leaders.
Part of our mission, and the mission of the Metanioa Center is to connect local communities to local churches by working with local churches in engaging the community where their building is located. Churches flourish when they look outward to share the Hope that they have with the community around them. This happens when church “members” get involved in the community they worship in, work in and/or live in through the schools, community organizations, government and more.
Good News Club Spring 2018 @ Lockland Schools
The picture to the right – what is it? It’s 50 bags of “stuff” for school age children gifted by the children’s Sunday School Department at Faith Bible Church! These bags of goodies will be distributed through the Good News Club to students at Lockland Schools.
The Good News Club is ministering to 3rd-5th graders once a week this spring. We are so proud of our Good News Club and the devotion of this “all volunteer” team who meet weekly with students in this after-school program.
Lockland Churches you can get involved with this awesome program as part of your own local outreach. Contact us and let us know of your interest. And a huge THANK YOU to Faith Bible Church!
Cru @ Lockland Schools
Led by Keith Ray, Cru (formerly known as Campus Crusade for Christ) University of Cincinnati students, will be introducing a pilot program to 6th thru 8th grade students at Lockland Schools this spring. Join us in praying for Keith, the UC student leaders and the 6th thru 8th grade students who will be participating in this pilot program. We are praying for great success and that this pilot program returns in the fall as established program in the Lockland Schools.
Metanoia Center Training Partnership
Lockland’s Metanoia Center has partnered with Lincoln Heights Outreach, Inc. for four weeks of basic Windows computer training. Training dates are set for April 4, 11, 18, 25 from 10am till 12 noon and will be held on the LHOI campus. For information, details and to register contact us by visiting http://www.metanoiacenter.net .
We are also having discussions together for a fall 2019 Faith & Finances Seminar! Stay tuned for future announcements as we finalize the dates, times and location.
Training the Trainers
We have the following equipping training events in our schedules for the first half of 2019. We invite you to partner with us by praying for our equipping, and, if possible, by helping to underwrite the costs for the training.
International Wholistic Missions Conference
The IWMC is an annual spring conference that we attend. It is not only a training and equipping conference but is also a working conference for Global CHE Network Service Team members, as Jim is. You can read more about this conference by going to this website: https://www.wholisticmissions.com/
Our estimated costs for this conference is around $1500.00. If you would like to help with the financial costs for this conference click the button below.IWMC Donation
Work Life Facilitator Training
The Chalmers Center trains churches and ministries in Work Life, a biblically integrated job preparedness curriculum designed specifically for people from backgrounds of generational poverty. In addition to practical job skills, the curriculum empowers participants to recognize that God is at work in the world and that their jobs are a way of participating in that work. We will be attending this training to gain facilitator status in order to present Work Life Trainings through the Metanoia Center and with other surrounding ministries. You can read more about this training at this website: https://chalmers.org/work-life-training/
Our estimated costs for this training event is around $2000.00. If you would like to help with the financial costs for this training click the button below.Work Life Donation
Pray with us over the following items as we seek God for His favor in glorifying Him in our community and beyond.
- For revival of dying churches – for spiritual revival, revival by increasing numbers of those committed to the church and revival for ownership of the community where they are located.
- For the Good News Club here in Lockland and for local Lockland churches to participate in the Good News Club.
- For the Cru team here in Lockland and the students they’ll be working with.
- For the potential for Young Life to join us in ministry here in Lockland.
- For our summer ministry activities that will include two prayer walks and another day of passing out New Testaments in our Village.
- For local churches to engage in working together to be a Biblical presence through the Village of Lockland.
- For funding for a physical location for the Metanoia Center and for the physical location itself.
- For safety and health as we minister and travel.
- Pray for upcoming Global CHE Network Service Team meetings and the influence of the Network in reaching thousands around the world with the Good News.
Serving With You Because of Him,
Jim and Phyllis
About Us: Jim and Phyllis are faith-based independent missionaries commissioned by Faith Bible Church, Cincinnati, Ohio serving with the Global Community Health Evangelism Network ministering globally, locally and in their own neighborhood. Donations to their ministry may be made through Alliance for Transformational Ministry, 727 E Bethany Home Rd, Ste D-122, Phoenix, AZ 85014 or online by visiting https://atm.givingfuel.com/gcn. Please include a note with your donation indicating your desire to direct it to Jim and Phyllis Null’s Ministry Area.
Contact Us: Our contact information is: Jim and Phyllis Null, 316 Home Ave., Lockland, Oh, 45215 – Telephone: 502-235-7005