Spring Church Trends

There are a lot of church statistics around attendance patterns in church life, and spring brings some of the most interesting ones. Most of us are probably aware that the largest attended Sunday is Easter Sunday, and having just walked through the Easter season, you probably experienced that firsthand. Of course, Christmas is a close second, but because Christmas moves around and isn’t always on a Sunday, attendance is usually lower than Easter. When we look at Mother's Day, we see significant attendance patterns as well. As a matter of fact, Mother's Day, according to pastors, is actually the third highest-attended church Sunday of the year

Now, the obvious reason might be that mothers simply encourage their family to join them for church. The old joke is that on Mother's Day, mothers convince everyone to come to church with them, and on Father's Day, fathers convince others to go play golf with them. But given the statistics around Mother’s Day attendance, it prompts the question, how can we be intentional during this season for greater ministry impact?

There’s no question, you're likely to talk about motherhood on Mother's Day, and fatherhood on Father's Day. But it's also important to recognize that the spring season is the stopover leading into summer and we know that summertime is the lowest-attended church season in most of North America. So what are the things we can do, particularly in the late spring heading towards Mother's Day, that can help us sustain long-term engagement given the inevitable summer slump? 

Launch New Small Groups

Following Easter and throughout the spring season, is a great opportunity to launch new small groups that engage your existing members and get new attenders on a community track. It’s also a great time to launch more evangelistic-forward small groups that leverage the nicer weather and help your people be intentional about outreach and evangelism in their neighborhoods. 

Program a Relationship Series

Mother’s Day and Father’s Day are great times to launch a relationship series that will get strong engagement and create great easy ways for your people to invite others as well. Relationships are complicated, and who doesn’t need help? Addressing this ever-relevant area of need is an effective way to connect with what matters to members and new attenders alike. 

Connect With Explorers

Springtime is often a time of new beginnings. Many leaders are moving toward using Gloo's Reach to connect with “explorers” in their community. An explorer is someone in your community who is looking for answers or help—in their marriage, around their anxieties, or in their questions about faith and spirituality.  Gloo connects those people with caring “responders” in churches, not to give them the answers, but to show up in conversation. We know that Jesus is trending in mainstream media, so questions about faith are on the rise. I recently shared on Twitter, a comment from one pastor at a church in California who told me that he connected with several people who came to him from the He Gets Us Campaign who came to his church once and have come back again. Through Gloo’s Reach, he also had a number of people who wanted to connect that have since come to faith in Christ. Springtime marks a time of transition and bringing in the new for many of us, so positioning your church as a place for connection and conversation is a great opportunity to serve your community well. 

Most importantly, it's never too late to seize the spring momentum so that we can sustain a strong summer and overall year! Whether you’re engaging your existing members, creating a welcoming place for new visitors, or even re-engaging those who are shifting communities or making their way back to church, let's seize the opportunity to be intentional and engage with more people this spring season.