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Dirt’s flying, but pledges are down. What can we do?

The pastor of “Hometown” Community Church noted in a casual way one Sunday that the pledges for the new worship center and classroom buildings were coming in only at a 50 percent rate.

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How one church helped families secure stronger finances in tough times

When Blackshear Place Baptist Church offered a family finance program, 1,200 people signed up, and trimmed thousands in personal debt.

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Churches share nation’s concern for needed immigration reform

Churches are as engaged in the issue of immigration in this country as are other groups, many doing quiet, steady work and providing dialog and attempting resolution that goes well beyond the public clamor that adds little to a real solution.

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Projectors illuminate the message

Engaging and inspiring today’s congregations is increasingly difficult in a world saturated with corporate and secular images. The solution for many churches is to make each service more creative and interactive — specifically, to use large-screen projection to support the message each week. Bright and colorful images large enough to be seen from every seat serve to capture and hold the congregation’s attention, allowing the essential messages to be easily delivered and understood.

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Two schools of thought on paying musicians

In a recent ministry blog, a pastor wrote, “One thing that really bothers me is having to pay musicians to play in worship. My worship leader insists that since they are professional musicians we have to pay them.

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Are churches responsible for worship-related injuries?

Churches tend to recognize different expressions of faith in their religious worship services. Some traditions call for quiet reflection and meditative prayer, while others encourage demonstrative shouting, dancing, singing and other physical forms of worship.

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E-giving means fewer envelopes to open and less chance of fraud

Bad weather, vacations and illnesses can cause parishioners to miss church services during the year. While some people will make up their missed donations, many won’t. That’s where electronic giving, or e-giving, can help.

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Prevent a crisis with a leadership transition plan

Strokes, car accidents, heart attacks, affairs and murder are just some of the circumstances causing leaders to vacate pulpits and other critical ministry positions prematurely. However, few religious institutions have prepared adequately to survive the thorny transitions that follow.

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When being an unbeliever qualifies you for a church job

“Get Paid to Go to Church.” This headline appears in classified ads all over Missouri, and it’s catching the attention of unchurched individuals everywhere. It’s not a gimmick or a scam. It’s a mystery visitor program designed to provide feedback to church leaders on how their worship services are experienced by first-time visitors.

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The CE Interview: Miles McPherson

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It’s something of an irony that Miles McPherson some three decades ago wasn’t much the “marrying kind,” but today can say, as he did in a recent blog, “I am for traditional marriage as God designed it, because it is the model that honors His original and eternal intent.”

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