Over the last several years we’ve been collecting data from the churches with which we consult. One of the key questions we were interested in has to do with serving. We wanted to find out how many people are volunteering in one of the church’s ministries either inside or outside the walls of the church. Here’s what we’ve found:
As you can see, the average church engages 4 to 5 people out of 10 in some sort of serving role. For the purposes of this research, we assumed kids aren’t serving and, therefore, they aren’t included in the percentage. However, there are a few churches that are creating serving opportunities for older children as well.
The biggest surprise related to volunteers, though, has to do with its relationship to staffing. We’ve found there’s a correlation between the money that a church invests in paid staff and the number of people serving.
As the percentage of the church’s staffing budget increases, the percentage of people volunteering decreases.
In other words, if you want more people to serve, you may need to spend less on staffing.
We’ll share more details about his in the future eBook on measuring church health, but I hope church staff teams see this as a challenge. If you are paid staff at a church, your job is not to do the ministry. Your job is to equip God’s people to do the work of God.
Want to learn more about measuring church health, here are the previous articles in this series: