December 10, 2014 Tony Morgan

20 Politically Incorrect Thoughts on Church in America

I woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning, and I’ve decided I’d like to offend some church people today. On a good day, I’ll catch myself before I speak. Today is not a good day. Here are…

20 Politically Incorrect Thoughts on Church in America

1) It’s not possible to offer three different types of worship services and do them all well.
It’s also confusing to the people you’re trying to reach.

2) Sunday school competes with kid’s ministry for space and volunteers.
Kid’s ministry should be the higher priority.

3)There are many dead and dying churches that don’t have any debt.
Eliminating debt is not the win…no matter what Dave Ramsey says.

4) I think and North Point will thrive after Craig Groeschel and Andy Stanley are gone because both churches embrace team teaching, develop leaders and establish healthy systems.
Many large churches lack all three.

5) Worship music is too slow and too repetitive. Worship music is too slow and too repetitive. Worship music is too slow and too repetitive.

6) Once a church gets beyond a few hundred people, it’s really dysfunctional for boards and committees to be involved in day-to-day decision-making around purchases, facility maintenance and staffing issues.

7) When you feel like you are the only person in the room bringing ideas to the table, you are the problem.

8) Churches don’t effectively engage women in senior leadership roles.

9) Every church should be actively planning to add a service, add a campus or plant a church.

10) I’ve never seen an unhealthy church with too many volunteers.
I’ve seen many unhealthy churches with too many staff.

11) I still don’t understand what a “missional” church is.

12) Shared leadership doesn’t work.
When all the leaders are equal, no one is leading.

13) People visit the website before they visit the church.
That should frighten most churches.

14) I’d always hire a kid’s pastor before I’d hire a youth pastor.

15) Contrary to Rick Warren’s books, most churches are still program-driven.
Churches still think getting people involved in more activities helps people become more like Jesus. That doesn’t work.

16) Churches without lay leadership accountability within the church are one moral failure away from collapse.

17) We spend a lot of money to send people on sightseeing trips and to repaint buildings on the other side of the world.

18) Every church should do a marriage series, a money series and a series on life purpose every year. Christians need it, and I’m guessing unchurched people do too.

19) It’s impossible to rally people around a vision unless it’s specific and measurable.
And I really do believe NewSpring Church is going to reach 100,000 people in South Carolina.

20) Most churches say they’re outward-focused, but their worship services and calendars indicate otherwise.


It’s probably just better for me to keep my thoughts to myself. Carry on with your regularly scheduled programming.


Photo Credit: kevin dooley via Compfight cc

Tony Morgan

Tony is the Founder and Lead Strategist of The Unstuck Group. Started in 2009, The Unstuck Group has served 500 churches throughout the United States and several countries around the world. Previously, Tony served on the senior leadership teams of three rapidly growing churches including NewSpring Church in South Carolina. He has five published books including, The Unstuck Church, and, with Amy Anderson, he hosts The Unstuck Church Podcast which has thousands of listeners each month.

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