Why Are People Leaving Your Church?

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by bb_baptist, Jun 5, 2001.

  1. bb_baptist

    bb_baptist
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    There are many reasons why people leave churches.

    What has been the number one reason - in your experience?
     
  2. Pastor KevinR

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    As you know, webmaster, here in NYC, folks are quite transient, rarely staying in the neigborhood for a long time like the old days.
    Sometimes, too alot of folks want entertainment.Perhaps the music is boring, or maybe the sermons! :eek: Sometimes people get offended easily, by mentioning sin, which they consider meddling instead of preaching.There of course are many variables but personally I feel that some folks leave because they are sponges instead of givers of themselves.Anyone else? :D
     
  3. Don

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    In the one church I personally know of where people are leaving on a somewhat regular basis, it's because they're tired of having their salvation questioned by the pastor.

    In my past, I've seen people leave for the same reasons stated above; I myself, as a military member, have had to leave a few churches because God has called me elsewhere (the military thinks they did it, but we all know better, don't we? [​IMG] )

    In the church that I've mentioned, the pastor regularly gives a mixed message: First he says that saved people don't engage in things like worldly dress, smoking cigarettes, etc. Then he says, "Christian, if something has a hold on you, you need to get right with God."

    So most of the people who have left have done so because they're tired of constantly being taught to doubt their salvation instead of rejoicing in it.
     
  4. tlange

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    I think that there isn't one particular reason, but rather several!

    1) The big vs small church mentality, some people do not like a big church.

    2) Some people do not get "connected" they do not make any friends or develop any meaningful relationships. If people do not connect, they will leave.

    3) Because they do not feel like they have any "ownership" within the ministry. They need to feel like they are a vital part of the ministry and it belongs to them and not just the pastoral staff!

    just my 2 cents worth....
     
  5. TomVols

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    disinterest. That is my experience as to why people leave in a nutshell. The reasons which branch off of this are varied.
     
  6. Pastor Larry

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    1) Doctrinal/theological/philosophical error on the part of the pastor;

    2) Legitimate occupational move that prevents continuance;

    3) Opportunity to fill a ministry need in a church that could legitimately use your gifts. This assumes that you are not leaving a void in your current church.

    4) Carnality
     
  7. Pastor Larry

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    Sorry for the second post. I should have read more carefully the original question. I should have listed them in a different order. I would think the most common reason is my number four (carnality) with two (occupational move) being second. The first and third are rare it seems to me.
     
  8. SaggyWoman

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    Why do people leave the church I attend?

    * They aren't right with God, and they don't want to get that way.

    * God wanted them to move--job wise or to attend another church

    * They had a stinky attitude, and by moving, they would get a better one.

    * They never were serious about attending to begin with.
     
  9. PreacherDave

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    Interesting question. As members (not leaders)we personally left churches for:
    1. doctrinal error;
    2. pastors with a "god complex" (taking upon themselves far more authority than the Lord gave them);
    3. the "priesthood of the believer" was not honored & so many were unable to use their gifts--or the opposite, everyone was worked to death (who would work) and so people got worn out;
    4. disinterest in evangelism--esp. towards the needy.
    [Interestingly, these are often found together.]
    Leaving (for us) was after attempts to communicate the problem to elders who wouldn't listen, and over a lengthy period of time of trying to work in and through the church.
    I believe this is a legitimate problem in many churches; the "country club" mentality. Too many American Christians are fired up over their "distinctive doctrines" but not Christ. Too many American believers don't want change or challenge; and they've grown lukewarm in their relationship to the Lord. Many believers have just about given up going to church because of it; they've been worn out and/or wounded so many times. Don't be quick to judge the people who leave; consider talking to them (if they'll talk). They're not all whiners; and often even the whiners have legitimate gripes.
     
  10. Gina B

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    Let's see. I left my first church because first I moved, then second I found out there were doctrinally wrong teachings.
    The second one I left because I kept trying to be a part of it, but nobody seemed too interested in doing anything that wasn't already being done, and they automatically assumed that a poor Christian is a very stupid and/or useless one. I wasn't to be taken or answered seriously when I asked questions or brought up issues. When I brought visitors they weren't as welcome as other visitors. When I tried to go out with the group visiting it seemed a problem to them. It turned out that I shouldn't have been anyway, because after becoming spiritually dead they have decided to become much more liberal, and it's just a sad place.
    The last one is my fault, although I haven't exactly left. I just haven't been there. Our pastor left, there was some hurt feelings going on, I pulled back for a while, and things have gone downhill from there. I want to go back now, I'm just afraid of people asking where I've been and me having to explain. Especially when I know they're really struggling and as a member I haven't stayed faithful and done my part.
    Gina
     
  11. Barnabas H.

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    Some of the reasons (not in chronological order):

    1. 2 Timothy 4:3-4 "For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables."

    2. They are of the variety mentioned in 2 Timothy 3:7 "Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth."

    3. Daniel 12:4 "But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased."

    4. The reasons already given by others on this forum.
     
  12. SaggyWoman

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    Another direction. Why have I left churches?

    1. Moved to college.
    2. Moved to seminary.
    3. Moved to a position.
    4. Was called to a church staff.
    5. Was called to a church staff.
     
  13. DocCas

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    The main reasons people leave the church I pastor are:

    1. Military transfers

    2. Men going into the Ministry in other locations (Missionaries, church planters, etc.)

    3. Saints dying and going to heaven.

    [​IMG]
     
  14. Don

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    Reasons I've left a church:

    1) Military moves

    2) Doctrinal/personal problems with the pastor (meaning, I personally have problems with a pastor who preaches one thing and practices another. Such as, TV is immoral--but hey, if the game is on, let's sit down and watch. Women should stay home with their young children--but my wife will continue to work, even though I have a young child. Etc., etc.)
     
  15. Dr. Bob

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    My thoughts (for what they're worth):

    (1) Modern Americans want to be entertained. Many come to church not to serve, but to be servedand to be the "spectator". <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>I have not found this to be true in other nations. There, to come to church is a sacrifice and they spend hours in joyous study, worship and celebration.

    (2) Modern Americans do not want doctrine. By its authoritative nature, doctrine is devisive. Even in our ifb churches they want to hear John 3 rather than Romans 9. <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>Pablum and mother's milk have become normative in our churches.

    (3) Americans have become feeling oriented. Concerned with what people "think" about them, whether they "like" a pastor or deacon or youth leader. They refuse to take responsibility or blame for actions, and just want to be happy. This post-modernism has led to a new tolerance for sin and destroyed the vibrant purity of our churches.

    Hey, I think I'm going to work this into a sermon. Of course, nobody will be around to hear it! [​IMG]
     
  16. Bob Alkire

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    I would say down here it would be doctrinal errors and carnality.
     

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