Dear Church Family,

Thom Rainer is a SBC church consultant, cultural influencer, researcher, and extensive writer/author.  I recently read an article he wrote entitled; “Five Types of Church Members Who Will Not Return after the Quarantine.”  Obviously I read it with interest and came away with a sobering outlook on the future of the church.  In the next few FTP articles, I want to share with you what I read.

First, he says that the #1 question he has received in the last few months is; “When will all my church members return to in-person services?”  So it is on just about every one’s mind.  First, he states that not all the church members who were attending before the pandemic will return.  He goes on to say that anecdotally his conversations with hundreds of church members and church leaders indicate that somewhere between 20% or 30% of the members will not return to your church.  ( by church members he is including regular attenders or those who acted like church members).  So, this leads to the question:  Who are these non-returning church members?  Why are they not returning?  He identifies the 5 most common dropout groups.  He states that these groups may not be mutually exclusive but in fact there could be significant overlap.  Here’s the first group:

  1. The decreasing attendance members.  These are folks who had seen their attendance declining before the pandemic hit.  They may even been regular attenders sometime before the pandemic (and what I mean by regular is they attend the majority of Sundays in a typical month).  However, their frequency of attendance declined incrementally.  From 75% or more to 50% and then to 25% or less until they are rarely seen except for special Sundays like Christmas and Easter.    Next week we’ll look at a couple more groups, so stay tuned.


Church Family News

There is some sad news to report this week.  I just learned today that DeeDee Thomas’s mother, Betty Taylor Wade, passed away Monday night surrounded by her family.  Her funeral will be held at BGBC this Friday, August 28.  A viewing will be held at 10am in the sanctuary followed by the Celebration of Life service at 11am.

Kudos to Suzanne Stepp who has taken on the responsibility of overseeing the A/V system in our TWS.  She is doing a great job not only in running the computer but also in preparing the slides for the hymns and sermon.  God bless you Suz and thanks!

Speaking of “kudos,” a special shout out to: Cathy Jo Gray, Tracey and Emerson Mallory, Sabrina Farris and Jenn Thomas for distributing the school supplies that were generously donated to needy families in our community.  Thank you ladies and thank you church for responding to this important need in our community.

Mike Durham, our Association Director, has informed me that the annual HBA meeting has been cancelled for this year.  This meeting was held in our church last year and is typically scheduled for October.

Prayer Ministry.  Daniele Cushing has been burdened to help our church grow in intercessory prayer.  During the Covid-19 pandemic she posted opportunities for corporate prayer via a conference phone call twice a week.  We are going to continue that but with a change in times to:

  • Sunday mornings at 9am in the Philathea room with Pastor Frank. We will be praying for our morning worship services as well as for our church.  Daniele is attempting to make this time available for our off site prayer warriors so stay tuned.
  • Wednesday evenings at 7:30pm via phone. This is a change from 7pm.   The phone number remains as:

712-432-8377 and the access code is:  279785#


  1. Remember in prayer:
    1. Members of our church family facing surgeries and other life issues.
    2. All our frontline workers, in and out of our church, who work hard each day serving and protecting us during this pandemic.

I love you all,

Pastor Frank