At the risk of austerity-mongering, it’s worth asking what a small, or new, or fragile church can do without in its worship to make worship sustainable, and to free up money and energy for other parts of church life.
Some things come to mind; here I’m thinking of middle-of-the-road mainline Protestantism. You could have worship
- without a meeting-place you own
- even without a fixed meeting-place
- without a full-time or resident minister
- without a sermon, or at least a long, originally-composed sermon every week
- without an organ, and probably without a piano
- without a choir
- without hymns
The list goes on, but you may already have experienced one or more of these “deprivations” in your own church. You might not even consider it a deprivation.
I’ll be looking at some of these options on and off for the next few weeks under the banner of “doing what you can, but doing it well.”
Burnout is a real risk under diminishing resources and opportunities. Burning out the leadership, leaving them hopeless, is not an option. Or else you’ll be
- without a church