Only 40 Percent of Americans Being Reached by Current Church Model
The contemporary church growth model can only reach a maximum of 40 percent of the American population, said a leading thinker in the missional movement on Thursday.
This is a problem because 95 percent of American churches are using a model that even if successful will reach less than half the population, said Alan Hirsch, an internationally recognized missiologist and founding director of Forge Mission Training Network. He spoke at “The Genius of And” conference, hosted by Granger Community Church in Granger, Ind.
Most churches target the 40 percent of the population that’s within the cultural distance of the church, he explained. Meanwhile, attractional churches that have more of an external focus and cultural relevance will, again, only work for 40 percent of the American population. And after a few years of coming to Christ, most people are socialized out of their context and into the context of the church, which removes them from their sphere of influence.
That leaves 60 percent of the population that the church is not reaching.
“Does anyone see a problem here? It is called all our eggs are in one basket,” said Hirsch in his message titled, “Living in the Land of And.” “At any given point and time to resolve the missional challenges in which we face we only have a variation of one model.”