And one more thing– as long as the church wants to grow only in order to pay the bills; if we see new people not as persons made in the image of God who need God’s transforming grace as much as the rest of us; if we only see them as instruments by which to meet the general budget, then we will have really lost what it means to be the church in the world.
This comes from a post titled The Church Has an Edifice Complex. You should read the whole thing.
I’d link this to the numerous times I’m aware of in which a church has forced some ministry off church property because the people served weren’t those who attended church. These include a Wednesday night program for community youth whose parents weren’t church members and a young adult class whose members weren’t attending the church service.
Is church attendance desirable? Yes. But if you do ministry only to those who are already doing so, where’s the outreach?