DEATH TO SERMONS is a rally cry. Not against churches, but against communication in church that does not connect with today’s culture. Communication that’s not relevant pushes people away, is anti-viral.
To truly innovate and reach NEW people (in a church or otherwise) you have to as Seth Godin puts it “Find the spot where uncomfortable meets important.”
The title of this blog – DeathToSermons – is uncomfortable. At times it’s uncomfortable for me, and it may be uncomfortable to you. It makes us uncomfortable because it challenges what has been the norm in America since the 1940′s – lecture style sermons.
Regardless of what many think – the sermon is not the main thing when it comes to a church reaching new people. Communication is. If we communicate in a way our culture can relate to, they will come. If we communicate in a way they can’t relate to, they will stay away. Proof? Currently in most communities in America, 70% of the people do not attend any church on Sunday. Although 80% of people still say they believe in God, they are not motivated enough to go to the trouble to come to a church on Sunday. Solution? Kill the sermons.
The 70% can’t relate to the church because they speak in a different language. They live outside of the current church norm and that’s why a normal sermon won’t attract them or reach them. And that’s why DeathToSermons exists, to encourage a break from the sermon status quo in order to reach those not being reached.
Bottom Line: A sermon is simply a communication form, it’s not sacred or holy in and of itself. Like the traditional walk down the wedding aisle, it’s not required to accomplish the mission. It’s also okay to dance down the aisle. When you dance instead of walk, you just might relate to some people that you may have otherwise missed.
ABOUT BARRY WHITLOW
I’m a lover of God, family man, and a Church Communication Activist.
My love the Church runs deep. I believe that first and foremost the Church is about communication. Salvation, hope, love all have to be communicated in a way that people in today’s culture can relate to. If they can not relate to the message of the church, they will not begin a relationship with a church. From guest services to the live Sunday event, to the communication style used in small groups -how we communicate in church matters.
Incredibly, 70% of people in most communities in America choose not to attend church on Sunday. That is what keeps me up at night. These dear people don’t come because they no longer believe there is a God, they don’t come because they can no longer relate to how the church communicates its message -the most important message on earth.
As you can see, I am passionate about communication as it relates to the mission of the church. And that because effective communication is a powerful tool that can be used to touch the heart of a congregation, community, or the world.