Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Graham Baird webinar on church growth

This afternoon I participated in a Webinar led by Graham Baird, pastor of Highlands Church in Paso Robles. Highlands is a Presbyterian church that was started four years ago and today has 997 in worship. I enjoyed the webinar and wanted to share the notes that I took.

Notes from Graham Baird Webinar, May 4, 2010

He is pastor of Highlands church in Paso Robles, California

His background
• Campus minister in Ann Arbor, Michigan
• Part of a failed NCD in San Antonio, Texas
• Interim Pastor in Red bluff California

Paso Robles is a town of 26,000. There are 60,000 people in range of the church
47 churches in the town before they started.

Their mission statement—to help dechurched people become fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ

198 at first worship service
40 the next Sunday
They grew to 3 services plus a midweek service

Today—961 family units
Average attendance—997
4 weekly worship services
3/5 of staff is multicultural
150+ seniors
Median income is 33,000
Many blue collar people

Most important point
Jesus Christ is the head of the Church
Jesus Christ is their senior pastor
Christ makes churches grow

Col 1:15-18
Ephesians 1:22-23
Ephesians 5:29

Curiosity is the best key to church growth
Ten ideas for church growth
1. The leadership has to have a heart for an outsider
Our hearts have to ache for people outside the system
We have to feel a deep need for outsiders
Are we more inclined to spend time with the people we know or the outsiders

2. Create a personality profile of the outsider
They have developed three personality profiles
Paula and Pete Paso (fun and normal)
Napa Ned (looking for meaning)
Gary Golfer (doesn’t want to be judged)

3. Share vision (heart) with the church
Pastor share vision quarterly from the pulpit
They call the messages “Heart of the Highlands message

4. Cultivate “Who Me” leaders at home instead of choose me leaders

5. Share numbers with leaders
They are open with numbers

6. Importance of Personal/Relational Outreach
The personal/relational dynamic is essential for church growth
1) handwritten notes from the pastor and not a form letter
2) call people on Saturday—pastor does. “What can I do to pray for you.” The only question he asks
3. Walk through the pews 20 minutes before worship to greet people

7. Free media resources
Cross example

8. Event focused worship

Ash Wednesday
Manudy Thursday
Mother’s Day
Baptism Sunday
Dad’s day
Hawaiin Shirt Sunday

9. Minimize Presbyterian Name
Saul to Paul. Saul changed it because Saul had baggage. Presbyterian has baggage with community

10..Maximize Presbyterian theology
1% more theory. You don’t have to accept everything. Is there one percent more that you can accept?

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