Statistical Snippets from Our Survey

By Kent Fillinger

AVERAGE SIZE
Megachurches: 4,901
Emerging Megachurches: 1,375
Combined average weekly attendance: 386,035

GROWTH RATES
Megachurches: 1.3 percent (down from 3.5 percent in 2014); overall, 54 percent of the megachurches grew (down from 68 percent in 2014).
Emerging Megachurches: 2 percent (down from 5.4 percent in 2014); overall, 57 percent of emerging megachurches grew (down from 65 percent in 2014).
Large churches: 4.1 percent (down from 4.9 percent in 2014).
Medium churches: 3.3 percent (up from 3.1 percent in 2014).

FASTEST-GROWING CHURCHES
Worthington (OH) Christian Church, 35.1 percent
New City Church, Phoenix, AZ, 33.3 percent
New Day Christian Church, Port Charlotte, FL, 20 percent

A woman is baptized at Whitewater Crossing Christian Church, Cleves, OH. There were 124 baptisms at the church in 2015.
A woman is baptized at Whitewater Crossing Christian Church, Cleves, OH. There were 124 baptisms at the church in 2015.

BAPTISMS
Megachurches baptized 22,467 people, an average of 387 baptisms per megachurch.
Emerging Megachurches baptized 7,228 people, an average of 98 per church.
Megachurches baptized an average of 7.7 people per 100 in attendance, the same as in 2014.
Emerging Megachurches baptized an average of 7.1 people per 100 in attendance, up from 6.5 in 2014.

HIGHEST BAPTISM RATIO PER 100
RiverGlen Christian Church, Waukesha, WI, 18.9
Central Christian Church, Beloit, WI, 15.6
Suncrest Christian Church, St. John, IN, 15.2

GIVING
Average weekly per-person giving based on general fund only:
Megachurches: $31.65
Emerging Megachurches:$29.54
Large Churches: $29.77
Medium Churches: $29.27

AVERAGE TOTAL DEBT
Megachurches: $9.0 million (or $1,843 of debt per person, based on average attendance figures).
Emerging Megachurches: $4.4 million (or $3,196 of debt per person, based on average attendance figures).

DEBT-FREE
Megachurches: 13 percent
Emerging Megachurches: 15 percent

A CLEAR MISSION AND PURPOSE
(The following percentage of churches strongly agree they have a clear mission and purpose.)
Megachurches: 83 percent
Emerging Megachurches: 63 percent
Large Churches: 61 percent
Medium Churches: 37 percent

SPIRITUALLY VITAL AND ALIVE
(The following percentage of churches strongly agree they are spiritually vital and alive.)
Megachurches: 64 percent
Emerging Megachurches: 50 percent
Large Churches: 44 percent
Medium Churches: 29 percent

CHURCH UNIQUE
(The following percentage of churches strongly agree they are quite different from other churches in their community.)
Megachurches: 42 percent
Emerging Megachurches: 28 percent
Large Churches: 33 percent
Medium Churches: 25 percent

WILLING TO CHANGE
(The following percentage of churches strongly agree they are willing to change to meet new challenges.)
Megachurches: 57 percent
Emerging Megachurches: 56 percent
Large Churches: 43 percent
Medium Churches: 34 percent

CHURCH CONFLICTS
WE ASKED: During the past 5 years, has your congregation experienced any disagreements or conflicts?

RESPONSE: Yes, but it/they were not serious.
Megachurches: 31 percent
Emerging Megachurches: 23 percent
Large Churches: 32 percent
Medium Churches: 19 percent

RESPONSE: Yes, and in at least one instance, some people left.
Megachurches: 29 percent
Emerging Megachurches: 32 percent
Large Churches: 30 percent
Medium Churches: 45 percent

RESPONSE: Yes, and in at least one instance, some people withheld donations.
Megachurches: 7 percent
Emerging Megachurches: 18 percent
Large Churches: 14 percent
Medium Churches: 20 percent

RESPONSE: Yes, and in at least one instance, a pastor or staff member left.
Megachurches: 10 percent
Emerging Megachurches: 23 percent
Large Churches: 15 percent
Medium Churches: 31 percent

Kent E. Fillinger serves as president of 3:STRANDS Consulting and director of partnerships with CMF International, Indianapolis, Indiana.

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