2018 Fast Facts about Small and Very Small Churches
2018 Fast Facts about Small and Very Small Churches

These statistics from 2018 are gleaned from small and very small church data collected by Kent Fillinger. Be sure to read Fillinger’s article, 2018 Special Church Report, Part 3: Small and Very Small Churches,” and look at the accompanying tables, “The 2018 Charts: Small and Very Small Churches.”

_ _ _

AVERAGE ATTENDANCE

Small churches: 163

Very Small churches: 54

Combined average weekly attendance (125 churches): 21,701

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GROWTH RATES

Small churches: 0.03 percent (up from -0.3 percent in 2017); overall, 38 percent of small churches grew (up from 36 percent in 2017)

Very Small churches: 1.7 percent (down from 5.5 percent in 2017); overall, 43 percent of very small churches grew (down from 44 percent in 2017)

_ _ _

FASTEST-GROWING SMALL CHURCHES

Hazelwood Christian Church, Pittsburgh, PA, 212.5 percent

First Christian Church, Mableton, GA, 28.5 percent

Reclaim Christian Church, Ansonia, CT, 22.6 percent

_ _ _

FASTEST-GROWING VERY SMALL CHURCHES

Fifth Street Church of Christ, Moultrie, GA, 68 percent

First Christian Church, Greenwood, SC, 41.2 percent

Winema Christian Church, Cloverdale, OR, 31.7 percent

_ _ _

BAPTISMS

Small churches: 699 (average 9 baptisms per church)

Very Small churches: 152 (average 3 per church)

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BAPTISM RATIOS

(Number of baptisms per 100 people in average attendance):

Small churches: 5.5

Very Small churches: 5.1

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HIGHEST BAPTISM RATIOS PER 100—SMALL CHURCHES

Christ’s Church, Fort Wayne, IN, 16.9

Thurston Christian Church, Springfield, OR, 15.0

Vernal Christian Church, Vernal, UT, 13.5

_ _ _

HIGHEST BAPTISM RATIOS PER 100—VERY SMALL CHURCHES

Connected Life Christian Church, Boca Raton, FL, 34.4

Peeled Oak Christian Church, Owingsville, KY, 31.4

Central Christian Church, Charleston, IL, 15.4

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STATES WITH MOST . . .

Small churches:

Indiana — 12

Ohio — 7

Georgia & Illinois — 6 each

Very Small churches:

Virginia — 5

5 States — 4 each

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OLDEST AND YOUNGEST CHURCHES REPORTING—YEAR STARTED

Oldest Small Church: Countryside Christian Church, Seaman, OH—1814

Oldest Very Small Church: Cool Spring Christian Church, Keysville, VA—1800

Youngest Small Church: Catalyst Church, High Point, NC—2009

Youngest Very Small Church: Movement Christian Church, Knightdale, NC—2017

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GIVING

Average weekly per person giving (based on general fund only):

Small churches: $36.11 (up from $31.80 in 2017)

Very Small churches: $35.30 (up from $30.58 in 2017)

_ _ _

OUTREACH GIVING

Percentage of total budget spent on ministry “outside the walls”:

Small churches: 17.1 percent

Very Small churches: 16.4 percent

_ _ _

BUDGETED FOR STAFFS

Percentage of total budget invested on ministry staff:

Small churches: 49.3 percent

Very Small churches: 51.9 percent

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