My name is David Murrow, and this is my first post on this blog, although I’ve been blogging for many years at churchformen.com.
I’m a husband, father, author, and church layman. I make my living as a television producer and writer in Alaska.
About a decade ago the scales fell from my eyes. I suddenly noticed something that had been hidden in plain sight.
There were always more women than men in church. And the men who did attend church often lagged the women when it came to involvement and enthusiasm.
Women just seemed to “get” church in a way men didn’t.
I did some research. I discovered the average worship service in North America draws and adult crowd that’s 61% female. Overseas the gender gap is even higher.
No other major world religion has such a disparity.
Then I uncovered another of Christianity’s hidden secrets: men are the key to church growth. Almost without exception, the churches that are growing have a healthy crop of enthusiastic, involved men. Meanwhile, female-dominated churches are mostly in decline.
Here’s the church growth equation: Men = Miracle Grow.
Getting more men into church is not just a nice thing to do – it’s the key to Christianity’s survival.
More redeemed men not only means bigger churches – it means healthier families, communities and societies.
So I decided to write a book about this vital topic. “Why Men Hate Going to Church” hit bookshelves in 2005. To date it has sold more than 125,000 copies in ten languages. It’s being used in seminaries and pastoral training courses across the globe. I get e-mails every day from pastors and laymen who are implementing man-welcoming changes in their churches – and seeing growth and health as a result.
Our little movement is bearing fruit. I’m noticing an increase in masculine imagery in the churches I visit. There’s been a subtle shift away from “girly” praise music, romantic language and frou-frou décor in many churches. I’m positively giddy about the evolution of Sunday school away from a classroom experience to a more hands-on, kinetic learning environment. Even female church leaders are getting in the act – making their congregations more welcoming to the opposite sex.
Today I train men’s groups all over the world. I’ve written four more books (including a complete revision of “Why Men”). I blog. I answer lots of e-mails from readers. I maintain my ministry site, www.churchformen.com.
So what’s the next frontier for me? The Lord has been talking to me about men’s ministry. If I may be bold – most churches terribly mishandle their ministry to men. Men’s ministry is in need of a extreme makeover.
Few churches even offer it. About 90 percent of men’s ministry programs fail within 2 years of launch. Men just don’t seem too interested – particularly young men. Too often men’s ministry is just women’s ministry for men. Or it’s a dozen old guys meeting in the church basement for pancakes.
So tell me, does your church offer a men’s ministry program? Have you tried it? What do you think? Please comment below.
Next week I’ll share a concept that could completely reinvent men’s ministry in the local church. It’s a method Jesus used to disciple his men, but this method has largely disappeared from the local church in the past 1700 years. If you’d like to know more, join me here next Wednesday.