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Mission Driven By the Numbers

This week’s post is written by the Rev. Dr. Patrick G. Duggan, Executive Director of the United Church of Christ Church Building & Loan Fund. Since 1995, Rev. Dr. Duggan has also served as senior pastor of the Congregational Church of South Hempstead in South Hempstead, New York.   In January 2017, the United Church…

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What do 111 Closed Congregations Tell Us?

This weeks blog post is written by Reverend David Schoen, Temporary Minister for Church Legacy and Closure, for the Office of Church Building and Loan Fund within Local Church Ministries. Rev. Schoen has also completed a report on Congregations that Closed in the United Church of Christ 2012-2015 that will be available soon to the wider church.…

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Clergy Shortage or Pulpit Shortage?

At a meeting of our Conference’s Church and Ministry Council last week, we were looking at the newly released Fall 2016 Statistical Profile of the United Church of Christ. It has some graphs that should look very familiar by now, showing a denomination that continues to grow smaller. One of our younger clergy on the…

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Mind the Tiller: Leading a Church to Closure

This special post is written by The Rev. Dr. Gail Cafferata, Episcopal priest and sociologist of religion whose current research focuses on pastors who have closed churches. Dr. Gail Cafferata has worked with CARD to gather data on UCC churches that have closed between 2010 and 2012, as well as gathering information about the pastors who…