Why is Local Outreach So Hard? 20 Reasons:

As church attendance declines, we must look at our communities as a mission field. Why don’t we? Here’s some reasons, assumptions, & excuses I’ve heard, said, felt as a church leader:

  1. As churches, we have turned inward & focused on campus.
  2. As churches, we have “hired it done” by church staff instead of equipping people for the work of local outreach.
  3. Witnessing means inviting people like me to my church.
  4. The compelling call to “Go” (Matthew 28:19-20) begins at the borders of our own country.
  5. Assumption: “Everybody has a church already.”
  6. Assumption: “They know where we are if they need us.”
  7. Assumption: “The needy around here get plenty of help from the government.”
  8. Assumption: “We don’t have enough money.”
  9. Assumption: “The city won’t let us share the gospel.”
  10. As church leaders, we feel tension between “Go. It’s about the people out there” & “Come. What’s going on in here is vital.”
  11. It takes a lot of energy to maintain the on campus ministry.
  12. If we challenge people to reach out & serve in non-traditional ways they may go to another church.
  13. Local outreach = Advertising.
  14. Excuse: “Our area has some dangerous neighborhoods.”
  15. Excuse: “We will one day.”
  16. Excuse: “We tried that already.”
  17. Excuse: “We might get taken advantage of.”
  18. Excuse: “My people are not ready.”
  19. Sinful unspoken assumption: “We don’t really want ‘those people’ coming to our church.”
  20. Sinful unspoken assumption: “It won’t help our bottom line.”

What other reasons, excuses, assumptions could you add to this list? How does your church reach out to your local community?

Posted on July 19, 2013, in Faith In Action, Ministry, Missions, Sending Capacity. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. 21. The racial, cultural, and socioeconomic difference between our church and the surrounding community is to great; “those people” (don’t, can’t, won’t) want to come and worship with us.

    – We seem at times to be oblivious to the racial, cultural, and socioeconomic diversity of the first century church. This diversity certainly presented it’s challenges. In fact it is what initiated most of the Epistles that comprise the New Testament. But they were obedient to facing those challenges and the church grew.

  1. Pingback: Being On Mission Stinks, Why is Local Outreach So Hard? and other top posts for 2013 | Lane Corley

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