A Church Membership Recovery Model

A Church Membership Recovery Model

  • Our Goal:
    • Lord willing the result of this ministry will produce members of First Baptist Clever who recognize the blessings of being identified and committed to the body of Christ. We are praying for a membership that loves Christ and the fellowship of other believers.

    • Our Current Status: 

        Resident Members = 289
        Non-Resident Members = 225
        Total Membership = 514
        Average AM Worship = 125 

    • Future Status:
        Total Membership = 250
        Average AM Worship = 300 
  • Ministry of Recovery Involvement:
    • This is a churchwide ministry and will involve everyone possible. We will focus especially on already established relationships with straying members, while attempting to create new relationships with them.
  • Ministry of Recovery Process:
    • Saturate each stage of the process with prayer.
    • Plan and prepare ministry in Deacon meetings.
    • Host guest speaker to discuss the Biblical nature of the ministry and encourage the church in their decision to proceed.
    • Prepare updated Membership List.
    • Review the Membership List with the Deacons.
    • Categorize the Membership List:
        Unknown Members
        Known w/o Contact Information
        Known w/o Significant Relationship
        Known w/ Friendships
        Known w/ Family Ties
    • Prepare a letter for the initial contact with straying members. This letter will be sent to one category at a time to the last known address.
    • Hold a special churchwide meeting to discuss the Ministry of Recovery.
    • Mail letters.
    • Contact by phone and/or home visit if possible once the letter has been sent. Encourage members of church who know the straying member to contact as well.
    • Report regularly during business meetings.  
  • Ministry of Recovery Decisions:
    • Resident Members:
      • No address or phone number (no contact possible) – Remove
      • Attending another church – Transfer
      • No longer wishes to be affiliated – Remove
      • Wishes to be restored:
        • & recognizes importance of Christ and Churchmanship – Recovered!!
        • w/o attendance or involvement – Educate
        • if same desire after being patiently informed – Remove
    • Non-Resident Members:
      • No address or phone number (no contact possible) – Remove
      • Attending another church – Transfer
      • Missionary (remain in contact) – Maintain
      • College student (remain in contact) – Maintain
      • No evangelical church in new community (remain in contact) – Maintain
      • Military w/o evangelical church in area (remain in contact) – Maintain
      • Evangelical church available & not attending anywhere – Educate -if same after being patiently informed – Remove
      • Recently relocated and actively searching (remain in contact) – Maintain  
  • Membership Qualifications:

    Understanding that no one is qualified in and of themselves, it is God that qualifies us by grace alone through faith alone in the work of Jesus Christ alone, we recognize there are Biblical qualities that must be present in receiving and maintaining members. For a person to be received into membership, he/she must be:

    • Regenerated: God must have given spiritual life to the person. This new life is made evident by the fruit of faith and repentance along with devotion to Christ as Lord. The individual must have the ability to articulate their faith (they must have a credible profession of faith).
    • Baptized by immersion as a believer: Christ and His disciples taught the importance and significance of Scriptural baptism. This first step of obedience must be taken prior to being received into membership.
    • Committed to the church covenant: The church covenant is a document that summarizes the Biblical teaching related to congregational life. The congregation recognizes this document as a statement that reflects its commitment to Biblical Christianity.

      The church covenant covers such topics as:

        – Salvation
        – Mutual encouragement
        – Mutual accountability
        – Unity of the body of Christ
        – Christian obedience to Christ
        – Financial stewardship
        – Congregational worship
        – Proper observance of the ordinances
        – Missions
        – Membership movement after relocation
    • Committed to the church’s confession of faith: The confession of faith is a document that summarizes Biblical doctrine. We recognize that in order to have true unity, doctrinal agreement is necessary.

    This piece is taken from the First Baptist Church of Clever, MO, Doug Richey, former pastor. They granted permission for us to use this. Permission is granted to you to adapt and use it also.