Posts Tagged ‘church attendance’

Rodney Stark on Myths of the Reformation

Many misconceptions surround the Protestant Reformation, from it being the birth of capitalism to it prompting Europe’s secularization. Noted sociologist of religion Rodney Stark (Baylor ISR) joins us to discuss these myths and more. With the 500th anniversary of the Reformation just about a month away, this is a great opportunity to refresh on some interesting talking points to engage your friends, family, and colleagues.

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Matt Boswell on What Pastors Don’t Want to Reveal

Your pastor seems like an upbeat, fun-loving fellow who gets to celebrate the Word of God every week. Sounds like a great job. But are there issues that clergy struggle with on a regular basis that they might not want you to know about? Pastor Matt Boswell of Redemption Church in Duvall, WA opens up and talks about his viral blog post “Ten Things Pastors Don’t Want to Reveal.” We go down the list of ten and talk about how he manages these job-related challenges in this interesting discussion on how clergy might view the world.

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Matt Boswell on Redemption Church, One Year Later

One year ago, we interviewed Pastor Matt Boswell who was part of a small team that created a church in one week’s time. We return to the scene of our initial interview to see what has changed over the course of the year. This is a fascinating interview that provides insights into how churches grow and change. We tackle a wide range of topics including how church’s maintain attendance and enthusiasm, why more people are getting married on water skis, what pastors learn from visiting other churches, why popcorn buckets may or may not be a good thing for collecting tithes, and Matt’s theory of pacifism. Plus, Tony reveals his biggest fear in church. Interested in how church’s operate? This podcast is for you!

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Gerald De Maio on the Electoral Religion Gap

With the election season heating up, we revisit the issue of whether religion plays a role in voting behavior in the United States. Prof. Gerald De Maio (Baruch College, CUNY) discusses his collaborative research with Louis Bolce on the “religion gap” in American politics. This research indicates that those who attend church more regularly, or who hold more orthodox religious views, tend to vote much differently than seculars. De Maio and Bolce’s research also shows how the media has failed to pick up on this electoral divide while touting other “gaps” — e.g., gender, age, soccer moms — that are much less salient when it comes to predicting election outcomes. We speculate how the “religion gap” will play out in the November 2012 elections.

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Larry Osborne on Church Finances and Growth

Should pastors know what individual congregants tithe? This question set off a debate on Christianity today and we pick it up with Pastor Larry Osborne (North Coast Church in Vista, CA), who admittedly changed his view on this question. He explains why and our conversation also covers other interesting facets of church financing. We also discuss some of the strategies that Pastor Osborne has used to help his church grow from a small Bible Study to a church that serves over 8,000 congregants each week across three campuses.

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Alexander Ross on Religion & Happiness

Prof. G. Alexander Ross of the Institute for the Psychological Sciences discusses the decline in female happiness over the past four decades and how it is related to declining religious partipation. Our interview features a general discussion of happiness, the non-religious factors affecting one’s happiness, the general decline in female happiness (relative to males) and how religion promotes general contentment and joy. Prof. Ross notes that recent declines among church attendance, particularly among women, have led to a steeper decline in happiness for females as compared to men. We conclude with a discussion of the role of religion in psychological counseling.

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Byron Johnson on Religion & Delinquency

What effect does religious participation have on reducing teenage delinquency? Sociologist Byron Johnson, director of Baylor University’s Institute for Studies of Religion, reviews a number of studies on how church attendance leads to lower levels of deleterious behavior among teens and young adults. (To download, right click on the button to the right and choose “save target as….”)

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