When a measure becomes a target, it ceases to be a good measure. For the Church, this is living under the Law, which God's grace through Jesus Christ has rendered moot, says the Rev. Jason Valendy. Read more


It's not the numbers themselves, but the fixation on numbers that's causing the church to miss the whole vision of what God wants the church to be and to do, writes the Rev. Jason Valendy. Read more

Perspectives 1 Comments

Green Envy

Photo Courtesy of Van Bourgondien (

Institutionalizing Envy

Try as he might, the Rev. Andrew Burd-Harris finds "no win in comparison" from the metrics of Vital Congregations. Read more

May 1, 2013 1:43 PM Andrew Burd-Harris 1 Comments


Photo Courtesy of Dan R. Dick

The Janus Conundrum

Trying to reconcile two opposite approaches contributes to The United Methodist Church's confusion over its future, writes the Rev. Dan R. Dick Read more

Nov 20, 2012 8:09 PM Dan R. Dick 1 Comments

Sabermetrics: If It’s Worth Counting in the Church, It’s Worth Counting Right

The Rev. Ben Gosden proposes a way for The United Methodist Church to use metrics in its decision-making. Read more

Nov 20, 2012 7:19 PM Ben Gosden 1 Comments

Jeremy Chart No.1

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Defeating the Dark Side of Church Metrics

The Rev. Jeremy Smith offers a way to add qualitative evaluation to the "dark side" of mere quantitative metrics as measures of congregational vitality. Read more

Sep 25, 2012 1:47 PM Jeremy Smith

Brain Drain

Graphic Courtesy of Jeremy Smith

Church Metrics = Young Clergy Brain Drain

The Rev. Jeremy Smith of "Hacking Christianity" looks at the implications of the UMC's Young Clergy Initiative program, especially its emphasis on metrics Read more

Aug 22, 2012 11:17 AM Jeremy Smith 1 Comments

Analyzing the ongoing personnel conflict involving Bishop W. Earl Bledsoe of the North Texas Annual Conference, the Rev. Christy Thomas explores why metrics can be such an inexact determinant of genuine leadership and effectiveness. Read more

Christy Thomas

The Rev. Dr. John H. Southwick of the General Board of Global Ministries compares statistics from the Towers Watson study used with the Call to Action's Vital Congregations program with a wider survey from Faith Communities Today. Read more

GC Archive

Vital Congregations Logo

Vital Congregations Logo

The Mistake That Will Not Die

John Meunier finds new evidence to support his concern that Call to Action research is being misunderstood and misused to promote the Vital Congregations campaign. Read more

Apr 4, 2012 4:19 PM John Meunier 2 Comments

Hands in prayer

United Methodist News Service Photo by Corey Daniel Godbey

A new statement on mission for United Methodists, seen by its creators as providing values and vision that the Call to Action lacks, is drawing the interest of thousands of online readers. Read more

GC Archive 4 Comments

False Profits

"The Gospel According to Bob" takes on the tricky aspects of focusing on numbers rather than values Read more

Feb 23, 2012 10:35 AM Dan R. Dick 1 Comments


Courtesy of Dan R. Dick


Rev. Dan R. Dick lifts up ideas about "vital congregations" as places where the quality of discipleship is more important than the quantity of church members. Read more

Feb 16, 2012 5:53 PM Dan R. Dick

Diana Butler Bass

Robert Cummings Photo

Religion historian Diana Butler Bass' latest findings on the state of American religion hold both challenge and hope for The United Methodist Church. Read more

GC Archive

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Vital Congregations Logo

I Know Vital When I See It

Bishop Scott Jones on the Vital Congregations plan to increase membership. Read more

Dec 31, 2011 5:44 PM Bishop Scott Jones

Metrics and Measurements Part 1 - On Measuring Accountability

Part 1 of Ben Gosden's series on metrics and the UMC. Read more

Dec 15, 2011 3:07 PM Ben Gosden

Just Give Me Orders, Please

A reprint from John Meunier's blog, "an arrow through the air." Read more

Nov 30, 2011 2:58 PM John Meunier

The False God of Statistics

John Meunier contends that using statistics alone to determine United Methodist church vitality sets up a false god in the place of authentic discipleship. Read more

Nov 30, 2011 2:58 PM John Meunier 1 Comments

Finding What We Look For

Dan R. Dick analyzes the deficiencies in how church vitality metrics are chosen. Read more

Nov 30, 2011 2:58 PM Dan R. Dick 2 Comments

Does the UMC Have a God Complex?

United Methodist campus minister the Rev. Rob Rynders examines the denomination's insistence on top-down leadership in an age of collaboration. Read more

Nov 30, 2011 2:58 PM Rob Rynders