Project Documents

Date of Award

1990

Document Type

Project Report

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry

School

Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary

Program

Doctor of Ministry DMin

First Advisor

Norman K. Miles

Second Advisor

C. Raymond Holmes

Third Advisor

James J. North, Jr.

Abstract

Problem. A very important concern felt by the pastoral staff and lay leadership at the Crossroads Seventh-day Adventist Church, New York City, was that of building and maintaining the attendance at weekly worship services. The purpose of this study was to investigate the influence of a specially prepared series of sermons dealing with worship-related topics on the attendance and attitudes of those who assemble regularly to worship at this church.

Method. A series of eight sermons on worship was prepared and presented at the church during a one-week period. A pretest questionnaire was administered to members and visitors shortly before the series commenced. Three months after the series, a post-test questionnaire with basically the same questions was administered to the same group to check whether significant changes in attitude and/or attendance habits had been experienced by the test group. The study was prescriptive, descriptive, and suggestive, rather than empirical and definitive. Data gathered through the questionnaires provided information but did not supply any basis for quantitative factors involved. During the series members were encouraged to invite acquaintances. Subcommittees were entrusted with managing the technical details of actual planning and conducting of the meetings. The desire of the church and its leadership to build its attendance was appropriately coupled with their varied talents and combined concern for the spiritual welfare of attending visitors.

Results. The sermon series,the center of this project, made definite impact on attendees. Post-test responses indicate many changed their views and attitudes on a number of aspects of worship. Tangible evidence of the evangelistic impact of this project is found in the number of individuals whose first contact with the Seventh-day Adventist Church is directly traceable to the worship sermon series.

Conclusions. Certain conclusions were reached from this project. Generally, a positive awareness of worship attendance was awakened among all concerned. It provided a learning experience for the preacher and for those who attended. More specifically, many who attended began to consider more seriously their attendance habits, and their attitude towards worship. For the first time, many have begun to realize the significance of worship in the context of the Advent message.

Subject Area

Seventh-day Adventist preaching

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