Much is known about why people in North America do not attend church. Peter Burch, a Baptist minister, decided to find out how these reasons apply to the Pacifica community of California, a suburb of San Francisco; but he took his research one step further. He also wanted to know how church members perceived the reasons for non-attendance in their community. In the process, he was in for a surprise that led him to discover the fundamental attribution error in action. When he grouped the reasons given by non-attenders and compared them with perceptions of church members, he discovered that they were often on opposite sides of the spectrum. This article explores the implications of these findings for church leaders who are discovering that today’s missional context needs to lead beyond the conventional wisdom of past solutions.
Burch, Peter Edward and Baumgartner, Erich
"When Perception is no Longer Reality: Leading Beyond the Limitations of Yesterday's Certainties,"
Journal of Applied Christian Leadership:
Available at: https://digitalcommons.andrews.edu/jacl/vol13/iss2/7