Scott Hodge


Summer Slump?

Jul 31, 2006

I need to get some feedback from all of you church-goin’ folks…  Especially the pastors.

As most of you know, summer is usually the time of year when churches experience a "dip."  It’s called "The Summer Slump."  As hard as we try to avoid it, it usually shows up. 

But here’s what’s weird – we’ve experienced just the opposite at The Orchard!  It’s crazy!  Good, but so strange to me!

Just to give you an example – this past weekend, our attendance was 52% higher than the same weekend the year before.  Same thing financially!  72% higher than the same weekend the year before. 

Not only that, but get this – we have almost 80 people getting water baptized at our big BBQ & Baptism coming up next weekend!  We’ve never had this many!  It’s usually been between 30 and 40 a year.  But almost 80?!?!?  So, so, so jazzed about that!!

I share all of this to ask – is this happening at your church?  Please share!  Give me your feedback!  Is this just a "God thing" or are people not vacationing this year and instead inviting their friends to church with them!? 

Share on… 

11 Responses to “Summer Slump?”

  1. Dave says:

    It is a possible combination of both. I am taking the family to the zoo this year but we can’t afford to drive away or even to work for that matter, Gas prices are one thing. But I also Love coming every week to see what God is up to, It is so cool to see thing moving in a way that brings Him glory and I just always want to be a part of it, no matter how small a part that I and the rest of us play, we all share the rewards of knowing we are making a differance, and that by bringing his Flock closer to Him, we are indeed being good and faithful servants, and to hear Jesus tell me that I have been a good and faithful servant is what I am looking forward to most. And tieing in to the message from last weekend, who wouldn’t want to hear “Well done you did a great job” from their father, epecially Abba. So I belive it is both, God is at work most of all, but also, we just can’t afford to travel either.

  2. Gary Lamb says:

    I’ve been talking about the same thing. We have broke our highest attendance three times this summer (not including Easter and anniversary). June and July have been our biggest giving months ever in our 23 months. Last week we had 515 people in JULY!
    I joke that we reach so many unchurched people that they don’t know they are supposed to miss during the summer.

  3. It’s been the same with us. We are double in attendance and giving from last year. 2 of our highest attendance Sundays ever were in July.

  4. michael says:

    we don’t have much history since our grand opening is not for a couple of weeks. but we had 2 preview services…one in june and one in july. in the middle of the summer, we had 170 and 250 people show up. 60% not involved in any church at all.
    we don’t set attendance goals, but i was a little blown away by the attendance.

  5. Chad Wright says:

    Our children’s church is booming (relatively speaking). I normally have around 6 kids in my class. I had 15 in my class alone last Sunday. For our size church, it was crazy. This spurred our long on hold expansion of the children’s area.
    We are so pumped to see what God has in store for his church. Things are a rockin’.

  6. Jay Hardwick says:

    Awesome stuff, Scott!
    Since our launch in April, we’ve only had 7 services (we meet on the 1st and 3rd Sunday of the month) and have experienced more growth and consistency than we ever thought we would through the summer. Our giving has been phenomenal (almost double our projected giving) the last three services.
    I agree with Gary – when you reach unchurched or dechurched people, they get hooked and love it and don’t want to miss.
    I also think that when people see that the church is not “taking the summer off” they respond. I know you guys put together a creative summer series as did Gary and it worked very well. The Seacoast boys introduced some cool new things too.
    My $.02.

  7. same thing here in Iowa. We are only 11 months old and all my church planter buddies said hold on and you can make it through the summer dip. We have grown all summer long! the last two weeks we have broken our highest record attendances! It is awesome. No one can believe it!
    WE are totally stoked and cant wait to see what the fall will look like!
    By the way, we meet briefly at the Buzz, in DC. I read your blog and love it. Cool to see a blurb about you in outreach mag!

  8. Misty says:


  9. Amy Hesterman says:

    Unfortunately, just the opposite for us. We are a 7 year old church plant… moved into our new building last summer….never had a summer dip in attendance…never had a substantial dip in giving until now….serving is down. Discouragement amongst leadership up. We have been in Willow Creek’s Old Testament Challenge since January. Amateur diagnosis…could that be one of the problems? Not sure. But really looking forward to getting our momentum back in the fall. Brighter days ahead!!!

  10. We have experienced a huge leap since last summer. We were averaging about 550 last summer and are up above 900 this summer (we have experienced a dip since spring, when were averaging 1100+). But we had our largest offerings ever last month. I think there’s something building throughout churches everywhere. To quote Crowder, “The ocean is growing, the tide is coming in, here it is.” God’s up to something!

  11. Sarge says:

    Same here in KY. Attendance is up and we had our biggest giving month ever this July. God is good.

Leave a Reply

  • RSS
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Vimeo
  • Flickr



Top Posts