Friday, October 30, 2020

Did You Know That Per-Capita Giving is HIGHER in Churches with Annual Audits and Independent Boards?

 By Warren Bird, Ph.D.


Do your church's governance and financial management models help or hurt per capita giving?

ECFA just released news that I believe will be extremely relevant to large churches. My "Did you know" headline is part of that news. 

To explain it further: if a large church has an annual audit performed, per capita giving goes up. Likewise, if the majority of its governance board is independent (i.e., a majority of the board is both non-family and non-staff), per capita giving goes up.

As the graphic below illustrates: if a large church is building member commitment through an emphasis on personal practices of spiritual growth, through involvement in the life of the congregation through attendance and small group, and through reinforcing the commitment to of fiscal integrity and trust, the per capital giving is likely to increase. 


This is only one of our findings: ECFA's “Megachurch 2020” report runs 22 pages and is the largest national study EVER of trends in U.S. megachurchesIt highlights 24 specific research findings that include answers to these questions:

     • What works best in megachurches to increase spiritual vitality?

• What have megachurches done to become so multiracial?

• How does small group involvement increase spiritual formation and church growth in megachurches?

• What decreases per capita giving in megachurches? What specifically increases it?

• Does your governance and financial management model help or hurt per capita giving?

• Are megachurches growing more by multiple services, multiple campuses, church planting, or church mergers?

• What year in megachurches is the peak growth era under the same senior pastor?

• What happens in a megachurch after the pastor who led during the church’s greatest growth era retires?

Part of the fun of this blog is the participation of our readers!  Truly, I welcome your comments and questions about this blog and about the entire report.

Download the entire report (free) at Please alert ministry friends as well.