Earlier this year, I hit a major milestone, celebrating 15 years as a pastor. In those 15 years as a pastor, I can’t remember a single summer when church attendance increased. Not to be glum; it’s just the truth. We call it the “summer slump” for a reason. Get online and Google “church summer slump,” and you’ll find all kinds of tips for how to beat it, overcome it, maximize it, lead the church through it, and on and on and on. The truth is, summer just is what it is in the life of the church: a season when church attendance generally declines because people are traveling more and/or have more weekend activities. BUT… just because attendance declines doesn’t mean great things can’t happen in the life of a church during the summer. I leave here on July 4th and return on July 14th (or 15th). So, in spite of the fact that the “summer slump” is inevitable, I’m really looking forward to the things we have going on at the church this summer. For instance, there’s Vacation Bible School. (You might’ve heard, but I’m a big fan of VBS. Ours is June 10-14.) There’s also Summer Music Camp (I’m also a big fan of SMC. This year, it’s July 22-26.)
We also have youth camps, and I know I thoroughly enjoyed going to camp when I was in youth group growing up. In addition to VBS, SMC, and youth camps, this summer our church is also doing a mission trip to Montana, something we could never do during the school year. We’re going to leave here on July 4th and return on July 14th (or 15th). So, in spite of the fact that the “summer slump” is inevitable, I’m really looking forward to the things we have going on at the church this summer.
On a personal note, continue to keep me and my family in your prayers. I’m in the final stages of the doctoral project at Baylor’s Truett Seminary, and I have a lot of work to accomplish before June 15, which is the deadline for finishing in time to graduate in August. This has been an amazing journey, and I appreciate your continued support and prayers in this last leg of the race.