SIDNEY — Imagine an annual event centered in churches, involving as many as 3.5 million people at locations around the world on the same day! It’s happening again on September 17, 2017. The event is National Back to Church Sunday, a movement that has involved over 31,000 churches from all 50 states, over 120 denominations, and 90 countries worldwide.
Back to Church Sunday is the largest annual community-based church outreach effort in the nation. The campaign empowers churches and church members with the tools they need to welcome their neighbors, friends and loved ones back to church, while providing an easy way for everyone in the community to find a welcoming church.
In a survey of participants in 2016, 95 percent of responding churches said they’d participate in Back to Church Sunday again. In addition, 85 percent of responding churches said that having a special day motivated their members to invite family and friends. Back to Church Sunday began in 2009 in response to survey research that indicated 82 percent of people said they would attend church if someone they knew invited them, but only 2 peercent of church members were inviting people to come with them to their church.
“Every year research shows that people are willing to try church if they are invited by a friend or family member, yet very few Christians ever invite others to come to church with them,” said Rev. David Chivington, Senior Pastor at Sidney First United Methodist Church. “We are excited to see so many churches, denominations and individuals joining together for the common goal of inviting people to church. People are finding it’s easy to do so with an event made especially for this purpose.”
Sidney First UMC is located at 230 E. Poplar in Sidney and plans to celebrate National Back To Church Sunday with one combined service at 10 a.m. that will feature both traditional and contemporary elements. There will be a picnic following the service, along with games and inflatables for the kids. Everyone is welcome.
There are many churches in the area participating in National Back To Church Sunday. A complete list is available at http://www.backtochurch.com/find-a-church.