The Meeting House, a multi-site church in Canada, has a unique approach to encouraging congregation involvement: Purge Sundays. That’s the tongue-in-cheek name the staff uses, but it gets to the point.
Teaching pastor Bruxy Cavey admits “purge Sundays” were his idea. “Evangelical Christians can be a trendy bunch, always looking for the good deal and where the action is,” he explains. “The more we have grown as a church, the more we have attracted tourists who come to check us out and will attend for some time, but never consider The Meeting House their home church. We don’t think that’s healthy for them—to be a voyeur on church life, rather than a healthy, active, committed participant in church life.
“So we started to ask them to leave.”
It’s a bold idea—asking passive congregants to get involved or go find a different church where they can do that—and I like it. They have the necessary exception for people still seeking but not yet committed, and they challenge their people to do what they’re supposed to do.
It sounds kind of abrasive, but it also sounds like they take the right approach. After all, if they lose people as a result of purge Sundays, that’s the idea. It’s refreshing to hear about a church that cares about more than increased numbers.