In the October 29th, 2005 World Magazine, Joel Belz wrote an article entitled, “Locked from the inside.” In the article, he warned, “Get ready, America, for the huge collapse from within that is soon to result in the locking of hundreds and then thousands of church doors across our country-all from the inside.”
Depending on what statistics you read, the problem of a shortage of churches has been happening for quite some time. In 1900, there were 27 churches for every 10,000 people in the US. In 1950, the number had dropped to 17 churches for every 10,000, and by the year 2000, the number is just over 10 churches for every 10,000 people. It is true that there has been a population increase, but statistics show between 8 to 11 churches closing every day.
In our local Kingsport Times News, we have also been reminded of the problem. On May 30, 2004, a headline read, “Rural churches struggle to keep congregations.” Then later that same year, December 5, 2005, on the front page was the headline: “Hot jobs. Preachers, teachers, chefs in demand.”
While the problem is all across our country, the hardest hit areas are rural America. Smaller congregations with little potential of becoming a popular “mega church” and no ability to pay a pastor a living wage find it hard to keep the doors open. The CAPS ministry was developed to assist the local church regardless of size, but our mission heart beat is to assist the smaller rural church. And we do this by offering the following ministries:
- Men available for Pulpit supply
- Men willing to serve as interim pastors
- Men ready to take a pastorate
- Training men for the above ministries (including through your local church or ministry)
If you are interested in learning more about CAPS we have men available to come and present the ministry at your church. You can click contact us via the form below, or call me at or (276) 940-2782 or (423) 343-0232.