Sunday, 23 July 2017

Reasons why the Congregation is so Small Bingo

You may be a visiting preacher, you may be a visiting worshipper, or you may be the Bishop of Little Brickhill.  But one thing you can be sure. Wherever you go to church, the congregation size will be, according to the welcomer, vicar or steward, a bit smaller than could normally be expected.

Well, if you're a regular visitor you'll need something to relieve the sense of wondering why the congregations all seem to be avoiding you. So feel free to take this cut-out-and-keep "Reasons why the Congregation is so Small Bingo". When you have five in a line, shout "Half Empty House of God!" 

They’ve all gone away for the summer holidays It’s First Sunday. People do other things on First Sunday It’s pet service this afternoon  so they’re all busy grooming their animals There’s a lot of colds about at the minute It’s a Benefice combined communion. So nobody comes. Joan’s in hospital* The kids these days don’t come because of football They’ve all gone to Blackpool + It’s too hot It’s cheaper to go away after the summer holidays They’re digging up Church Lane and you’ve got to park in Church Close Kids these days just play on their Playstation X-box Ninjatendos They’ve all gone away before the summer holidays It’s the All Age Service Green Belt this weekend All the young ones are at Soul Survivor There’s a lot of hay fever about at the minute They all discovered Tinder last week It’s too cold These days we’re competing with Sunday morning telly It’s raining It’s a baptism so they all went to the 8am The children are away at camp It’s High Mass It’s Parade Service at the other church There’s a lot of bubonic plague about at the minute  It’s snowing They’ve heard the sermon before It’s Spring Harvest. So the Easter Day service is a bit dead They’ve all died.

* Replace "Joan" with "Elsie" as appropriate
+ Or appropriate nearby holiday location. Especially appropriate in residential retirement home communions.


  1. Yes. It's a very interesting statistical phenomenon: every week the congeregation is substantially smaller than the average number. (It's a bit like the way that the education system will only be considered to be succeeding when every child is performing above the average for their age.)

  2. 'Half of them can't get up the b... hill!'


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