Too many congregations of mainline churches profess that they welcome strangers but are inhospitable when the stranger comes to worship. They know that worship is the single most important ingredient in why people join and remain active members in a congregation. They realize that they need to welcome strangers, so they try to be a warm, open family. Some of them believe they have achieved this model, but few do achieve it. The key to turning this situation around lies in the congregation’s attitude toward the stranger. This is especially true of the attitude of those who plan and lead worship. As long as the stranger is an anomaly in the imaginations of those who plan and participate in worship, their worship will continue to exclude and their membership diminish.
Word & World
Keifert, Patrick R. “Guess Who’s Coming to Worship: Worship and Evangelism.” Word & World 9, no. 1 (1989): 46–51.
Keifert, Patrick R., "Guess Who's Coming to Worship? Worship and Evangelism" (1989). Faculty Publications. 123.