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Consider these facts:

*Between 50 and 75 U.S. churches close their doors every week

*More than 80% of the churches in the U.S. have plateaued or are declining.

*In the United States alone, there are over 200 million unchurched people, making the U.S. the third largest mission field in the world.

*Since 1991, the number of adults in the U.S. who do not attend church has nearly doubled.

*The largest unreached people group in America are the twenty-somethings.

*51.9 million people in the U.S. between the ages of 20-38 are not connected with the existing churches. (Gallup Poll)

*8 million twenty-somethings alive today will no longer attend church by the time they turn 30. (Barna)

*Our nation leads the world in every category of violent and domestic crime and social decay (Nation-Builders)

*Memphis has been called “the city of churches.” Yet, Memphis is now primarily known for its crime, corruption, racial fragmentation, troubled schools, and losing sports teams.

*Memphis is a great city. Yet, In 2009, Memphis was the second most miserable city in the US. In 2010, Memphis was the third most miserable city in the US. (Forbes)

*Memphis is the hunger capital of the United States. Last year, 26% of Memphians sought assistance from food banks and churches. “Nowhere else in America is the food need greater.” (McClatchy Newspapers, March 28, 2010(

When I read these statistics, I think, “what a great place for followers of Jesus to live and love and serve!”

Memphis has great churches, larger and smaller. Many of the pastors of these churches are my friends. Their churches are making an impact. Thanks be to God.

In addition, gospel-driven churches are springing up all over Memphis. Many of these young church planters burn with a passion to seek the peace and prosperity of the city. (Jeremiah 29:7).

Conclusion – God is raising up and reviving Gospel-centered, outward-focused (missional) churches all over the Mid-south. We are excited to be part of what He is doing!

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