Church Data Entry Update from GCFA

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Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Dear Pastors, Church Leaders and Volunteers, 

The year 2020 has certainly brought many challenges for local churches: quickly getting up to speed on how to worship virtually, having drive-in and yard services, opening with very limited capacity and attempting to make participation seem to be natural without a place to go. Now that the end of year statistical reports is coming soon, it is time to capture statistics for the year. Please know, this information is very important and still matters. Churches of all sizes matter. Did you know that over 50% of our denomination have fewer than 100 members? That's why it is important that data is collected from everyone. The accumulated data helps us see who and where we are.

It’s understood that the numbers will be different this year due to the varied methods of delivering services. There isn’t a one size fits all approach. We do know one thing that is certain. Local churches know their congregations better than anyone. They can tell the local story. To help with this, we will maintain what we did last year with some modifications to the the instructions. We are adding the following instructions for the lines noted below.  


Line 7: For 2020, only use the weeks that you had full in-person service.  

Line 7a: In 2020, many churches initiated online services using various platforms. See instructions from the platform to determine views that were hits or watches based upon viewing time (the length of time considered a watch may vary by conference). 

Line 27: If the church received a loan from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) as part of the CARES Act that has not been forgiven, include the loan balance here. 

Line 54c: Enter the amount received from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) as part of the CARES Act here (whether it's been forgiven or not). 


2017-2020_-_tables_i-iii (PDF) 

Online Attendance Tips From Discipleship Ministries (PDF)

Why Local Church Statistics Matter (PDF)


Also provided is some guidance from Discipleship Ministries on capturing online attendance. We know it’s going to be a year of wild data for some of these categories.  Thank you for the work you do to provide this information. May God bless you and your ministry! 


Thank You, 

GCFA Data Services 

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