Barna survey: Churches feel economic crunch: Typical church sees 7 percent drop

A nationwide poll of 1,100 Protestant church leaders in the last quarter of 2009 found that 57 percent said the economy affected their congregation negatively over the past year, but only 8 percent called the effect “very negative.”

A typical church saw its budget drop 7 percent from the previous year, according to Barna Research based in Ventura, California. Southern Baptist congregations, charismatic or Pentecostal churches, and black churches were most likely to say their budget was down.

Mainline Protestant churches and those with pastors earning between $40,000 and $60,000 annually were most likely to be holding their ground, the researchers said. –Associated Baptist Press