Pastors Might need to change Sermons’ Length after COVID-19

For every new solution to a problem, there will always be arising of another challenge even in that new solution provided.

This is just, in the case of the what COVID19 pandemic as turn out to, by leaving churches with no choice of moving into online worship service where members connect from their homes via the internet and in doing so, this made them to keep tack with the time at the corner of their devices even when the service is still on.

Survey from LifeWay Research indicated that people now have very different perspectives on just how long a sermon lasts. With 54% Protestant pastors think their duration range between 20 to 30 minutes, 85% are sure that their sermon does not pass 40 minutes while 14% indicated that they run longer than 40 minutes and 32% of the protestant congregation think sermon runs around an hour.

Meanwhile 66% member agreed with the pastor of preaching not longer than 40 minutes.

Executive director of LifeWay Research, Scott McConnell, said as churches restart in-person worship services and other church activities, many are calling for churches to refocus on the essentials,” He continued “Prior to the pandemic that would have meant shorter sermons for some churchgoers.”

You can’t easily find an agreement between congregation and pastors when it comes to during of sermons.

“Some sermons feel like they are longer than the pastor estimates,” McConnell explained. “Churchgoers report sermons over 40 minutes in both small and large churches, but that could be related to different definitions of what elements of the church service are included in the sermon.

For example, pastors may give announcements, do a Scripture reading and conduct an altar call surrounding the sermon, which may lead to congregants feeling as if the message itself is longer.”

Faithwire reported that that when churches start filling the pews again, pastors might need to make a concerted effort to tighten the length of their morning messages.

Some of this, of course, shifts based on demographics.

Caucasian pastors are far more likely to say their sermons are under 20 minutes, while African-American ministers are more willing to admit their messages run longer than 40 minutes in length. And interestingly, there is a direct correlation between the amount of education a pastor has and how long his or her sermon lasts. Preachers with a master’s (42%) or doctoral (34%) degree are more likely to deliver a 20-minute message compared to those with less formal education (10%). Those with a bachelor’s degree or no college education (24%) are more likely to preach for at least 40 minutes than those who have obtained advanced degrees (10%).

Parishioners want church to be shorter — but not too short.

Only 14% of Protestant churchgoers said they want their respective pastor’s sermon to last between 15 and 20 minutes. The majority of congregants (52%) want their pastor to preach anywhere from 20 to 40 minutes. Only 9% of attenders said they want to sit for an hour-long message on Sunday morning.

“Many pastors have likely been preaching shorter sermons while their churches have met virtually,” McConnell said. “More than a quarter of churchgoers would prefer such shorter sermons when they return to meeting in person.”

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