Podcasts Episode 34 | 23:21 min | September 19, 2023

Church Membership: What is It? Why Does It Matter?

Taking the right approach to church membership can sidestep a lot of landmines—and shape a church's long-term outlook.

What is church membership? Why does it matter? Is it even still relevant?

Erika wraps up her multiple-episode theme, “Strengthening Your Church for the Long Haul,” by exploring church membership, and explaining why it remains relevant as ever.

Even though churches define membership differently, and some use more formalized processes than others, it’s critical for leaders to revisit their church’s specific approach—and the potential legal implications created by it.    

Erika walks through the key details that leaders should review, and the potential disputes that can be minimized by building—and following—a membership process that is rooted in a clear membership philosophy.


Eight Legal Considerations for Church Membership,” by Richard R. Hammar

Episode 29, Episode 30, Episode 31, Episode 32, and Episode 33 of the Church Law podcast (each focusing on different aspects of strengthening churches for the long haul). 

The Church Compliance Conference, taking place September 21, 2023, has been listed as a top church management conference for its topics, speakers, and value. Learn more and register here for the 16th Annual Church Compliance Conference

Take the Next Call,” a six-week online course with Erika E. Cole

Download your FREE copy of The Church Attorney Legal Audit® System document checklist here, and check out Episode 29 (“Using a Legal Audit to Position Your Church for the Long Haul”) to learn about the importance of a legal audit for your church.

Questions? Comments?  We welcome them! Please contact Erika Cole at erikacole.com. Erika reads each comment and may answer your question in an upcoming episode.

See all episodes of Church Law.

The Church Law podcast is part of Christianity Today’s ChurchLawAndTax.com, a not-for-profit publishing ministry.

Erika E. Cole, Esq., known as The Church Attorney®, is the creator of The Church Attorney Legal Audit® System, a proprietary legal audit process that helps church leaders be confident they are operating with integrity, and avoiding costly risks. She serves as a senior editorial advisor for Christianity Today’s ChurchLawAndTax.com.

This content is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered. It is sold with the understanding that the publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting, or other professional service. If legal advice or other expert assistance is required, the services of a competent professional person should be sought. "From a Declaration of Principles jointly adopted by a Committee of the American Bar Association and a Committee of Publishers and Associations." Due to the nature of the U.S. legal system, laws and regulations constantly change. The editors encourage readers to carefully search the site for all content related to the topic of interest and consult qualified local counsel to verify the status of specific statutes, laws, regulations, and precedential court holdings.

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