Ministers in large suburban churches – churches with large parking lots that were until very recently filled with large SUVs – are noticing thinning crowds on Sunday mornings as the faithful cut back in church attendance to save money on gas.
In a recent LA Times articles several ministers were interviewed and shared their concerns about church attendance, church bus service for the elderly and poor, and worries about the effect of rising fuel prices on their poorest parishioners. Mega-churches, who tend to draw parishioners from sometimes distant suburbs, are especially feeling the pinch.
However, not everyone sees the fuel price crisis as a bad thing for churches. Ministers of smaller churches in town centers hope that the escalating cost of gas might cause some Christians to reconsider that long drive to the mega-church across town and to think about attending the local church to which they can walk or bike.
Read the LA Times article.