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Easter remains a high attendance day for most churches

by Kelly Valencia

Easter Sunday is among the highest-attended services for most churches in the United States, according to a new report.

LifeWay Research has found that 90 per cent of surveyed Protestant pastors identify Easter as the day their church has its highest, second-highest or third-highest attendance for worship service.

“While many churches consider high attendance as something from their pre-pandemic past, seasonal changes have resumed,” Scott McConnell, executive director of Lifeway Research, said.

“Church attendance is predictable again with periods of consistency in the fall and early spring, as well as holiday crowds at Christmas and Easter.”

Of those 90 per cent, 52 per cent of pastors said Easter was their highest-attended Sunday worship, while 30 per cent ranked it as the second most attended, and eight per cent ranked it as the third most.

Pastors of larger churches, particularly those with over 100 attendees, are more inclined to consider Easter one of their highest-attended services, if not the highest. Specifically, pastors of churches with 250 or more attendees (67 per cent) and those with 100 to 249 attendees (60 per cent) are more likely to view Easter as their highest-attendance service than pastors of smaller churches.

Furthermore, pastors at churches with 100-249 attendees (93 percent) and those with 250 or more attendees (98 percent) are more likely than pastors of smaller churches to rank Easter among their top three high-attendance days.

Easter holds the third position among churchgoers' favourite holidays to celebrate, with ten per cent expressing this preference. Those who attend worship services at least four times a month are more likely to choose Easter as a favourite holiday (14 per cent) compared to those attending one to three times a month (five per cent).

The report's data was sourced from a telephone survey conducted between August 29 and September 20, 2023, among 1,004 Protestant pastors.

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