"Most American churchgoers would rather attend church than watch their favorite football team"

3067 reads

There are 11 Comments

Mark_Smith's picture

are relatively serious, so of course they wouldn't. What about the millions who have already left?

Also, the NFL isn't stupid...they put the games on starting at 12pm. Look at how many men are tapping their watches starting at 1159am. That is a better question.

Finally, with most churches abandoning Sunday PM services this is a mute question.

dcbii's picture

EditorModerator

Mark_Smith wrote:

are relatively serious, so of course they wouldn't. What about the millions who have already left?

Also, the NFL isn't stupid...they put the games on starting at 12pm. Look at how many men are tapping their watches starting at 1159am. That is a better question.

Finally, with most churches abandoning Sunday PM services this is a mute question.

And, any of those who are serious about worship but still love their football have certainly figured out how to use the DVR.  We have some pretty big football fans in our church, but I've not noticed any that are concerned if the services go long.

Dave Barnhart

Jim's picture

Because we are on the eve of the Superbowl, and this seems to annually come up as a comment. Something like "it's a shame God's people stay home from the evening service to watch a football game ... ".

My response is that the Super Bowl is a family event ... just like any other quintessential American holiday: families gathered with food and fellowship. 

Mark_Smith's picture

SI has posted two articles lately about how no one does Sunday evening church services anymore, so skipping out for the Superbowl is irrelevant isn't it?

Chip Van Emmerik's picture

So what are you saying Jim, church meetings should be scheduled around "family" events? Even if this were a good idea, I would question you designation as a family event. Many families have no interest whatsoever in football, and many more parts of families have no interest while other parts might. You are suggesting depriving the assemblage of the many for the selfish satisfaction of the few.

 

If the church believes that having a Sunday evening gathering is an important part of their structure on a regular basis, I do believe it is wrong to cancel the regular service on Super Bowl Sunday and the corollary is that it is inappropriate for families to stay home for a "family gathering." How is it different from the family who decides to stay home one beautiful Sunday morning in June so they can go to the beach for a picnic or to the mountains to go hiking? In fact, why not just plan to attend one regular church service each month, you know - so they aren't forsaken the assembling together of the saints - and plan family activities on all of the other weekends? 

Why is it that my voice always seems to be loudest when I am saying the dumbest things?

Jim's picture

Sunday and the corollary is that it is inappropriate for families to stay home for a "family gathering."

Let's be honest about "inappropriate":

  • Does your church covenant spell out that the Sun evening service is mandatory? I doubt it!
  • Probably says something like: " ... To strive for the advancement of this church in knowledge, holiness, and comfort;.. To promote its prosperity and spirituality; to sustain its worship, ordinances, doctrines, and discipline;"
  • Is the one who does not attend the Sunday evening service breaking the covenant? (Yes / No)
Jim's picture

Chip Van Emmerik wrote:

So what are you saying Jim, church meetings should be scheduled around "family" events? Even if this were a good idea, I would question you designation as a family event. Many families have no interest whatsoever in football, and many more parts of families have no interest while other parts might. You are suggesting depriving the assemblage of the many for the selfish satisfaction of the few.

 

If the church believes that having a Sunday evening gathering is an important part of their structure on a regular basis, I do believe it is wrong to cancel the regular service on Super Bowl Sunday and the corollary is that it is inappropriate for families to stay home for a "family gathering." How is it different from the family who decides to stay home one beautiful Sunday morning in June so they can go to the beach for a picnic or to the mountains to go hiking? In fact, why not just plan to attend one regular church service each month, you know - so they aren't forsaken the assembling together of the saints - and plan family activities on all of the other weekends? 

Actually I didn't say any of this ... 

Jim's picture

the Super Bowl is a family event ... just like any other quintessential American holiday: families gathered with food and fellowship.

See Super Bowl Sunday:

Although it has never been made an official holiday, several commentators refer to it as a holiday due to the way it causes families and friends to gather and celebrate together

Bert Perry's picture

Is that Vikings fans, used to humiliation on the gridiron, make a practice of going to church to brace themselves for what's coming up that afternoon.  Similar revivals were reported this year in Chicago, Oakland, Jacksonville, Tennessee, and the District of Columbia last year, and Detroit usually has such revivals, though not as much this year.

In real football, there was a national day of mourning in Brazil on July 9 for the same reason.  

Sorry, couldn't resist.  :^)

On the serious side, I'm somewhere in the middle; Super Bowl games are a good opportunity to interact with people who ordinarily aren't at church, no?   I've been part of churches where the time demands were such that ordinary ministry to nonbelievers was effectively preempted by the load of services and such.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Mr. Ed's picture

I have known respectable church members who were absent every Sunday the Packers played at noon on Sunday because they had season tickets.  Those of us who did not and were in church were sometimes made to feel unspiritual if we complained about missing the kick off.

There is a small independent Baptist church in the shadow of Lambeau field that has church on Saturday night before a home game.  On Sunday they rent out their parking lot which brings in more money than if they had a church service which many would not be able to get there anyhow because of the crowd heading to the game.  This rental arrangement has been keeping that church solvent for a number of years.  

 

 

 

 

Jim's picture

Sunday Is for Football - Men have reasons for not going to church.

More Americans will watch the Super Bowl this Sunday than go to church, to judge from recent Nielsen ratings and studies of church attendance. In that respect, this weekend is like every other weekend during football season.

The NFL is more popular than organized religion by two measures: the number of us who make time for it in our lives, and the amount of time we make for it. Consider that 34 percent of men and 18 percent of women spend six or more hours a week watching professional football (to say nothing of college games), according to an Adweek/Harris poll in 2011. Six hours is a lot. The typical church service lasts only about one hour, and the best estimates based on headcounts — not, as in Gallup, on self-reporting — are that less than 20 percent of American adults put in any pew time at all on the Christian Sabbath.