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National 'Back to Church Sunday' set for Sept. 15

Sep. 12, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

CHESAPEAKE -- "Back to Church Sunday," part of a national movement of churches, will be celebrated at Chesapeake United Methodist Church at 10 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 15.

Everyone is welcome and urged to attend, according to a news release from the church.

National "Back to Church Sunday" (www.backtochurch.com) is an initiative that is "Inviting America Back to Church." It seeks to reach people who once attended church, but don't any more, and invite them to return for a special Sunday.

Back to Church Sunday was launched four years ago in response to a survey of 15,000 adults in the United States. Results showed a personal invitation from a family member would prompt 67 percent of Americans to visit a church, and 63 percent said an invitation from a friend or neighbor would encourage them to attend a service.

"Back To Church Sunday provides a season to encourage Christians to be intentional about sharing our story with friends and neighbors all year long," Pastor Chuck Case said in the news release. "For Back to Church Sunday, we will have a special service to welcome everyone and a reception meal afterwards."

Since its inception, National Back to Church Sunday participating churches have invited an estimated 7.5 million family members, friends, and neighbors to their churches.

About 20,000 churches are expected to participate this year, inviting more than 2 million visitors.

The American Religious Identification Survey showed that 83 percent of American adults identify themselves as Christians. In contrast, another survey by the Barna Group indicated only about 20 percent of Americans attends church on any given Sunday. Back to Church Sunday's goal is to invite or re-invite America to rediscover church.

Back to Church Sunday has an interactive Facebook page (www.facebook.com/backtochurch) and a roster of participating churches on the Back to Church website at BacktoChurch.com/find_a_church.

Chesapeake United Methodist Church is located at 501 2nd Avenue in Chesapeake, Ohio and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/chesapeakeumc. Call 740-867-3848.