Church Closing, Then Reopening Without Old People

“Grove United Methodist Church in Cottage Grove is closing in June and reopening in November without the elderly members. The church wants to attract more young families. The present members, most of them over 60 years old, will be invited to worship somewhere else. A memo recommends that they stay away for two years, then consult the pastor about attending the Cottage Grove location again. Officials say the church needs a reset, and reopening the church is the best way to appeal to younger people. Methodists’ regional Annual Conference is paying $250,000 to restart the church. They have hired a specialist in starting new churches–Jeremy Peters. Peters, 32, has moved to Cottage Grove with his wife and three children. He is working with community groups, laying the groundwork for the relaunch, probably in November. ‘It’s a new thing with a new mission for a new target,’ said Peters, ‘and a new culture.’”

“Church asks older members to worship elsewhere,” St. Paul Pioneer Press, Jan. 18, 2020