The above article is by Lovett Weems and explains how the death rate in the US will change dramatically before 2050. I have posted his video on this topic earlier but this is an excerpt from his new book. Any clergy under the age of 40 really needs to pay attention to this because our whole careers will be focused on this phenomena.
I truly appreciate the idea of looking at the gross instead of the net. I feel that is even true now in small older congregations. Personally in my congregation we had a net gain of 0. We had three die and one transfer but four people joined. I was bummed when our number didn't change but then again I am thrilled at the four that did join, two were through confirmation. This year my confirmation class is 6 youth. For a church that averages 85 in worship, I'll take that number any day.
10 years ago this May I graduated seminary and when I did this was never even in my line of sight. But the fact remains that the majority of my career will be focused on ushering the baby boomers out of the world and scrambling to deal with the consequences of low numbers of Gen X and Gen Y they will leave behind.