COMMUNICATION AND THE SURVIVAL OF A CHURCH: A COMPARATIVE STUDY OF ST. JAMES ANGLICAN CHURCH, GACHIE AND THE NEIGHBORING EVANGELICAL CHURCH

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ABSTRACT
This study sought to find out how the survival of a church is enhanced by
communication. These churches are the Anglican Church of Kenya St James Gachie
and the Evangelical church, which is the Vision of Life Church International Gachie.
The general objective of this study was to assess the importance of strategies of
communication used by Anglican Church of Kenya, St. James Gachie and Vision of
Life Church International, Gachie. The specific objectives were: to identify
communication strategies used by Anglican Church of Kenya St James Gachie and
Vision of Life Church International, Gachie; to compare the strategies of
communication used by Anglican Church of Kenya St James Gachie and those used
by Vision of Life Church International Gachie; to find out the number of followers
joining or leaving Anglican Church of Kenya St James Gachie and Vision of Life
Church International Gachie as a result of communication strategies used and to find
out the image of Anglican Church of Kenya St James Gachie and Vision of Life
Church International Gachie, among the youth. The study was guided by Systems
Theory and the Medium Theory. Probability sampling was conducted to obtain a
sample of 34 youth respondents from Anglican Church of Kenya St James Gachie
and 39 youth respondents from Vision of Life Church International Gachie. These
samples were obtained from the membership lists of both churches. The same
sampling was also used to get respondents from the clergy of both churches. In
Anglican Church of Kenya St James Gachie, they were three while Vision of Life
Church International Gachie had two. The study adopted a mixed approach to collect
data. Quantitative data was analysed using descriptive statistics and results presented
in tables and graphs. Qualitative data derived from interviews and unstructured
observations were analysed in relation to the research objectives and trends
established. The study findings indicate that Anglican Church of Kenya St James
Gachie was slow in adapting modern styles of communication compared to Vision of
Life Church International. This trend had made the Anglican Church of Kenya St
James Gachie to experience a low membership population among the youth as
compared to Vision of Life Church International which attracted a large number of
youth based on the modern means of communication used there. This study found
out that Anglican Church of Kenya St James Gachie had set an image of an equal
society among the youth while Vision of Life Church International was said to set an
image of a modernised society. The study recommends that two strategies of
communication especially role plays and movies be introduced in both churches.
Additionally, the study recommends that the two churches hire trained
communication personnel as well as set up communication offices since, just like
any organisation; each church has a vision and mission to accomplish.

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