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What Thom Rainer Says Will Happen to Churches Post-Covid

Change is Inevitable

Thom Rainer states early on in the podcast that churches will come out of this season of suffering and scarcity, and things will be different. He sees the pandemic as a “structural torment,” as companies that never went online before had to make their way online, and churches weren’t exempt from this.

Rainer believes churches will have to find their footing after this crisis, remarking that change is inevitable.

The Silver Linings

Although the pandemic caused many inconveniences for churches, it did bring about changes that many found desirable. Rainer saw this time as an opportunity to try new ideas, such as offering live-streaming services, switching up worship arrangements, and more.

Thom Rainer

These new ideas weren’t just unique to this period – they also brought a certain level of success. Rainer reports that many churches experienced growth throughout this uncertain time, with some reaching younger generations that would’ve formerly been impossible.

Ecclesiastical Structures

Regarding how churches will look post-pandemic, Thom Rainer sees a “depolarization” of traditional structures, favoring an organic growth model that allows an organic process of connecting and decoupling as needed.

In this model, churches aren’t as centered around certain hierarchies; they are more malleable and able to adapt to the changing culture.

Pastoral Leadership

Rainer sees the pastoral leadership model as different post-pandemic: pastors will pay more attention to their congregations’ needs and make more resources readily available. He also remarks that pastors must work harder to gain their congregations’ trust and loyalty, as trust is hard to build amid a crisis.

Engagement of Members

Thom Rainer believes that church members need to stay engaged in the church. He suggests churches find ways to “engage” with their members, such as sending weekly emails and holding online devotionals.


Thom Rainer firmly believes churches will come out of the pandemic better than ever, having adapted to the changes it brought about. He suggests that having suitable structures in place, solid pastoral leadership, and engaging members are all crucial to the success of churches post-pandemic. Churches can look forward to more significant, brighter days with these elements.

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