All my life, the academic calendar has held sway over all others even the church one. I suppose that's part of what makes it easy for people to take summers off from church. Summer has always seemed to be the time when "real" life is suspended for vacation.
But, of course, that has never been the case. My dad worked through the summers when I was a kid and we had two weeks of family vacation in August. Once I was old enough to have a summer job, I didn't lie around the house reading anymore. And then adult life really took hold and there is no such thing as two or three months off every year for most working adults. Certainly not priests.
Most churches have a Rally Day or a fall Sunday dedicated to starting up again. I like parties and it's a good thing to encourage people to sign up for ministries every year but doesn't this sort of thing also encourage people to take the summer off? We need to rethink this whole notion of beginning that happens every fall. Especially since we now start in August - our schools are back in session August 4th.
Maybe we really do need to have year-round school and then we might have year-round church!