The majority of church growth happens between Christmas and Easter. It is during this time frame when more people will be visiting your church. This includes those who haven’t been in a while or don’t have a steady church, making this time period a crucial one to take advantage of momentum and perfect your volunteer on-boarding process. Therefore, the best time for ministry growth is…now!
To help with this, we at Ministry Scheduler Pro suggest to always have these three strategies in place during the busiest time of year:
1) Volunteer Welcome Packets
Welcome packets are a great way to make sure that newcomers have the information they need about your church. Whether they are left at a guest table in the church foyer or handed out during services, be sure that the newcomers know your church has these packets and where to find them. There are lots of fun things you could put into them, but always include:
- Ways to get involved with the church outside of attending services.
- How to get to know other people, like through mid-week events, fun activities, and volunteer opportunities where they’ll be working with others.
- Volunteer sign up Info, which can include a person to contact, as well as a link to any kind of application form you might have through your ministry scheduling program.
2) Train Your Greeters
One of the best ways to get a newcomer to come back is to make them feel welcome the first time they attend. Make sure your greeters are prepared for this season with a little extra training on how to approach people they don’t personally know. If they see someone sitting alone or don’t recognize a face (or an even easier way to tell the newcomers – they are always on time or early), have them approach to introduce themselves and ask how long they have been attending the church. This way, if it is just someone they don’t know, they are still building community and not alienating regular attendees. But if the person is new, they have been greeted at least once before the service starts. Whether the person attends regularly or not, it is always good to learn about their interests, and use that to build relationships. So, if they have kids, ask them if they have heard about the children’s ministry. If they are new to the area, tell them about your favorite segment of ministry and why you chose to serve in it. You can even invite them to serve with you next time to meet people and learn more. If you have a program like Ministry Scheduler Pro, you can post these tips online for volunteers to see before they serve.
3) Let Your Needs and Wants Be Known
One mistake many churches make is not communicating how much each individual, and their gifts and talents, is a true contribution to the church and is vital in the growth of ministry. You can start this by letting your current volunteers know what the needs of the ministry are and asking them to help you in recruiting new volunteers. Don’t just tell them how many people you need (although this does help), but share the specific qualities you would like to see in those volunteers. When your volunteers hear about those specific needs, they can ask people with those qualities if they would be willing to help out. A personal ask where someone says “You are so kind and compassionate. Would you ever think about joining our care team to help people in need?” goes a lot further than “I need five people to serve on our care team. Would you be interested?” Be sure you also get to know your current volunteers. As you get to know them better, some of their gifts and passions can come out and inspire work in a whole new role. And don’t ever forget that a lot of that can be taught. Take the time to invest in someone else who is willing to step into a new position – you just might be forming the next generation of ministry leaders.
We’re sure there are additional ways we’ve not included. Make sure to share yours in the comments below!
This blog was written by Raina Hanson of Ministry Scheduler Pro. Previously one of their favorite clients, Raina joined the team at Rotunda software in 2014. With degrees in theology and mathematics, she uses her background and experience helping churches free up time spent in administrative work to focus more on the other parts of ministry.