Envision – A few areas to consider and pray over as you start thinking about Easter…
- Reach People: Who has God put in your church’s sphere of influence?
- Serve Community: What are your community’s needs?
- Harness Strengths: What vision and passion is God fueling in your congregation?
Form a Plan – Nail down a plan, delegate responsibility, and organize resources.
- Map Out Events: Consider ramping up to Easter with a barrage of outreaches, observing Lent, Passover, Palm Sunday, Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter Sunday.
- Delegate Volunteers: Enlist point people for each event and area of serving. Empower them to their own ministry and vision.
- Line Up Materials: Plan for all necessary items—sets, transportation, audio-visual equipment, printed and promotional items, hospitality, and any giveaways.
- Outline Easter Sunday: Coordinate worship, media clips and your message. Leverage sites like SermonCentral.com and SermonSpice.com.
Invite – Consider these methods to invite your community…
- Create an Online Buzz: Leverage Facebook, Twitter and your church website. Post on local event calendars and Craigslist.
- Build on Existing Relationships: Invite guests from all of your current outreach ministries.
- Brand with Signs & Printed Materials: Equip members with yard signs, hang a banner from your church building, send a postcard mailer, canvas with door hangers, and equip members with pass-along invitations.
- Leverage Media: Send a press release to local newspapers, radio and tv news networks. Request a listing on their community calendar, and consider advertising.
Connect - Remain others-focused both before and after your event.
- Give a Warm Welcome: Make sure your entire church knows that they are all part of the hospitality crew—equipped with smiles and willing hearts.
- Limit Confusion: Keep direction signage and parking straightforward, bathrooms and lobby clean and stocked, and provide seating help for guests.
- Offer Secure Childcare: Provide a nursery check-in system, a safe and clean area for play, and friendly staffers.
- Maximize Your Bulletin: Include pertinent church information, upcoming events and ministry activities.
- Provide Snacks: Allow time and provide a space for guests and church folk to mingle before and after service.
- Connect to Ministries: Staff ministry tables so that newcomers can browse offerings, study materials, and make connections.
- Invite Back: Announce your next event from the pulpit at Easter services and invite guests to return.
- Give Visitors an Easter Outreach Booklet!: These inviting books draws readers toward a closer relationship with God and show how the best way to find hope is through a relationship with Christ. It gives a clear presentation of the Gospel and gives the reader an opportunity to pray and receive new life through faith in Christ Jesus.
- Obtain Contact Info: Capture new visitor information and interests for follow up, and track how guests heard of the church. Offer a small free gift to every guest who fills one out.
Reconnect – According to Gallup, visitors who are contacted by a church on the day of their initial visit have an 80 percent likelihood of joining that church. So it’s important to plan ahead for follow-up…
- Assemble a Follow-Up Team: Equip them with guest connection cards and ministry knowledge, and connect guests with relevant church ministries and activities. Have the team call guests after service on Easter Sunday, and follow up with a handwritten note to each guest.
- Jumpstart Your Database: Input your database first thing Monday morning so all guests remain in the loop.
- Host a ‘Comeback Event:’ Follow Easter with a special sermon or compelling testimony series, host a newcomer small group or pastor Q&A.
How does your church ramp up for and follow Easter?