People go to church for all kinds of reasons, to hear the Word of God, to mentor and find mentors, to meet new people, to see old friends, or even just in hopes of gaining a better understanding of the Bible.
With people coming to worship for so many different reasons, how are you ever supposed to pinpoint a few surefire ways to encourage better attendance? Here, we’ve gathered a few tips and tricks to help your church grow.
Turn to Your Congregation
You will gain your most useful feedback by asking your congregation for feedback and suggestions. Who better to turn to than the people directly tied to the curch’s attendance? It may be difficult for you to see any changes that need to be made because you are so closely involved with the goings-on of your parish. The easiest and most reliable way to receive honest and constructive feedback is to conduct an anonymous survey—this way everyone can say their piece, without fear of judgment, or even more, public speaking.
Take their suggestions to heart, although, they may not all be good. Put their suggestions into action, even if for just a few weeks, see what works, and workshop some ideas that don’t quite pan out. It’s important to show your parishioners that their opinions are valid and their suggestions haven’t fallen on deaf ears.
Appeal to All Ages
Teaching the Word of God in a way that makes sense to people of all ages can be tricky. How are you supposed to write a sermon that a 5-year-old and a 50-year-old can both appreciate?
You may have to change up your usual service, introduce a youth pastor, or even offer an additional worship service, designed for a younger demographic. Find children’s bibles for sale to hand out and kick off Sunday school, start a weekly youth group for the teens, and organize a Bible study luncheon or coffee hour for your older church members.
It may take a little extra time and effort, but soon everyone will have a group to call their own within your church, young and old alike.
Bring a Friend
Visiting any new place alone can be uncomfortable, especially when everyone else seems to already have a familiarity and comfortability about them. Encourage your congregation to bring a friend along for some good clean fun and worship. You could designate one Sunday a month, or make it a weekly challenge for your parishioners to bring a friend to youth group, coffee hour, or the Sunday service; if you really want to go above and beyond, you might consider hosting an outreach event.
Newcomers are more likely to join if they already know at least one person, and they’re bound to make many friends along the way.
Revamp Your Church
As important as it is to work on improving your congregation’s worship and fellowship, it is equally as important to work on improving the church building.
You want your church to be welcoming, not only to newcomers, but also to those who may spend a great deal of time working and worshipping in its’ halls, offices, and sanctuary. These may include cosmetic changes, like knocking down a wall or two to open up the narthex to better accommodate your growing congregation and encourage fellowship, or redoing the roofing to give a more polished appearance. Your revamp may also include more behind the scenes changes to keep your worship services running smoothly.
Hopefully, these few tips and tricks will help you to bring a new sense of life and excitement to your church and congregation, encouraging better attendance and the membership of a few new congregants.