Trying something new can be overwhelming for many – and that even means attending a new church.
People seek a different church for different reasons; some are looking for a place that aligns with their theological views. Others want to go to a church with their friends. Some want to go to a church where they can make new friends.
No matter the reason, your church’s new members may feel overwhelmed and not know where to start.
Here are three ways to welcome new members into your church:
Give a proper welcome
Each church has different dynamics, and for new members, this can be overwhelming. What’s the dress code? Are there unwritten or unspoken rules? How can they get involved?
Putting together a welcome letter can be a great first step in making sure they have the information they need to get started. Some churches opt to host open houses and have events for new members so they can get to know each other and other congregants.
Keep in mind that big events like this aren’t for everyone – and may be overwhelming for introverts or those that are on the shy side. In fact, it’s reported that 70% percent of new attendees feel negatively about being recognized so keep that in consideration.
Focus on following up
Make sure you get the names and addresses of visitors and those that are new to your church. Whether it’s the pastor or a volunteer, making contact with visitors and new members can be greatly appreciated. Send a text, give them a call, or even send them a handwritten note in the mail. This shows that you appreciate them and look forward to their contributions to your faith community.
Host an adult Bible study just for them
For New Hope Lutheran Church, finding a way to engage new members was a priority for Pastor Chris Michaelis.
He wanted to create an experience where they could really wrestle and navigate what it means to be Christian – creating a personal experience to allow new members to really bond together.
Hosting an adult Bible study just for new members gives them the opportunity to create relationships and start to build the roots within your congregation, which makes them feel welcomed and engaged with your community.
“It prompts us as a faith community to empower and inspire members to live out their passions that makes us, as a community, fuller and more unified,” said Pastor Chris Michaelis, New Hope Lutheran Church.
Learn more about how to engage and empower your new members by reading more about Pastor Chris Michaelis’ journey with his new member small group.