How to Make the Most Out of Easter Attendance

It comes as no surprise to pastors and church leaders that Easter is a big – HUGE – attendance day, rivaled only by Christmas. And your Easter service is your first impression.

So we’ve compiled a quick dos-and-don’ts refresher list for your service and your new guests to help you plan one of your biggest days of the year to make the greatest impact on all the people God brings through your doors Easter Sunday … and beyond.

For your service …
Do recognize that excellence in an Easter service makes a difference. We need to do our very best to maximize their experience and exceed their expectations.

Don’t talk for ‘insiders.’ Talking about ‘the blood of the lamb’ and the crucifixion are all phrases we understand – but are completely foreign to a new person.

Don’t make your Easter service so different from your regular services. If a new person loved it, they aren’t really going to like next week. And worse, if they didn’t like it at all, they may not return.

Do make your first-time guests feel special. Put yourself in the shoes of a new person, starting in the parking lot all the way through the service.

Do make sure guests feel welcome as soon as they walk through your doors. Make them feel like you’ve been expecting them and that they belong.

Do welcome new guests during the service. That is, welcome them without calling them out using phrases like, ‘If you’re new to church this weekend, we’re just really glad you’re here.’

Do make sure the facilities and environment are welcoming for guests. Have a great signage to help people know where to go for kids, restrooms and the auditorium.

Do give them a reason to come back. Create an amazing guest experience for them at Easter and literally invite them to come back.

For your new guests …
Encourage everyone to visit your website. Create a simple QR code-based form where people can sign up for a digital copy of the message with a compelling reason to give you their email address.

Do present opportunities for generosity. Have online and mobile giving options – and broadcast them – to connect with your guests.

Do tell stories about life change. Highlight a Kingdom impact your church is making. Thank everyone for the generosity that made the story possible.

Do offer an easy path to engagement. Introduce them to a congregant that has a knack for making people feel immediately at home and comfortable.

Don’t offer too many ministry options. Give only two or three ideas for how to take the next step. Simple is always better.

Do perfect the child check-in experience. Make the process simple and painless so returning won’t feel as daunting the next time, especially for newcomers with children.

Do smile! Seriously. That’s it. Just … smile.

Do leverage technology. Your church management software (ChMS) should easily support almost every strategy listed here to help you maximize the encounters you’ll have with those not already connected to your church.

God has moved them to come to you this Easter – so make the most of their visit and move them to stay.

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comment_post_ID); ?> Are there any reliable statistics about the percentage of church plants that fail after 3 years in the US?
 
— Jon Moore
 
comment_post_ID); ?> I am a senior citizen who has lived in many areas of the US, the farthest south being Virginia DC area. There are several church plants in the area--some failed, some doing well. One of the sadist failures was a plant in NW Washington near a large Presbyterian Church (I had been an elder in the church, so I knew the area) where changes in church doctrine was driving many away from the PCUSA churches. There were many mature Christians who lived in the area who were very willing to participate and give generously to the church. Its failure was a loss. The pastor and his wife lived in a VA suburb, wanted something that would appeal to their tastes, which included "praise music". There was a professional piano teacher and several people who had sung in choirs in the area. Their suggestions were completely ignored. Forget that there was joyous participation in singing hymns and silence by many for the praise music. The experienced church leaders that were attending were expected to seek the wisdom of the pastor who did not live in the area rather than have any role in leadership. There is another church plant in Northern Virginia that seems to be going the same way. My take: the pastors should get past their high-school and college days culture and get to know and appreciate the people of the community. Do not try to reproduce Intervarsity or Campus Crusade. Hymns are not a sin and "uneducated" (never graduated from college) should not be ignored as uninformed or stupid. People who have served in and/or live in the area are needed in leadership and not just to serve coffee and give. We all need to pray together and serve God in the community in which there is to be a plant. Glenna Hendricks
 
— Glenna Hendricks
 
comment_post_ID); ?> I like it Mac and do agree with your opinions on the matter. Thanks much
 
— winston
 

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