I was doing some consultation with a church on refocusing its ministry.  I had breakfast with a man who been attending about five years.  “What attracted you to the church?” I asked.  “Multiple worship times and good music.”  “What has kept you there?” “Well, it wasn’t the follow-up when I first visited.”  He went on to describe how had completed a follow-up card from the pew, placed in the office plate. “How did they respond?”  “No response.  I have yet to have a contact from anyone in the church answering my questions.  I had to do that myself.

Too many churches are merely “friendly.” They smile and say “hi” as you are handed a bulletin.  They may quickly shake your hand during the greeting time as they move quickly past you to start an “insider’s” conversation with a friend.,

Other churches try to be “welcoming.”  Assigning someone to meet you specifically, learn your name, help you find the restrooms, and guide you to a literature-saturated welcome center.

Best churches go another level to not say merely, we are glad you are with us today and tell us about yourself.  They do not stop with a nice form letter personally signed by the pastor.

They follow up those pew cards with persons who contact their guests with the need answers.  They send a “layperson” to the house with a gift.  (People are not impressed with  visit from the pastor at this point. He’s hired helped, paid to make that visit.

And after that first visit someone takes responsibility to seek put that guest when they return to church, learn their spiritual need and connect them with to those who can help.

This level of attention says “you matter to God and you matter to us.”  Follow-up of this nature says THIS IS A CARING CHURCH THAT INVITES YOU TO BE A PART OF THE COMMUNITY.

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