Changing Service Times for Summer? Read This First.

Hey church…summer is quickly approaching. Are you ready? During the summer months, a lot of churches will consolidate their service times to accommodate a smaller summer crowd. If you plan on doing that, read this first.

Decide Early. If you haven’t already made this call for your church, do it yesterday. Don’t wait until the last minute and cause unnecessary confusion to your congregants and any potential visitors. And don’t just make this decision for your Sunday services…this should include your other ministries as well. For example, if your youth group will not be meeting during the summer months, that needs to be decided now, too.

Prepare Your Teams. Let your volunteers know what to expect before you start advertising it to everyone else. Give them time to decide if they can continue to serve summer service (1)during the summer based on the updated schedule. If not, it’s time to start recruiting summertime volunteers.

Get the Word Out. Start letting people know about the service time change as soon as possible. Post it on your website, your Facebook page, your bulletin, and announce it during your Sunday services leading up to the service time change. A couple of summers ago, one mystery guest told us this: “I arrived at the church for the second service only to learn that they had a combined service that day and it was half over.” Don’t let this be your church.

Double Check Everything. In our line of work, we see a lot of church websites, social media profiles, bulletins, etc. and it’s always surprising how many discrepancies we see in service times. Another mystery guest told us, “I checked the church’s website and found incorrect information that led me to the church at the wrong time. I visited thinking I was attending the 9:30AM service only to find they had switched their summer service (2)schedule.” Make sure the information across all of your sources of information is correct and that it all provides the same information.

Don’t. There is no rule that says you must change your church service times during the summer. Usually, when there is a change, there is also at least a little confusion. If you don’t have a good reason to change your service times, just don’t do it.

There are a lot of factors to consider when deciding whether or not to change your church’s schedule for the summer. For a smooth transition, be sure to let everyone know your plan, including your potential guests.

Hey Church – What Moms Really Want for Mother’s Day

Did you know after Christmas and Easter, Mother’s Day is the third-highest attended Sunday at your church? A lot of moms (whether they regularly attend church or not) will have no shame in asking their family to attend church with them for their special day. And they should because it’s a day dedicated solely to mothers.

So, here’s what that means: you’re not only going to see a lot of moms visit, but you’re likely to see the people that matter most to them as well. With that in mind, plan your services knowing that just like Easter and Christmas, you will have people visiting that aren’t connected to a church community and may not be connected to any faith whatsoever.

Know What Matters Most. Getting their families to church is only part of what moms really want. What they really hope and pray for is that their loved ones will be impacted enough to come back again. Moms care about their loved ones being connected to a church and hopefully to a faith. Make sure you have a plan to connect with and follow-up with these new faces. By doing so, you’ll honor the moms in attendance with their kids and other loved ones.

Be Hospitable. Mother’s Day may be the only time all year that some people accept an invitation to attend church (because again…moms have no shame in playing the mom Mothers Day 1 (2019)card). There are so many ways you can connect with these people and make a great first impression. You probably have some of these ways figured out already, but if not, we’ve given you some ideas here.

Be Sensitive. There will be all kinds of moms visiting your church this Mother’s Day. This means that mothers who have recently lost a child, moms that are estranged from their kids, foster moms, hopeful moms that struggle with infertility, anxious moms waiting for the adoption papers to go through, stepmoms doing their best to connect with their bonus kids, and so many more. Be sensitive to all of these situations and provide encouragement to them as well.

Whatever your church plans this year for Mother’s Day, just remember that focusing on what moms really want is the most important thing. Showing that you care about the people that they care about is key. A mother’s work is never done, especially when caring for those around her, but the church can provide a significant and practical way to help.