Well, here we are. Just a few weeks until Easter. I know you probably have more than enough free time 🙂 so we decided to compile a checklist that can help you get your brain going as you come up with ways you can prepare for the biggest Sunday of the year.
General Tips for Easter Preparation
__ Serve the community in the days leading up to Easter. Show this isn’t just about getting a huge crowd in your doors, but rather it’s about love and changed lives. If you want ideas for serving the community, you can click here. If you have ideas not on that list, please tell me so other churches can benefit from them.
__ Determine contingency plans in case of overflow. How many visitors do you expect? Will they all fit in your auditorium / classrooms, or does your normal Sunday crowd already fill most of your space?
__ Put a strong visitor follow-up system in place, because there’s nothing worse than having more visitors then you’ve ever had before and not being prepared to follow up with them all. (Excellerate makes visitor follow-up a breeze. Click here for more info.)
__ Pretend you’re a first time guest and evaluate your church space.
- Is the building easy to see from the street or hidden from certain angles (put up signs)?
- Is it easy to find the key rooms (restrooms, kid’s area, sanctuary, etc)? Especially focus on providing direction to the restroom. Few parents mind asking for directions to the 2 year old class, but asking a stranger where the restroom is can be a bit less fun.
- Seek and destroy any use of acronyms. Visitors don’t know what they mean and will be confused.
- Explain everything you do during Easter service. Don’t assume everyone knows why we have juice and crackers.
***Remember that the more clueless a person is about what a particular part of service means, the more we should desire to see them welcomed into the church. Confusion makes people feel unwelcomed, so we must explain everything.
- A good trick is to ask a friend from out of town or from another church who’s never been to services with you to come and act like a stranger in service, and then give you feedback.
__ Make sure your website is up to date and attractive. In today’s culture, it’s the first place many visitors will see. Clutter on your website is like decorating your sanctuary with plastic flamingos.
__ Remind your members to be friendly and welcoming. This shouldn’t be a problem, but Easter can be a stressful day, particularly when you mix kids with sugar. That’s why it helps to give a verbal reminder that we need to make a special effort to welcome our guests.
__ Remind members that if a visitor asks where something is, we should escort them, not point and leave.
__ Pray and fast.
__ Send out mailers and advertisements to let the community know when services are and what to expect when they attend.
__ **Take a day off. (Stop laughing. I’m serious.) This is a stressful time, and if you aren’t relaxed and rested, you’ll find you spent all your best energy on preparation and have no strength left for the real thing. Do everything you can to finish EVERYTHING by Friday, and make Saturday your Sabbath.
__ If your services are already 80% full or so, consider adding an extra service and requesting your members attend that one instead, so as to make room in the service most visitors will prefer. Don’t be scared to ask specific families to switch, if that’s what it takes to make room for the unchurched.