God isn't bland. The Church shouldn't be, either.
Friday Four: Community Engagement

Cleve and I have such a passion for helping churches create remarkable community-building experiences.

Here are four practical things we’ve learned on the field recently.

1. Don’t be a ‘know-it-all’

With a recent trip to Timberlake Church in Redmond, WA, with Noah Munck we learned so much from their experiences. This is a church who knows how to treat families right and has a knack for logistics, so we soaked in some things that they have mastered. At the same time, they were eager to learn from us and our experiences – no matter how well they had it together on their own.

2. A different Sunday morning experience

Something else we learned from Timberlake was the value of Sunday morning. They have a philosophy that everything should flow through the weekend services. So why not have a community event during church service times in your building or on your property? What better way to invite people to church than to say “I’ll meet you right here this time next week.” You’ve done more than create a fun experience – you’ve actually showed them that church can be “fun” too.

Timberlake typically has 5-600 children on any given weekend between all their services. I don’t know what the final count was, but I feel comfortable saying they had more than 800 children on the weekend we were there plus parents.

3. Bridge the trust gap

Cleve wrote on this a while back. Engaging those in your community in a different way than you have in the past continues to bridge that gap between skeptism and trust which leads to loyalty and life change. People want to connect and belong. What can you do bridge that gap?

“Do you go to church here?” we asked. “No, I’ve been wanting to come for a while but hearing about this event pushed us over the edge to make the leap to visit,” was one mother’s response at a recent outreach we helped with. She brought her whole family to church for the first time in years. This experience helped her cross from skeptical to trusting.

4. It’s worth it

I don’t know about you, but anytime I invest money into anything I always fear, is it worth it? Is it worth the time investment? The resource and cost investment? Will we meet our goals?

Let me re-phrase these questions: what is it worth to you to nearly double your weekend attendance at a gathering on your campus(es)? What would it be like to have face time with literally hundreds of people who would have never otherwise walked through your doors? Is it worth the cost of one direct-mail piece?

If you’d like our help creating a memorable and remarkable experience at your church this Easter (it’s not too late), summer, or fall, please let us know. We’d love to help however we can. katie@mediasalt.com or cleve@mediasalt.com

Katie PersingerToday’s post was written by Katie Persinger. In addition to being Cleve’s wife, Katie consults churches and ministries in the area of communications - strategy, video, web, and print. She has served at Saddleback Church and most recently as the Executive Dir. of Communications at The Chapel. You can follow her on Twitter @mrspersinger and read her blog, Mobile Mama.
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