Becoming an Inviting Church

Becoming an Inviting Church

I was recently asked how church leaders can communicate to their congregation the significance and importance of inviting people to their church.  

Maybe you can think of ways your church has done this well in the past, or maybe you’ve been trying things, and they’re not working. I don’t know that there’s a one-size-fits-all answer to “inviting,” but I can tell you from experience that sometimes going back to the basics is a good place to start.  

One of the most effective ways we reinvigorated the inviting culture at our church was through an intentional teaching plan. We strategically planned a four month teaching run that looked like this:

  • September: 4 Week Series on The Church

This series focused on how beautiful the Church is when it’s working right. We talked about things like the reach and influence the Church has in the lives of people and our community, why a healthy church should be “adding to its numbers,” and the care and hope the Church brings to the world.

  • October: 4 Week Series on People

This series focused on how beautiful people can be when they really live and look like Jesus. We talked about things like breaking through the Christian stereotype, going beyond a surface faith, making God part of every aspect of your life, breaking through self-centeredness, and being salt and light in the community.

  • November: 4 Week Series on The One

This series focused on just how much value Jesus places on the one (lost sheep, lost coin, etc.). We were challenged to notice and engage with the people God placed in our lives whether that was our neighbor, coworker or the waitress at a restaurant. All of these people matter to God.

  • December: 4 Week Series on Felt Needs

This series was called “It Would Take a Miracle…” It focused on four different areas of life: fixing family issues, healing wounds, finding purpose, and restoring faith. The final week of the series on restoring faith fell on Christmas.

church-inviting-guests

Throughout the entire teaching run (September – November), our pastor challenged people to be thinking and praying about who they would invite to the December series. We were all challenged during the November series to pray for one person, for one minute, at 1pm each day.

What if we all invited one person?

And, by the way, this wasn’t only a challenge for church members. Our Senior Pastor was challenging himself and the staff to get back to the basics of inviting others as well. He even shared stories about his experiences from the pulpit.

At the time, we were about 8,000 in attendance, and 2,500 new people showed up for the December series.

We found that talking about why inviting people to church matters, encouraged not only church members, but also our leadership team, to actually take practical steps towards becoming an inviting church.

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By | 2017-02-09T13:52:22+00:00 November 8th, 2016|Strategy|5 Comments

About the Author:

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Amy is a Ministry Consultant with The Unstuck Group. She served as the Executive Director of Weekend Services for over 12 years at Eagle Brook Church in the Twin Cities, helping the church grow from 3,000 to over 20,000. Today she works with churches of all sizes, providing a fresh perspective and concrete strategies to strengthen their processes, staff health and weekend experience.

5 Comments

  1. Lisa Abbott November 9, 2016 at 2:52 pm - Reply

    Amy, what year did Eagle Brook do this — are the messages and material still on your website?

  2. Amy K Anderson November 10, 2016 at 10:37 am - Reply

    Lisa – We did this in 2007. Unfortunately those messages are no longer on the site. However, if it helps, here is a list of the series/message titles:

    (on the Church)
    Simply Irresistible
    · Our Influence
    · Our Reach
    · Our Growth
    · Our Care

    (on Christians)
    Breakthrough
    · The Stereotype
    · The Surface
    · Self-Centeredness
    · The Ordinary

    Just One
    · Notice One
    · Lead One
    · Be The One
    · Invite One

    It Would Take A Miracle
    · To Fix This Family
    · To Heal This Wound
    · To Find My Purpose
    · To Restore My Faith

    Amy

    • Lisa Abbott November 11, 2016 at 4:25 pm - Reply

      Thansk Amy! Proud to be a part of EBA and grateful for all the ways you encourage churches to take steps forward.

  3. Dave July 8, 2017 at 9:55 pm - Reply

    Possible for you to track down sermons and resources ?

  4. Amy K Anderson July 9, 2017 at 5:22 pm - Reply

    Dave – Unfortunately the specific resources from 2007 are no longer available on-line. You could try contacting Eagle Brook Church in MN directly to see if they have any resources available that I am unaware of.

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