Why not challenge every member of your church to use these seven tips to connect with guests:
1) Make a personal commitment to intentionally “connect” with one guest every Sunday. Ask God to make you aware of visitors. Be diligently alert—in the parking lot, foyer, nursery, hallway, worship service—to notice them. If you accidentally welcome someone who isn’t a guest, no problem. You’ve found a new friend.
2) Once you’ve found a possible newcomer, pray for God’s guidance. Smile, greet the guest warmly, and introduce yourself. Pay careful attention to his name. Repeat it. Write it down. You will want to call him by name next Sunday when he returns.
3) Chat casually and purposefully. You may ask, “Is this your first time to worship here?” Ask nonintrusive questions such as, “Did you just move to town?” or “What brought you to church today?”
4) As you chat, listen carefully to find things you have in common. Most importantly, offer friendship. Make a plan to get together this week. For example: invite them to join you for lunch today, meet for coffee Monday, or be your guest at an upcoming church event.
5) Give the guest your email or phone number, and ask for their contact info. Call them Tuesday to remind them of the kids’ Wednesday program or on Saturday to say, “I hope you come back again tomorrow. I’ll save you a seat!”
6) Help the guest to connect with at least one other person at the church. As you converse, think of someone who has a common interest, i.e. children’s ages, similar life stage, employment, neighborhood, hobbies or background. Introduce them.
7) Say these words before the guest departs: “We want you here!”
Jesus said, “I was a stranger and you welcomed me.” As God brings guests to your church, will you intentionally connect with them? Eternity will be impacted.
By Diana Davis