Special Guests Poll Results

August 6, 2008 by

2008_08_05specialguestspollresults.jpgJust how special does your church treat visitors?

Well, for nearly a third of you, the answer is not special at all. They get a pat on the back, a bulletin and maybe a handshake from the pastor. Then again, so does everyone else at your church. Another 12% of you go just over this low bar for a pulpit shoutout. Low-effort, low-cost for you.

The next 5% of you are where visitors really, really start to get special. Maybe it’s a sticker, a pin, standing up in the service or wearing a dunce cap, but you make your visitors do a “subtle” action that screams, “I’m a visitor.”

The final group of you (over half) bribe give your visitors something. Whether it’s church resources, a gas card, burritos or whatever, it’s slightly more than the obligatory pastoral welcome or funny-smelling bulletin lady hug.

This week, we want to know how you came up with your church’s tagline?

Post By:

Joshua Cody

Josh Cody served as our associate editor for several years before moving on to bigger things. Like Texas. These days he lives in Austin, Texas, with his wife, and you can find him online or on Twitter when he's not wrestling code.
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3 Responses to “Special Guests Poll Results”

  • M.joshua
    August 6, 2008

    My church is small. When we get a visitor, its the job of the cell leaders to invite the new people into our lives. I don’t think that mechanical approaches are worthwhile. Inducting new people into a resurrection community should be a bit like childbirth. It doesn’t have to be painful, but it certainly should be messy (but good messy).
    I recommend eating with the visitors above all else. Invite them to lunch. Pay for them or make them food. Its the best way to make them welcome and show them what your community is really made of.

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  • anon
    August 6, 2008

    Pulpit shoutout?
    They “get to” stand up?
    Do any of this to me when I visit your church, and you’ll never see me there again.
    The correct “pulpit shoutout” is “Are there any visitors who would like to introduce themselves?”, which leaves those of us who DO NOT want to introduce ourselves free to sit quietly in our pews.

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  • Eddie Velez
    August 7, 2008

    I have experienced both sides of the coin when it comes to visitors. Being the head usher of our contemporary service, I get to see the shy, anxious or eager faces as they search for a new way of life or home. Some people do not want to be recognized (as they are trying to live in this world while wanting the insurance policy of salvation). When they are approached, they feel like they have been found out and are in the spot light! I know when I was saved, before that fateful decision, I tried to hide in the crowd and thought that all eyes were on me (how self-important is that?)! However, I have also seen the ones that leave because they felt no one cared.
    In my humble opinion, one should reach out but they should do so in a way that is non-threatening and loving. In my church (Our Savior Lutheran Church in St. Petersburg, FL) we go out of our way to greet them, ask about their interests, are they visiting or do they live in the area, give them an information packet and introduce them to the Pastor. We then have our elders and service people make them feel welcomed by discreetly (and not all at once) coming over and say, “I noticed you are new. WOW! It’s great to see new faces! Welcome to our church!” and introduce themselves. This way they feel the warmth and love of Christ.
    The result, we have been experiencing an approximate 10% annual growth since we started this approach. Our packets include a calendar, devotional, brochure, magnetic bumper sticker (so as to not ruin the paint job) and a business card in a small quality folder.
    People like to feel special! It really doesn’t take much to accomplish this. If one would reach out and let them know, “Hey, you are special and we would love to have you as part of our church!” in a way that is non obligatory, you will have a winning strategy.

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Poll Results