If your community isn’t talking about your church – then do something to get the conversation going.
We’re not going for things like, “What’s going on down there anyway?” We don’t want bad publicity. We want things like, “I think the church is hosting that” or “Have you see what First Church did?! Wow!”
Every church has publicity – good or not so good. But the worst is no publicity at all. If you closed your doors today, would anyone in the community even notice?
The goal of your church is to attract, serve, invite, include, help, grow, and share Christ with people who are not yet in the church!
Here are some questions for your team: Why should someone who doesn’t know Jesus come to our church? How can you get a starting point for spiritual conversations with unchurched people in your community? What are some ways to get your community talking about your church? How can you help your own church folks get excited about “making a splash in the community?”
On a practical level, here’s a list of ideas to get the community to know who you are!
- Offer to decorate the teachers lounge and provide refreshments for teachers at the local schools.
- Work with the city to set up a festival or help with one.
- Set up a children’s parade during your homecoming event.
- Host concerts on your parking lot.
- Utilize all the free publicity you can arrange to get – including a great plan for social media presence.
- Host special Sundays for community workers – firemen, police, teachers, etc.
- Put banners in front of your building.
- Set up a booth at every community festival you can be a part of.
- Host a work day at the park.
- Go big on invitation for Christmas Services, Easter Services, and other high receptivity Sundays.
- Car show in the parking lot some Sunday.
- Articles published about any major changes in the church.
- Teach people how to talk about Jesus and the church.
- Plan for one major community connection every spring and every fall.
- Host a lunch for seniors in high school toward the end of school.
- Organize a sports tournament – in your building or at the school gym, park, or other place in town.
- Help the community raise money for a community cause (food pantry, shelter, etc).
- Door hangers for special services and events.
- Give away free stuff.
- Offer tutoring to students.
- All night prayer vigils for the community.
- Host a spiritual conversations event with a panel discussion.
- Become great at a specific annual ministry / role in the community (such as a dinner, play or outreach).
- Treat each Sunday as a very intentional special event for the community.
- Go over the top on hospitality.
Steps to practically do this:
- Create a task force. This isn’t committee, but a short term group to accomplish something to jumpstart conversation in your community.
- Cast the vision. Our community needs to be aware that we exist. Pray for a stirring in the hearts of your people and the community.
- Calendar an event or idea. Put down a plan anywhere from 1 – 6 months out.
- Connect with lots of people to help. The more the merrier!
- Crank up the publicity. Let it be known intentionally.
Our main goal is to share God’s love, but too often, the church doesn’t even have a platform to do so. There has to be a connection. Your community needs to be aware of your presence. You must joyfully, simply, and powerfully create conversation about your church right where you live.