3. Make sure their kids have an amazing experience.
If junior leaves the nursery screaming and crying with a dirty diaper, what kind of statement has that made?
Alternatively, if the kids come out of children’s church with the royal treatment begging mom and dad to come back next week, what message is that going to relay?
This doesn’t typically happen by accident—it’s got to be planned. Empower your children’s ministry workers to have a visitor workflow as well. Make sure those kids have a fantastic experience, and everybody will win!
4. Don’t do weird things.
Your church family may love the tradition of calling out first-time church visitors and having them bring their families up on the platform for introduction, but listen…don’t do it.
If you embarrass that first-time church visitor or their spouse (even worse), you can pretty much bank on them not returning.
I understand there are cultural variances on this, but for the most part, plan on respecting the privacy of first time visitors. You’ll certainly want to get their contact information, but keep it really simple.
If the visitors’ card feels more like a home mortgage application, it’s not going to happen. Usually a name, address and email address will suffice. If your email game is on point, you may even get away with collecting only a name and email address.
5. Be real.
While I understand the ambiguous undertones of this statement, my point is this: Be yourself and allow others to be themselves. Now if you are weird, there will definitely be a conflict with my previous point, but keep yourself in check!
If your treatment of first-time church visitors feels canned, routine or forced, it will be obvious.
When it comes to first-time visitors in your church, nothing will substitute for a genuine heart that is full of the love of God. If you love God, you will love who He loves, and He loves people. If you don’t love people or at least have a desire to love people, consider a career change!
6. Answer their questions.
Those visitors have questions. They may not be asking them, but they do have them. Answer as many of them as you can through the various touch points during the workflow.
Enlist your greeters to share key information with visitors such as child care specifics or restroom and sanctuary locations. If you can answer those questions before they are asked, you’ll communicate great organizational vibes.
7. Pray with them.
They didn’t come to be entertained. If they wanted to be entertained, they could have stayed home and watched television. They are here at your church because they have needs, burdens and life issues, and they are hoping that God can help. Ask them what those are and pray with them about them. Connect with them on a spiritual level, not just a customer level.
This blog post has not entered into gifts and follow-up procedures, although they certainly have an important place in the visitor workflow. Check out one of my other posts to read my thoughts on those.
The main goal of this article is to deliver easy actionable reminders on interacting with the first-time church visitors in your place of worship. Be in tune with the Holy Spirit of God, and allow Him to direct your steps, thoughts, actions and reactions.
Love people where they are, and prepare yourself to be involved in taking them to where God wants them to be!
This article originally appeared here.