Home Pastors Articles for Pastors First-Time Guest Gifts: 26 Lessons From 33 Churches

First-Time Guest Gifts: 26 Lessons From 33 Churches

8 Examples of First-time Guest Gifts

Rather than just talking about what churches give to their guests, I asked some friends to send me what they give away. Here are samples from eight churches … be inspired! You can download high res versions of these images in the unSeminary Members Only section … if you aren’t a member, you can join now for free.

  1. Gift Idea from Christ Community Church—Chicagoland


A pen. Welcome brochure. Free coffee at their coffee bar. Explanation of the gospel.

2. Gift Idea from Cornerstone Church—Moulton, Ala.


Water bottle full of candy! T-shirt. Book written by pastor. Note pad. Highlighter.
Welcome pack with all kinds of information about the church.

3. Gift Idea from LifeChurch.tv—18 Campuses … mostly in Oklahoma


A worship CD. A welcome CD about the church. Clear directions on how to get plugged into the church. A New Testament. Flyers on various ministries of the church.

4. Gift idea from New Covenant Church—Brantford, Ontario


A church-branded travel coffee mug. Welcome CD about the church. Welcome brochure.

5. Gift idea from Shelter Rock Church—Long Island, N.Y.


Andy Stanley’s How Good Is Good Enough? book. Chocolates! Letter from the pastor.
Flyers about the ministries of the church.

6. Gift idea from Triad Baptist Church—Kernersville, N.C.


A church-branded travel coffee mug. A pen. Welcome flyers.

7. Victory Church—Austin, Texas


$5 gift card for their store. Various brochures about their ministry. CD from pastor.

8. Gift idea from Tuscaloosa Vineyard—Tuscaloosa, Ala.

Vineyard_300x300$5 Starbucks card. Hand written note. CD from pastor.


1. Start with what your guests would like.

Remember when you were a kid and your dear Aunt Lucy gave you that out-of-date sweater that was two sizes too small … you started calling her Aunt Lousy.

Don’t do that to your guests! Make your gift something that other people will really want to get! Be creative. Create a WOW! moment for them.

2. This will cost money.

The average amount spent across all of these churches for their gifts was $4.88 … the lowest was $0.75 and the highest was $15.00. First impressions are important as a church, and these are strategic resources for you to invest.

Figure out what you would be comfortable spending on these items … then budget 20 percent more. Your guests deserve it … they risked a lot to come to your church and you should reward them.

3. Leverage it to gather contact information.

How can you follow up with your guests if you don’t have their contact information? Use your gift in an exchange to collect their contact information.

The fact that they are giving you their contact information means they are giving you permission to follow up with them. Make sure your best people do the follow up with these guests.

(Bonus: Check out how one church uses the contact information from first-time guest gifts to follow up guests with an email sequence.)

Give Guests a “Next Step”—Across the board, the churches that seem to leverage first-time guest gifts the best are giving them a clear next step to take. They have a newcomer’s class … or a reception with their pastor … or even just a group of people dedicated to helping first-time guests get connected to the church. It isn’t random … there is a clear communication on what guests are supposed to “do” next.

What are you learning about first-time guest gifts? I’d love you to join the conversation. Leave a comment!