Think Big!

Spirit Mountain

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Big Days are a great way to reach new people in your community.  These are opportunities to be intentional about outreach.  It’s important that when we cast vision for Big Days, we emphasize that our target is to invite people who are not active in another church.  It’s great to have our friends and family visit who may be from another church, but that doesn’t do much to grow the kingdom.  We emphasize to invite everyone you come in contact with, but make sure your priority is inviting those who are lost or needing a church home.  I’ve discovered after several years of having Big Days at our church that a well promoted and well planned Big Day can bring in double your average weekly attendance and increase your weekly attendance by as much as 20% going forward.  Additionally, you should pray for, plan for and expect people to accept Christ as their Savior.  (This is why it’s important to have a New Believer follow up plan in place. I will be sharing our plan in the near future.)

Each year, our church plans several Big Days designed to encourage members and regular attenders to place a special emphasis on inviting friends, acquaintances, co-workers, and strangers to church. Big Days also provide a unique opportunity for evangelistic outreach during the service, as many of the guests on these days have not yet heard a clear presentation of the gospel.  It also gives those in our church a great way to bring God into a conversation by way of a simple invite.

There are generally two categories of Big Days at our church: holidays and special outreach.

Holidays

Historically, our church has promoted special services on Easter and Christmas Eve. These two occasions are when many who do not normally come to church feel the urge to attend, either due to traditional upbringing or because someone invited them. Promotions around holiday events are meant to capitalize on the pre-existing idea among the public that this is a time to go to church. When promoting a holiday Big Day, the following activities are usually the most effective:

Specialized Invitation Cards, Direct Mail Postcards, Radio Advertisements, Newspaper Advertisements, In-Service Promotional Videos & PowerPoint Slides, Handouts on Sunday Mornings, Host or Pastor Mentions, Member & Attendee E-blasts, Web Site Information, Social Media Promotion, Door Hangers, etc…

Special Outreach

Our church creates these Big Days for the express purpose of encouraging invitations to our church. These include Back to Church Sunday in the fall and Friend Day in the winter. Promotions around special outreach events are meant to remind members and attendees of the urgency of advancing God’s kingdom through church attendance.  When promoting a Special Outreach Big Day, the following activities are usually the most effective:

Specialized Invitation Cards, Radio Advertisements, In-Service Promotional Videos & PowerPoint Slides, Handouts on Sunday Mornings, Host or Pastor Mentions, Member & Attendee E-blasts, Web Site Information, Social Media Promotion, Door Hangers, Community Service Projects, Encourage hand-written invitations from members & regular attenders

If your planning a Big Day, expect God to move.  Set goals in attendance and other areas that will stretch your church and expectations.  I’ve discovered we need to set goals that are just beyond what we can do ourselves.  This causes us to rely on God for the results.
Begin planning now for Easter.  Check out my Useful Links page for sites that can help you as you develop your plans.
I am including a sample timeline that I actually use to prepare for Big Days: Big Days SAMPLE timelines
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About John Herring

I've been in ministry for almost 20 years. In that time, I have had the opportunity to serve in a variety of roles including, Student and Children's Pastor, Worship and Media Pastor, Education/Small Groups Pastor, Associate Pastor, Church Administrator, Missions Pastor and 'other duties as assigned' Pastor. Many of these have been within the same church and I have had the opportunity to see a variety of changes and transitions in ministry over the past 20 years. I enjoy coaching, consulting, mentoring and investing in leaders to see them become who it is God created them to be. As I do all of these, I am also in transition from where God had me to where He is taking me and enjoying learning more about Him in the journey. I am blessed to have been married to a beautiful godly woman, Alisha, for 11 years and have 2 amazing kids. I continue to learn more about them, myself and God every day. View all posts by John Herring

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