Outreach Archives - Page 32 of 37 - Church Executive


Welcome to worship: how to recognize hearing loss — and provide solutions

Those among us who have it, often prefer to try to cope with it, live with it, or hide it from others. And yet, this so-called invisible disability affects about 20 percent of American adults! This means that potentially, one out of five of congregants are not hearing messages and music that inspire them each week in your house of worship.

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How scheduling tools can streamline your ministry efforts

Scheduling can be a nightmare. Overbooking rooms. Double-booking church equipment. Accidentally scheduling two big functions on the same day. No matter the church size, the story is the same.

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Using technology to tame the volunteer schedule headache

Perhaps no other part of church is as important or as complicated as managing volunteers.

Visitors coming to the church are greeted by volunteers — those first few impressionable moments are left to volunteers. The same is true for the nursery, our children’s ministries, guardian angels patrolling the parking lot, and especially the lay leaders that lead out bible studies, Sunday school classes and children’s programs.

These critical roles in the church are bounded by a number of important concerns: Who has volunteered? Are they gifted in that way as a volunteer? (Just because you want to be a teacher, doesn’t make you a great teacher.) Have we checked their background — especially in regards to children’s ministry? Are we using them? How often do they serve? Are they burning out? What are their preferences in serving? Do they like to serve with their families? What rotation works best for them?

As a leader of volunteers, your concerns are more aggregated: How are my volunteers performing, and do they enjoy their roles? (Because if they don’t, they won’t volunteer much longer.) Do they have feedback that can make the position better, more efficient and more fulfilling?

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THE CE INTERVIEW: JONATHAN STOCKSTILL

Jonathan Stockstill was 30 years old when his father, the Rev. Larry Stockstill, turned over to him the leadership of Bethany Church. Interestingly, Larry was the same age as Jonathan when he took over for his dad, who founded the church in 1963.

Jonathan has led music at Bethany since he was 17. He says he always felt that he would be in full-time ministry, but it was not until he was in his mid-20s that he began to sense a pastoral call upon his life. At the time, he was leading worship and traveling with a band called Deluge. He wrote songs, recorded projects and did music tours, but he says God was dealing with him about a different kind of ministry. Jonathan also did several evangelistic crusades and went through a season where he felt he might plant a church in his late ‘30s.

“But God had a different plan,” he says.

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An unforgettable guest experience

What do we need to do at our churches to avoid this chasm in developing a great guest experience?

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Leaders: don’t miss the power of symbols in your church

Symbols are powerful. They add a richness to routine. They inspire hope. Symbols arouse emotions more quickly than reasoning. Symbols elevate the “why” above the “what.”

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3 leadership practices every young minister can do right now

I recently had coffee with a young(er) minister. He asked a great question: What can I do right now? The young minister (he’s around 20) wanted to know how he could lead better. Starting today. He caught me a bit off guard. After all, leadership is learned and refined over time. Pastors spend years growing. He knew that, but he also wanted to know what could be done immediately.

I’m not that far removed from being a “young” pastor (at 35, many might still categorize me in this way), but I have learned — some things the hard way — from pastoring for 10 years. There are a few practices young ministers can do right now that will help them grow immediately. Here are three leadership practices I shared with him.

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A tale of two church cafés

Today, churches are offering a lot more than a cup of joe in a Styrofoam cup. With beverages and atmospheres that rival secular franchises, their champions have learned a lot in the process.

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Social media risk — a spot check for the church?

Recently, I convened a panel of experts for a conversation about where the Church stands relative to capitalizing on the remarkable evangelization opportunity of social media. The key questions:
• Are churches actually embracing
social media?
• If so, how are they doing managing the risks?
• How can churches establish boundaries as they row in these unchartered waters?

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When a church MOVES, will its people FOLLOW?

Churches relocate more than you think. In fact, your own church might be moving. Or, maybe you’re wondering how to relocate successfully sometime in the future. In either scenario, you’ll face some primary challenges:
• Communicating the church move to your members and regular attendees
(the congregation)
• Communicating the church move to your neighbors (the community)

That’s why you need a communications strategy before you make the move.

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