5 Assumptions Your Church Should Make to Serve Guests Better

Guest Post: Brett Bixby

There’s no guarantee that a first time guest will visit your church this week, but if they do, will you prepared to receive them? One of the biggest mistakes small town churches make is not preparing with guests in mind. We can’t afford to make that mistake. Our mission is much too important. So, I’d like to share with you a training we did with our teams, that you can take and share with yours.

  1. Assume there will be guests every week
  • We do what we do in guest services under this assumption every single week.
  • We are glad everyone feels welcomed and accepted each week, however, we do guest services for the person or family that arrives for the very first time.
    • Everyone knows where to park – but not the first-time guest
    • Everyone can open the door on their own – but for the one guest
    • Everyone knows where the kids check in is – but not the first timer
    • Everyone can find their own seat – but we want the first-timer to be able to find a seat and not feel like we are full or that they are taking someone’s spot. This is why we set up chairs as we fill up.
    • Guests usually come early or late – serve at your post at least 15 minutes before the service begins and at least 15 minutes after the service has started.
  1. Assume guests will not introduce themselves
  • Most guests are looking to stay anonymous
  • We need to make the first move in greeting someone we don’t know. They might have been attending for 3 years – but if you don’t know them, please introduce yourself. “How long have you been coming to _____________?”
  1. Assume guests do not understand WHAT we do or WHY we do it
  • This is why we wave people in at the driveway
  • This is why we help people know where to park
  • This is why we take people with young children to show them the children’s area
  • This is why we need to explain the security and safety of the kid’s area
  1. Assume every first-time guest has some degree of nervousness
  • They may be trying to find the person who invited them
  • They may be from a different church or religion and are out of place
  • They may just have a fear of the unknown
  • Some are worried the building is going to cave in on them
  • Parking, finding the bathrooms, and sitting down are three nervous points.
  1. Assume God is strategically working in the lives of everyone who drives onto the property and walks through the doors of your church on a Sunday morning.
  • Regardless of whether someone is a first-time attender or a regular, whether they are young or old, tall or short, fancy or plain, we assume God has prompted them to come to church today!
  • With this mindset, we present them with an over-the-top welcoming experience because we believe God has already been involved in them coming to church.

Brett Bixby is the Executive Pastor at Bridgewater Church. They have 5 campuses spread across Northeastern PA and the Southern Tier of NY. He has been a pastor for 20 years and has been at Bridgewater for the last 8 years. He is married to Nicole, and they have 5 children.

Please note I have the right to remove comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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