What makes a Sunday at church stand out? Is it the sermon? The worship? The people we meet? Is it the way we feel when we walk through the doors, the way God spoke to us during the service, or the hug we get as we walk back to our car?
All of these elements work together to inspire people to come back the next Sunday and bring their friends and family. These are a few practical ways that you can make people feel more welcome at your church.
Start With The Team
At VOUS Church, every servant leader that serves on Sunday contributes to creating a welcoming atmosphere. From the parking team to the host team and the welcome team, we all play a part in letting guests know that they can sit with us.
On the welcome team, team lead Angel Gualtieri says, “We begin by sharing praise reports from the week and testimonies for the previous week. We always encourage the team of the why behind the what — we GET TO be some of the first people guests will see when coming to VOUS Church. We don’t know what people are going through. A smile, hug and handshake will go a long way.”
Joamna Ramirez, a servant leader on the environments team at VOUS Church, shares this advice. “The most important part of our process is making sure that we ourselves are comfortable in the space, and by default our guests will be comfortable in the space.”
Give People Your Full Attention
“As for the one who is weak in faith, welcome him…” – Romans 14:1
What would our churches, homes and families look like if we treated every interaction with each other as a moment preordained by God?
Focus is at a premium these days. With our phones, watches, tablets and TVs constantly buzzing and beckoning our attention, it’s rare for someone to experience another person’s full attention.
In your churches and homes, you can reverse this trend by putting your phones down and investing your all into the person in front of you. Look into their eyes, ask them questions, show an interest in who they are.
Angel offers this advice. “Smile always, don’t get distracted by others serving with you — even if there are only a couple of guests walking through the doors ― give them your full attention.”
Decorate with Comfort in Mind
“I think the area we can all improve on as the church is comfort. I love giving people spaces to lounge, to sit down, relax, have a cup of coffee, have a great conversation, listen to each other, and just be together,” Joamna says. “We always want people to feel cozy in our spaces, whether it’s 50 degrees or 100.”
With each new SZN comes a new design and a new opportunity to welcome our guests.
“We always try to make sure to take colors (what colors are in season), lighting (that isn’t too harsh, unflattering, or too dim), spacing (are things too close to each other? are things too far away from each other? are there too many things?), music (we have a playlist, and whenever I hear one of the songs from our playlist while out on the road, it immediately takes me back to Sunday and makes me look forward to the next Sunday), warmth (lights, textures, plants) and typography into consideration,” Joamna says.
The Power of the Written Word
Every SZN at VOUS Church, we unveil a brand new accent wall with our signature phrase — The Best Is yet to Come. It’s become the favorite spot for new guests and servant leaders to take pictures for social media.
“When I first started serving with environments, I wanted the center of our ‘lobby’/courtyard to say something, and the most obvious way to do that was by writing on the walls. We had no idea how people would react, but our walls have been preaching to our guests ever since!” says Joamna.
We also incorporate words in the signs that welcome team members hold that welcomes guests visually. “Popsigns are huge,” says Angel. “They give the team confidence to hold something and inspiration on what to say because the sign has a phrase on it. We encourage one side of the signs to have welcoming phrases and the other side to have goodbye phrases.”
Environments Team Training
Do you want to be a part of creating a welcoming atmosphere at VOUS Church? Join us for an environments team training this Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.
Wednesday, August 2
4004 NW 2nd Ave
Miami, FL 33127