How to Plan a Church Newcomer Event

The Church Revitalization Podcast – Episode 127

How to plan a church newcomer event and assimilate new guests into your church.

If your church has not hosted a Newcomer Event in recent years or have had little success, this is written for you! A Newcomer Event is a short 60 to 90-minute event hosted at the church in order to assimilate those who are new or newer to the church. Many people who are new have an interest in getting more involved, but they do not know how or what kind of commitment they would need to make. These short events are specifically designed to get people plugged into an easy next step. 

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Here are five tips for planning your Newcomer Event:

1) Determine the schedule and “feel” of the event

Will it happen after church? Will the event be inside or outside? Are you going to provide childcare? How long will it be? Will you serve food, and if so, what kind? Will there be a formal presentation, and how long will it be? There is no “right” way to host a Newcomer Event, but there are wrong ways. If you don’t spend time planning your Newcomer Event, you will not have great results. Determine how your Event should flow, but be intentional about planning it well.

2) Don’t require an RSVP

As a practical matter, do not require people to reserve a spot. Plan your food to be something that will “keep” if you have too much. It is easier than you’d think to make a guess on how many people will come based on the number of guests you have had in the previous month. Let people come, even at the last minute.

3) Be certain that you have a planned “next step”

As a part of the event, make it easy for guests to sign-up for community life ministries, a discipleship class, a Sunday school class, etc. This way you are “handing off” guests to a place where they can be known, identified, and disciples.

4) Keep it simple and fun

This should not feel like a formal event. The point is to introduce people to your church. So treat guests as if you invited them into your house. Make sure staff and volunteers interact with newcomers and do not just sit together. Ask them questions rather than exclusively talking about the church.

5) Get help if you need it

If you’re new to hosting a Newcomer Event, let The Malphurs Group partner with you in developing the details. A central aspect of our mission is to equip churches, and we would love to help you! Just click here to schedule a time to talk with us.

BONUS: Watch this episode on YouTube.

Scott Ball is the Vice President and a Lead Guide with The Malphurs Group. He lives in East Tennessee with his wife and two children. (Email Scott).

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