May 26, 2016

Let’s Play!

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Many “friendly churches” are not very good at making friends, and we know that people “stick” at church or in any social group if they have made a number of friends in the early days of their experience with the group. Many churches are stagnant in their growth, not because they are not friendly or because they lack a system for following up on newbies, but because they are socially impermeable. They don’t make friends with people quickly and easily.

The solution? Intentionally promoting social interaction with new people among your membership. Get them to play with others. Play cards, scrabble, or something with a newcomer. Take them out for coffee. Have them over for dinner. Take them out to lunch. I wonder what would happen if church members were encouraged to “tithe” their Friday or Saturday nights to engage with new visitors to the church. Five weekends a year times 50 families = 250 social encounters with new people a year. That’s like adding a part-time staff person!

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