If nothing changes, Sunday School will not grow. Growth requires prayer, more workers, more classes, training, caring contacts, invitations, new members, and more. There is God to obey. There are people to reach, care for, and teach.
Sunday School cannot rest upon past success. Jesus’ commission for the church (Matthew 28:19-20) is Sunday School’s mission to “make disciples of all nations.” Relationships must be developed. Invitations extended. Jesus shared. Lost saved. Prayers prayed. God’s Word studied. Lives changed. Families strengthened. Disciples grown and mobilized. Multiplication results.
There are key actions that should take place in a growing Sunday School. The Sunday School Revolutionary is about those revolutionary actions and changes. But this post will focus on an annual schedule for some of those key actions. The following calendar assumes that the new Sunday School year (including promotion of age groups) will occur in September. It also assumes that regular planning and communication meetings are taking place. Consider the following:
- JUNE-AUGUST: Enlistment and New Classes. Talk to all current workers. Evaluate the year. Ask how serving could be even better. Ask if they will serve in the coming year. Replace any who are not returning. Consider classes in each age group (preschool, children, youth, and adults) which need to be started. What leaders are needed to staff the new classes? What additional literature is needed for new classes/leaders? Also plan and communicate the retreat (see September) and the training event (August).
- JULY-AUGUST: Space and Furnishings. Where will new classes meet? What needs to be done to ensure the space is ready? Are new or replacement furnishings and equipment needed? Who will prepare the space and order furnishings/equipment?
- AUGUST: Prepare for Promotion and Provide Training. What do you need to do to help prepare parents of preschoolers and children for moving to new classes? What do you need to do to help teens and adults move to new classes? What do you need to do to promote new classes (bulletin, during worship, contacts/invitations, etc.)? Do you have a list of classes, teachers, and room numbers for greeters to help guests find their classes? Participate in a teacher and worker training event.
- SEPTEMBER: Open House and Retreat. For Open House Sunday, invite every member and prospect, offer a light breakfast, have greeters in place, wear name tags, register guests, ask people to join, and at the end of the service offer an open house where people get to meet the teachers of every class. For the Retreat, encourage 100% participation, involve everyone, evaluate, dream, set goals, and make plans. Evaluate attendance in new and current classes. Promote and set goals for Friend Day (see October).
- OCTOBER: Friend Day. Make contacts. Each person extends at least 3 invitations. Host class fellowships. Have high attendance day or contact contest with a focus on inviting and enrolling new people (friends).
In Part 2, we will look at the remaining schedule (November-May). From your experience, what else should be added to these months (June-October)? Summer is busy behind the scenes. The fall is a high energy time that can bear much fruit with good planning and actions. Schedule Sunday School growth. Make disciples. Be revolutionary!