We have all heard and understood the saying, “You only get one chance to make a first impression.” Revolutionary Sunday School takes no chances here. Plans are made to ensure that first impressions are good ones. Certainly, facilities, equipment, and signs also impact the impression, but for the sake of space allow me to share some thoughts about the relational side–making guests feel welcome. I have written on this subject before in a blog post entitled Helping Sunday School Guests FEEL Welcome. In Part 1, I will share about greeters and class greeters. In Part 2, I will share about having genuine interest in guests and welcome gifts.
GREETERS. There are stages and ways to welcoming Sunday School guests. First, there should be greeters at all significant entrances to the building. These greeters should be friendly and helpful. Entrances should be covered by pairs or teams, so that when a guest arrives one of the team can walk the guests to the welcome center or to the classroom. Greeters may need to be aware of Sunday School class age groups in order to help guests identify where they will attend. A pair or team ensures that the entrance is not left unattended while one of the pair/team is away. Greeters should also either help register guests or lead them to a welcome center to do so. Greeters can also introduce the guest to the teacher and class and share a copy of the registration information.
CLASS GREETERS. Second, all classes should have class greeters–someone whose job is to welcome, register (if it has not already been done), and introduce guests to class members. In preschool and children’s classes, one of the teachers can either serve as a greeter or a greeter can be enlisted to be 15 minutes early and to stay for 10 minutes after Sunday School has started and then go back to their adult class.
Adults and teens can serve as greeters in their classes. Adult and youth greeters should also walk guests after class to find restrooms, their children, and the sanctuary. Greeters should also sit with guests in worship and introduce the guests to people before and after the service. Also, a quick call by the greeter on Tuesday with thanks for attending, an invitation to an upcoming class fellowship, and asking for prayer requests will be highly appreciated. For more information, check out Revolutionary Sunday School Classes Have Greeters.
Don’t forget that follow up is important in order to continue the good first impression that was given. Assess your class and/or Sunday School as a whole. How are you doing at making a great first impression with your guests? Which of these two areas need to be addressed to strengthen that impression? Check our Part 2 for two additional areas. What steps can you take this month? Don’t let another guest slip away because their impression was poor. Greet them with enthusiasm. Be revolutionary!