Back to School and Back to Church: 5 Ways to be Missional on Sunday Morning this Fall

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Summer! So many plans. So much fun.
Trips.
Vacation.
The lake.
The pool.
Cookouts.
No school.
No homework.
Playing till dark.
No real schedule.
It really is a great time. And it's hard to believe that another summer has come and gone.

This week many schools start the new school year. As trips come to an end and homework and sports practice take the place of schedule-less nights and playing till dark, we'll settle back into routines and rhythms. This provides us with a great opportunity as a church!

Fall is typically one of the biggest times of growth in churches. As families who have been scattered begin to settle into their new school routines many find it a great time to add new routines or re-establish the long lost routine of church. 

So here are a few ways that we can make the most of this opportunity as a church:

  1. INVITE
    There is really no bad time to invite someone to join you at church, but a great time to invite someone is when they are more likely to say yes. Fall is one of those times - a new day, a new start and new routines. Even if you have invited someone in the past, Fall provides a great opportunity for a re-invite. So look for an opportunity, make an opportunity and invite someone to join you at our Sunday gathering.
     
  2. COME EARLY
    Visitors are almost always early! They arrive 15 minutes early so that they can easily find their way to the building, find parking and get to a seat. Statistically, visitors decide in their first 6 minutes whether or not they will return. That means their first minutes are crucial. When they arrive they should find friendly faces and welcoming friends. They should be cared for and made to feel like family. If no one is here to welcome them and care for them because we arrive 15 minutes late, that will never happen. So get up, get moving and as part of God's mission, come early.
     
  3. STICK AROUND
    Instead of rushing out after our last song on Sunday, take a minute to speak to people you don't know. This has to be an intentional thought and plan. If its not, we are prone to rush to lunch or check in with the friends we haven't see since last Sunday. Make it a goal to meet someone you don't know. If you think they may be visiting, ask, "Hey, I don't think we've met before. Are you new to New City?" The end of the service is not too late to help someone feel at home with us.
     
  4. ASK ABOUT MCs
    When you do meet someone new, even if they aren't a first time visitor, ask if they are involved in an MC. If they aren't, invite them to your MC. Everyone is looking for a place to belong, a family to be a part of. We were created with that need. Invite them to join you at your next MC gathering.
     
  5. FOLLOW UP
    How you follow up depends on what you talked about. If they agreed to check out your MC, plan to follow up with them so you can give directions - maybe by phone, email or social media. If your conversation didn't get to that point, then look for them in the coming weeks on Sunday and make sure you speak to them if they return. This goes a long way in making visitors feel like they are known and welcomed.

Our mission at New City is to help others live in light of the gospel. Doing that takes time with people, time in our worship gatherings, time in our MCs and often time one on one. We will only get that time as people feel welcomed enough to return. That's where you come in.

In Colossians 4:5 Paul urges the church to make the most of every opportunity that they had with those not a part of the church. Let's make the most of the opportunity that this Fall brings.