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Church Engagement Ideas

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Best Practices for Hybrid Engagement
Curator Michael Palmer
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5 Resources
book
Boomer Volunteer Engagement: Facilitator's Tool Kit
This resource is designed to help nonprofit groups involve, engage, and sustain baby boomers...
organization
Fresh Expressions
This organization helps local faith leaders create new kinds of church and meet modern...
article
Engaging Young Adults: A Resource from the Center for Congregations
Published by the Center for Congregations, this four-page article shares insights from Indiana...
media
Sunday School Made Simple
These weekly video lessons provide nourishment and scripture study at a distance or on-the-go....
book
Inside Out Families: Living the Faith Together
Based on interviews of numerous families, this book provides ideas for engaging family...

Church Engagement Ideas

Spiritual gathering places represent the heart of communities and all the good that communities as a whole can do both to help each other and to grow as individuals. In fact, vibrant congregations are often the very heart of a community and a central hub for all events.

That is at least usually the perspective to outsiders looking in.

Of course, congregation leaders often find themselves taking on the challenge not only of bringing the community together and maintaining an air of togetherness within the congregation but also overseeing the development and functioning of programs that promote engagement. 

Even leaders of small congregations feel this pressure. Perhaps for decades, they watch as their congregations grow and shrink as the community experiences cyclical ups and downs. They look hopefully toward the future and wonder: what are the things a church needs in order to grow even in a bad year? 

This is a question that many spiritual leaders are asking today. 

In an era when many people are seeking comfort from communities outside of a congregation, many spiritual leaders wonder how to make a church service interesting and relevant to the fears and struggles congregants face today. 

At The Congregation Resources Group, we have explored many church engagement ideas, and we understand which are often successful. We are here to share some ideas on church member engagement, congregation spiritual growth, increasing and retaining new members, engaging with members online, and developing avenues for congregant feedback, with the hope that you can use these ideas to create a successful church engagement strategy. These church improvement ideas will be valuable not only to leaders, but also to congregants who are interested in creating committees to explore and increase the impact of their church. 

Church Member Engagement

Many people engage with their spiritual community only once a week. Their relationship with that community is reserved for the hour that they spend sitting in a pew and listening to their spiritual leader. At times, church member engagement may seem like a mere afterthought.  

While this method of engaging with spirituality may be completely adequate for some, a congregation truly becomes a community in the time they spend together outside of the sanctuary. Working groups, classes, choirs, and even just the conversations that congregants have with each other after a particularly moving service are the threads that hold a strong spiritual community together. 

When thinking about how to foster church member engagement, spiritual leaders will want to come up with a plan that meets the congregation’s needs and that successfully engages the entire audience. They can begin by thinking about creative church service ideas that encourage their congregants to engage with each other outside of services. Of course, sometimes, such ideas can feel elusive.

After all, the goal of a congregation is to make every person feel part of one whole. That is difficult to achieve when not everyone is thoroughly engaged. The good news is that our website (thecrg.org) has all the resources you need to move your congregation to sing, engage, converse, and even guide one another. If you are worried that attendance is down, you can even find practical ideas for taking church attendance.

To get started, all you have to do is use our search bar to find the tools you need to keep your congregation thriving in unity. When you find resources that you find valuable, you can curate your own collection simply by bookmarking them. That way, you can return to them again! Whether you need guidance in addressing a difficult topic or just need church proposal ideas to bring before decision makers in your congregation, we can provide.

How To Grow The Church Spiritually 

One of the paradoxes of leading a congregation is that spiritual communities need to simultaneously grow and remain constant. Leaders trying to figure out how to attract visitors to church might be inclined to focus on the growth aspect, changing services to make them more universally valuable. On the other hand, leaders who are focused on maintaining loyal congregants might be more focused on creating a space that is comforting in its repetition and sameness. Striking this balance between growth and familiarity is challenging, but it is also very possible.

Congregation leaders interested in finding this balance need to begin by asking the question: “how can a church grow spiritually?” There are many answers to this question. Some leaders focus on finding ways to teach individual congregants how to grow spiritually, which could provide alternative ways for new members to engage with faith. 

If you find yourself uncertain how to grow the church spiritually, do not despair. It does not mean that you have failed as a leader or that your congregation is devoid of spiritual vitality. You might just need to find the right resources to aid the growth you desire.

At the CRG, we are proud to offer countless resources on how to grow spiritually. We understand that spiritual growth looks different for every congregation and for every individual, which is why we have curated resources that help a range of different people. For example, if you are looking specifically to help your youth ministry grow, we have resources that emphasize that specifically.

At the end of the day, if each congregant has the opportunity to learn how to grow spiritually as an individual, the whole community will grow.

Fresh Ideas For Church Growth

How to grow your church membership and how to grow your church’s finances are not always the most enthralling topics; however, they are important to discuss. Most congregations have long histories of attempted church growth strategies. Some might have been successful while others gell flat completely. What is hard is generating fresh ideas for church growth, ideas that boost congregation morale rather than threaten it. 

Effective church growth strategies—both those aimed at growing finances and those aimed at growing congregations--are centred around helping facilitate a sense of ownership within the congregation. Financial strategies aimed at ownership are those that appeal directly to the impact potential donations would have on a congregation.

Indeed, there are several different types of church growth to consider. The strategies you employ will depend upon the type of growth you seek. That’s why at the CRG, we have put together a wealth of resources designed to help congregations of all sizes and with a range of different goals. For example, if you want to know how to grow your church membership, we offer resources that provide you with step-by-step guides to do just that. 

Oftentimes, the best church growth strategies focus not only on how to increase church membership but also how to develop programs that benefit current members and entice them to stay around. You also must take into account your church’s finances and how much you can realistically spend on your growth efforts. The CRG provides comprehensive guides covering all of these issues and more.

How To Get New Church Members And Keep Them

You look around at your congregation. You are happy to see the familiar faces smiling back at you, but you realize that something is off. Why does your congregation look so different from the community that surrounds it? You know that your clergy has a lot to offer to its broader community, but it is unclear to you how to get new church members and keep them.

You may have some ideas to increase church attendance, but the issue is figuring out how to make church members committed once you find potential members. You may know what kind of crowd you are trying to attract but may be totally uncertain about how to attract them. Moreover, you understand the role of members in church growth but just are not sure how to facilitate long-term growth. 

At the CRG, growing churches is part of what we do. We understand that it is a long process that requires quite a bit of trial and error. We also understand that the growth of the church may depend on any number of factors, and these factors may vary from one congregation to the next.

That is why we offer a wide range of resources on how to get new church members and keep them. For example, maybe you are wondering how to grow a church in a small town. Maybe it is not a matter of growth entirely but also a matter of how to make church members committed. 

Whatever the case, we have resources to help.

How To Engage Church Members Online

Today, engaging with your congregation through youth groups, bake sales, and services may not be enough. Congregations need to think hard about how to engage church members online as well as in person. Digital strategy for churches is becoming an essential step in any church engagement push, whether it is focused on member growth, spiritual growth, or financial growth. 

Church online engagement comes in many different forms, from the typical e-newsletter to establishing a presence on social media websites like Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok. However, the most important aspect of any online church strategy is knowing your audience. You likely know your current congregation members well and have already perfected some strategies for engaging with them in person. That said, engaging with the congregation online may look quite different since you do not have the benefit of interacting face to face, shaking hands, and gathering as a group.

If you have never thought much about engaging with people online, the CRG can help. We can offer you tips for connecting via apps and your own website. We can even provide you with engaging questions for church social media, to help get conversations going. You do not have to let your congregation suffer in digital silence simply because the pews are empty and the altar bare.

Church Engagement Questions

Similar to the importance of online content that inspires congregants to respond, you will also want to make sure that all your church members understand that their feedback is welcome and that they know where to go to submit said feedback. This should be the case whether someone is attending a service for the first time or the fiftieth. 

How you promote this engagement will ultimately be up to you and congregations. Some congregations hand out new church member questionnaires while others urge leaders to answer regular church leadership survey questions. What you do is not as important as ensuring that every voice can be heard. 

You may be wondering how you can craft the perfect church engagement questions without alienating anyone in your congregation. The CRG may be able to help you. We believe that such questions should not divide but instead lead to unifying conversation, no matter what topic you are hoping to cover. For example, maybe you are trying to gauge how to best resume church services after resorting to virtual services because of COVID-19. While many may have opinions on this matter, your main focus is simply to guide your congregation back to normalcy. We have some resources that help you come up with fair and practical church reopening survey questions.

Maybe you are not looking for something quite so serious and just want to get the congregation bonding and talking through some good-natured conversation. We have resources to help you generate fun church poll questions as well.

The bottom line is that at the CRG, we are all about helping you make your congregation feel like one harmonious whole rather than many incongruous parts. We do that by offering an endless pool of resources for you to use as you see fit.

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