Many of your church members may attend services on a regular basis, but how involved are they outside of their time spent in the pew? 

Christians who are active in their church reap several benefits, from spiritual growth to connection with and support from others in their faith community. On the other hand, your church needs engaged members to continue your mission and keep your doors open. 

So how do you encourage your church members to become more active? In this article, we share eight ways you can boost member involvement and grow your church!

8 Ideas to Encourage Church Members to Get Involved 

With all of the distractions in today’s world, it can be tough to encourage your church members to find the time to become more involved. Use these ideas to break through the clutter, get more participation from your congregants, and expand your church community.

1. Share the message

It’s important to cultivate a culture of fellowship and togetherness that your church members want to be a part of. That starts with the message you share during sermons and throughout each worship service. 

Teach about how gathering together to worship God – including in ways beyond Sunday services – strengthens one’s relationship with Him and others in the congregation. 

Speak to how being actively involved is beneficial for each member as well as the church as a whole. Every member brings his or her own unique skills and experiences to the table, and, together, they form a strong faith community. 

“so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.” – Romans 12:5

2. Offer ways to serve 

Your church members may want to become more involved by giving their time and talents, so offer several ways to serve or volunteer at your church

It’s best to provide several different types of service and volunteer opportunities that appeal to all ages, skills, and interests. Be sure to also offer options at different levels of time commitment – some of your members may only be able to serve sporadically throughout the year, while others may be looking to donate their time every week. 

Here are a few examples of ways your church members can make a difference through their involvement – 

  • Worship team – These volunteers ensure each worship service runs smoothly, with tasks that may include reading scripture, collecting offerings, welcoming newcomers, running the soundboard, and more. 
  • Music program – Becoming a member of a chorus, handbell choir, or church band gives congregants a way to praise the Lord and give back to the church, all while doing something they love.
  • Sunday school teachers – There are typically several opportunities to volunteer in Sunday school, including teachers and assistants as well as activity leaders.
  • Hands-on helpers – Painting the sanctuary? Raking leaves for older members? Setting up seasonal decorations? Any project that could use the help of many hands is a great opportunity to bring in some volunteers! 
  • Office assistants – From printing and putting together the weekly bulletin or newsletter to entering data into your system, there are typically a few simple office tasks that can be taken on by volunteers. 

3. Establish small groups 

Encourage church members to get involved by making it easy for like-minded individuals to gather together in faith. This can be done by forming various small groups that appeal to people with different interests. 

These groups meet on a regular basis and often plan fun activities, volunteer opportunities, or even church fundraising efforts, depending on the group’s goals. There is typically a faith-based element worked into everything they do together. 

Small groups offered by your church could include – 

  • Bible studies 
  • Men’s or women’s guilds
  • Book clubs
  • Quilters 
  • Youth groups 

But the opportunities are endless! You may also give your church members the opportunity to set up their own small groups if they don’t find one that fits their interests. 

4. Launch youth programs 

Youth programming fosters a sense of community and fellowship in the younger members of your congregation. Typically starting from toddlerhood and throughout high school, youth programs may include weekly Sunday school, after-school clubs, youth groups, Vacation Bible School, and more. The hope, of course, is that these young people will continue to be active members of the church into adulthood!

In addition, youth programs typically encourage parents to become more involved with the church as well. Someone has to bring the kids to the church, after all! You may also choose to introduce a family-centered church service with a focus on singing songs, making crafts, and playing games themed around a story from the Bible. 

These programs are also a great way to introduce new children and families to your church – simply encourage program participants to bring a friend.

5. Plan fun events and activities

Events like trivia and bingo nights, fall festivals, movie screenings, and more encourage church members to join together outside of worship services for fellowship and fun. For the same purpose, you may also introduce activities and outings, like going to a local sporting event, museum, or other attraction as a group. 

These events and activities are also a great way to bring in new faces and potential active members. Use advertising to spread the word and ask current congregants to invite their friends to join. 

Plus, hosting events opens up a slew of volunteer opportunities, from planning to marketing to day-of needs, and beyond! 

Pro tip: Make it easy for church members to sign up for events and activities by selling tickets (or reserving a spot for free) online using ticketing software. 

6. Build a new member program

Encouraging active involvement from your church members right from the start will make them more likely to get involved and stay involved. 

Establish a new member program that includes the steps you need to take to ensure everyone feels welcome and fully informed about all that your church has to offer. 

These steps may include – 

  1. Setting up a Welcome Center in your lobby, where newcomers can go to learn more about your church and sign up for additional information.
  2. Following up with these potential members with postcards, calls from your pastor, and other forms of communication, encouraging them to come back. 
  3. Creating a New Member class to teach newcomers about the background of your church and your faith, being sure to include information about how to get involved at church.
  4. Producing a New Member booklet with all of these details included, as well as easy ways to sign up for volunteer opportunities, upcoming events, small groups, and more.
  5. Celebrating New Members with recognition during service as well as fellowship time following worship, during which established members are encouraged to welcome newcomers with open arms.

7. Spread the word 

Do your church members know about all of the opportunities to get involved? Don’t just assume they do! Your congregants can’t become active members if they don’t know how.

Here are some ideas to help you spread the word and ensure everyone is aware of all of the activities, events, volunteer positions, and more available to them. 

During worship 

In addition to the message shared during the sermon, make announcements about any upcoming volunteer opportunities, events, and other chances to get involved. Include these details in your church bulletin as well as on any bulletin boards or screens in your lobby or worship space. Use a QR code to easily connect them with sign-up sheets and online content about these opportunities.

Take this to the next level ask an active member to share their personal experiences and how getting involved with the church has shaped their faith journey.  

One-on-one outreach

Most people are more likely to get involved if someone reaches out to them directly with information and opportunities tailored specifically to their interests. 

Know someone who loves to sing? Have your choir director give them a call. Is there a group of kids from Sunday school who haven’t joined your youth group? Take a minute to chat with their parents after a service or class. 

Digital promotion 

Keeping church members up to date about all of the ways they can get involved through digital channels is quick and affordable. 

Post about each of your upcoming activities, available groups, and more on your social media channels. Ask your active members to share your posts to increase awareness and engagement. 

Send out a monthly e-newsletter featuring stories about what church members are doing as well as important dates for future opportunities to join in the fun. Have a big event coming up? Be sure to email the details to your congregants along with a registration link. 

8. Introduce a CRM

Keeping track of all of your members, their level of involvement, their interests, and communications with them can get difficult as your church grows. But there are tools to help you accomplish all this and more, called CRMs.

Standing for customer relationship management, you may think CRMs are only for for-profit businesses, but the right CRM can make a big difference in your church. They can help you keep track of everything about your members, from volunteer sign-ups, to who’s in your small groups, to giving history, and beyond. 

Plus, there are several CRM software tools created specifically for churches and focused on getting your members more involved. Take a look at Rock RMS and Planning Center, just to name a couple. 

Over to You 

We’re sure we don’t have to tell you that having an active congregation benefits the entire church as well as its individual members. However, encouraging busy members to spend more of their valuable time at church and with their faith community can feel like an uphill battle. 

Use these tips to get your church members more involved and grow your fellowship. In need of funding to back your activities, events, and small groups? Check out Donrobox MinistryMatters, an industry-leading fundraising platform with all the tools you need to bring in tithes, offerings, and more to support your ministry. 

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