I was recently a first-time guest at a friend’s church. Throughout the service a variety of people entered the stage to greet guests, make announcements, lead music, sing solos, play instruments, talk about a church-sponsored mission trip, and preach. I’m sure most of the people sitting around me knew each of these people, but I only knew two – my friend and the pastor.
Maybe it is just the way I’m wired, but as each person spoke or performed I couldn’t help but wonder who they were, what their connection was to the church, and what they did outside the church environment. One instrumentalist in particular made me wonder (I’m still wondering) if he was a professional musician I should recognize. At times my wondering became so distracting my mind drifted away from the focus of the service and I had to reel myself back in.
This experience has caused me to question how we typically utilize and identify church staff members during VBS – especially during VBS Family Celebration or Family Night.
Do we make sure every staff member is involved in some way that is visible to kids and parents alike? After all, kids have older siblings who need to be connected to the student ministry, parents and grandparents who need to be connected to the various areas of adult ministry, and musicians who need to be connected to the music ministry. How are you providing unchurched families an opportunity to know and connect with the church staff?
Here are a few ways that have come to mind:
- Station church staff members (from all ministry areas) throughout the building or event venue, especially as families are arriving and leaving.
- Wear name tags that identify staff position as well as name.
- Distribute an information sheet at registration that includes pictures and ministry description of each staff member.
- Enlist a different staff member each day to participate in some way during the worship rally.
- Train staff member to participate in intentional conversations with unchurched parents instead of with the church members they talk to all the time anyway.
- Enlist church staff to serve on the registration team as classroom escorts.
- Enlist church staff members to serve on parking lot and greeter teams.
- Rotate church staff members through student and adult VBS classes.
I’m sure you can come up with many more ideas. Join the conversation by sharing how church staff members – including office and facility staff – play a prominent role in your VBS events.
Looking forward to a few Impossible Clues to VBS 2017? We’re doing something different this year and I can’t wait for the reveal. It is already one of my favorite themes so mark your calendar now!