Being new at anything can make all of us a little nervous. We want to provide patient, gracious support for all those who visit our church community. We don't want anyone to feel like a stranger. We want to welcome all our guests (without ever embarrassing them!) and help them become friends. Here are some things WE try do to help. We've also added a few things that YOU might consider that have proven helpful for others.
Things WE try to do to help:
Our Hospitality Team always tries to greet folks at the main entrance (or sooner, if the weather is nasty). A Hospitality Team member will introduce themself and greet you, thanking you for being our guest. Then they will ask how they can help. You may have questions about childcare, the restrooms, seating in the auditorium, or other issues. We are always very glad to help you with any of those matters.
Prior to the service, or after the service is over, we hope many folks will introduce themselves to you and welcome you. You may find that some of them have a lot in common with you (e.g. neighborhood, children/teens, work, hobbies, etc.).
We try hard to remember names. Your name is important to you...and we want to make sure you know you are important to us.
After your first visit the Pastor or another volunteer will reach out to you with a thank you note and usually a phone call, email or text. We try hard to never be pesky or pushy. But we do want to encourage folks and get to know them in whatever way and timing they are most comfortable.
Things YOU can do that will help:
Fill out the guest registration card provided to you upon arrival by the Hospitality Team or an usher. Please provide as much of the information as applies and you are comfortable sharing. We promise we won't misuse it. And we will never share it with anyone outside our church. Before you leave you can place your card in the offering plate, hand it to an usher, a Hospitality Team member, or even the Pastor. This allows the Pastor to send a thank you note through the mail. Then he or another volunteer will follow up with a phone call, email or text.
Let us know how we can help. You can add a personal note, a prayer request or ask a question on the back of your guest registration card. Or you can take a Communication Card out of the pew rack where you are seated and do the same. Feel free to share with us any prayer requests or personal needs you may be facing. You can also ask us questions about the service. We have a Communication Box at the Information Center out in the main foyer. Anything left in that box will be picked up after the service by the Church Secretary and shared directly with the Pastor.
Say hello to the Pastor before you leave. He usually stands in the foyer so he can greet folks as they depart. He loves to greet people in person. It is a lot easier to contact people you have already met. But if you can't, he won't take offense.
Be willing to hang around for a few minutes. During the service the focus is on the Lord and the opportunity to study and worship. But after the service we enjoy meeting other people. Normally, if folks see someone they don't know, they will tastefully come over to greet a guest. We can all use a few more friends!
When the Pastor or another volunteer contacts you, feel free to ask questions that you may have. You might even want to write down a note on your copy of the bulletin. It's a great place to list the names of people you meet, too.
Sign up to receive the church newsletter. It is circulated by email as a PDF attachment, or via USPS for those who request it. BEBC News is distributed weekly, normally on Thursday afternoon. You will find many articles about upcoming events, special ministry efforts, support resources for Bible reading, scripture memory & meditation, volunteer opportunities, and recommended resources (e.g., books, articles, music, podcasts, mobile apps, etc.). We even include photos of recent events.
Come and visit for another service. It's always easier to interact with people on a follow-up visit. And you may notice other things that will encourage you or spur additional questions. Don't forget to ask about the Ladies' Bible Study or the Men's Fellowship. Those meetings are in a small group format and are much more informal. That allows more opportunity for getting to know folks. It also provides an easier format for informal interaction and practical discussion.