OK, its not the word but I had to lure you in somehow.
How many times have you witnessed a scenario like this…
You are enjoying (or maybe enduring) the preliminary stuff at a worship experience. The musicians are talented and at least seem dedicated, the people are friendly, you are comfortable and ready to be taught. Then it happens.
Perhaps this is the first person you have actually heard talk at the gathering you are attending. He gets up in front of people for the ubiquitous greeting and announcements. The greeting is warm and heart-felt but the announcements…shoot me now. He drones on and on about the upcoming youth ministry trip, the dedication of the new mop heads, the unfortunate misadventure involving the tepid tea and stale scones at the last ladies meeting, meetings upon meetings, the nominees for church officers, the weather, the current price of kangaroo pelts in Australia, the…you get the idea. No too long after the 20 minute reading of the bulletin begins – you check out. Come on, I know its happened to many of us.
So what is the point? Announcements are not just about announcements! In the four to seven minutes we have to say something (remember this might be the FIRST something someone hears and will decide if they want to come back right then!) we want to leverage that resource the best we can.
Here are some ideas of what that time is:
– One more chance for all of us to be reminded about the mission and why our doors are open that Sunday (or Saturday night)!
– An initial verbal challenge for all of us to be ready to engage with the teaching and take that next step in faith.
– The opportunity to share information about all church events (picnics, baptism, work days, prayer meeting, etc)
– A time for a member of the pastoral team to help us all remember where our focus should be for the next 40 minutes.
– Public prayer – which sometimes involves the sharing of special needs that the entire body should be aware of and wins that we can celebrate together.
What this is time is not:
– A laundry list of all the possible ministries and activities in any given week
– A public reading of the bulletin or PowerPoint announcements
How you can help:
– Ministry leaders should utilize both digital and print media to announce ministry initiatives.
– Prepare handouts for the bulletin. We can make sure you know where the copier is. That is what it is for!
– Make PowerPoint slides for advertisement. You can find people to help you with this too.
– Utilize the web. Use Facebook, email, Twitter and texts. You can still call people too. 🙂
– Use small group leaders to get the word out about your ministry.
– Be proactive in communicating about your ministry!
– Send me an email with your announcement and we will put it out there on Facebook!
Ok, ok. Let’s slow down. Does that mean we will never make ministry specific announcements? No! From time to time we need to make a public announcement about particular wins and needs. These will be strategic and special not utilitarian and dull. We (the pastoral team at New Life) need some lead time when that happens. Get us the info as soon as you can so we can help figure out a way to best get it out there.
We have roughly 60 minutes a week to say something! Let’s make it count.