Connect with Easter Visitors

Seven Ways to Connect with Kids’ Ministry Easter Guests

by Mark Entzminger / March 27, 2015

This week, weve been talking about how kids ministry leaders can maximize the opportunity of Easter. If theres one thing that Id want leaders to remember, its that it takes intentional effort to draw first-time guests—whether theyre kids or parents—into our ministry. 

Really making an impact and ensuring that guests dont simply show up annually on Easter takes preparation and foresight. We need to be proactive rather than reactive about our Easter Sunday visitors.

Seven Ways to Connect with Kids Ministry Easter Guests 

Here are just a few ways you can intentionally connect when you welcome guests this Easter Sunday:

1. See the church through their eyes. This one is hard, because it’s easy for us to overlook a stack of paper or poor signage in the parking lot or church entrance. But it’s critical! To help you understand how your church is viewed by newcomers, consider going to an unfamiliar church as if you were an attendee and see what you notice. Or ask some new attendees what their biggest challenges were when they started attending.
2. Greet the children first. Nothing speaks of your values to a parent more than making sure you notice and engage their children in conversation. Rule #1—Slow down! If you are frantic on Sunday mornings, you will not have the time to truly connect with parents who are visiting. Rule #2—Look them in the eye! You may need to get down on one knee to do this, but it makes connecting much richer. Rule #3—Learn their names. If you want parents to know your love for kids, use their child’s name in a positive statement when they come to pick up that child—without needing to look at the child’s nametag.
3. Speak life. Even when you are not in conversation with a new guest they will be listening to your tone, body language, and words. Don’t get caught being negative and condescending.
4. Instruct regular attenders about their responsibility to welcome guests. Life at church takes on a different tone when everyone is seeking to greet and befriend new guests. 
5. Instruct regular attenders about making the environment open to the moving of the Holy Spirit. If you want new guests and nonbelievers to know how to respond to the Holy Spirit, then all of your church members should be modeling this throughout the service. When your regular attenders are taking notes, opening their Bibles, worshipping, praying, etc., they say to a new guest, “I believe this is important and real.” This will help guests be willing to respond to the leading of the Holy Spirit.
6. Provide important information to the parents before they ask. Good signage and concise information about your church is crucial. You must look at this through the lens of someone who has never been before and may be cautious about coming to church. How easy is it to find times, locations, phone numbers, and what to expect on your website? What kind of print resources are available that talk about how to know Jesus? Do you have printed resources that describe all the church activities they can get involved in? In what ways do you help parents understand your check-in system and make sure they are comfortable with it? How do you handle a parent who is not comfortable leaving their child with people they don’t know in an unfamiliar environment?
7. Listen. God gave you two ears and one mouth. Maybe this was for a reason. :) 

I want to encourage you to be intentional when you meet and follow up with families who are visiting your kids ministry this Easter. I think kids and parents alike can tell the difference between being greeted because they are another warm body in the room and being greeted because volunteers and leaders are genuinely glad theyve visited and want to get to know them. 

Theres nothing that makes an impact on people like really feeling they were seen and heard. 

How are you planning to prepare your volunteers for the new faces they will experience on Easter Sunday?