As a participating Back to Church Sunday church, you will be intentionally reaching out to those who are “unchurched” or “dechurched” in your community. As part of this you will be encouraging your congregation to invite someone they know to come with them to church on September 17!
Using this Planning Calendar and the Planning Guide provided in the Church Kit, you can inspire your members to be inviters and be more effective in planning an invite-able and welcoming special service!
Five - Six Weeks Before
(July 30 - Aug 13)
- Meet with church board, elders and ministry leaders and make sure everyone knows about your special service and is ready to help make it a great event.
- Ask the church leadership team and prayer teams to begin praying for your event and unchurched people in your community.
- Create a social media strategy - see the Social Media Guide that came in the Church Kit. Start by making sure your social media profile is complete, the profile picture is up to date, and that you have a good quality cover photo (this would be great area to promote your BTCS event). From there, you’ll want to post daily, engaging and shareable content. Make sure people are aware of your special BTCS events by promoting your event on social media.
- Order custom direct mail postcards to send to every home in your community inviting them to your Back to Church Sunday services. Click here to see designs.
- Order other outreach and promotional tools - see the complete list in the Church Kit or Click here.
- Plan your follow-up strategy. How will you thank people for coming and how will you attract your visitors back to church after your September 17 event. Check out The Case for Christ Movie Sermon series and small group curriculum - it’s an excellent follow up campaign.
Three - Four Weeks Before
(Aug 13 - 27)
- Introduce your event to your congregation and cast the vision for Back to Church Sunday. Play the “ ”(Included in the kit) video during your Sunday Services.
- Deadline Approaching: Be sure to order custom direct mail postcards to invite your community to your Back to Church Sunday services. View designs. (Last day to order in time for Back To Church Sunday, August 23. Call 800-991-6011 for assistance.)
- Update your church website with Back to Church Sunday web graphics, included in your Church Kit. If you have video on your website, add a fun video like the "View All Videos " video to your page.
- Equip your members with invitation tools they can use to invite friends and neighbors to the big event.
- Recruit volunteers to hand DoorHangers in their own neighborhood or in the neighborhoods around your church. Don’t forget to involve your youth group!
- Begin posting on Social Media - use the videos in the kit, web graphics and memes. Don’t forget to ask your congregation to like and share the graphics on their own Social Media pages.
- Ask your congregation to begin praying for the people they are planning to invite.
- Order visitor gift books to give every new person who comes to your event. You might also want to ask local coffee shops and restaurants for coupons you can hand out along with the book.
One - Two Weeks Before
(Aug 27 - Sept. 10)
- Decorate your church with indoor banners that promote the Back to Church Sunday event and build excitement with your members
- Continue to post on social media and show the “View All Videos ” and “ ” videos (included in the church kit) during your services to get people motivated to invite their friends and neighbors.
- Continue to pray and ask your member to pray along with the leadership team.
- Meet with your greeters, ushers and hospitality teams to affirm their roles and make sure everyone knows their role in making visitors feel comfortable and welcome at your church.
The Week of the Event
(Sept 10 - 16)
- If you ordered Back to Church t-shirts for your team, pass out the shirts and make sure everyone wears it on Sunday
- Make sure your postcard invitations have been mailed to your community
- Prepare your bulletins and visitors gifts
- Give your whole church a good cleaning - concentrate on the bathrooms and children’s areas.
- Continue praying and posting on social media - post a fun, attention-getting video like "Churchpool Karaoke" (included in the church kit) and watch it get shared!
- Prepare invitations for your follow-up campaign and make sure you include an announcement in your service to entice visitors back on September 24.
- Plan to show a powerful welcome video at your service, to welcome visitors and reinforce to members that the church is truly a place to belong. Consider showing the “View All Videos ” video at the very beginning of the service. Then, the “ ” is a perfect pre-sermon video.