In the registration form on a recent webinar on Improving your Church Hospitality, people were asked
“What is your biggest challenge in your church hospitality ministry?”
Most respondents were people leading or serving in Hospitality ministries, pastors and officers in church leadership, plus a few church planters and church consultants.
The answers fell into 5 common barriers where churches struggle with their hospitality ministry.
Five Common Barriers to Effective Church Hospitality
Respondents described their congregations as having people who
- don’t notice visitors,
- friendly with each other,
- don’t care about welcoming outsiders,
- too busy fellowshipping with themselves.
Some examples can be seen
2. No Personal Ownership
Respondents indicated concerns about how to share a vision for hospitality ministries within a congregation
- So that the members would personally greet people they don’t know.
- Taking responsibility for some of the systems of hospitality (training, recruiting, etc).
- To get beyond “Friendly with themselves”
This gets really how to cast Vision for Hospitality Ministries in a Church and increasing the visitor attentiveness of the church in general.
3. Not enough Volunteers
Church Hospitality ministries are labor intensive. Think of all the people involved in
- Administration level of Hospitality Ministry.
- Recruiting the Greeter / Usher / Welcome Center Volunteers.
- Training the Church Greeter
- Training the Ushers.
- Training the Welcome Center Volunteers.
- Scheduling the volunteers
- Keeping volunteers motivated and so.
Finding, Recruiting, Training, Scheduling and maintaining all those volunteers is a lot of work.
That list doesn’t cover all of those volunteers and ministries who are tangential to the hospitality ministries like the
- Children’s workers
- Audio / Sound technicians
- Janitors / Custodians who keep the building looking clean and nice.
4. Lack of Adequate Training for Hospitality Ministry Volunteers
Respondents indicated that out on the open market for purchase is there is a lack of resources available for training. This was two fold
a. Not enough training materials
I’ve looked at a lot of resources currently available on Amazon. I would agree. There are some great books on church hospitality, but not ones that focus on training.
To help fill that need, I’ve created two ebooks that you can download immediately after purchase.
- You can get the 2 DVD Greeter Training Combo Set of Greeter Training DVDs from the store
- See this tutorial on fixing your greeter ministry.
- Church Greeters 101 in Paperback or Kindle
If a visitor leaves your church and says “No one said hello,” you might need to grow this avenue of ministry
- How to Welcome Church Visitors: in the EvangelismCoach.org store
b. Not enough training
Respondents point out that there is a great need to provide some kind of training, but have a hard time knowing where to start. Each of my e-books give suggestions on how to do that.
5. Connecting Visitors to the Congregation
Can visitors connect relationally to the congregation? How easy is it for them to break into the social networks of your congregation?
Respondents indicated that they needed help with ways to
- Get church visitor contact information.
- Contact visitors during the week after the service
- Help visitors come back a 2nd, 3rd, or 4th time.
You might want to consider this Visitor Assimilation Webinar that is available in the store.
Let me ask you this?
If I were to get to a list of 10 barriers, what would you add?
This is more evident now that I am reaching out into a new-territory.
I see my church as one that has a group of cliques and it is difficult to get to know all 300 members.
I am desiring to learn spanish and each of the 15-25 people at another church took time to say hello this past sunday morning.
Thanks for sharing. I presume that the other church in your comment was a Spanish speaking congregation, and that your church is an english speaking one?
If so, you are also likely dealing with some cross cultural differences as well.
We just awoke to the horrible fact, that our church is deserving of an F when it comes to greeting our guests. We, the members feel at home, but we ignore our visitors. So we have each begun reading and trying to apply what we have learned. The next guest who walks through our doors, i hope will feel as if they have been with family, and desire to come back again and again.
Thanks for stopping by. You can visit the hospitality category on the website and see hundreds of articles related to this theme.
Of all the things you want to accomplish to make improvements, what area do you want to fix in the next 30 days?