During the months before Easter, the primary focus of many parishes is on how to get the most people possible to Easter mass. With a tremendous amount of work and effort, Easter is often a fantastic success in terms of numbers of people attending. However, for most parishes, the following Sunday is often a big disappointment, with few of the new people from Easter coming back the following week. Here are 5 tips that will help you make sure this doesn’t happen at your parish.
- Use a connection card at the Easter mass: Few visitors will come back without follow-up. Be sure to have a connection card for them to enter their contact information and make sure you take prayer requests on the card.
- Tell people what you regularly do: Many parishes forget to share basic information such as mass times, the parish’s most popular ministry groups, where the parish most needs new volunteers, and what they can do now to help those in your local community by volunteering their time, talents, or treasure to your parish.
- Tell them what your parish can do for them. Remember to tell them in your bulletin, on your website, or with an additional publication, what you offer for their family and children every week.
- Follow-up immediately: Connect to them through a follow-up email, postcard, or social media connection within the week after Easter. This makes a powerful and lasting impact.
- Invite visitors to interact outside of mass: This suggestion came from a church that hosted a “Latte with the Pastor.” They would send visitors a follow-up with two free coupons for lattes along with a note that said they could be used to join the pastor at the local coffee shop any Thursday from 3:00 – 5:00 p.m. The visitor was invited to come and ask any question they wanted to about the church’s faith. The response was tremendous and could be a creative way to bring visitors back to the parish to learn more.
The tips here do take effort, but they make certain that the tremendous amount of work you do to prepare for Easter results not only in a joyous Easter mass but in continuing contact with your guests and a much greater possibility of them coming to know Jesus through the Gospel.