10 Things You Can Get Ready NOW To Ensure An Epic Easter
Christmas is just barely in the rearview mirror. You’re only one month into your New Year resolutions and the temperature keeps dropping. Time to plan Easter!! Some may argue it’s too early, but with Easter hopping onto the calendar on March 31st this year, if you haven’t started planning, you might just find yourself already late to the Easter party. Don’t worry fam. Consider this blog post your early Easter wake-up call. We’ve got 10 things you can get ready right now to ensure an epic Easter.
1 - SET THE TABLE
Your dining room table is probably pretty empty right now, but when you have dinner guests coming that changes. You set the table for the festivities. That’s only one aspect of your hospitality. From cleaning the floors to burning candles, you get ready for your guests to have a beautiful experience. It’s no different than when you’re expecting new guests at your church. Here are some pro tips to help you set the table well:
Find Fresh Eyes
Get some people outside of your organization to secret shop your church. Have them come on a random Sunday to be able to share the good, bad, and ugly of their experience. Give them a form to fill out afterward. Include questions regarding clutter, signage, cleanliness, smiles, and general hospitality.
Update Your Signage
Do a walk-through with your team. Make sure areas are clearly marked and visible from a distance. Replace printed taped pieces of paper with professionally printed good-quality materials.
Organize and Declutter
Choose a day for the team and members to get into all of the nooks and crannies. Throw out expired food items. Deep clean some areas that are in need. Re-design the nursing mom’s room or swap out that old stained carpet. Purge, purge, purge.
2 - INVOLVE EVERYONE
Challenge your community to shift from consuming to investing. Let everyone know how important Easter is and how they can be a part of ensuring a great outcome. From decor to design, create serving opportunities designed to get your community involved and invested. In turn, they are more likely to invite folks to something they had a direct hand in helping to make happen. Don’t forget to expand your current serving roles on Easter Sunday in order to better serve a higher guest volume.
3 - KEEP IT SIMPLE
Gone are the days when churches had to put on a holiday extravaganza. The younger generations want your authentic personality, not some awe-inspiring performance. Besides, you’ll keep them with what you get them with. You’d rather put your best self forward. By doing that, you’re letting them know what to expect in the future. Replace big production with real relationships. Swap out a complex show for a simple show of kindness. That’s not to say, don’t do anything special. It’s a special day, so it’s appropriate to try to make it special. Try to focus on things that will bring people face to face, not just shoulder to shoulder. Create environments where people will be connecting, not just consuming. Spend money on a coffee cart or food truck, rather than another set of lights. In a culture struggling with loneliness more than ever, presenting a genuine and loving community will go a long way. Doing the simple things well will be extremely attractive. You don’t have to be something you’re not. Ditch trying to put on a fake show and focus on showing off the real love of Christ.
4 - COMMUNICATE, COMMUNICATE, COMMUNICATE
Make sure everyone knows what to expect. From new service times to where volunteers should park, get all of the information out as soon and as often as possible. Start with your staff. Communicate the same information to them several times and empower them to share it with their teams. Let them be carriers of communication. Over-communication is the start of good communication. Just when you think you’ve said it so many times that people are sick of hearing it, they’re just beginning to get it. Don’t stop. You can even use your church app to send out reminder notifications. Keep communicating digitally, verbally, smoke signal, morse code, and any other way you can. The worst part of communication is when you think it’s taken place.
5 - GET PICTURE PERFECT
What more Easter (besides the obvious) than family photos? Transform small unused areas of your church into photo-friendly spots. Providing picturesque backgrounds not only enhances the aesthetic appeal but also encourages members and visitors to capture memorable moments. Oftentimes these pictures end up promoting your community. It also reminds your guests of how much of a great time they had visiting your church. These photo spots can serve as a testament to the warmth and inclusivity of your congregation. Consider hiring a professional photographer to capture family photos. It will give you a reason to have a touchpoint with first-time guests and an opportunity to invite them to visit your website or app to download their picture. Whether it’s a scenic garden. an iconic architectural feature or a simple selfie spot, these photo-friendly spaces can become a unique way to connect with your community beyond Easter Sunday.
6 - RESOURCE YOUR COMMUNITY TO INVITE
As church leaders, you can play a pivotal role in fostering a culture of inviting by equipping your members with tangible tools. Consider creating visually appealing invitation cards, digital graphics, or shareable digital content that encapsulates the spirit of your church. Be sure you include your website or a QR code that leads them back to your church app where they can get more details. Don’t stop there. Encourage them to leverage social media platforms by giving them digital assets easily shareable. Your members want to invite their friends and family but often don’t know how. Make it easy by resourcing them.
7 - PLAN YOUR DIGITAL STRATEGY
Use every digital tool at your disposal to get folks to your church to hear the greatest story ever told. From the simpler things like leveraging your social media to the more advanced methods like curating your SEO (a fancy term describing how to make it easy for someone to find your church online). This part can be scary and fear, oftentimes, freezes us from doing things. God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power, love, and sound mind. Don’t allow fear to stop you from reaching the lost. Reach out to other churches who are already doing it well. Ask people within your church to meet with you and help design a digital strategy. Contact companies to help you. (Shameless plug, but Field Day offers a personalized digital strategy planning session free of charge. 😉) Expand your ability to reach the lost in your local community and beyond by leveraging digital resources for the Kingdom.
8 - INSPECT WHAT YOU EXPECTED
So, you’ve successfully navigated the labyrinth of executing Easter. Congratulations! Now, before you break out into your Holy Spirit celebratory dance down the aisle, it’s time for the post-event evaluation—a sort of ecclesiastical debriefing, if you will. A guiding principle is to “inspect what you expected” which is just a fancy way of reminding ourselves to see if reality met our glorious and often unrealistic expectations.
Ask these essential questions:
- What went well?
- What didn’t go so well?
- What you should do differently next time?
Don’t forget to evaluate your Return on Investment (ROI). We’re not just talking about the heavenly kind here; we’re diving into the dollah dollah bills y’all. As good stewards of God’s budget, it’s time to dissect where the money went. Did the catering smack? Was the marketing effective? Consider if the event’s impact on attendance and soul-winning justified the financial acrobatics.
So, as you ponder whether your Easter service was worth the confetti cannon and the lingering smell of the petting zoo in the lobby, be sure to take note of what worked and what didn’t.
9 - POINT PEOPLE TO SOMETHING AFTER
Easter services are like a block party, attracting a diverse group of first-time guests eager to take in the celebration. However, the real challenge lies in transforming these visitors into community members before the spiritual sugar rush fades away. Pointing people to something beyond the Easter service is key. What could you invite your new guests to that keeps the momentum rolling? Consider hosting a welcoming brunch, a casual meet-and-greet with church leaders, or even a special newcomers’ event. Create an environment where they can connect, ask questions, and feel a sense of belonging.
Strategically promote upcoming events or sermon series that align with their interests. Whether it’s a captivating sermon series, engaging community initiatives, or special gatherings, use Easter as a launchpad.
10 - HAVE FUN
Easter is a celebration, although it doesn’t always feel that way to a church staff. Don’t allow the process to rob the joy of the holiday. Plan moments of fun and schedule margin in the days and weeks leading up to Easter. Maybe plan a party for your staff and their family. Rent bunnies for the afternoon. Eat and laugh together. Go into Easter with rested hearts and joyful spirits, rather than empty tanks. Your teams will appreciate it and their families will love you for it.