The Oregon Faith Report - Faith News from Oregon

Six Ways to Get People Back to Church

August 11, 2012

Congregations Fire Up Steps to Invite Family, Friends, Neighbors and Co-Workers to National Back to Church Sunday on Sept. 16
By Back to


In what is becoming a national movement to help ignite a spiritual awakening in America, more than 14,000 churches are expected to invite people to come back to church on National Back to Church Sunday.

National Back to Church Sunday is based on the simple principle that 82% of people will come to church if invited by a friend, yet only 2% of church members invite their unchurched friends.

“In Houston more than 1.4 million people said they had gone to church, but half of those surveyed report they no longer attend,” said Pastor Rickie Bradshaw of the Union Baptist Association in Houston, Tex. “National Back to Church Sunday is providing us a great opportunity to reach almost 750,000 people for Christ. Our churches are gearing up to invite them to come see what the Lord can do in their lives.”

Here are six ways churches can encourage their members to get ready for Back to Church Sunday:

Churches are praying for their communities, that God will prompt members to invite people to church and that hearts will be moved to accept.

Congregations are viewing and sharing the “Pastor Rap – Back to Church Sunday” video. Already viewed more than 64,000 times, the video is part of the Back to Church 2012 Church Kit, available at The kit also includes six other promotional videos, more than 60 digital resources, an e-book, e-vites, social media links, sermons and other materials.

Church members are using social media content for Facebook and Twitter. Organizers can exchange ideas on the National Back to Church Sunday Facebook page (, while the event’s website ( gives individuals an opportunity to extend electronic invitations to friends, relatives and colleagues.

Invitations, door hangers and other resources are helping church members reach out to family, friends, neighbors and co-workers. These items can be ordered at, or churches can order customized promotional items by calling 1-800-991-6011.

Back to Church Sunday School curriculum is also available for children to help provide a positive experience on Sept. 16 for every age group.

Churches are registering their names and locations on the National Back to Church Sunday roster, making it easy for people to find a church to attend on Sept. 16. Registration is free and simple. A list of participating churches is available at

Churches are encouraged to sign up at and begin taking steps now to equip members to invite people to church on Sept. 16.

National Back to Church Sunday ( is the single largest annual community outreach in the nation, sharing the simple message and mission of inviting everyone in America Back to Church. The campaign empowers churches and church members with the tools they need to welcome their neighbors, friends and loved ones back to church, while providing the unchurched an easy way to find a welcoming church in their community.

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Discuss this article

John Fairplay August 11, 2012

Here’s another way: Make the service short and relevant to people’s actual lives. Too many churches rely on elements that were created to appeal to how folks lived 500 years ago. How is Jesus relevant to the world today? How can I apply the lessons he taught to a life lived in the 21st Century? Dogma and pagentry are great, but in a world that is moving 1000 miles an hour, they’re an ox cart.

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