Bullet(in) Points

I greatly enjoyed visiting with each of the Sunday School classes over the past few weeks as we discussed the “Road Map” document that I presented back in January.  One of the topics that came up frequently during those discussion is how we can do a better job of connecting with those who visit our church on Sunday morning.  As we talked a lot of ideas were shared, which is a great thing!  Keep those ideas coming!

One “tool” that we talked about using more is our weekly bulletin.  It is the one thing that we put in peoples’ hands every week, and we discussed how we could use it better.

So why have a bulletin in the first place, besides “because we’ve always had one?”  Believe it or not, there has actually been a considerable amount of research on the matter!  What that research shows is that churches are using their bulletins to:

1.       Provide sermon notes for the service. – We already do that!

2.      Share some important church announcements. – We are 2 for 2!

3.      Provide a general order of service. – Wow…we are with the times!

So far so good right?  Now consider these items:

4.      Share attendance/stewardship statistics. – Hmm…frankly I’m not sure about this one.

5.       A welcome message to visitors. – We really don’t have space for that in our current bulletin.

6.      Some sort of tear-off card that guests and members can fill out and drop off for follow up. - We have guest/follow up cards in the welcome packet and in the pews, but not the bulletin.  And we don’t have anywhere for the cards to be dropped off at.

Further research is showing that more and more churches are using customized (and simplified) bulletins and are creating them in a format that can be posted on their church website.

Some churches have done away with physical bulletins altogether, but I’m not sure that’s the way to go.  Still, the studies show that perhaps our bulletin is due for an overhaul.  What do you think?  What do you want out of our weekly bulletin?  Let’s talk…stop the office…send me an email…or catch me on a Sunday morning.

Here’s what’s happening:

1.       Please sign up for a 30 minute time slot and participate in our 24 hour prayer vigil during Holy Week.  Sign up sheets are in the sanctuary.

2.      We are still in need of helpers in the nursery.  Please consider serving and contact Shirley Echternatch.

3.      VBS Week will be June 11-15 this year.  Please be praying about how you might be able to help and sign up in the sanctuary.

4.      Choir Practice – Monday March 19 at 7:00 pm.

5.       PRC Meeting – Tuesday, March 20 at 6:30 pm.

6.      Saturday, 4/14 – Spring Clean Up Day from 8am until whenever the work gets done (probably by 11am).

7.       Holy Week 2018 at Ebenezer:

                   Palm Sunday – Holy Communion and Fellowship Meal

                  Wednesday 7 pm to Thursday 7 pm – 24 Hour Prayer Vigil

                   Maundy Thursday Service – 7 pm.  “Breads and Spreads” Fellowship time afterwards.  Bring your favorite bread (homemade or from your favorite bakery) and/or your favorite spread (jelly/jam/cream spreads/etc…) to share!

                   Easter Morning – Celebration Service

8.      I did receive confirmation on additional Holy Week Services in the community:

                    Good Friday Service at Metzler’s Mennonite Church at 7pm.

                    Easter Morning Sunrise Service at Carpenters Community Church at 6:30am.

See you on Sunday,

Scott