It’s no secret that we have been trying all kinds of ideas to help our community be a part of the ways we greet, usher, and provide social hour hospitality on Sunday – I am beginning my fourth year with Foothills, and I think we’ve tried at least 5 different big ideas since I started to try to find just the right fit.
With over 800 adults and 300 kids and youth who consider themselves in one way or another a part of our community, it is somewhat of a funny mystery why we struggle so much to fill our ushers, greeters, visitor table staff, and coffee-maker jobs every Sunday. It’s not that our community isn’t willing to pitch in – we have in the range of 200 people doing some sort of service for the church or on behalf of the church every week! Yet….nearly every Friday, we keep finding ourselves without sufficient folks to take on these important jobs….
Over the past couple of months, the Membership Team and the staff has been brainstorming and thinking through what’s going on with this dilemma. Through lots and lots of conversation, we came up with a plan that we are all feeling very good about, and two Sundays ago we launched our new plan.
This plan invites all of our groups – and I do mean all – from the Board to the Choir to ESL tutors to….everyone! – to cover at least one (and if they are big, more than one) Sunday in the church year, filling all of the hospitality roles as a team. We created a calendar slotting everyone in, and we discovered that when every group participates we are able to cover the whole year of Sundays without any problem!
The group providing these important hospitality roles will in turn be promoted through an insert in the order of service and with special nametags, which will help our wider community to know more about all of the ways to connect in our congregation. Serving together also allows the group to strengthen their relationship with one another, their sense of teamwork, as well as their connections to the congregation. We had in mind building on the model the Brotherhood has kept over the years where they serve coffee together regularly – giving back to the community and strengthening their relationship with one another.
If you want to serve on Sunday but you aren’t a part of a group, don’t worry! We have created a group called the Free Rangers where we will invite you to fill in when groups aren’t able to cover all the slots, and a few Sundays in the year are reserved for the Free Rangers entirely. To sign up for the Free Rangers, contact Kathryn at email@example.com.
If you are a part of a group, ask your group leader when YOUR Sunday is, and get it on your calendar now! We hope everyone will show up for their group’s Sunday, help people know about their group and ways to get involved, provide a wonderful welcome for everyone who comes on Sunday, and have fun along the way.
Thank you to all who do so much for our congregation. I am constantly amazed and grateful to be a part of this generous, joyful and welcoming community.
– Rev. Gretchen Haley, in partnership with the Membership Team and the staff