What do you do when a guest comes into your home? You welcome them in, give them something to drink right away, and make them feel like they belong there.

But what happens when they show up to your church? Do you know your next right step? And what if they want to know more about your church, take a giant leap and call your church their new church home. Are you ready to serve them week in and week out?

We recommend holding regular Welcome Desserts for all guests in your church, where you give them a forum to ask any and all questions as well as learn what the church is all about, in the safety and comfort of your home.

Here is what we recommend, in ten simple steps.

10 Steps to Your Welcome Dessert

  1. As soon as they show up, make them feel like they belong there. Hand them a drink, tell them to put on their extrovert hat (if only for an hour), and give them a real quick lay of the land so they won’t feel entirely out of place.
  2. Give your guests time to meet one another. Don’t rush. Let your guests walk the room and strike up conversations. Have another couple along for the ride with you, so they can help you work the room and make sure people know they are welcome as well.
  3. Gather your guests. After giving them a five minute warning, gather your guests into a comfortable common area. A large living room, outdoor patio, etc … is the best call. Make sure you have enough seating for everyone, as standing room only doesn’t work for this kind of an event.
  4. Start off with a lame joke. Don’t take yourself too seriously. This breaks the ice and lets everyone know you’re normal. For example: Why didn’t Noah go fishing? He only had two worms. Total dad joke right there.
  5. Ask your guests: “Why did you come to __________ (name of church).” Then ask them a followup, “Why did you decide to come back?” Everyone will have an answer to this, it will create bonds between your guests, and you will gain keen insight about how your church is operating.
  6. In 60 seconds, tell your guests: Why your church exists, What sets you apart from all the other churches, How life changes when you call __________ (name of church) your church home.
  7. Expand on your elevator speech. Go a little deeper with your pitch. You’re not a salesman, but you are attempting o convey a clear understand about why your church is here, what sets it apart, and how things are different because it is around. Make sure you tell stories, explain in brief your mission and values. Stay focused.
  8. Allow your guests to ask questions. After you give your elevator speech and expand on it a bit, allow your guests to ask questions. You may have shared a story they relate to, they could want to know about your personal life, and they may be confused. Give it room to breathe and don’t mind the awkwardness as people consider their questions.
  9. Wrap and dessert. Thank your guests for coming. Remind them that you will be around to continue to answer any questions they may have. Direct them to the dessert and coffee table, and to stick around in order to get to know the other guests.
  10. Conclude. Your welcome dessert should take anywhere between 60-90 minutes. Try not to go over that, as there will be some extreme introverts in the audience who are already feeling uncomfortable with going to something like this. Snap a picture of everyone who came to the dessert, so admin can enter it into the database, and make sure you thank each and every guest for taking the time out of their schedule to join you.

Don’t stop here!

Learn more about how to properly treat your guests in your church. We’ve got that covered and more, in our article about the difference between guests and visitors.

A huge thanks is owed to Larry Osborne at North Coast Church, who has helped speak into the development of this Welcome Dessert Script and who hits a home run every time when he leads them at his home.