Good Samaritan: Helping People in Need

Caring for the Underpriveleged with Efficiency, Love, and Compassion

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Helping people in need is an excellent way to attract new members to your congregation. Oftentimes, practical assistance is the doorway to the greater world of spirit and faith. By building relationships with those in the community who need you most, your church's numbers will naturally grow.

Make Your Church a Haven
In addition to their Sunday morning sermons, many churches host other sorts of events during the week between services. Some open their gyms or properties to youth sports leagues, while others accommodate evening classes or meetings for the betterment of the community in spare rooms in the building. Many churches sponsor addiction recovery programs for those who have gotten mixed up in drugs or alcohol. These programs are often led by recovering addicts who have found strength through their Christian faith.

Kindergarten and daycare services are also popular ways to help foster child development and give parents the flexibility to take on a new job or care for a loved one who has fallen ill. Many churches host nonprofit daycares, which are often run by parents.

Single Adults
As divorce rates and the trend toward marrying later in life continues, the numbers of single adults continue to rise. How is your church reaching out to these people and making sure that they know that they're a welcome and vital part of your religious community?

For starters, you might try surveying the single adults who are already a part of your church. How do they feel about the ministry? Are there classes or services they'd like to see? Do they feel like an integrated part of your congregation? As you gather answers to these kinds of questions, you'll begin to understand how you can better reach out to other single Christians.

For a more proactive approach, there are a number of ways to proceed. With childcare provided, things like single parent mixers or a "Mom's Night Out" for single mothers can be excellent ways of attracting new people to your congregation. You might try inviting single persons to lead various aspects of your Sunday sermons -- singing hymns, for example.

You can also focus your sermons on aspects of the single life in the Bible. Many figures in the New Testament, Jesus Christ included, were single throughout a large portion of their youths, and often into old age as well. To highlight the contributions and worship of your unmarried church goers, finding new and inventive ways to honor them will go a long way, helping to attract other single adults to your congregation.

New Families
With the changing times, families are coming in all shapes and sizes. What are you doing to attract and provide support for the new Christian family -- the one with a single parent, or divorced parents, or children from multiple marriages? Though these are different kinds of families, they are still families. We recommend providing education services to these sorts of people in hopes of attracting them to your congregation. Providing classes in things like parenting, single parenting, divorce recovery, and finance management will lead to improving lives for many members of your religious group and community at large.

Advertise Your Resources!
Perhaps you're holding classes of this kind, but your turnouts aren'Â’t quite what you'd hoped. Why not? Are you advertising in places that single parents might frequent like grocery stores, daycares, and other counseling services? Sometimes, providing a small addition like a map on your advertisements can make an enormous difference in your turnout.

Regardless of how you choose to help, providing services and havens for the people in need in your community is an invaluable service, and will eventually lead to the growth of your congregation or religious group.

Written by: Bob Robertson