Receiving everyone warmly as though they already belong

Think 'PACE' when you welcome!


Have fun! Make it accessible for all! Be aware of any in-jokes that immediately bring a divide and stop the space being welcoming. How about creating a welcome bag to give to new people with info about your church and some sweets (everyone loves sweets!)?


Welcome is not just about our buildings, it’s about every access point. Is the culture of your church to mingle and welcome new faces? Do people stay in their own friendship groups to chat or do they make the first move towards new people? Do new people still feel welcomed in week 3 or 4? Could you hold an evening every 6 months where anyone new meets with the leaders to hear vision for the church and has the opportunity to ask questions so that they feel seen and included?


Does your church culture reflect the diversity of your community? Are the faces at the front representative of who gathers as part of your church? Does the food provided celebrate and reflect the diversity of your community? Are food allergy and intolerance needs catered for? Do you have a non-alcoholic option for communion for those who don’t drink or are in recovery?

What do meals together look like? Are they around tables? Is this how your community eats? Are house thresholds a barrier? Are some people happier with a brew on their doorstep or a meal in your home?


We need to be mindful that people come from all backgrounds, cultures, values and belief systems. Some may have experienced trauma, some may have addictions, some may struggle with literacy or have special educational needs or a disability. Whatever the challenge faced, we need to extend the same warm and loving welcome to everyone, so that everyone feels welcome and safe.

It was a great evening hiring a whole play park! Families from Make Lunch joined with our toddler group families and our wider church family. We got to know each other better, and a joy to see our Minister getting stuck in going down the death slide!! - Okehampton Baptist Church

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