Ministerial Musings By Rev. Carol Rosine
You, my friend, are invited to be part of the FUSF Welcoming Team! Just think what a truly warm and welcoming congregation we could be if each one of us took it upon ourselves to expand our circle of acquaintances at church and perhaps grow some new friendships.
I’m guessing that when you look around the sanctuary on Sunday mornings you see a lot of folks whose names you don’t know and faces you may not recognize. Am I right? Well, just think what it’s like for visitors to look around and see nothing but a sea of strangers, pleasant-looking strangers, but strangers nonetheless. Unless you’ve been with us forever, you probably remember what it was like when you were visiting and uncertain about this new church.
You might have been hoping to find kindred spirits here and, since you stuck around, chances are that this happened. But think about all those who visit for a while and then don’t come back. Sure, they may have listened to a sermon and realized that this is NOT the place for them, but it’s also possible that they didn’t really feel welcomed. Not feel welcomed? How could that be?
Well, if this is the case, there are things we can do. For example, if you have a “usual seat” in the sanctuary, why don’t you sit someplace else, perhaps even next to or close to someone you don’t know very well. Then, when worship ends and I invite you to greet the people around you, you will have someone new to greet. How simple is that? And if you have time to stay for coffee, why don’t you take a chance and invite this new acquaintance to join you. You could even sit at a table or come back into the sanctuary to sit and chat awhile.
Or if you are planning to go out to lunch after worship with a friend, why don’t you invite a few more to join you. My mother used to say that we had minister at every Sunday dinner when a table-full of church people gathered and talked about the sermon, often tearing it apart if I recall correctly! Just think, you could do the same. Five or six people around a table, sharing a meal and ideas. And I don’t mind, really, if you tear the sermon apart. Just spare me.
The thing is that it takes time to create connections, to discover if this is a community that will be a good fit. But if we are all intentional about really welcoming newer people and helping them to find places for themselves among us, we can make their transitions so much easier. So please help. Join the FUSF Welcoming Team.
See you at the meetinghouse!