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  1. How about, “preach the whole counsel of God”? Would that be a little higher on the list than restroom access?

  2. Excellent points. I have been reading a lot about how important signage is lately, and I know the church we attend is short on that. It is great that you looked at the churches through the eyes of a newcomer. We can tend to forget how important all those things are when we have been going to a church for a while and “know the ropes.” We have to make new people feel welcome, which means not only showing them around, but also taking an interest in them and getting to know them. My husband and I are ushers at our church, so we get to meet people as they come through the door. It’s a great time to greet them and point out the main areas.

  3. I would add: Pastor, please help me hear and follow your message/sermon. I get lost when you take bunny trails. I get lost trying to figure out what you’re trying to say. And by all means, in your message, please help me see and know God more clearly.

  4. I have found the exact same thing when I go to churches to speak about single parents or to educate church leaders about the child of divorce. Even been asked to move out of someone’s “spot”! One wonders how unchurched people ever survive visiting a house of God. And why they ever return.

    When I was a consultant for Church Initiative going to church websites was very frustrating for all the reasons you stated and more.

    Covering all this in a book coming out next year with Abingdon Press. Thanks Thom for the validation there are others that see the same thing I do.

  5. Piet Labuschagne May 23, 2013 at 5:29 am

    I like your comments. Something that I always find very ammusing is at the end of the service while the Pastor is praying and calling people forward for prayer the background music is so loud that very few can hear the prayer or invite.

  6. Yes, yes yes! :) I love the focus on the FIRST TIME VISITOR… that is what I have been “preaching” to my own church and all our church clients in terms of websites, but everything else also…

    We have to think about what the “people” out there “need” and give it to them – yes they need God, but how many barriers do we put in front of them if they can’t even find parking, the bathrooms, your church’s address, etc

    Going to share this on our FB page, thanks!

    Patrick Steil

  7. As someone who is currently in the planting stages of a new church, I really appreciate the ideas! We are just now making decisions about signage and I am working on the website! For me, it was timely! Thanks!

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