At First Mennonite Church in Indianapolis, we have a tradition of laughing. Sometimes, we laugh at ourselves! Laughter has been one of many good resources to use these last couple of years. After all, a pandemic and a pastoral search aren’t going to occur simultaneously very often. I hope not, anyway!
Now that one of our new pastors has joined us in early November, it is appropriate to remind ourselves how to be welcoming for our pastor. These suggestions may also help us be more welcoming to others we encounter at church or in our daily activities.
- Let her know you are glad she is here!
- Swap your 1990’s directory photo for a newer one, preferably, one which actually looks like you in this decade.
- Invite someone new to an informal small group activity (a hike, picnic, campfire).
- Wear a name tag, any name tag.
- Introduce yourself to at least one person you don’t know twice a month (your fast-growing teenager does not count).
- Minimize abbreviations and acronyms.
- Give grace freely.
- Wear your name tag.
- Affirm new ways of singing, praying, or worshipping.
- Invite past participants to come worship with us again.
- Invite someone you don’t know to join you and others to an easy lunch after church (India Palace, Newfield’s Café, Hoagies and Hops, pizza on the playground, etc.)
- Agree to go with a newer person to just one of many “extra-Sunday” activities offered thru church.
- Pray for Monica, and let her know you are praying.
About the author
Robin is now fully retired after 33 years as a pathologist and laboratory medical director. When Deb and he are not busy with volunteer projects, they continue to hike in various national and state parks. This photo includes their granddaughters at Mammoth Caves National Park this Fall.