5 Ways To Be Relational With Your Congregation

While your goal as a pastor should be to get to know your congregation and build relationships with them, this can be an intimidating task. It can be tough to be relational with the people of your congregation, especially if you’re just getting started at a new church. So if you’re looking for some ways to engage with the members of your church and begin building relationships with them, here are a few tips to get you started.  

Introduce yourself to people you don’t know.

It might seem simple, but it goes a long way. It’s often that making the first move in introducing yourself is the hardest part of any conversation. So take that first step and introduce yourself to people you don’t know. If you make it your goal to do this a handful of times each Sunday, you’ll be amazed at how much easier it becomes to circle back and talk with those people later on. 

Spend time in the church hallways after service. 

As tempting as it is to want to hide or lay low after a sermon, one of the best things you can do for your congregation is to be available to them after church on Sundays. After all, preaching is not the only part of your job. You play a huge role as a shepherd as well. So it’s important to put yourself in a position to have conversations about the service with the people who were on the receiving end of it so that you have the chance to possibly go deeper with them and encourage them.  

Invite people to share a meal with you.

It can be a little intimidating to invite the pastor to share a meal with you. So make it easy on your congregation and invite them to share a meal with you. Just like we talked about in tip #1, making that first move is often the hardest part. So if you can, talk to your spouse and find a time that you can invite someone from your church over once a week or once every couple of weeks and make the point to invite your congregation into your home to get to know them better.  

Send hand-written notes to people in your congregation.

Hand-written notes might seem like a lost art, but they make a huge difference when it comes to building relationships. Showing someone that you were thinking about them and that you took the time to write them a note of encouragement can mean more to someone than you even know. I’ve known several pastors who carve out time in their schedule every week to write five notes of encouragement. By making this a habit, they’re making relationship-building a priority within their congregation.

If you pray for someone specifically, text them or email them and let them know. 

We all know prayer is powerful. And it’s an amazing thing to know someone is praying for you. Don’t you love when people tell you they are praying for you? So why not return that favor? If you have someone from your congregation on your prayer list or if the Holy Spirit put that person on your heart that morning as you were praying, send that person a quick text or email and let them know. Not only will it encourage them, but it will show them how much you care about them and value them and will only add to the relational capital you are developing within your church.  

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