Central Baptist Church of Southington Connecticut


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The Church Calendar

  • Jim Townsley
  • Jan 30, 2015
Schedules, time lines, and calendars are an important facet of starting and pastoring a church. Good planning must not be underestimated. From the time of a commitment to start a church until the church's first service it normally will require two years of planning and preparation. This means keeping a calendar and monitoring events will be indispensable.
Raising financial support has become almost a necessity to properly begin a new church. Setting up meetings with churches is usually done at least six months prior to the scheduled meeting and often it is done a year or more in advance. In order to properly present the place where you will start the new church a survey trip will be necessary. After a trip to the area it may become necessary to take additional trips to the area or to survey a new area. Once the area is chosen prayer cards must be designed and printed. Initially when setting up the first meeting an exact location may not yet be determined. Naming the general area or region to which you will be going will usually be sufficient.  Since these meeting are six months away it will give you time to determine the exact location or city where you will start the church.
While raising support and traveling to churches addition churches can be contacted to schedule meetings. Also, more planning can be done during this deputation time. Periodically revisiting your area and looking for meeting places and talking with community leaders will help to prepare for the first service. A meeting place should be solidified six months in advance of the first service. John and Romans can be printed and the meeting place can be listed on them. If the John and Romans are printed before the meeting place is secured a flyer can be inserted later.
Moving to the new area should be done at least two months before the first service and if possible moving to the new area sooner would be advised. A couple of weeks will be needed to get your family settled and move into your new home. All the printed material should be printed and ready five weeks before the first service target date. Some material may need to be stuffed or bagged and outside help can be solicited to help you. Visiting groups should be encouraged to help with the distribution the last four weeks prior to the first service. All of these events should be scheduled on your calendar.
Maps and GPS guidance should be provided with each visiting group. A master map should be maintained marking the areas as they are covered. The pastor should spend the majority of his time visiting the best prospects. People will want to meet the new pastor and most of the visitors will come as a result of his direct contact. By the time the first Sunday comes there should be several people who have committed to attend the first service. Everyone committed will not show up and a few may come that you have not met. Building the list of committed visitors is crucial to the first service being a success.
All this planning requires strict timelines and one delay can cause a domino effect of missing additional deadlines. Once the first service has come future planning should be already in motion. Announcements should be made of upcoming events at the first service. People need to know something is going on in this new church. Announcing a sermon series that would interest your target group is a good idea. A series on "Growing in Grace" or "What You Believe" could be helpful and encourage people to attend faithfully. Also having a fellowship in the near future would be something to promote. Food is always a good attraction and it is especially helpful to ask people to bring something. If they bring something they will be there. Doing something for the youth can be a great activity to announce. It may be as simple as having a softball game, but it is something to promote and continue to have contact with these new prospects.
A year of planning could be laid out early on in the church. Putting everything on a calendar will be a great help to planning and promoting the new church. Without a calendar every activity will be haphazard and reflect a poor testimony on Christ. A three year calendar is important so that you can see the coming year in addition to the immediate year. Scheduling revival meetings and missions conferences sometimes require planning ahead two or three years. Remember to plan your work and work your plan. Your calendar will help keep you organized and on track. For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it? -- Luke 14:28.