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How does Element connect with first-time guests?
We have a four-week module called Growth Track. It’s 60 minutes after our second service each Sunday. The first Sunday of the month is Discover—Senior Pastor Erik Lawson talking about who we are as Element Church. The second Sunday of the month is Essentials, which is about our Christian walk and how we do life on a daily basis. The third week is Purpose—what God wants for us and where we fit into the church. And the fourth Sunday of the month is E-team—we highlight all the volunteer opportunities and try to get people engaged in serving at Element.
Why do you offer Growth Track on Sunday?
We don’t want any obstacles. People are busy, they have lives, they have kids, they have everything else. You want them to come back at 6 p.m. during the week? That’s too much for people. But they may say, “Well, I’ve driven to church today, I can stay an extra hour.” It’s not about our convenience, it’s about theirs. If they’re looking for a way to connect with people, they don’t have to wait for something during the week. They can just come on in. There’s always lunch and childcare, too. We then try to do a good job following up with email or phone calls in between the weeks. We don’t want to make it burdensome but want them to know they’re valued in the process.
What will people hear about the ways to engage at Element?
We always talk about our weekend experience. We always talk about volunteering. We always talk about small groups. And we’re trying to get individuals attached somewhere in there. We realize that if you’re trying to walk this Christian walk, you need people around you who are walking in the same direction. And it’s easier to do that when you’re coming to church, serving, in a small group. So we’re trying to find ways to make sure those points of contact are easier for individuals to engage in.
Can you share one way you’re making it easier?
We start talking about volunteering in the first week. Then, in the third week, they’ll take assessments, do an application for volunteering and complete a background check. That gives us time to get their paperwork processed before the fourth week when they’ll hear about every ministry. Then, we start aligning the ministries just like a job fair with job descriptions for every position we have available. So when someone sees one they’re interested in, they can apply to that one. They want to find the best fit for themselves, but it’s difficult when they don’t know what’s available for them. So we try to be as informative as we can, letting them know what’s going on and how to be a part of what’s happening.
How do you know Growth Track is working?
We’ve got some volunteers right now working with Growth Track because they came from Growth Track. I talked to a lady last week, and her thing was she went through Growth Track and said, “I want people to experience what I experienced.” Ultimately volunteers produce volunteers. When a volunteer finds a position and they’re happy about it, they’re enjoying it, they’re fitting into their calling, this allows them to draw people in.
A 2014 Outreach 100 Church
No. 84 Fastest-Growing
50-60 adults in a Growth Track session each week