As the Church continues to emerge from the shadow of COVID, we are embracing a new normal as a community of faith. The lessons learned during 2020 and the opportunities that came to light are reshaping many of the things that we do. How we shape our welcoming ministry is no exception. I am delighted to announce that Phil(ippa) Lowe has volunteered to oversee our welcoming ministry under a new title “Guest Services”. Phil has been part of the GBC family for over two years and has one heck of an interesting story about meeting Jesus six years ago. At the time, she couldn’t get over quite how much about Jesus had been lost in translation and kept asking,”why didn’t people show me this sooner?” It makes her a great fit for our Guest Services - not only does she love welcoming and journeying with people as they take their next step in their journey of faith, she remembers how confusing and overwhelming it can be at the start for people too!
One of Phil’s enduring memories of her first ever visit to a church (not ours) was how thankful she was that they had name badges. Why? Because she’s really bad at remembering names. Not knowing anyone as you walk into a new church is hard enough. Being introduced to people and knowing you’re likely to forget their name straight away is even harder. So being welcomed into a church by people whose names she could see made it a lot easier. “Plus, weeks later, if I still couldn’t remember someone’s name, I didn’t feel so pressured,” she explains. “I’m really good with faces, and details like where they had told me they’d been on holiday, but names slide away! Having that simple sticky label helped me feel so at ease. After all, I was one name they needed to remember. But I suddenly had about 60 to 100 names to recall. It really took the pressure off and freed me to focus on what I was really doing at the church: trying to figure out Jesus.” GBC will be piloting name labels at our 10:30 service from April 25th. Please help us prepare by doing the following:
Phil would love to hear from you! Completing Safe Church is a first step, so contact Marjy Robertson to get that rolling. Phil especially seeks volunteers for The WELCOMING & INTEGRATION part of Guest Services. So if you have a heart for meeting new people, and genuinely want to be able to encourage them to see the possibilities of God’s plans and purposes in their lives, this is the volunteer role for you. As a member of the WELCOMING & INTEGRATION team you will:be a friendly face on the lookout for visitors and guests, sitting next to them or introducing them to others in the congregation and looking out for them in weeks to comelove talking to people whom you have never met - when you look at a busy room you are inspired and excited by the new people you could talk to, rather than feeling overwhelmedbe comfortable in articulating your faith and sharing your story of following Jesus But you don’t need to have a talent for remembering everyone’s name, thanks to the new name label pilot.
*Phil is happy to have a chat with anyone who wants to know more. Call or SMS her on 0414711107. We’ll also be sharing a video/podcast in the next week so you get to know her better.