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Monday, February 14, 2011

Invitation Sunday - New Ideas

Our Stake has "Invitation Sunday" (sometimes called "Missionary Sunday") once or twice a year, and the next one is coming up in March. This is meant to be a special opportunity for ward members to invite their nonmember friends/relatives to Church on a Sunday that is specially geared toward visitors. We provide invitations for ward members to give to their friends (see other posts in the "Invitation Sunday" category, at right, for invitation ideas). This is organized by the Stake and Bishopric. Normally we have Sacrament speakers (usually ward missionaries and full-time missionaries) who are assigned to give talks on gospel basics, and sometimes a special missionary presentation is planned for Sunday School as well.

Today in our ward mission correlation meeting we discussed some ways that we might be better able to help our members to invite their friends this year. If your ward has "Invitation Sundays" these are some suggestions that may help you. Even if you don't have a specific Sunday geared toward inviting non-members, its important to help encourage members to invite their friends whenever appropriate, and some of these ideas (or the principles behind them) could work any week of the year!

Here are some of the ideas we came up with:
  • Incorporate explaining how to invite friends/relatives to church into the new-member discussions (Newer members may not be sure how to approach their friends, and they are a great source of non-member friends/relatives...).
  • If you have new members who have already completed the new-member discussions, consider having the ward missionaries or full-time missionaries make a special visit to these members for a special lesson on how to invite friends/relatives to church.
  • Make sure to include the youth and primary children, provide invitations to them as well.
  • Advertise the "Invitation Sunday" well in advance of the planned event. Submit information for bulletins, newsletters, or programs that are appropriate in your Ward. You may also consider having it announced in Relief Society and Priesthood meetings, Primary, Young Womens meetings, and maybe even Sacrament meeting (if approved by your Bishop). Posters on display tables and/or bulletin boards may also be appropriate.
  • Now available through the LDS online store (on the official Church website, www.lds.org) are "I'm a Mormon" cards. These have a space for a personal message and/or a printed label sticker (for if you want to pre-print the address and date/meeting time). Look for this item in the Ward Mission section, in the "Whats New" section, or search for "I'm a Mormon" in the online store's search box. These come in a box of 500 (10 styles) for $10.00 (free shipping). See photo, below. For other ideas on invitations, see my other posts in the "Invitation Sunday" category, at right)

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