For the last several weeks… maybe even months, you’ve probably been slaving away at designing Easter worship services. Themes are in place, the message in process, the music picked out and rehearsals under way. The lillies are on order, and your worship space may even be redesigned for this special occasion. You may have even begun developing or looking for that special video or animation piece to really draw folks in. There’s a good chance that you and or your team are doing everything in your collective power to take things to the next level for one of the most celebrated Sundays on the church calendar.
We all know that Easter is one of the highest attended days of the year. It’s one of a very small handful of days we have to reach those normally on the outside in greater numbers. Guests are open and attentive to attending church on this day, so It only makes sense that we’d put so much time and energy into making worship really great. We all secretly hope that if we’ve done our jobs right and we’ve created something really meaningful and engaging, they’ll come back and become a part of our church families. There’s really only one problem: what if they actually do come back?
Though we rarely think about it, one of the most important Sundays of the year is the week AFTER Easter. I’ve never been to a church on Easter that didn’t raise the bar creatively through music, message, environment and more. I’ve been to plenty who tend to take the next week off. If Easter weekend is the pinnacle of worship, the following Sunday is often the pit.
If we do manage to get some of the C&E crowd to come back for the next week and if they were impressed at all thinking “this church is different”, it only takes one typical church service to give them the impression that nothing has really changed from what they may remember.
Pastors, musicians and other team member are mentally and physically spent, having put all of the efforts into the one big day. It only makes sense that they’d have less to give the week after.
Maybe in the church, we should set aside a “week after Easter” planning meeting to go right along with our Easter creative brainstorming sessions. Since you probably didn’t do that, it might be worth taking a little time this week, some next week, and a little more the week after to make the week after Easter something really good too. While Easter might be a first impression, the following week may be the more important next “first impression” for those visiting us for the first time on the big day.
Obviously, the week after the following week matters too, but giving this week something special as well is a good starting point to making worship something those on the fringes will want to be a part of.
What are you going to do to make the week after Easter something your guests will remember?