part 5: your story
Authenticity over people pleasing.
Several churches in the Episcopal tradition suffer from a people pleasing syndrome. They mean well by attempting to create a welcoming environment for everyone. However, by focusing on everyone, they speak to no one. They are doing themselves a disservice. Our denomination allows for great interpretation. We are complex beings that all have vastly different tastes, and, thus, vastly different ways of worshipping God and building community. Use this to your advantage!
Click the picture to download the worksheet for exercise five, which will help craft your story.
Instead of trying to please everyone; play to your strengths. What does your church do best? What is the essence of your community? The ethos? Accept that your community will not speak to everyone and cherish that idea. So…dig up the work you did from exercises 1-3 and start to locate that clear and authentic message to fuel your video!
The clearer you can be about the story of your community and find the authentic voice that is echoing through its walls, the better chance you have in creating a magnetizing and effective welcome video.
hmm...no, thank you.
Finally! This place speaks to me; I may have found my spiritual home. Let's go this week!
Yes, some people are going to say...
...but others will say...
...and they will pass 10 Churches every Sunday to get to yours.
Some Great Church Stories:
St Bede’s by the Sea is a beach community that reflects the surfer community it serves through a low key worship with contemporary music and a priest in a Hawaiian shirt. Founded over 100 years ago, St. Bede’s has been a mainstay of Hunnington Beach. We keep our doors open all day for kids to play in our park, students to use our computer lab, and seniors to relax in our make-shift café. We believe Jesus is found in our relationships with one another and we aim to nurture every one of them, whether it is a friend, stranger, or adversary.
St Luke’s is an urban based Anglo-Catholic parish that attracts a diverse community that that has a deep reverence for traditional liturgy. The streets around us might look grim, but our worship emanates the beauty and hope of God’s love. We look to be transformed through the power of liturgy and the sacraments. It is through the power of the Eucharist are we able to reflect the love of God throughout the week.
We are a bustling church that attracts parishioners from all over Los Angeles. It is not odd for our lights to be on six nights a week, as there is always something going on, whether it is worship, class, yoga, or a homeless meal. We love to stay active in our faith by being heavily involved with the city’s greatest needs. Often, we partner with neighboring churches so we can take on even bigger projects.