There are probably more reasons that people visit a church but I think that these might be the most important ones. If a church were to respond to these visitor expections and requirements how could they engage visitors to return, and one they have come a few times retain them for the long haul?
The road to full membership in a church can be thought of as having stages. I call this "membership induction."
The first stage is getting noticed by potential newcomers.
The second stage is attraction which stimulates a visit.
The third stage is courtship where the newcomer is interested and wants to learn more, and begins to develop relationships with church members. The newcomer may be paired with a sponsor or mentor.
The fourth stage is engagement where the newcomer wants to more formally pursue the possibility of taking a vow of covenanting with the church. This involves a proces of study and discernment as well as further relationship building.
The fifth stage is taking vows of covenanting.
A church which is successful in growing its membership provides services to newcomes who are at each stage in this membership process. The services and activities the church would engage in for stage one would be different from the services and activities at stage three and four.
This is article #15 in a series on Birth Of A Congregaton.