Barn Quilts, Sunday School, and Tourists (Guests)

Friday 14th March, 2008

Yesterday Steve, Cheryl, and I travelled to Flemingsburg, Kentucky, for the second stop on the Assimilation Tour. We arrived early and were able to do some sightseeing. Cheryl is interested in the culture of Kentucky, and she had done some internet research about Fleming County. She had discovered three historic covered bridges in the area. So we drove by the Chamber of Commerce, the church, and then to the Goddard White and Ringo's Mill covered bridges. If we had just a bit more time, we would have gone to see the third.

On the way to and from the covered bridges, we saw 5 barn quilts (see above for an example). It seems the barn quilt project began in the late summer of 2006, and now less than two years later there are 56 colorful "quilts" hanging on barns all over Fleming County. They are all presented in a map brochure with pictures of each. You can drive the county and check them off as if you were going on a treasure hunt.

Here's my question: why would any farmer agree to hang a picture of a quilt on the side of his barn? I wish I could have asked some of these barn owners. I can think of several possibilities. It could have started at the request of his wife. It could have grown out of peer pressure after the first one was hung. It could have started and multiplied due to the generosity of a benefactor. It could be just a bunch of folks who really like to celebrate the culture of their part of the state. As a result, now it has become a tourist attraction for the county.

What do barn quilts and Sunday School have in common? Certainly, I think it is important for a Sunday School class to consider what they can do to attract guests. It is important to get the word out about the class. Consider some of these ideas:

  • Invitations should be extended to friends, family, and acquaintances. These can be by card, letter, e-mail, phone call, or in person. They can be in the community, at work, at home, or in worship.
  • Put announcements about the class in the church bulletin.
  • Share about the class and class activities through pre-worship presentations.
  • Members of each class need to assess the benefits that the class has to offer.
  • Teach them to share their Sunday School testimonies (check out Sunday School Testimony: Powerful Revolutionary Tool for more information). Share the testimonies one-on-one and even from the pulpit.
  • Ask someone to put together a class brochure listing those benefits. Give the brochures away to worship guests. Make them available at a welcome center. Pass them out to people when you invite them.
  • Why not put together a class blog where you can share about members, guests, fellowship and project plans, and more?

What other ideas would you add to this list? Press the Comments button below. Work to get out the message about your class and your Lord. Be revolutionary!

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