Sunday School Growth Contest or Campaign?

Wednesday 17th September, 2008

I recently saw an interesting Sunday School contact, enrollment, and attendance contest in a Georgia church back in the spring (check it out). It involved good Sunday School work over four weeks leading to four Sundays. The Sunday School from preschool through senior adults was divided into two teams, led by the pastor, staff, and Sunday School director. Points were awarded to each class and team from the following efforts/results:

  • 500 points for contacts (except home visits)
  • 2,000 points for home visits
  • 2,000 points for guest attendance in class
  • 5,000 points for enrolling a new class member.

I like the high point values. I think they can be more incentive for some people. I also like the two teams. They appeared to be evenly divided throughout the age groups. It might even be great to recognize the class in each age group whose efforts have produced the most points. I also like the fact that the contest is over a four-week period. That is long enough to help Sunday School leaders and members to see the value to their efforts and to realize some results.

When I first glanced at the church's newsletter and saw the title, "Sunday School Growth Campaign," I was taken aback. I tend to use growth campaign to represent a much longer time than four weeks. And I tend to think of a growth campaign as involving more elements:

  • prayer about the Sunday School
  • evaluation of the Sunday School
  • dreaming about possibilities for the Sunday School
  • identifying needs of the Sunday School
  • prioritizing those dreams and needs
  • setting goals for achieving those dreams and addressing those needs
  • making action plans for accomplishing those goals (including assignments and deadlines)
  • proper enlistment of God-called people
  • assembling an effective leadership and planning team
  • meeting regularly to evaluate progress and to plan effective work
  • apprenticing new leaders and releasing them into service
  • starting new classes and groups
  • identifying spaces for additional classes and groups
  • establishing a variety of regularly planned training events
  • theme for the quarter or year.

But as I thought through the church's emphasis, I realized that it has many possibilities of accomplishing much in four short weeks. Invest time, energy, and planning in your Sunday School work. Give God your best. Be revolutionary!

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