Through research and testing resources, the Church of England is discovering how repeated invitation really encourages people to come back to church.

The best news in the research is that families want and expect churches to keep in touch with them. The following occasions are special events which offer the perfect opportunity to invite and welcome families back.

  • #Heartready in 2018

    This year Ash Wednesday coincides with Valentine’s Day, creating a great opportunity to talk about love including the great love God has for everyone. This limited edition occasion page has ready-made resources to make the most of this special time.

  • Mothering Sunday

    Cards and gifts are already on sale for Mother’s Day on 11th March in 2018. Hotels, restaurants and cafes are already promoting their special menus. The mood is one of celebrating and treating generations of mothers, but the day itself can bring a mix of emotions. Whether it’s joyful, complicated or filled with sadness, Mother’s Day – and getting ready for it – is a big day for families, so get in touch to let them know the local church is there for them in good times and difficult times. Here are some ideas to help.

  • Easter

    Easter is perhaps the church’s greatest opportunity to speak with confidence about the saving power of Jesus Christ. We know that those who have already had contact with the church through their own special occasion are happy to hear from us again. Targeted invitations and ideas for welcoming them into church over Holy Week can help us explain the life-changing meaning of Easter to even more people.

  • Godparents’ Sunday 6th May 2018

    This is a great opportunity to invite baptism families to come along with godparents to a special service, and to involve all those in the congregation who are godparents or godchildren too. Find resources here to help.

  • Summer

    From fetes to flower festivals, holiday clubs and church picnics, summer offers so many opportunities to keep in touch with contacts. Here you’ll find easy ways to welcome wedding couples, families of recently baptized children and those who are bereaved, throughout the the summer months.

  • Back to school

    September is a really significant time for families with children. The very young may be starting nursery, older ones may be starting school or moving up a class. It’s a great opportunity for the church to stay in touch with families who have had children baptized at the church and show continued support as they grow up.

  • Artificial Poppies used to commemorate Remembrance Day.

    ‘Remembering’ and Remembrance

    All Saints’, All Souls’ and Remembrance Sunday are all services which are often well attended, and many people may only come to church for these occasions. This page offers suggestions for reaching more people at this moving time of year.

  • Christmas

    Across all our research with those who have encountered church at one of life’s key moments, there is a consistently positive desire to hear from us again.  One of the best moments to be in contact with people is around Christmas.  It is the most likely time when people will want to return and a focused invitation linking to their situation can make a difference. The ideas below might help to target that invitation.