As I’ve written beforeVolunteers are the life blood of your church.

Much of your ministry success rests on the time and talent of those most committed to your church.

With Christmas approaching, take time to bless your volunteers. Making certain they understand the value you place on them.

While these are not season specific, Christmas is a great opportunity to remind people of their impact.

1) Handwritten thank you notes

There is something powerful about receiving a note of appreciation. It is an opportunity to share about the value you place in their service. And, a way to speak specifically to the ways they make your church a better place.

2) Time of public blessing

Set aside a time to gather your volunteer team together, including spouses when possible. Go around the room and thank each volunteer personally. Letting them know something you admire about them or the difference they make. When possible, speak to their spouse also.

I’ve been a part of something like this a few times and it is truly powerful. It  endears you as a leader worth following.

3) Let them know how their service makes a difference

Let your volunteers know about the wins…

The single mom who’s kids love the children’s program and beg to come back

The prodigal child who didn’t know church could be so welcoming

As you share stories of God working in your midst you inspire people. They begin to understand that their sacrifice has purpose

4) Connect with them as they serve

Volunteers know you have a lot on your plate on Sunday. Show them the value they have as individuals by taking 5 minutes each week to connect with one or two of them. Don’t be check your watch and look around. Be present. Look them in the eyes, shake their hand and thank them for their partnership.

5) Make monthly phone calls

Set time aside each week to contact a group of volunteers by phone. Don’t make it awkward and set an agenda. Just ask about their lives, take notes for following up, and let them know you appreciate them. Pray for their needs and let them go. Essentially, do the things you would do for a close friend.

6) Celebrate birthdays

Get a stack of non-cheesy birthday cards and send them out at the first of each month. Let people know you’re thinking of them and remember it’s a special time for them. It isn’t much but it goes a long way.

7) Serve coffee and snacks

Providing light snacks and something warm to drink is a simple way to show you care. It shows you took thought about who would be there and how they would serve before they even arrived. Post a thank you message near the food to let them know you are praying for them and the impact they will make that day.

 

What are some ways you have shown appreciation to your volunteers? I’d love to hear your ideas.