“Hospitality is the art of preparing space for others so they feel comfortable and welcomed in a space that is not theirs.”
— Katherine Sasser, owner of Hurley House in Fort Worth
The intentional effort to create space that is welcoming to visitors allows them to experience the love and grace of God — and makes them want to come back to our church. It says to them, “We knew you were coming and we’re so glad you’re here. Please come in and join us!”
One of the first places our visitors usually stop is the Welcome Center — a designated focal point that allows newcomers to find the information they need in order to have the best experience possible. However, after visiting other churches, I began to question if the “counter-service” approach of our Welcome Center was the best way to welcome our guests. By virtue of its design, our Welcome Center felt like more of a fortress and put the entire ownership process of seeking help or information on the guest. The question I kept asking myself was, “How do we change this space to make it convey come in — not stay out?”
So, in an effort to make it more well . . . welcoming, we gave the Welcome Center a “mini makeover.” Opening up one side of the space gives volunteers an easy way to walk towards those who need help and engage them one on one without the physical barrier of the counter in between. And, though there is one counter still intact, the desk below was removed so there isn’t as much space between the counter and the visitor.
Now it will be even easier for our Welcome Center volunteers to exceed people’s expectations of welcome and inclusion in an area that is designed to say, “Come on in, we’re so glad you’re here!”
See you Sunday!
Director of Welcoming Ministries