Grace Institute News
November 9, 2011
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becoming a greener church...
We often think of environmental responsibility in terms of recycling, using less water, etc. But in the average church, one of the biggest wastes is that of paper. Between newsletters, bulletins, reports, Sunday school lessons, and countless other copied materials, an enormous amount of resource is wasted every year. While re-cycling is a great idea if it is available to a church, one of the easiest "green" efforts is transitioning to using less paper. Here are some options that most churches can consider:
Send newsletters electronically to all who are able to receive them and cut down on the amount of postage, envelopes, and paper used to mail. Send first class to only those who don't use email. This allows for more immediate delivery of news and it can be done more often at literally no expense.
Send board reports (minutes, financial statements, staff reports) to members electronically before the meeting. This will save time at the meeting and cut down on a lot of copying.
If it is available, use a projection of reports and minutes at your meeting, again to cut down on the number of copies needed.
Make bulletins as minimalist as possible, using smaller amounts of paper in the process. Ask the question, "What are the basics a first time visitor would need in order to be comfortable in the service?" We are now in an age of "less is more."
Begin using social media like Facebook to promote events and spend less money on paper and postage for mailings. If you aren't sure how to use it, ask a 5th grader.
Gather visitors' email addresses if possible and send welcome notes to them by email and not always cards. Cards and notes are nice, but an increasing number of people are becoming more responsive to immediate email welcomes. It also allows for an immediate conversation to be started and gather feedback about their first visit.
Sit down with leaders and figure other ways to strengthen your ministry with technology and become environmentally responsible. If we can save money in addition to helping save the planet some stress, going greener seems like good stewardship.
A Walk Towards Hospitality
Check it out every Thursday in November 11am-2pm