IN THE FOUR CORNERED ROOM, “F” is for Fellowship.
Quote #3. Southern Baptist Sunday School expert Josh Hunt:
We used to have our friends over on Friday nights to play cards. We would have dessert, tell jokes, and play games together. One day I suggested to Sharon that we invite a couple who had visited the church to join us on Friday night. We did, and we had a good time in the process. During the entire evening, we never said anything about church or Sunday school or the Bible or anything remotely religious. But, do you know what? They joined the church in a few weeks. Now, he is teaching a class himself. And they would both tell you that they were not living the disciple’s life before they played cards and ate dessert with us that night
. . . That is why I say, if you want to double your class every two years or less, give Friday nights to Jesus. Have your friends over. Play cards. Eat dessert. Tell jokes. Laugh. Have a good time. But most of all, include an outsider couple. Ministry has never been so much fun. . . . This ministry is based on sound church growth thinking: people are not interested in a friendly church; they are looking for friends.
Hunt found that 90% of the people he played cards with later joined the church.
Source: Josh Hunt, How to Get 90% of Your Visitors to Join Your Church, http://www.joshhunt.com/ friday.html (accessed 16 June 2006).