Launch Conference, Part 7A: Planning My First Service From Scratch

This next section from the Launch Conference is called Planning My First Service From Scratch. It's actually a pretty long section, so I'm gonna break it up into three parts. This will (naturally) be the first part.

1. Determine my Launch Date!
  • Your launch date is the most important decision you will make after you nail down your calling.
  • Once you pick a date, stick to it!
Top 3 Best Launch Dates (#1 is best)
#3 - Easter
#2 - Fall: Just after school starts
#1 - February

Why is February the best time to launch you first service?
  • You get a second "bump" in attendance with Easter 2 months later
  • There's plenty of time for growth to happen before summer (when attendance tends to drop)
  • People are still willing to do something new with the start of the New Year
Top 3 Worst Launch Dates (#1 is worst)
#3 - Christmas (most attenders are visiting family in the area; they won't be repeat attenders)
#2 - Tie: Superbowl Sunday, July 4th, Labor Day, or any other national holiday
#1 - Any time other than Sunday morning

2. Plan 3-6 Monthly Services prior to your Launch.
  • Monthly services are stepping stones to your Launch.
  • Do a minimum of 3 monthly services, a maximum of 6.
The Power of Monthly Services:
  • Attract a Launch Team
  • Build momentum
  • Give you practice and allow you to improve your skills
  • Give you a chance to grow
  • Provide more time for follow-up
  • Enable more efficient use of initial resources
  • Lower your stress level
  • Make your launch day less intimidating
  • Build greater awareness of the church
  • Build excitement within the church
  • Help you stick to your Launch date
  • Allow you to test your meeting location
  • Allow you to test a worship leader
  • Build your database of future weekly attendees
Monthly Service Do's and Don'ts

  • Teach a message series
  • Talk about your future weekly services
  • Receive an offering (unchurched people aren't offended by receiving an offering)
  • Collect contact information (send handwritten notes to everyone who visits)
  • Hold at least three monthly services
  • Only talk about the future vision
  • Tell them you are "practicing"
  • Ask them to join (wait till after your launch)
  • Hesitate to evaluate and improve
  • Do more than six preview services
BUT: How do I staff my monthly services?
  • First monthly service will be you, the worship leader, and possibly your spouse and/or a friend.
  • After the first monthly service, get volunteers from those who attended that service to staff your next service.


Anonymous said...

Hi Markus, I am an associate minister at Refuge Christian Community in Independence, KY. (www.refugechristiancommunity.com) I stumbled across your blog and I find it extremely interesting (especially your book choices...) Anyway, I would love to get in contact with you if I can - perhaps over coffee. I've searched for another way to contact you but this seems to be the only way. Please e-mail me at ryan_henry@refugechristiancommunity.com . Thanks - Ryan

Markus Watson said...

Ryan, yeah, I'd love to get together with you! I just dropped you an e-mail, so give me a call...

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