Tuesday, March 21 2023 - 5:14 AM

The Seventh-day Adventist Church in the Pacific Southwest

Friendship Month campaign

Imagine implementing a dynamic initiative that could potentially bring visitors to your church in a large way. We interviewed Judi Paliungas about a new resource that every church can use to invite new people to their services.

Editor – Judi, you work in publishing, as well as in the business of designing websites and graphics for books, signs, display banners and more. Your work is well established and liked by many. Recently you showed me a new product called the “Friendship Month Campaign” that a church can use to invite the community on a given Sabbath to visit its facility and worship service. I think it’s pretty cool. Give us a brief overview of what this is about?

Paliungas – Friendship Month is a downloadable, easy to execute, turn-key “campaign” to help churches mobilize their congregation by inviting their friends to church during a 4-week period. It was created by two great minister friends of mine, Michelle Whittington and Colleen Schuerlein. Over their many combined years in ministry, they discovered a proven formula for church growth. When church members step out of their comfort zones to ask friends, family and co-workers to join them at church, something wonderful happens. Their relationships deepen and are strengthened. By challenging and engaging members in this way, you create an opportunity for them to go deeper into their spiritual beliefs by being willing to share them with others and to strengthen their spiritual muscles by offering the gift of God’s love to their friends.

That led them to creating their first “Friendship Month” campaign that was a smashing success. It’s been perfected over time, and it’s been shared with other churches who reported similar results. They asked me to get involved to help them reach an expanded market, so we’ve added some great new tools to the package, and have customized it to fit the culture of various denominations.

Editor – Interesting. So, how does it work?

Paliungas – Here are the components of the campaign: It starts with easy to follow Step-by-Step Procedures, covering everything from table setup and organizing your volunteers to creating special gifts and follow-up strategies.

Then there is a a monthly theme outline for use in your bulletin. Copy, paste and customize the provided text and your bulletin announcement is ready to go.

Other components include:

An Engaging, Pre-Event Kickoff Complete Sermon Talk – This is the sermon you’ll give the week before Friendship Month starts. It was designed to inspire your current members into action, while gently helping them overcome any fears or objections to inviting their friends to church.

4 Complete Contemporary, Fresh and Sermon Talks – each building on the previous week’s message. Thes focus on different aspects of building and nurturing Spirit-Filled relationships with our friends, family and one another.

A List of Suggested Songs for Your Church Services – (including congregation, choir and special music performances)

A Full Set of Professionally Designed, Done-For-You, Editable Marketing Pieces – complete with royalty-free stock photo and logo that you can use if you wish, or substitute with your own logo and photos. Simply customize each piece with your church’s information. The marketing pieces were created in a variety of software programs commonly available either in-house or at any local quick-print shop including Adobe InDesign, Microsoft Word and Adobe Photoshop.

• A Guest Invitation Postcard for Members to share with their friends
• A Guest Information Card for getting guests’ contact information
• A Large Promotional Banner for inside or outside use
• A Promotional Poster to post in your church and community
• Guest Gift CD Cover and Artwork to make sermons available to your guests
• Promotional Graphics and Post text to use on your website, and Social Media
• Invitation & Welcome Slides (various screen formats) for use in your services
• Customizable Follow-up Welcome Letters for nurturing new guests

It’s all provided as a digital download straight to your computer.

Editor – It sounds really interesting and flexible. I like the fact that each church can adapt it to fit their specific setting. So how much does it cost?

Paliungas – This package has been professionally appraised at a value of over $1500. But in order to serve as many church communities as possible, it’s being offered right now for a special price of just $249.

Editor – OK. That’s a fair price. Especially when you consider it is highly customizable and saves users a lot of design and set-up fees. So, the idea behind this is to create an opportunity that makes it easy for church members to invite their non-member friends to a service that is highly visitor-friendly. And many of the nitty-gritty details have already been thought out in advance. Cool! Thank you for helping to develop this and letting us know about it.

Friendship Month Campaign is available through AdventSource in Lincoln, NE. To order call: 800.328.0525 | Product Link

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About Rich DuBose and Judi Paliungas

Rich DuBose

is director of Church Support Services for the Pacific Union Conference

Judi Paliungas

is the principle designer and web implementation director for Palimor Studios

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