Staying in contact and communicating is something every church needs to do well. Ever thought about it? Communication is a basic requirement for genuine community. In terms of cellular communication, statistics claim that the average cell phone subscriber actually made and received more text messages than cell phone calls. Text messages are the best way to send short, instantaneous messages to large numbers of people.
The next question is about praxis. What in the world can a church do with a group texting system? The truth is, there is a lot a church could do. They just need to step out, be creative and be willing to see what uses can be rewarding.
First, there are the more basic things that group text messaging can do for churches. These things are not particular to churches as these are ways most any group or organization can use text messaging.
- Meeting Reminders – Text messages are the perfect way to keep staff and teams current on meetings. You can schedule text messages to be sent to everyone 5 minutes, an hour or even a day before a scheduled meeting.
- Cancellations – The beauty of text messaging is that it is instantaneous. People typically read text messages minutes after they receive them. Could there be a better platform for sending out cancellation notices to large groups?
- Volunteer Reminders – With text messaging, large groups of volunteers can be given instructions or kept up to date. Whether in the field or at home, text messages are quick and effective.
Now, what about those areas of church text messaging that are a bit more innovative? Well here are some ideas I came up with. Not all of them may work or even be desirable. So, think of this more as brainstorming. I am interested in seeing where this technology can take us – if we are open to it. how to find hidden text messages on phone
- Prayer Requests – Church text messaging would be the perfect platform for getting out prayer requests to a entire congregation. You can send out simple or last-minute prayer requests to large numbers of people in a matter of seconds.
- Childcare Notifications – When a child is in need of a parent during worship services, some churches use a number system or display a code on a large screen during worship services. This works pretty well but is often distracting, even if minimized. What if text messaging was used instead? Parents could be instructed to put their phones on silent (yet fully on) during the service and text messaging would be the perfect solution for discrete parental notification.
- Interactive Sermons – Some churches use slides or other props that coordinate with the sermon’s main points. Text messages could be used for this type of interaction as well. Bullet points could be texted to the entire congregation and they would all have a personal electronic copy of the sermon’s take-home ideas. They could be sent out either before, during or after the service.
- Bible Verses – Church text messaging could also take advantage of this instant communication by sending a daily or weekly Bible verse to the congregant’s cell phones. The verse could be sent in preparation for Sunday worship, during worship or even on a daily basis. Receiving a bit of the “word” while in the “real” world is something that everyone would benefit from.