Meet & Greet

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Salty, Apr 11, 2016.

  1. Salty

    Salty
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    In another thread - about the order of worship - a couple people mentioned they have "meet & greet" time.

    This is one of my pet peeves. Over the years, I find this to be a very hypocritical time.
    The pastor announces - lets greet one another and especially our visitors! So the folks in my immediate vicinity will turn around and say "We are so glad to meet you and have you in our service"

    BUT after the service - very infrequently do the members re-greet the visitors.
    Sure the church officially says we are a friendly church - and they are very friendly - to those in their cliques.
    Over the years, I visited scores of churches - and have found this to be true of the majority of churches I have visited. In fact, when I worked at a radio station - I had a show and this subject came up one night. I then ventured on a mission. I started to visit area churches incognito - and over 50 churches I attended - only 5 passed shows "Friendly Church Program". BTW - all 5 passing churches were liberal. What I found was that the bigger the church the less friendly it was. In these large churches (300+) it was not unusual for no more than one or two people to truly greet me (outside of the M&G time). BTW, I am not one to run out to the parking lot - actually, I like to read the bulletin board.
     
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  2. annsni

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    I always try to get to see visitors right after the service and to invite them to join me for coffee in the fellowship hall. It's a great time to get to know people and make them feel welcome. I would rather dump the greeting time though just because I don't think it does much other than interrupt the service.
     
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  3. Revmitchell

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    We will never stop the greeting time. It is invaluable.
     
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  4. Iconoclast

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    The meet-and-greet time is a complete waste of time you are correct. It should be done away with
     
  5. Zenas

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    We had a "meet and greet" for about 20 years. Over time it got more and more raucous and a lot of people really hated it. About a year ago we got a new pastor and he decided not to have it. I don't know why he did but our service is a lot more dignified and spiritually meaningful. If I were seeking a new church the meet and greet would be an absolute deal killer.
     
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  6. TCassidy

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    We recognize all of our first time visitors, and take time to greet them. That way, when the service is over we know them by sight and can invite them to coffee, or lunch, etc.

    Without doing that during the service there is no way to know they are there. And if we don't know they are there we can't invite them for fellowship after the service.

    If wanting to fellowship with visitors is a deal breaker, let the deal be broken. :)
     
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  7. Rolfe

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    Agree. If the people are genuinely friendly by nature and not being forced in to it, it can be beneficial.
     
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  8. Revmitchell

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    What is puzzling to me is how someone can disagree with whether or not the greeting time is invaluable in our church. Especially in light of the fact they have never been there. Just one more example of the abuse of these ratings.
     
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  9. Salty

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    Actually, it is very simple. You don't recognize the individual. Thus, they are new.

    Makes me think of the time I visited First Baptist, Dallas,Tx. The man I sat down next to look over and asked "Are you a member of this church" At that point, I came to the conclusion that if a member of a church does not know, if I am a member (or even an attender) - than the church is too big. - JMHO
     
  10. TCassidy

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    I am sorry but I can't recognize every one of our 900+ members by sight. Perhaps your memory is better than mine. :)
     
  11. Salty

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    Exactly my point (and I not referring to my [lack of] memory)
     
  12. TCassidy

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    Our problem is the opposite. They enjoy chatting with the visitors so much it is hard to get them all back in their seats. Our Minister of Music just starts playing the next congregational song and people realize it is time to sit down and sing! :D
     
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  13. TCassidy

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    Well, I must have missed your point, then, because it looks to me as if you disagree with our practice which, in our case, would result in our church being perceived as cold and unfriendly.

    So, if we don't recognize new visitors how, exactly, do we know who to invite to fellowship after the service?
     
  14. TCassidy

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    Yes, of course. We should disfellowship Peter for winning 3000 on Pentecost and, of course, Jesus, who preached to 4000 and 5000. Shame on them! Way too many people! :rolleyes:
     
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  15. TCassidy

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    This is a good point. How can somebody 2000 miles away, who has never visited our church, know what is best for our church? The concept seems rather presumptuous to me. :)
     
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  16. revmwc

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    We are so small we know who the visitors are. I station myself at the front doors and greet everyone as they come in, and remain there until about 5 minutes before service time. My wife and others walk around greeting folks before we begin. Then as we exist I am back at the front door shacking hands as folks leave
     
  17. Rolfe

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    Years ago, Mrs. Rolfe and I went to a similar Church. The attitude there toward others was one of the best that I have ever seen in a group of Our Lord's people. Their light was brightly shining.
     
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  18. Rolfe

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    Soon after moving to our present area and while we were searching for a church home, Wifey and I visited one that outwardly looked perfect for us. We visited the place for a bit over one month. Coldest, unfriendliest group of Baptists that we have encountered. Like the "greet the visitors" time was enforced by whip. They are still in existence, but their reputation is not a good one.
     
  19. Baptist Believer

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    [QUOTE="Salty, post: 2221661, member: 5656"I started to visit area churches incognito - and over 50 churches I attended - only 5 passed shows "Friendly Church Program". BTW - all 5 passing churches were liberal.[/QUOTE]
    I have found this to be true with a much smaller sample size. There are certainly some exceptions - I can think of one liberal Baptist church in town that was quite cold toward me as a visitor - but I suspect it is a theological influence as well as a sociological influence. "Liberal" churches in American culture tend to be more oriented toward practical and personal issues in the community around the congregation, while many "conservative" churches tend to react against any hint of a "social gospel" and strive for theological purity above any human need.

    Both sides have positives and negatives to their theology, and while I skew toward the theologically conservative side of things, I usually enjoy the company of more liberal Christians (at least the ones who are not on a short-sighted crusade of political correctness) over more fundamental Christians because of their ability to interact more forthrightly with me.

    In regard to the size of a congregation, I have found no correlation between size and honest friendliness. I have visited small churches with barely an acknowledgment that I was there - that is, no one tried to sit where I was sitting because I was taking up space.
     
  20. exscentric

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    We were standing/singing in a new church. Suddenly a serious nudge in the arm and some one said, "Quick, what's your name, I gotta introduce you.

    Greeting times are a waste of time to the greeted most of the time. We have visited many churches and they never lead to anything except hand shakes and greetings. Sit down and all is forgotten it seems.
     

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