With the move to Melbourne we have visited a few churches.  This has made me think of other amusing experiences I have had in visiting churches and thought I would summarise the odd ways NOT to make someone feel welcome as a visitor.

Remember to take these lightly as they are based on my possibly faulty recollections of visits.  And if you think your church is here, possibly guess again.

Next week I might add the list of really positive things that have happened when I have visited churches.

10) Give all visitors a red rose to identify them as visitors.  This includes the single guy by himself.  *BLUSH*

9) Do not advertise your dress and Bible code as grey suit and Revised Standard Version.  All visitors are self-identifying as they do not meet this code when they arrive in jeans and with New International Version Bibles.

8) Welcome a visitor from the pulpit by getting their name and country of origin wrong.

7) Welcome a visitor from the pulpit by forgetting their name asking for a prompt and then saying “now what was your wifes name?” straight after being introduced to her.

6) Have a pastor turn away from the visitor as they are not of the pastor’s ethnic background or the ethnic background of the majority of your church and shake the hand of someone else.

5) Ignoring the visitor who the senior pastor has asked to be introduced to the next time they are in church.

4) Doing 5 straight after a sermon on all people are valued and respected and ignore the visitor because there are special guests from overseas who have just dropped in and need to be taken care of.

3) Say you are a seeker sensitive church and use so much jargon/Christianese that visiting Christians can not figure out what you mean.

2) After registering a child for the childrens programme and saying “No juice, no jam” on the paper work call in the parents and say “We have just fed him some jam, will there be an anaphylactic reaction?”

1) Give visitors an items so large that it can not be missed that they are visitors (imagine one of those foam hands for example) and then have no one say hello the whole time they are slowly leaving the church.

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