Large Event Planning
A large outreach will be most effective when Christians involved are building relationships with their friends, family, and neighbors who don’t know Christ, persistently praying for them, and then inviting them to the event. Below are suggestions from pastors across the country for planning and implementing a My Hope event. Please use whatever is helpful to your ministry.
Ideas for Large Group Showings
- Day of Hope (Sunday morning church service)
- Church BBQ/Picnic
- Dinner-and-a-movie night
- Renting out a movie theater
- Easter or Good Friday service
- Mother/daughter event
- Father/son event
- Vacation Bible school closing ceremony
Sample Preparation Schedule
Two Months Prior to Outreach – Planning/Prayer
- Set dates and times for the My Hope outreach in the church.
- Download or order My Hope materials below:
- My Hope Kit: Promotional kit that shares key concepts for preparing any My Hope outreach.
- Decisions DVDs: This new film features compelling testimonies and a message from Franklin Graham.
- 2013 Program DVDs: Five 2013 films are available.
- Prayer Cards: Cards help encourage every member of your church to pray for those in their lives who don’t know Christ.
- Living in Christ booklets: A simple, four-lesson discipleship tool. Request enough for each person who will make a salvation or rededication decision.
- Staff Briefing – Watch one of the My Hope 30-minute films; pray about the type of My Hope event God wants for the church.
- Promotions – This team makes sure the congregation is aware of and preparing for the event on a personal level; key leaders of the church are contacted to promote the My Hope event; the congregation is informed and reminded of the outreach (church website, church bulletin, social media, mass email, etc.).
One Month Prior to Outreach – My Hope Sunday
This Sunday is designed to motivate and challenge the entire church to pray for those in their lives who don’t know Christ.
- Prayer cards can be placed in the bulletin in advance.
- Pastor introduces My Hope outreach and plays My Hope film.
- A church member can share their personal testimony of how they received Christ in three minutes:
- Tell what your life was like before you received Jesus (Romans 3:23).
- Explain what caused you to turn to God (Romans 5:8).
- Share the circumstances of how you received Him into your life (Rev. 3:20; John 1:12).
- Repeat the prayer you said to God to ask for forgiveness for your sin and invite him into your life (Romans 10:9).
- Explain how your life has changed since Jesus became your Lord and Savior (2 Cor. 5:17).
- Pastor gives an invitation to congregation to pray to receive Christ.
- Invite congregation to write down the names of friends and family who don’t know Christ on the prayer brochure found in their bulletins.
- Pray for the names.
- Share details of the church’s upcoming My Hope outreach: date, time, venue, etc.
4 Weeks to 2 Weeks Prior to Outreach – Building Momentum
- Each Sunday the pastor leads the church to pray for the names on the prayer cards.
- Promotional videos and film trailers are available to show in services to remind and encourage the congregation.
- Encourage intentional building of relationships. Everyone should make contact with the people on their prayer card before inviting them to the church-wide event.
1 Week Prior to Outreach – Invitations
- Encourage church to invite those on their prayer cards to the church-wide event. They can then confirm their attendance two days before the event.
- Encourage constant prayer for each person who is being invited.
- IMPORTANT – Discuss with staff how to handle the invitation to receive Christ at the outreach. Here are two possibilities:
- Altar Call – Lead in a simple prayer of salvation. Ask people who prayed to come forward to speak with a counselor. Have counselors come forward.
- Fill Out Decision Cards – Lead in salvation prayer. Invite people who prayed to fill out a decision card placed on the seat. Collect all the cards and follow up as indicated on the card.
Day of Outreach – Prepare for Harvest
- Checklist: Lead staff/counselors in prayer time. Check video and sound, as well as temperature of room. Meet with counselors and greeting team for final instructions. If decision cards will be used, make sure they are ready.
- Host the event. Whether it’s a showing in the church or a BBQ in the park, pray for the Holy Spirit to draw the people and speak to their hearts!
- Begin follow up after the event by immediately praying with those individuals who accepted Christ and calling them the next day on the phone.
The Week After the Outreach
- Report what God did through your outreach on the Share Your Story page. Please share the attendance and the number of first-time salvations and rededications.
- Celebrate what happened at your next church service.
- Ensure each new believer is guided into a Bible study. Consider using Living in Christ booklets to teach the first steps of faith in Christ.