According to research from Lifeway, Mother’s Day church services are the third most highly attended of the year, after Christmas and Easter. We don’t really think of Mother’s Day as being in the Christmas/Easter big leagues, but perhaps we should! Let’s give this attendance spike — particularly how it relates to relationship building and church giving — some careful thought.
A Little Sensitivity Goes a Long Way
Mother’s Day is, generally, a happy occasion. Many mothers enjoy the attention and gifts they receive from their spouses and children in recognition and celebration of their important role in the household. Motherhood is certainly worth celebrating. But as you do, remember that Mother’s Day brings many women — possibly some in your congregation — sadness and pain.
Some unmarried women long for marriage and children. Others are struggling with fertility issues or are mourning the loss of a child. Mother’s Day can be nearly too much to process for some, and it’s important to be sensitive to their feelings.
If they only hear “Hooray for mothers” or “Motherhood is such a blessing” messages, they may think your church has no place for women like them. Make your Mother’s Day message inclusive, offering compassion to those in your membership who may not be able to participate when you ask the mothers in the room to please stand up.
When Attendance Is High, but Church Giving Is Low
We have received feedback from churches that the Mother’s Day attendance bump doesn’t always result in a corresponding increase in church giving. In fact, despite being the third most highly attended service of the year, some churches see a decrease in giving on Mother’s Day. This could happen for a variety of reasons, but one key factor could be that in focusing on honoring mothers, members forget to give.
Why would that have such a big impact? According to Givelify data, women give more to church than men. If giving has been down on Mother’s Day, that could mean that women are giving less. On a holiday that specifically focuses on women, the women in your congregation may simply forget to give.
The biggest impact on giving, though, is how pastors frame it. The onus is on the pastor to find new, exciting ways to engage members on and around Mother’s Day and remind both men and women to give.
How Pastors Can Turn the Situation Around
To prevent a decline in giving and to maximize the high attendance on Mother’s Day, pastors need to get creative. One way to boost contributions is to encourage the men in your congregation to step up and take the responsibility of giving that usually rests on the women of the church. This not only helps keep giving levels steady, but it also offers men another opportunity to show their thanks and support.
Another fantastic way to combat potential decreases in church giving is to collect a special Mother’s Memorial offering. Give people the opportunity to make an offering in honor of their mothers and celebrate the women in their lives through giving.
To make it easier for both members and guests to participate in these meaningful offerings, implement Givelify mobile giving and display clear instructions on your screens during offering time. With Givelify, you can easily set up special envelopes for different offerings — like a Mother’s Memorial offering. When giving is convenient and your membership is engaged and excited about Mother’s Day giving, you set the stage for an increase in contributions.