Prayers are how we communicate with God. Those of us that have faith would unanimously agree that there is power in prayer. Whether you say a Hail Mary or Our Father, or spontaneously talk with God we pray because we have faith. Many of us spend a lot of time in prayer because we believe it helps.
Power of prayer
St. Paul tells us to “pray without ceasing.” Our lives should be filled with prayer. For those of us raised in a prayerful house we have learned from our parents. Blessings before and after meals, morning prayers, evening prayers and the rosary are common practices. How many times have we said the Hail Mary and Our Father? We have said the prayer so many times it is committed to memory. It becomes a part of us.
If you examine prayer carefully you will find there are several types of prayers. We have prayers of love and thanksgiving (giving thanks to God), prayers of petition (asking God for something), prayers of contrition (expressing sorrow for your sins), and prayers of intercession (praying for others, and ourselves). Continue reading
Bulletin Announcements are one of the best ways to inform parishioners of church events and activities. Are your church’s bulletin announcements effective?
People like to be spoon-fed information with easy-to-find key points. They are looking for specific information in your content. Finding answers in an article shouldn’t be a hunt. Here are 3 ideas to simplify your bulletin content. Continue reading
Website support is critical in such a digital age. There is nothing more frustrating than finding an error within your website. Or even worse (and embarrassing) when a parishioner points the error out to you. We know that from publishing bulletins.
You just want it fixed, and we get that.
Your site is not stagnant and it should evolve over time to continue to serve your parish needs. We can help you with simple content updates and more complex website enhancements (adding Spanish pages). Continue reading
How do you create interesting bulletin content?
The presumption of most editors is that people who read the bulletin have a desire for the sacramental life of the church. Are we missing an opportunity to communicate with the unchurched? Does your content address the needs of those who are lonely and searching for God but do not know where to turn? When they read your bulletin do they feel connected or a stranger looking in from the outside? Consider aligning your content with the stages in the process of evangelization.
“Evangelization is in fact the grace and vocation proper to the Church, her deepest identity, She exists in order to evangelize.” (Pope Paul VI, Evangelii Nuntiandi, 14)
This means that something on your cover should speak to those who have not discovered a need for God and do not know where to turn. Think about adding to your inside content on the aspects of parish life that incorporate initial and continuing catechesis. Your effort can be about making your bulletin content show that the church exists to evangelize. Build on human needs and show that needs include a desire for God.
The next time your content becomes routine explore the missionary zeal of faith and proclaim the need for God and accepting the Gospel.
About the Author: Thomas Miner is the President of Bartleby Press, Austin. TX. A church bulletin printing service.
There are a number of printing and electronic sources that your parish may employ to inform parishioners about events. Some you may have in place already and others you might consider in the future. Here are a few ideas that you can consider.
Brochures/Flyers: All brochures or flyers should be sent to (add your email address here) approval prior to copying or distributing. Asking them to send in the flyer as an editable format can save time and frustration with scheduling. PDFs are non–editable. If you also have a scheduling person for flyers that are intended as bulletin inserts they should also be emailed to that person as well.
Bulletin: Write a brief announcement that includes who, what, when, where, why about your meeting/event. Submit it to (add your email address here) by 12 noon on Friday to appear in the following weekend’s bulletin. Your submission must be 9 days in advance. Items should appear for a maximum of three weeks.
Celebrate Church Bulletin Editors Appreciation Week
This effort is formed to recognize the contributions of bulletin Editors to the church community, and to support their personal development. Church Bulletin Editor Appreciation Week is not yet widely observed in many workplaces and we are hopeful that it will catch on. Pastors and business managers are encouraged to arrange events to show their appreciation of the work carried out by bulletin editors, to highlight their importance and to enhance their work-related skills.
A day in the life
Parishioners have been known to take the church bulletin editor for granted. Little do they know that collecting ministry information, correcting run on sentences, listening to complaints for oversights, not reading minds, last minute changes and meeting the weekly deadline is an unappreciated job. And if her job isn’t hard enough they are given the additional task of updating the website.
All this and some say nobody reads the bulletin or checks the website. Right? WRONG.
Startling Facts About Your Website
If bulletins editors wonder if any one reads your bulletin think again according to a recent study.
“In an average week, one-in-five Americans share their religious faith online, about the same percentage that tune in to religious talk radio, watch religious TV programs or listen to Christian rock music. And nearly half of U.S. adults see someone else share their religious faith online in a typical week.
These are among the key findings from a survey conducted in May and June of 2014 that asked 3,217 adults from the Pew Research Center’s nationally representative American Trends Panel whether they had engaged in various kinds of religious activities during the previous week.”
Participation in Electronic and Offline Religious Activities
% of U.S. adults who participated in each activity in the past week
Saw religion shared online 46%
Shared own faith online 20%
Watched religious television 23%
Listened to religious talk radio 20%
Listened to Christian rock 19%
Shared faith in real-life setting 40%
Source: American Trends Panel (wave 4). Survey conducted May 30-June 30, 2014.
Add this to your bulletin for Sunday, December 6 .
Wednesday December 17 is Bulletin Editor Day. Church Bulletin Editor Day highlights the important role of bulletin editors in all churches worldwide. This is not a secular holiday but the unofficial week to recognize the tireless efforts of your bulletin editor. Show her your appreciation.
About the Author: Thomas Miner is the President of Bartleby Press, Austin. TX. Bartleby Press provides bulletin publishing, church website service and more.
Church bulletin information should get to the point.
As the publisher of Catholic Church bulletins the question that I am most often asked by pastors is…Where do you see the Sunday bulletin going in the future?
My first reaction is don’t you mean to ask. What do you see in the future for parish communication?
My answer is the Internet. Having an up-to-date website is fast becoming the most effective way to reach all your parishioners. No question about it. Total access 24 hours, 7 days a week. If a person is looking for information, church information, they will Google it or look for it on your website.
That doesn’t mean that your Sunday bulletin is obsolete. What it does mean is the bulletin is fast becoming the brochure to your website. The bulletin is a short, quick informative blast of information. Continue reading
Confession of a Bulletin Editor
Providing vibrant, interesting, and engaging information in your Sunday bulletin is no easy task. Ted Hatfield, bulletin production manager for Bartleby Press, has been publishing bulletins for 25 years. He receives bulletin copy every week and transforms a word document into a professionally designed bulletin.
“The longer you edit church bulletins the easier it is to fall into a world of routine because, at times, it feels like a thankless task that your community and pastor take for granted.” He says. “Receiving an edited word document makes all the difference in the world to how your bulletin will finally take shape. Strong headlines and succinct straight to-the=point copy allows for more images that make the pages breath–easier to read.” Continue reading
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