October is Pastor Appreciation month. This is a great time to show your pastoral and church staff how much you appreciate their work. Here are some suggestions of ways your whole family can show your appreciation:
- Write a note. Too often today all our communication is electronic, and for pastor’s it is often full of “suggestions” for ways they can improve and change. Have each of your family members take time to hand-write a note to the pastor or leader who works with them (Children’s, Youth, Small Group Leader, Lead Pastor, …don’t overlook staff and volunteer leaders who pour into your lives).
- Food. Everyone enjoys a treat. Consider bringing in lunch for your church staff (pasta and salad is an inexpensive way to feed even a larger staff). Make breakfast for pastors and leaders on a Sunday morning (just let them know ahead of time so they don’t eat before getting to church). Bring in cookies, a cake, any sweet treat to the church office as a surprise.
- Night out. Give a gift card to a local restaurant or movie theater. If you know the pastor or leader well include babysitting their kids. Or give money or pay directly and include a homemade gift certificate for a night of babysitting with a youth from your church with whom you know the pastor or leader will leave their kids.
- Make a gift basket. Check out these suggestions for Father’s Day and Teacher Appreciation gifts. Many of these would also make great Pastor Appreciation gifts.
- Include a gift for the pastor’s wife and/or kids. These family share their husband and father with the whole church. Because of that he misses out on a lot of family activities like kids’ games, school performances, family dinners, etc. Remember to show appreciation to the entire family. That will communicate your love for your pastor to him as well.
- Go in with others from the church and provide a larger gift. A weekend away with hotel and food paid for, a cruise to the Caribbean…depending on how many other families can join you, you may be able to give a very nice trip to your pastor. If it is just a smaller number of families pooling money together, look at more get-a-ways, including bead & breakfasts, and exciting things to do or see within a couple of hours of your town. Sending them away to another town nearby will save you some money, but allow them to truly get away from the spotlight of the congregation for a few days.