We often think of smartphones and texting as more of a phenomenon among teenagers and young adults, but more and more of the whole population is jumping on the bandwagon. According to this study from the Pew Internet Project, 90% of American adults have a cell phone, 58% specifically have a smartphone, and 79% use text messaging. More and more churches are realizing this and are using text messaging to help engage their church members.
Here are 3 of the main ways that churches are utilizing text messaging.
- Event Details
These days it seems everyone is in a rush. From jobs to family events to church activities, people have so much going on that sometimes things can get lost in the shuffle. We need reminders! I for one know firsthand how useful it is when my church sends me updates and reminders of events. If I can’t remember what time the praise team rehearsal is, for example, all I have to do is check the text alert that the worship pastor sent out.
- Weather-Related Cancellations
It can be very frustrating to show up to church on a snowy Sunday morning only to find that service has been canceled. Or if an outdoor event is planned but the forecast turns out to be predicting rain, sometimes it’s difficult to figure out if the event is still going to be held. Such issues are easily solved with a simple text message: “All services are canceled this morning due to the snow!” or “Rain or shine, the church barbecue is still on for this afternoon!”
- Ministry Needs
There are always plenty of needs in a church. Maybe there is a shortage of children’s ministry workers. Maybe a church member is sick and needs some people to help make her meals until she gets back on her feet. Or perhaps a family just bought a house and needs help moving. Sending out a quick text message makes the congregation aware of such needs so that members can step up and serve.
These are some of the most common ways that churches use text messaging, but as text messages become more a part of everyone’s life, churches are finding this way of communication more and more useful. Texting questions to get live feedback during a sermon? Giving out the sermon outline via text message? Sending out prayer requests, announcements, Bible verses—the possibilities are endless.