Every week I hold online office hours and answer questions from folks like you. This week we’ve got a question about printing bulletins. Take a look and be sure to join me every Wednesday from 2-4 p.m. CDT for online office hours!
We waste tons of bulletins every single week, but our church leadership won’t get rid of paper bulletins. Any suggestions for how I can convince them this is a major waste of resources?
Much like anything, the presenting issue isn’t the root issue. Find out why bulletins are important to the church, or more specifically, the leaders you’re referring to.
Once you know the why behind the bulletin, you can begin to address how you’re going to meet those needs by reducing the volume of the physical bulletin.
For instance, most churches print a bulletin because it’s the way things have always been done. To change that means to change a process. A process that someone is familiar and comfortable with. So if the communications team is in charge of printing the bulletin, you might say to them, “Reducing our print costs will create less work for you. Here’s how…”
Another big objection to decreasing or eliminating the physical bulletin is the fear of isolating certain community members from important information. While it’s true that most people check and use email to stay on top of things, not everyone does. In that case, you want to have a plan for how you will get information to people who don’t need or have access to the Internet.
One example might be printing a monthly newsletter instead of a weekly one. Same information, same content, same announcements, it just happens on a less regular basis. It might not counteract all objections, but it would be a good start for folks who find a printed bulletin useful.
As frustrating as it can be sometimes, you must remember that announcements, bulletins, etc., aren’t actually the issue. The issue is staying connected to the community and knowing what’s happening in and around the church. Once you approach bulletins with that in mind, solutions come much quicker. (And not to mention solutions with a heavy dose of compassion! No one likes to feel left out.)
Great question. Thanks for asking!
Thanks for the great questions everybody! Hopefully this information will help you get from where you are to where you want to go. See you next time in the office!