5 helpful church visitor follow-up email templates

September 21, 2023

As church leaders, much of our focus is on getting new church visitors and creating a great experience for them. However, it’s also important to consider what happens after they leave a service. Did they feel welcome and included? Are there any needs the church could help meet? Are they planning on coming back? 

In order to answer these questions, your church staff needs to connect with them. One easy yet powerful way to communicate with visitors is through email. Most people carry their phones around and check email messages multiple times a day. First-time guests to your church probably do the same thing. So, why not follow up with them in their inbox and invite them back to church?

Of course, you’ll need to ask visitors to fill out a connect card with a few pertinent details, including their name, email address, and phone number. You can also offer an optional list of things like prayer requests, ministry programs, or small groups they may be interested in.

Now that you have the necessary contact information, let’s take a look at some best practices for sending follow-up emails to first-time visitors. 

Tips for writing follow-up emails to church visitors

1. Use an attention-grabbing subject line

Of course, you don’t want to come across as cheesy or sensational with your subject lines. However, you do need a subject line that will catch their interest enough to click, open, and read your email. 

One way to capture their attention is by using the visitor’s first name, your church’s name, or both of these in the subject line. Here are a few sample subject lines you can use:

  • [First Name], here’s what is coming up at [Church Name]!
  • [First Name], we are glad you came to [Church Name]. 
  • [First Name], you’re invited!
  • [First Name], thank you for visiting! Check out what’s coming next Sunday…

2. Start with a warm welcome

Once your visitor opens the email, start by sharing how happy you are that they visited and that you hope to see them again next Sunday. For example, 

“We loved having you at [Church Name] and hope you enjoyed your visit! We know that attending a church for the first time can be stressful, so I appreciate you being here. In case you’re wondering, Pastor [Name] will share about [sermon topic] this coming Sunday. We’d love to have you join us again this weekend.” 

3. Customize your message

Email templates are a huge time-saver. However, any email needs to sound like it’s coming from a real person. Take the time to personalize the template before you hit “send.” Here a few some simple ways to do this:

  • Use their name within the message.
  • Mention any church programs or events that this visitor might be interested in—for example, list children’s ministry programming to a visitor who checked their children into Sunday school during a visit.
  • If you met the visitor, include a tidbit you can recall from your conversation with this individual.

These personal touches show you paid attention when meeting a visitor and genuinely care.

ChMS for managing, connecting & growing your church

4. Build a personal connection

A church community is about cultivating real relationships. Consider what a newcomer might think, feel, or wonder about when it comes to your church. Are they fearful about sharing their past? Are they curious about faith and unsure if your church will welcome their questions? 

You can calm some fears by sharing what your church is about. Point them to your website where they can find out more information about your church’s vision, values, or statement of beliefs so the reader understands the “why” behind your ministry. 

5. Extend an invitation

Don’t forget to invite visitors to come back. Share how excited you were that they came, how you’d love to see them again next week, and ask them to return. We all want to be wanted, so ensure your visitors know you hope they’ll return.

6. Provide options to reach out

At the close of your email, give your visitors a few options for contacting your team. Some visitors will be happy to reply to the email. However, others may prefer to make a phone call or send a text message. Include those options so each visitor can reach out to the church in their chosen manner.

5 follow-up email email templates for church visitors

If you’re like most church leaders, you probably have a long to-do list. That’s why we’d like to make it easier to tackle visitor follow-up communications. 

Here are five email templates you can customize for your church. Decide which approach you’d like to take, adjust the text, and use these for future visitor follow-up emails.

Approach #1: Warm & inviting

Hi [First Name],

This is [Pastor/Leader’s Name] from [Church Name]. I’m so grateful you decided to join us last Sunday for church. We enjoyed having you with us and hope to see you back next weekend. 

If you have any questions, prayer requests, or would like more information about our church, please reply to this email or call me at [Phone Number]. Also, we’ll have a newcomers welcome lunch on [Date and Time] and would love to have you join us!


[Pastor/Leader’s Name]

Approach #2: Personal connection

Hi [First Name],

It’s [Pastor/Leader’s Name] with [Church Name]. We met briefly on Sunday as you [mention where you met—at the children’s check-in station, in the main lobby, etc.]. 

I enjoyed meeting you [and their family, if applicable] and hope you enjoyed the service.

Just in case you didn’t receive this information during your visit, here are some upcoming events and programs that I thought might interest you:

[List event and provide a brief description along with any times or dates.]

Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions. I’d be happy to help!

[Include phone number here.]

In Christ,

[Pastor/Leader’s Name]

Approach #3: Authenticity & vision

Dear [First Name],

Thank you for visiting us at [Church Name] last Sunday! We enjoyed having you with us. 

One question we often get from newcomers is, “What are you all about?” We value transparency and are passionate about our vision for our community. If you’re wondering about this as well, here’s a quick overview of our values and vision:

[Include a link to a video if you have one. Otherwise, include a short paragraph or two that conveys the vision and values of your church. Consider linking to the church statement of beliefs on your website as well.]

Please let me know if you have any questions or want to learn more about our church. I’d be happy to talk with you. You can reach me at [Phone Number] or reply to this email. I hope to see you again this Sunday!

Peace and joy,

[Pastor/Leader’s Name]

Approach #4: Provide relevant information

Hi, [First Name]!

Thank you for joining us at [Church Name] last Sunday! We enjoyed meeting you and hope to see you again this weekend.

Here are a few upcoming events and programs that might interest you:

  • Newcomer’s welcome: We host a luncheon [insert details here about any time of meet and greet you have for visitors]. We want to take this opportunity to answer your questions, get to know you, and share a bit about the church. If you’d like to attend, the next one is on [Date and Time].
  • Small groups: As much as we value coming together on Sunday mornings, we recognize that having deeper conversations in smaller settings is more accessible. That’s why we host several small group meetings during the week. Here’s a link [Link] to more information about those groups, when they meet, and where.
  • Upcoming event: We have a [Event Name] coming up on [Date and Time]. Click here [Link] to learn more and to sign up to attend.

Again, I’m so glad you came last week. Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions. You can reach me by replying to this email or at [Phone Number].

Peace and Joy,

[Pastor/Leader’s Name]

Approach #5: Encouragement & support

Hello, [First Name]!

This is [Pastor/Leader’s Name] from [Church Name]. Thank you for joining us last Sunday! We enjoyed having you here. I know visiting a church for the first time can be overwhelming, so I appreciate you taking a chance on us and hope you felt welcomed and valued.

We exist to share God’s love and the message of hope He provides. Whether you grew up in a church or wonder what faith in God is all about, you are welcome here at [Church Name]. 

We respect your questions and aren’t afraid to tackle the tough stuff. If you’re willing to give us the opportunity, I’m confident you’ll find that our church community is happy to walk with you through any questions or challenging circumstances you may be in.

Please join us for our next newcomer’s meet and greet on [Date and Time]. Also, if you have any prayer requests or questions about faith, contact me at [Phone Number] or reply to this email. I’d be happy to talk with you.


[Pastor/Leader’s Name]

Get better connected with church visitors

Taking the time to follow up with church visitors can be the difference between them coming back or not. Visitors need to know that you care and want them to return. A simple follow-up email can make a significant impact when done well.

Subsplash makes it easy for you to know, engage, and connect with your visitors. Imagine having your email, text messaging, group chat, and push notifications all on one platform that is integrated with your church management software

You can also easily create a beautiful church website with helpful information and online connection forms for your visitors. People visiting online can also watch your live stream services and chat with your community in real time. 

Better yet, all of these tools are on one powerful platform! To learn how your church can better connect with visitors, engage them with gospel-centered content, and grow your church, [.blog-contact-cta]schedule a free demo today![.blog-contact-cta]

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Deborah Ike, Guest author

Deborah Ike is a wife, home-schooling mama, and writer. With over 20 years of experience in business consulting and ministry, she writes to provide insights and tips to church leaders. She specializes in church business administration topics. 

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