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Four Strategies for Filling Those Volunteer Rosters This Resurrection Sunday

5 min read
Mar 22, 2024 12:12:28 PM

The Easter season is nearly upon us, and you’ve got big plans. Spring is commonly referred to as a strategic growth season, and while you’re excited and ready to host sunrise services and egg hunts, welcome first-time guests, and connect with families, in the back of your mind one question plays on repeat, “Do I have enough volunteers to make it all happen?”

It’s not too late to see those rosters filled, but there’s no time to waste. Preparations must begin immediately. With that in mind, here are four strategies to help you fill empty rosters and set you up for a win this Resurrection Sunday.


I know what you’re thinking, “I love my team, but there’s just not enough of them. Isn’t this blog post designed to help me find and recruit new people?” Yes, but unless you plan to single-handedly identify and enlist new individuals for each and every position within your ministry, you’re going to need assistance.

The longer someone serves in your ministry, the more personal it feels. It’s no longer a “them” or a “they,” instead it becomes a “we” and an “us.” The moment this shift occurs, ownership begins to develop. A volunteer who owns his or her ministry will be more motivated and consistent. They will strive for excellence and begin to problem-solve. They’ll also boast regularly on the ministry that has come to hold a special place in his or her heart. An appreciated volunteer who understands the vision and feels empowered to play his or her part will not only stick with you for the long haul, but they’ll recruit others to do the same.

If you’ve made meaningful connections, established a clear vision, and empowered your team members, making a request for them to help with recruitment this Easter season isn’t too big of an ask.



Recruiting can be difficult, especially on a highly attended holiday. Recruiting to a ministry that feels inefficient, ineffective, or unsightly is impossible. Before you launch into a five-part plan to fill understaffed ministry teams and start making announcements from the stage, you need to stop and ask yourself, “Would I want to volunteer in my ministry?” As leaders, it’s often difficult for us to see past the urgency of our need to the underlying cause of our shortage. 

When parents pick up their children, do they see stressed and outnumbered volunteers or inspired individuals who are joyfully living out their calling. Are first-time guests impressed with the aesthetics of your space, or are they distracted by unmanned doors and a lack of security? 

If you want people to sign up to serve, they need to see your effectiveness on display. Spend at least one or two weekends in self-evaluation, then make the necessary adjustments so your ministry will be more attractive.


The most common question I get asked is, “How do I get more volunteers?” To which I will usually respond, “Well…how many volunteers do you need exactly and in what areas do you need them?” There is usually a significant silence that follows. Why is it significant? Because recruiting is tough, but if you’re unaware of your specific needs you may complicate the matter further. 

When you clearly communicate your needs to both your fellow staff members and the team you lead, it’s easier to recognize the right person and get them in the right position. 

“I need four 9AM hospitality team members, three greeters for the 11AM service, and at least one more parking volunteer in each service.”

A tangible deficit is more easily overcome than an elusive one. Identify what and who you need this Easter, and clearly communicate that need with those who are willing to help you see it met. Most often, these people are fellow staff members, high-level leaders, and motivated volunteers.




The members of your team have a unique set of circumstances that brought them to where they are today. Their upbringing has molded them. Their relationships have influenced them. Their career choice, in many ways, may define them. With such diversity, it may seem impossible to find shared commonality. 

However, each of them has a starring role in God’s grand story. Each of them exists to make the name of Jesus famous, and while they may not realize it, each of them yearns to realize a greater purpose in Christ. They wouldn’t have signed up to volunteer if they didn’t. Use this knowledge to build camaraderie. Think of your language as a secret handshake to the greatest club ever created. When you get this right, it will deepen commitment and support unity among your team.

When your team has a common language, it is easier for them to stay motivated and aligned and go above and beyond to see the ministry win on those “big opportunity” Sundays, like Easter. The words or phrases you introduce to your volunteers should be memorable, clarify your vision, and bring inspiration. 

Examples might be: 

  • “This Easter Sunday we want every first-time family to feel like an insider from the moment they walk through the door.” 
  • Another unifying phrase might sound something like this, “We believe we are going to see hundreds of “one days” this Easter season. Moms, dads, grandmothers, friends, neighbors, and coworkers have been praying and believing that one day their loved one would give their life to Jesus. We are believing Resurrection Sunday is that one day. That means we need to be ready. We are asking you to help us identify additional leaders to help us prepare.”

A united team is a motivated team. A motivated team with a common language will both intentionally and unintentionally market your ministry to friends, family, coworkers, and neighbors. The best recruiter is a well-versed volunteer who loves your ministry to the point of remarking on it consistently

In most instances a bare roster is an indicator of an unhealthy ministry. People crave community. They want to be a part of a strong team. They desire to experience excellence and play a part in God’s story. A healthy ministry with high standards of excellence run by enthusiastic and committed volunteers who understand the mission and are united by a common language will attract new commits. 

Your shortage of volunteers may actually be pointing to a deeper problem, and it may be time to stop talking about your ministry and get busy working on your ministry. Evaluate your volunteer experience. Observe the inner workings of your systems. Ask your teams if they feel appreciated and empowered. Identify your specific needs and create a common language that will bring clarity and build unity. 

Your strategy for recruiting this spring season should be nothing more and nothing less than an effective and impactful experience for attendees AND volunteers.

For more insight on how you can build a healthy volunteer culture, connect with Jessica Bealer via email at jessica.bealer@generis.com.

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