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Church Volunteer Appreciation - Thanks and a Pat on the Back or Something More?

A woman I know has been heavily involved in the music program at her church for years. She started about 20 years ago directing the choir; before long a bell choir was established, also.

Over the years she's organized youth choirs and done a great job incorporating a variety of instrumentalists into the mix.

Each December, she puts together a wonderful Christmas concert featuring each of the musical groups.

There's more - but you get the idea. Their music ministry is vibrant and diverse, and as you can imagine, my friend spends many an evening at the church in various rehearsals.

After many years of service, she decided at the end of 2011 to cut back and stepped down from her role as Music Director (though she continues to direct the handbell choir). Her talents and instruction have benefitted many; the hours she's invested in the program over so many years are impossible to tally.

Do you let someone like that leave her job with a thank you and pat on the back...or do something a little extra to recognize her sacrificial service?

Across the country, there are thousands of volunteers just like my friend whose contributions are key to church operations. Their work makes it possible for many important things to happen - whether it's music, Sunday School, Bible classes, greeting people on Sunday mornings, administrative tasks, outreach programs, missions projects - you name it.

If those jobs don't get done, your church is a very different place.

Let's face it: most volunteers aren't "in it" for recognition. They feel called to contribute, and are happy to do so. A little boost in the way of public appreciation, though, can go a long way in keeping folks from burning out. There are any number of things you can do - many of which don't cost a dime. Use your imagination!

If you want to go one step further and present your volunteers with something tangible, you can do something nice without breaking the bank. Some congregations present our personalized church service plaques to those who are ending their terms every year. Others give them to volunteers have done something unusual and extraordinary. We've also had churches present them to people who have completed large-scale projects, like building programs. Interested? Check them out.

We've got plaques for teachers and musicians as well as general purpose service recognition.  

I Have Seen Your Service - Volunteer Service Appreciation

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