October is a time for pumpkins, apple cider, Fall Festivals, and . . . Pastor Appreciation Month. If this is the first time you’re hearing about it, don’t worry. There’s still time to do a little planning. How will you thank your pastor? Try one (or all 10!) of these ideas.
- Gather eleven church friends to form a “Thank-You-Card-a-Month Club.” Assign one month to each person and take a month yourself. During their assigned months, club members will send a card, flowers, movie tickets, or some other small thank-you gift to your pastor to show your love and appreciation.
- Take your pastor(s) out to lunch or dinner—not to discuss church business, but just to relax.
- Change the oil or perform other basic auto maintenance on your pastor’s car.
- Cut the grass or weed the flower beds at your pastor’s home.
- Bake a special dessert and leave it anonymously on the doorstep of the church office.
- Gather a crew to clean and paint your pastor’s office. (Get permission first, of course!) Replace the carpeting or refinish the floor, add new artwork to the walls, and update the furniture, if needed.
- Help the younger children in your Sunday school classes or children’s ministry groups make a “Thank You, Pastor” booklet. Give each child a blank piece of paper and encourage him or her to draw a picture of one thing the pastor does. Be sure that each illustration covers most of the page. Have several adults or youth on hand to print a caption for each page, dictated by the child who drew the picture. Then bind all the pictures together and add a booklet cover entitled “Thank You, Pastor, for All You Do!”
- Preteens might enjoy a scavenger hunt at a local grocery store. Their mission: To collect candy bars and other items that can be used in a “Thank You” poster. For example:
- We’re Nuts about You!
- You Score Big on Our Charts!
- We Wouldn’t Trade You, Even for $100,000!
- You’re out of This world!
- Don’t forget your pastor’s family! Show your appreciation with a restaurant gift certificate, an evening of free babysitting, or tickets to a sporting event.
- Many pastors serve congregations far away from their hometowns. Work with all the members of your church to buy airline tickets or provide gas money for a surprise trip “home.” Be sure to give a few days of extra vacation time to allow for the unplanned trip. And you may want to include gift certificates or money to pay for extra expenses (for example, a motel room, meals). That way, the visit can be a true blessing, and not an unexpected financial burden.
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