Message - as a church ministry
Message - Selecting -
The Message -
The messages placed on your church sign may be inspirational, witty,
informative or an invitation but whatever, it is an extension of
your ministry to the world. Some people have been drawn into the
church because of a sign message that spoke to their heart. It is
unknown the countless others in which the messages, undoubtedly,
either planted a seed or helped to cultivate a seed previously
planted. Our words of testimony will not return void. The 'Ministry
of the Sign' should be taken just as serious as any other church ministry.
The messages may be taken lightly but when the duty is performed
with conscientiousness it can be improved upon for maximum impact.
It is our duty to shout the good news to the people that they too
have the opportunity to share in the Good News of redemption through
God's sacrifice of His only Son, Jesus Christ. The church reader
board sign allows messages that can be bold one week and
compassionate the next. The messages extend the news of God's
goodness, and his justice to the commute of lost souls.
You may select existing messages or choose to compose your own
sayings or edit an existing saying. Ideally the saying should
be relatively simply to allow the easy reading as a person drives
past. Most Churches will usually use existing inspirational
and compassionate messages, searching the internet and other
sources. In composing sayings, try to be concise and to the point.
The shorter the message the easier to read. See PoetPatriot's
Original Sayings. A
shorter message is not only easier to read but is also easier to
post on the sign. The really short messages may be subliminally
picked up by a passing motorist without their intentionally reading
it. If the passing traffic is often stopped or slowed, the
motorists have the opportunity to read the messages, whether they
are long or short. Since the name of your church is
permanently affixed to your sign you might try avoiding using your
name by phrasing the message to imply the church name listed
(Usually) above. Where in the
Church Motto we
try avoiding using a divine designation the saying is different. In
the Sign Message we want to use God, Jesus, Christ in our
messages as a witness to the world. Sayings that are witty should be
simple to allow both the message and the humor to be easily sensed.
A saying adapted from a well known advertising slogan may more
quickly instill itself in the memory of the viewer. See the
Slogans Adapted. A
message that ties in to current issues or events may stick to the
ribs of a troubled soul. See the 'Political' and 'Holiday' categories
of the PoetPatriot's Original
Sayings and the 'Holiday' category of the
Sayings Collected. You
might even quote famous people. See
for Church Signs. Always show the author's name when quoting.
(Except when using my Original
Sayings, where I give
you the option)
Whether you select an existing saying, adapt, edit, or compose your own,
the messages are a vital part of your witness to the community.
You may occasionally use the sign to inform of church events or even
those of your community. However the sign as a tool for evangelism
should remain as such. Often the motorist looks forward to the
changing of the message and is disappointed when the message remains
for more than a week or is changed to just information. When being
informative try adding a short message at the bottom to maintain the
continuity of the messages to the world. The sign that is not easily
seen from the road would probably be better used as informative
only. That sign may state the subject of the next sermon and or
inform of church or community events. Basically the sign that
can be viewed should be used primarily for the presentation of the
messages to the souls of the commute.
Scripture is often used by Churches for messages on church signs.
When using scripture do not bother to place the reference unless you
feel it might somehow enhance the experience of reading the verse.
When the message is obvious to one who is antagonistic towards God
that it is a Bible verse, it is usually ignored. The language
of the King James is usually self obvious as from the bible. Using a
modern translation or paraphrasing the verse yourself reduces the
appearance of being directly from the Bible. The advantage of using
scripture is that it is the word of God, it is Truth.
Scripture may be used to inspire an original saying or be edited
down to a shorter more concise message.
The changing of the messages should be regular as clockwork. It is
understandable that the person who changes the sign messages
probably has other undertakings within the church. Perhaps have two
or more people assigned to the changing of the sign in a
rotation. As with any task, more workers make for easier work.
Perhaps with two 'changers of the message,' have one who would post
the longer messages and the other posting rather short messages. The
alternating between long and short sayings adds a visual distinction
that the sign has been changed. If you have a particularly poignant
saying you might repeat it 3 or 4 times during a series of rotation.
Since the main Church service is once a week it is usually expected
that a new message be placed at least once a week. The sign
provides the first impression of your church and when the message
remains for more than a week a negative feeling is left with those
who look forward to a new message. Ideally, assuming the
manpower is available, the message should be changed two or three
times through the week. Most of the motorists pass by your
sign every day and when the message is refreshed on a regular and
frequent basis they begin to look for that break in their commute.
Even those who hold contempt or animosity against God will begin to
read the frequently changing messages whether they want to or not.
Do not beat yourself up if only able to change it once a week as
that is the most common interval among churches. Two or three
times a year you might consider a
sign campaign where you
surprise your audience with more frequent messages. At the very
least, try to adhere to at least the weekly interval to maintain the
anticipation of your audience, the commuter.
The Church reader board sign is a tool to spread the gospel of Jesus
Christ to the community. The sign messages are just one tool among
many that God has given us to spread his word. It is a tool
that stays working for God even when we are not. It is an
impersonal tool that takes little effort overall. In the
community it is usually the congregation that gets the credit for
the work of the few individuals that compose or collect the messages
and perform the work in changing the messages on a regular basis.
Often taken for granted, with a single person in charge of the
messages, the sign is usually given little thought by the church.
Thank the person for taking the time to find or compose and for the
placements of the messages onto the sign. Praise is given by the
congregation when a comment comes in as to how it has touched a
life, however for the most part, though in plain sight it is often
out of mind. The sign becomes just a fixture of the church
when even the members fail to read the messages. The messages
on the reader-board sign is probably the one ministry that is the
most visible to the community.
2009, 2011 Roger W Hancock,
Sign - a tool for
A Tool -
The Sign -
Take it Serious.
As a Tool -
A Church Sign is fast becoming a sign of modern Church ministry.
Many Churches have found that a reader board sign becomes an
essential extension of their ministry. Some people will actually go
the trouble to express their gratitude concerning the messages.
Others have been drawn in to the church becoming members. Some
unbelievers have been saved because God spoke to them through a
particular message on the board. A concise Motto placed with
the name of the church provides an impression about the church.
( Read about the Church Motto.)
The sign is valuable in the arsenal of tools you use to market your
The Sign -
The ideal sign is two sided, placed perpendicular to the road so
that it is easily seen from both directions. Attempting to
minimize the cost, some churches will have a one sided sign that is
parallel to the road and often up near the church. A sign with
only one side and parallel to the road is not often seen by the
occupants of passing vehicles. A one-sided sign may have its
purpose, if used to keep the congregation informed of the sermons
and activities of the church. A two sided sign is more conducive to
the mission of Christianity. The size of the lettering must be
considered so the messages are easily read from the road. Your
sign contractor can help you determine the size of the lettering.
The distance of the sign to the traffic will determine the minimum
size lettering to allow it to be read from down the street, where
the motorist would begin to read your message before they pass by. A
few type styles are available, however choose one that is simple.
Avoid the fancy cursive and Old English styles as they are more
difficult to read from a distance. As an out-reach ministry, a
sign that is not seen is a message cast to swine.
The Sign should be placed where it is accessible to the most
traffic. It can replace a current sign or become a second sign
placed in a different location on the property. I once saw a
church reader board sign on a vacant lot, across from the church.
Consider safety in the placement of the sign, it may be distracting
if placed near a particularly busy and dangerous intersection.
Safe intersections are an ideal location for a reader board sign but
the sign should not be placed too close to the corner. The sign
should be far enough from the intersection so that it is plainly
visible when a car is stopped waiting its turn to proceed. You
might choose to place your sign on the busier road for the maximum
exposure. Consider obstacles or trees that may obstruct the
viewing of the sign. A small tree or bush may not obstruct now
but may grow requiring trimming, assuming it is on your property. A
properly placed sign maximizes the exposure of the messages you will
post on your sign.
The cost of the sign can vary substantially depending upon type and
feature. The most expensive are the electronic lighted signs that
can run more than $20,000. That may be prudent, especially if you
have a casino down the road from your church. One advantage is that
they are controlled by a control box or your computer inside your
church. The more economical signs require a manual changing of
the letters while out in the weather. Those can run as low as
$5,000. You might wish to have the sign lighted so it is read
at night or in the interest of minimizing the cost, leave it without
light to be read during the day. Whether low or high end in
cost, the messages placed on the board extends your ministry to your
community 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
There are many companies that are qualified to install signs.
Your local sign company may be more versed on local law concerning
the placement of signs. You may need a permit to have a sign
placed and there may be set-back requirements depending on your
location. Some Companies are Nation-wide catering primarily to
churches. Those companies would be aware they need to consult
local authorities, and may instruct you as to what information to
obtain from your City Hall. A church sign company may be aware
of specific problems and requirements when a church wishes to erect
a sign. Before any digging call the utility companies to have them
locate the utilities in the area where the sign is to be placed.
Some areas have a one-call number for all the utilities. Whatever company you choose, be sure they are bonded
The placement of a church reader board sign is the establishment of
a new ministry within your church. It is a ministry that should be
taken just as serious as your Sunday School Classes. The above
article, The Message, will help to
maximize the impact of that ministry. Go forth and spread the
Gospel of Jesus Christ to your local commuter.
2009 Roger W Hancock,