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January 24, 2020

Raise your right hand and repeat after me: I am now a DAWG! That’s right, a Deputized, Authorized Welcoming Greeter! Every member of First UU Church is hereby authorized to welcome newcomers to our events and services.

I read online that the average church welcomes three visitors per week for every 100 attendees. It’s been my experience that we’re above average in this (as well as many other!) respects, so you’ll quickly surmise that the members of the Welcome Team need help greeting everyone.

Welcome Team members need to stay close to the entrances before the service, so they may hand-off newcomers to other church members so they can return and greet others. If a Welcome Team member introduces you to a newcomer, please engage them in conversation and offer them a cup of coffee or tea. Ask how they found out about us – answer their questions – and tell them some of the reasons why you like attending First UU Church!

If you’ve spent any time keeping up with national and world events lately, you know how much folks need Unitarian Universalism. Countless people are seeking a place where they can combine their heartfelt compassion, use of reason and thirst for justice with their spirituality. They need what we have found and created, and we need them as a vital part of our growing community. We are here to welcome them home – for perhaps the first time.

I went online and found a handy way to amp up our friendliness and welcome folks: LINE UP! I’ve adapted it for our use here at First UU Church.

  • L = Look for someone you don’t know.
  • I = Introduce yourself.
  • N = Never sit alone.
  • E = Engage them with Events – tell them about the happenings in our
  • U = Use the fellowship time after the service to engage folks in
  • P = Practice the 3/10 Rule (talk to 3 people you don’t know during the
    first 10 minutes after the service).

Of course, just because you’re now a DAWG doesn’t mean you can’t take that next step and become an official member of the Welcome Team. We can always use more  friendly faces to staff the entrances and host the Welcome Table, and we are also having training sessions. Let Alma know if you would like to join!

Rev. D. Scott Cooper
Assistant Minister of Congregational Life
First Unitarian Universalist Church of Houston

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