The church calendar is an item that will either control you or you will control it. A calendar with all major holidays is necessary. It would never do to start your stewardship campaign for your building program on Mother’s Day! All of the directors in your church must be present during planning to create a good church calendar.
A great church calendar should be planned at least a year in advance. You will need to be aware of community events that might interfere with your event. Some years ago the author discovered too late that the church car show we had planned coincided with the local car show two blocks over.
To help in the discussions at the planning meeting, it is recommended snacks or a light meal be provided. Begin by placing the major events on the calendar. For example, revivals and conferences should be given priority. Next, begin with other events you would like to have but which are not yet set in stone. Do not overdo the scheduling. A good general rule is that major events should take place no more than every other month. If there are overlapping events, discuss whether this is acceptable. For instance, the youth group and the senior saints may not share the fellowship hall on the same evening. However, if one wishes to use the fellowship hall that evening and the other has a trip planned then that’s okay.
Resolve any conflicts that may arise peacefully. Be willing to compromise for the good of the entire church, not just your group.
Once a good calendar has been created it can be become your guideline for your ministry. Look back at the previous year’s calendar. What were the low attendance days at your church? Is it possible to add in an event which might boost attendance during that time?
Now that you have your calendar in place you may plan your events. For instance, your calendar can help you start your event planning a month or two in advance. Take notes throughout the year on what will be needed to make those events happen.
By all means, remember that if conflicts arise in the calendar, you created the calendar – not the other way around! Make sure you do not plow ahead with an event which you know will be a disaster just because it is termed an annual event. The master calendar should be kept in the church office or on a bulletin board or other visible location. Changes to the church calendar should also be made on the master calendar so everyone can see it and make adjustments accordingly.