10 Questions to Ask Perspective Members

Every preacher, elder or church leader has had the blessing of sitting down with a Christian who has asked to place membership with, or identify as a member of, the local church. Admittedly, those meetings can be very stressful for the leader because we want our church’s numbers to grow while at the same time making sure that the church does not accept within her midst someone who is going to lead the congregation or its members astray. And, for that matter, we want the perspective member to feel welcome and not like they are trying to prove their viability to the church.

So, what are some questions that we can ask perspective members to get a handle on the situation?

  1. What makes you want to be a member here?
  2. What are you favorite, and least favorite, parts of the church here?
  3. Tell me about your life before conversion and how you came to know the Gospel.
  4. Can you explain to me what is “The Gospel”?
  5. Write down how, why, when and everything you can remember about your baptism.
  6. Why did you leave your last congregation? (Follow Up Question: Are there any relationships at your last church that are strained or broken?)
  7. Can you explain to me what church membership means to you?
  8. Is there anything that you’ve heard in sermons or Bible classes that you either didn’t understand or didn’t agree with?
  9. In what areas of our ministry (teaching, evangelism, ministries, etc.) would you like to be involved? (Stress the importance placed on working for the congregation, not simply “being a member”.)
  10. What questions about the congregation do you have?

Keep these questions in mind next time someone wants to place membership. They will help you get an idea of the person as well as letting them know the expectations that you have for membership. Whatever you do, please don’t make it an interview! They are wanting to identify as a member of the congregation, they aren’t applying for a scholarship or job.

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