Adding a 2nd Service

I recently received an email with some questions about children’s ministries and volunteers as you add a second service.  I thought I’d respond here with some of the things I learned from experience and from others in preparation for adding services.  We currently have three services in two locations.


Our church is about to transition to two services and we’re trying to figure out childcare logistics for those who would serve in the music ministry (among others) for both services. Have you guys faced this issue? For example if a single mother (or husband/wife team) sings in both services, do their children stay in children’s church for both services? Do you have separate childcare for people whose children have already been through one children’s church service?


  • If your children’s area is engaging, they will enjoy being there a second time, in part because more of their friends will be there. We have had extra venues with coloring stations, games, and worksheets. But, we didn’t at the beginning. Keep in mind that in this area and in all areas, you are aiming for excellence and to exceed expectations. However, in some areas, you will want to determine what is the “good enough” level for service.
  • Another solution, a solution that gives you a greater opportunity to expand your volunteer force is to have multiple volunteer teams/bands/artists for each service.


  • don’t add a service time to your existing schedule.  Change the service schedules altogether (example: if you have a 10:30 am service, consider a 9:30 and 11 am) so that people have to make a choice.
  • ask people to  commit to the 1st service in writing for 3-6 months.
  • ask people to “serve one and attend one.” One of the biggest wins when you add a second service is the opportunity to significantly increase the number of volunteers.
  • Manage the size of each service. Talk up the smaller service and work toward an event distribution of attendance across both services.
  • Never refer to the first service as the “early service.”
  • Never talk down a service because of lack of attendance, responsiveness, etc…
  • Bring the same level of intensity to each service.
  • When you are not speaking, utilize in house speakers and allow them to speak in only one service. In doing this, you will develop and multiply the number of speakers twice as fast.
  • On big days, encourage people to come to the first service. Your later service will most likely be your front door.
  • At 80% capacity, people will not be able to sit together.  If you are a growing church, you need to begin planning the launch of a 2nd service when you are hitting 65-70% capacity.
  • If you are beyond 80% capacity, you are likely losing people because of crowding.
  • Use the momentum of a big day to launch 2 services.
  • If you are not certain about a 2 service schedule, pilot a two service schedule on Easter.  Then, launch a steady two service schedule in the fall.

One Response

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