How Church Storytelling Can Deepen Your Connection with Members


Storytelling was Jesus’s choice of communication style. As He walked with His disciples and spread the holy Word, He did so by sharing parables to exemplify His teachings. As a result, Jesus managed to build a loyal following of thousands. The modern church should take cues from Jesus and tap into the power of church storytelling to invite new members and deepen their connection with current members. 

Brands often rely on storytelling to increase brand awareness and recall, and churches should definitely be incorporating storytelling techniques into their marketing efforts.

Let’s discover the different ways to use the power of telling stories to get the word out about your church.

The Power of Church Storytelling

Harnessing the power of storytelling involves more than just capturing someone’s attention. It works well with modern marketing because stories are one of the best ways to spark human emotions. And it’s emotions that influence buying—or giving—decisions.

Here are some of the main benefits of incorporating church storytelling into your marketing efforts to grow your ministry…

Storytelling Helps You Establish Connections

Every story might be different, and every character unique. However, in the universal scheme of things, there’s something about each story that relates to each of us. 

When we tell stories, it helps us connect with people, often establishing connections even among strangers. And from a brand perspective, storytelling compels people to trust your brand because of that connection. 

According to the Brand Storytelling Report by Headstream, eight out of ten consumers (out of 2,000 people surveyed) want brands to tell stories in their marketing campaigns. However, don’t just tell any old story; make sure your stories are memorable and leave a lasting imprint on your audience. 

Storytelling Captures People’s Attention

Convincing younger congregation members to take an active role in the church can be challenging. And it becomes even more difficult to bring new members to your church. 

This is where church storytelling can come in handy. When you tell a story, the listener actively recreates that story in their head. As a result, the story becomes real, and they become immersed in it. 

Sharing stories is a great way to capture people’s attention. For example, you can use the storytelling technique to educate prospective members about what you’re doing in the church and how it benefits those who are part of your congregation (and those that you serve). 

And that leads us to the next reason why storytelling is a powerful tool in the church.

Storytelling Inspires People to Act

Your ability to influence the decisions and actions of your church members is crucial. Once you have that influence on them, they will naturally become disciples, spreading your cause in the community—just as Jesus did with His disciples. 

It’s not just about the act of storytelling, though; you can make this approach even more effective if you tell everyday stories. Use stories from regular people to make them more convincing and relatable. 

How to Approach Church Storytelling

If utilized wisely, storytelling is a technique that is effective in both for-profit and nonprofit content marketing. Whether you are trying to boost your ROI or grow your church, it’s a proven methodology that can help you achieve your goals. 

Your stories don’t need to be complex to be effective. Follow these tips to take the right approach for success… 

Use Stories of Regular People

Before you use church storytelling, ask yourself these questions:

As mentioned above, you don’t need a phenomenal story or someone extraordinary to “star” in your story. Use regular people to make your stories more relatable. Tap into the power of human connection to keep your stories grounded and relevant to the needs and plights of your fellow church members.

Show, Don’t Tell

This is one of the most repeated tips you will hear from content writers and marketers when using stories and for a good reason.

When you tell the story, you are forcing your own experience into the story. But when you show, it gives the audience the opportunity to immerse themselves into the story and interpret it in their own way. 

Do not remove the opportunity for your members to reflect on that story based on their personal experience with it.

Focus on Triumph Over Tragedy

If you want to succeed with church storytelling, you must focus on stories that showcase triumph over tragedy. 

For every human, tragedy is a common part of life. However, sharing stories of triumph over such tragedies gives people hope. This storytelling technique is especially effective in the church because you already have a platform where you can give people that hope—just like Jesus did in his journey to spread the Word. 

Use this as a medium to connect the story of Jesus with the story of your church. That’s how you can transform a story that showcases the glory of triumph over tragedy into something that your congregation can relate to and gain inspiration from. 

5 Ways to Use Church Storytelling

An out-of-focus church leader standing in the front of a church at the podium speaking to seated congregants.

Storytelling is the way to go if you’re aiming to strengthen your relationship with existing church members and attract new prospects. But how do you use this tool to improve your church communication efforts? 

Here are some ideas to use church storytelling to achieve your goals…

1. Sermons

Sermons are the cornerstone of every church communication, and it’s one of the best ways to incorporate storytelling that makes an impact on existing members and inspires prospects to join your church. 

Pastors and church leaders spend a lot of time and resources developing, editing, and polishing sermons to ensure they provide a meaningful service. Adding in stories can make those efforts easier.

Pick a story from your community to make your stories more relevant. Or share something from the pastor’s personal experience. By drawing from these everyday stories, your sermons will become more compelling.

2. Website

Businesses use storytelling to increase brand recall and make their customers empathize with their brand. You can use this same approach when writing the copy for your church’s website.

Bring up your website and analyze it. 

Does it accurately depict what your church represents? 

Will prospective members see a glimpse of what your community is like? 

How can you get your story across? 

3. Social Media

Every church must have a social media presence to help expand its reach and let more people know that their congregation exists. With that said, you can also use church storytelling when creating social media posts.

Many churches use their social media pages to blast their followers with announcements and church events. Don’t waste your platform for that type of information alone, although those things are relevant, too.

Use your social media platform as a medium for sharing your members’ stories. Leverage the reach of this platform to give your audience insight into what your church is about and what it represents. This will allow you to attract like-minded individuals who want to become a part of your story or share their own. 

4. Volunteer Recruiting

This is one of the best ways to use storytelling, especially since it will allow you to inspire people into action. It takes a great deal of commitment to volunteer. But if you can use video testimonials sharing stories of previous volunteers, you can move other people to do the same. 

5. Outreach

Sharing stories in sermons for your current church members is a good approach to making an impact on their lives. You can also use it to spread the message of your community and grow your church.

In a world where everyone has different ideals and views on life, stories serve as the common thread that brings us together. You can leverage the power of stories in your outreach programs to connect with more people and grow your church. 


Even before the written language was invented, the ancient people were already telling their stories. This insight into human psychology and the ability to spur them into action through hearing other people’s stories is a masterful technique you can use to grow your congregation. 

If you haven’t used church storytelling yet, now is the time to get started. Incorporate this technique into your marketing efforts and enjoy the growth that comes along with it. Need some expert help to leverage storytelling and grow your church? Learn more about our church marketing agency and request a free audit today!


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About Shannon Kegerries

Shannon’s deep desire to help others is a trait that was developed early on, as she has always enjoyed seeing people, groups, organizations, companies, and families thrive and make positive changes that encourage growth in all areas. That combined with her love of learning is what drove her to earn her master’s degree in psychology and counseling from Pittsburg State University in Kansas. For more than 15 years, Shannon worked in a variety of settings as a behavioral, family, young adult, and group therapist. As a behavioral therapist and case manager who has worked with people from nearly all walks of life, Shannon has a knack for helping others reach their desired outcomes, which she applies to her work at Viral Solutions as a content marketer. In addition to possessing keen insight into what drives human behavior, Shannon strives to find various ways in which she can relay each client’s message and vision to their prospect so that it hits every angle and sinks into the prospect’s mind. Likening her role to that of a detective, Shannon enjoys gathering information about each client’s prospect and competitor, then fitting it all together with the client’s product/service as the answer to the problem. She is a StoryBrand Certified Guide.

When she’s not working, Shannon enjoys reading, skiing, painting, and spending time with her family.