Today’s worship places, like churches, synagogues, temples, and mosques, are much more than a place for mass and prayer. Most of them offer diverse services to their parish, from Sunday catechism to sports facilities, and from charity bazaars to seasonal festivals and summer camps.
Signage in places of worship
These varied activities mean an increase in the number of visitors, which in turn results in an increased need for various types of signage to help them find and navigate the grounds.
Signage can attract new members to the congregation by capturing their attention and offering useful information on service hours, events, etc.
By helping people find their way within the church or place of worship, signage can make it feel even more welcoming. And since any temple is about faith, hope, and peace, providing inspiration is another important function of signage in a worship place.
Signage for worship places starts outside and finds its full expression indoors, in many different and relevant ways.
Exterior monuments for worship places
Exterior monuments in front of a church are often iconic. They usually both indicate the name of the church and include a regularly updated inspirational or witty message.
Roadside billboard-style church messages are great for attracting attention. Many passersby will regularly stop and check to see if the message has been changed. A clever inspirational message can even become the talk of the town—or the Internet—and attract attention from neighboring towns. In times of declining membership and church attendance, this opportunity for communication shouldn’t be neglected.
Such monument signs convey at the same time the church’s personality, faith symbols and values, a warm welcome, and information. A listing of service times and coming events keeps the congregation informed at all times.
As a permanent outdoor sign, an exterior monument should be visible at night, and therefore it should include lighting.
Permanent exterior signage vs. portable signs
Exterior signage in a worship place also includes all signs embedded in the front of the building, such as the name of the place and the appropriate faith symbols or the logo of the house.
Such signage needs to be large as it should be visible from a distance. It could also be lighted to be visible at night hours—for example by including LED or a lightbox.
If a worship place has outdoor facilities, such as a parking lot and sports grounds, external directional signage is also necessary. Parking lots can also benefit from both permanent and temporary signage, such as yard signs.
Portable signage can regulate traffic flow on services or events days when the attendance is much stronger than on a regular weekday. If a worship place has more than one entrance, permanent and temporary signage helps parishioners find the right entrance for each activity. For example, the main entrance can have a permanent sign, but during summer camp a temporary sign could indicate where the drop-off is.
Finally, entrance signage should include an information board indicating mass schedule, ceremonies such as weddings and christenings, or the schedule of seminars, Sunday school, and other activities.
Once indoors, signage has many different functions. ADA compliant signage should help with wayfinding and room identification.
Stairways, exits, lifts, bathrooms, the cafe, youth rooms, and other permanent rooms should all have adequate signage at their entrance. If there is a reception, its signage can reflect the text, fonts, and symbols used on the front of the building, and then provide directions to the rest of the premises.
Beyond wayfinding and ADA compliance, signs can do much more for a worship place by enhancing the spiritual values and inspirational message of the house.
From framed content to wall stickers, internal signage can include scripture, the church’s mission statement, photos, messages, religious symbols and icons, and more. These can make the place feel warm and welcome while providing inspiration in otherwise empty walls in corridors and waiting areas.
Internal signage can also honor donors and important contributors. Examples of this use include donor walls and panels, the names of contributors at the entrance/door of specific areas, frames thanking sponsors, and more.
Signage as part of the congregation hall
An increasingly important use of internal signage is in the congregation hall where the services are performed. Such spaces are usually large and have high ceilings. Signage is used as a backdrop that focuses attention and attracts the eye to the service.
Congregation hall signage is generally large and visible from a distance.
Increasingly, such signage is digital. Large video walls are used to broadcast the sermon, to help hearing-impaired attendees with written text, present the orators and their bio, showcase the lyrics of hymns in order to engage the congregation, etc.
Digital signage is on the rise
Digital signage is on the rise not only in the congregation hall, but in many areas of a worship house. Never before has technology been as close to spiritual life as today.
For example, service and event schedules can be displayed in digital screens, making it easy to update them as regularly as needed.
The external monument can also hold a digital message board.
In waiting areas, in the cafe or at the reception area, digital screens can showcase coming events and announcements.
Temporary interior signage
There are many occasions when a worship place needs temporary signage.
Temporary signs often need to be portable and re-usable.
Examples include banners, yard signs, wall stickers, retractable banner stands, and signs of various sizes for events such as special services, parish bazaars, charity events, sports and competitions, religious festivals, seasonal activities like Easter egg hunts, summer camp, etc.
Engaging the community
The more a worship place makes its presence visible in an aesthetical and spiritual way, the more it will engage the community.
A worship house that is active and engaged in the life of the community needs signage to announce and promote events to its members, who will be seeking this information.
Welcoming, engaging, inspiring, and informing: these are the four essential functions that signage can have in worship places.
Magnify Signs’ experienced team can help a church implement a signage program that conveys values and is adapted to the personality of the parish.
Contact Magnify Signs online or call us now on 303-647-9005 to create the perfect signage for your place of worship!