The greeter is often the first person someone sees when they come to the
church.  They set the tone for the experience.  Their smile and
welcoming handshake puts the person at ease.  They are there to help
take care of any immediate needs, like where to hang a wet overcoat or
how to find the rest room, or where to take a young child for care.

They help the person to their seat and provide instruction as to what
will happen during the service (such as a bulletin or order of service).
In this sense, greeters become the servants of God’s people, the way
Jesus told us.  Remember that at the last Supper, while the Disciples
were arguing over who would get the best seat, Jesus became the servant
and washed the road grime from their feet before they lay down on the
floor to eat (do you want someone’s dirty feet next to your plate?)

Jesus did the mundane task of making them comfortable so that they could
concentrate on what was going to be said later.

Louise Berkinaw speaks of our communities having an invisible wall around it, and the newcomer needing the help of others to “find their way back” to normalcy.  When people do make it through the door, what do they see?  Ms  Berkinow says that “Newcomers don’t know where to make contact.”[1] She
was at the time talking about wives of geographically mobile corporate
executives in the 80s.  Moving to a new town, not knowing how to get
involved in the society of the new community.  So they would sit home a
lot, afraid to do anything that would jeopardize the husband’s career
and their own lifestyle.  It wasn’t much, but it was all they knew. 

Or maybe, your visitor might be someone who had wandered from God, and
is almost afraid to come back to church, and needs someone to give them
the assurance that it’s OK to come back.  The greeter becomes the hands
and feet of Jesus, the loving father to the prodigal child, excited that
they have come back to the community of faith.

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