The parish bulletin is a perennial publication that is a “go to” for weekly news and information. Below are some tips to enhance your bulletins and other printed materials. Also, here is a video with advice for creating beautiful and engaging bulletins.
- Avoid technical terms and acronyms. Write for the long-time parishioner as well as the visitor who is learning about your parish and perhaps the Catholic Church.
- Designate certain pages for regular ministry updates so that readers can have an easy time finding the information they need.
- Group content by category. Good organization facilitates good communication.
- Use only one or two font styles and one or two colors and be consistent. Design your bulletin to make it clear, clean and beautiful and include plenty of white space. Decorating your bulletin can make it fell cluttered and busy.
- Articles and photos are helpful for personalizing your parish and communicating your mission and vision.
- Include a “call to action” in your articles and ads.
- In addition to promoting your parish events and activities, promote diocesan-wide events from our parish announcements’ page.
Additional Print Materials
Newsletters, flyers, brochures, fact sheets, infographics, banners, posters and annual reports are additional printed materials that can be effective tools for communication.
It is helpful to enlist the assistance of a professional graphic designer for the creation of these materials. However, if budget constraints are an issue, a low-cost alternative is Canva.com, an online platform that provides design templates and stock images. If you need assistance with Canva, contact firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
Also, writing and design tips can be found here.
To Print or Not to Print
Before deciding on what printed materials are needed and taking into account the budgetary and environmental concerns with printing large quantities, consider these questions:
Who am I trying to reach?
What am I trying to communicate?
Can this be accomplished without printing?
Can I use recycled paper?
How will I measure the effectiveness of my printing?
Can the printed material be recycled or repurposed?
How will I distribute the printed materials (i.e. event, direct mail, church office display?)