Sample Church Anniversary Speeches & Opening Remarks

Empty Church Pew Before Anniversary Celebration

Your church anniversary is a big deal... and so are the church anniversary remarks you give during your big speech. Throughout the years, it has taken the collective work of your entire congregation to build such an important pillar within the community. Summing up this big effort in words can be tough. That’s why it’s not a bad idea to look for inspiration in our speech for church anniversary examples. Below we offer seven church anniversary speeches you can use to spark creativity, enlightenment and engagement. Or you can use each speech for a church anniversary as is.  

Church Anniversary Speech that Focuses on the Origins 

Everybody likes a good origin story, especially when it involves them. Take a look back at how it all began and congratulate members for building the spiritual rock they all sit upon. The church anniversary remarks below illustrate how you can focus on your origin story to help members feel a sense of accomplishment.  

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Church Anniversary Remark 1 

Good morning and welcome! It's great to see so many beloved and familiar faces on our church anniversary. The Lord has been so good to our church family and days like this remind us of how special and important this body of Christ has become to this community. It wasn't that long ago when a small group of believers came together to share a vision to spread the message of Jesus Christ with the lost souls in this town, and here we are still going strong. 

Church growth isn't easy but all of you have proven that it's not impossible when every member of the congregation steps up and fully commits to winning the hearts and minds of those willing to listen to our message. Each year we continue to be blessed with new members. And make no mistake, each and every one of you is a valued member of this church body. 

You have proven your commitment and loyalty to the work of the Lord and for that we've all been richly blessed. As we worship together this morning let us keep our eyes focused on His glory and all the blessings He's seen fit to bestow upon us. 

Anniversary Remark 2 

This church was founded one year ago today. And yet it feels like this body of Christ has praised the Lord together for our entire lives. Never take days like this for granted, for they are gifts from God Himself. The Bible presents us with a mission to reach the lost with the message of salvation and it's an amazing feeling to have spent the last year winning the Lost for the Savior in the community. 

Today is a celebration of many things. Can you feel the love here? I certainly can.  

Our love of God and our commitment to His commandments is stronger than ever and today's church celebration represents the completion of merely the first step in a long journey that we will take together. 

Gracious Church Anniversary Remarks 

As a church leader, there are plenty of things outside your control, including how members receive your church anniversary announcement. That’s why it’s important to be gracious. Appreciating members and the Lord is something you can easily do, and it will provide an example for the greater community. Your attitude is contagious, and if you display gratitude in your speech for a church anniversary, members will follow. The following church anniversary remarks illustrate how you can show graciousness. 


Anniversary Remark 3 

Today represents a new beginning. This church celebration gives up the chance to not only look back at how far we've come as a church community but also to look forward to all the blessings the Lord still holds for us as we continue to do His work. 

As I spent the past few days praying over my church anniversary remarks for this morning it took my breath away thinking how fortunate we are to have been called to this life of ministry. 

For those of you who have invested time, energy and financial resources in this church service preparation, be assured that your sacrifices are deeply appreciated and received in love. Please look around you at your brothers and sisters in Christ as we lift each other up in the name of the Lord and sing his praises this morning. 

Anniversary Remark 4 

Church growth doesn't happen by accident. It takes hard work, prayer and commitment. It also takes the Holy blessing of the Lord. That's exactly why we're here this morning, to acknowledge that He has richly blessed us over the past year. 

I've prayed long and hard over the past few weeks in preparation for these church anniversary remarks. It never fails to bring tears to my eyes when I think about each one of you here today and remember the moments we've spent together worshiping the Holy Father as members of the body of Christ. 

Today is a momentous day in the history of this young church. There is so much ahead of us that it makes my heart nearly burst with joy. Let us worship together, pray together, lift up the Lord's Holy Name in thanksgiving together and bless Him for all the ways He has blessed us. 

Anniversary Remark 5 

Good morning! Thank you so much for being a part of this church celebration. It's hard to believe that another year has passed. The Spirit of the Lord is undeniable. And it's only through his mercy and grace that this church has managed to continue to grow and thrive. 

As we go forward on this special occasion, let's lift our voices to Heaven so that the Heavenly Father can see our hearts and know how much we love Him and rely on him for courage and strength day in and day out. Praise God for all of you and join me in offering a prayer of thanksgiving. 

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Speeches for Church Anniversaries that Focus on Growth 

One of your church’s missions is growth. That’s why it’s important to take a few moments to examine how much the congregation has grown. The church anniversary remarks below illustrate how you can focus on the adversity you’ve overcome collectively and the growth you’ve all achieved. 

Anniversary Remark 6 

We've overcome so much to reach another church anniversary. I'm thankful to see each one of you today and to have the chance to come together in a spirit of praise to the Holy One. There's no denying that this church community is a gift from the Lord Himself. In fact, this church is nothing short of a miracle. And yet we all know that the Lord God Almighty is in the miracle business. 

Take this moment to turn to the brother or sister in Christ on each side of you and say, "Welcome and praise God for another day living in Salvation!" 

May the Lord bless us today as we lift our hearts to Heaven and humbly ask him to fill this building with His goodness and mercy. 

Anniversary Remark 7 

Let me start my church anniversary remarks by welcoming each one of you to this very special day in this very special place. Each one of you is a child of the Savior, and it makes my heart swell with love when I remember all the moments we've spent together praising the Lord in prayer and song. 

We've grown so much, and yet we're only getting started. This ministry is possible because of the mercy and grace of the Lord Jesus Christ. It's been my pleasure to serve him alongside you for the past year and I can't wait to witness all that He holds in store for us in the year to come. As we worship together today, lift up each of your brothers and sisters in prayer and offer thanks to God that He saw fit to make the congregation possible. 

Complete Speeches for Church Anniversaries 

The church anniversary remarks we shared work great as a springboard for a sermon or as an excerpt to put in your church bulletin. However, it helps to have a little more. That’s why we built four speeches for church anniversaries. Each of these longer speeches focuses on a different theme to help you convey the importance of your church anniversary. 

Church Anniversary Speech 1 – Being Concrete 

When talking about a church anniversary, it’s hard not to be vague or broad. After all, your anniversary could be celebrating a period that spans generations. How do you convey the magnitude of something that may have taken decades to build? 

Using concrete examples in a speech for a church anniversary helps. With a concrete example in your church anniversary speech, you can show how a specific moment epitomizes all the hard work the congregation has devoted to building a spiritual pillar within the community. The church anniversary speech example below shows how one pastor recognizes the gardening work of their volunteers, Betty and Lorraine.  

Today is a celebration. Today we gather to share in the joy of another anniversary. As I look around our congregation today, I am filled with inspiration. I arrived earlier than usual today to walk the grounds, to enjoy a quiet word with the Lord as I took in what this anniversary means to me, to all of us.  

As I walked outside, I stood beside the lovely spring bulbs–the tulips and daffodils. In such beauty, the Lord is never far, but as I looked, in my mind's eye I saw Betty and Lorraine who just last week spent a Saturday morning weeding these very beds. I recognized the time they contributed to this labor. 

I thought of all our special events, the spaghetti dinners and Christmas pageants, and again, I was inspired by the gift of time and labor that so many of you shared with our church, with all of us. Over the course of the year, so many of you have given of yourselves in different ways, whether painting the walls or teaching a Sunday school class.  

So much wonderful work goes into a working church. Our prayer chains, our giving plans, our help to one another. This is what comes to my mind as I contemplate our anniversary celebration. What you give of yourselves is a glory to God…and he sees. I know he sees.  

Today we take time to celebrate all this work and the comfort it gives to us all. I look forward to the work to come. I look forward to being part of this work in the year ahead. Thank you all for coming today, and may God bless you and keep you. 

Church Anniversary Speech 2 – Being Gracious 

In our church anniversary remarks, we had several examples that focused on graciousness. As a church leader, it is important to show gratitude for the achievements of the church so that members might follow your example and welcome them. The following example speech for a church anniversary shows how you can embed graciousness into your sermons or speeches. 

Welcome. It is with gratitude and love that we welcome our congregation together today to celebrate the passage of another year. Often, when we come to events such as an anniversary, we think about the milestone–our first year, the fifth year, twentieth or fiftieth.  

So, we’ve arrived at this day, another anniversary, but it’s not a number we celebrate. It’s each day of the past year that we must count as a blessing. Each day we were able to bring a smile to a friend’s face with a smile, each day we were able to lighten the load of another, and each day we were able to feel the Lord’s grace shine in our hearts even on the cloudiest of days.  

So many moments make up a year. How did we show thanks to the Lord in those moments? Some days, it’s true, some days, dear brethren, we forgot to give thanks. Maybe some days we experienced bitterness in our hearts–bitterness because of a lost promotion, a lost friend, a broken relationship, a missed opportunity. Some days we forget to think of the Lord, to acknowledge his presence, or take comfort in his love.  

Other days, we found unexpected joy in a friend’s success. Or we laughed with a brother or sister over coffee while reminiscing about childhood days. Some days we remember to count our blessings and to praise our maker for his generosity of spirit, his undying love.  

Tomorrow, we begin the long journey to the next milestone, the next anniversary. How shall we proceed? As a congregation of friends and believers, how can we welcome each day of the coming year in a manner that will best please God? How will you glorify God each day on your way to the next anniversary? 

What I’d like for us to remember on this special day is that we go forward together. Those days when the sun is shining, and we feel joy in our hearts–those are easy days. Those are gifts, and how easy and wonderful it feels to express our gratitude for those sweet days. But it’s the dark days, the bad days that will arrive during the year, every year, that we must help one another to endure. Days in the hospital room. Days in the dead-end job. Days when our children become lost in the sinful ways of the world.  

These are the days that test a congregation of believers. These are the times when we must lift one another up and remind one another that even now, even in the midst of so much sorrow, we are loved and lives are not meant to be pure bliss, but neither should they be pure misery for any soul that we can share our light with.  

I hope you will take this message into the coming year. I hope you feel the same joy and gratitude that I feel as we greet tomorrow as a celebration too, a celebration of our fellowship and our journey together in God’s grace. 

Church Anniversary Speech 3 – Being a Good Shepherd 

In many of the church anniversary remarks focusing on growth, we challenged congregation members to grow in their path to Christ. The speech for a church anniversary example below shows how you can challenge church members to be good shepherds for their fellows.  

Welcome dear congregation. Today is a time of great joy as we celebrate the anniversary of our church’s founding. I find myself thinking about the first pastor who presided here so many years ago, standing here on this spot like a good shepherd caring for his flock. A loving shepherd, he led his flock to celebrate many great milestones, many anniversaries. Since those early days, our flock has grown. 

Throughout the New Testament, we come across references to shepherds, flock, and lamb. Most of us are familiar with these references. I thought I’d share a brief account about a shepherd I read about in my student days. It was from one of those long, seemingly endless Victorian novels set in the English countryside. While he slept, a shepherd named Gabriel loses his flock when a young, misguided sheepdog leads his herd over a cliff’s edge. The sheep, so thoughtless in their obedience to the wayward pup, meet their doom, and it shatters Gabriel. He’s left forlorn, in despair. He’s lost his living but he is desolate at the senseless loss of the sheep. 

Why would I share a tale of heartbreak with you on a day meant to be one of celebration? Because in the eyes of God, we are all sheep. We are his sheep and it’s to him we owe our obedience. How easy is it to follow the wayward, to leap metaphorically over that cliff’s edge? 

But we are not Gabriel’s mindless sheep.  

In fact, as we look at one another, we are each a Gabriel. We, as Christians, are shepherds. It is for us to keep an eye out for those sheep who become lost or led astray. We must abide by those practices Jesus taught us while he lived on this earth about tending to one another, about love and forgiveness.  

Anniversaries are a time for celebration and a time for planning. What is your plan as a shepherd in the year ahead? How will you model Jesus, the perfect shepherd? I hope you will be inspired to lead by his example. As you model what it means to be a good Christian, you can continue the work that Christ did while he lived.  

I am so pleased to see you all here today. Please enjoy cake and fellowship after our service in celebration of our anniversary and as we look forward to another year of spreading the Lord’s love and light. 

Church Anniversary Speech 4 – A Spiritual Checkup 

So far, our church anniversary remarks and speech examples haven’t focused heavily on spiritual health. In your ministry, you probably focus heavily on the topic already, but a church anniversary is a suitable time to give it a closer look. The following speech for a church anniversary example focuses on the yearly checkup. Unlike yearly physicals, there is no such thing as an annual spiritual exam. But why shouldn’t there be one? Use this church anniversary speech example to encourage your congregation to give themselves a spiritual checkup.  

Here we are together–all arrived for another anniversary. Anniversaries. The other day, I received a card in the mail reminding me it was time for my annual checkup. I suppose that’s an anniversary of sorts. As I was contemplating what to say about this anniversary we share together, I thought about that card in my mailbox, and then I thought what a good time an anniversary is for checking our spiritual health.  

People talk about their health all the time–their mental health, their physical health. But how is our spiritual health? How is yours on this anniversary? It’s okay if it’s not perfect. I fully expect to go to my checkup and listen to my doctor advise me to lose a few more pounds and watch my cholesterol–more closely–like I was supposed to last year. In other words, I don’t anticipate a perfect report.  

When it comes to our spiritual well-being, we can take stock today. We may have had some challenging days when we battled jealousy or disappointment. We may have had days when we felt like Doubting Thomas or Jonah awash in the whale’s belly. We might have wondered why God has forsaken us. We might wonder if we really matter.  

Of course, we don’t go to the doctor merely to hear good news. We go there knowing that we are flawed; we go for help so we can improve our health. It’s why we’ve come here today. We don’t come as perfect Christians. Oh, we all have our moments. But we come to become better Christians–more spiritually healthy.  

So, I remind you good Christians–because you are at heart even when you fall short–that this anniversary is a time to take stock in your spiritual health, to reflect upon it, and to open yourself to the good, good medicine that is found in worship and fellowship. We can all improve our spiritual well-being by striving to become the Christians we know the Lord wants us to be. Each day of the year is an opportunity to be better. May we all achieve this worthy goal.  

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Writing messages, remarks and sermons for different occasions can take a lot of work. That's why we built a resource filled with nearly 200 messages for every occasion. Download the free eBook, and you’ll have... 

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