10-15 Hours


Ask God to point you to those competent, godly people.


6-7 months out,

24-28 weeks out


Exodus 18:5-27


Read Exodus 18:5-27. Jethro watched Moses struggle under the burden of a lot of details and leading the people all by himself. You can try to do this Vision Dinner all by yourself and crash and burn under all the details involved. A better option would be to find competent, godly people to help with different aspects of the dinner. Below, you will find the dinner process broken down into manageable chunks.


After reading the Vision you read above, you’ll know that you desperately need to delegate responsibility to competent, godly people. There are 4 major coordinator roles and the all-important Table Host role. These roles can be delegated to your team and key volunteers. Read through each role and ask the Lord to show you the right person to challenge to that role.




Remember that you will be working with these people for up to six months. Pick people who are trustworthy and dependable. Please challenge your coordinator positions during this timeframe. Pick at least a few people per position in case your first choice is unavailable.


Volunteer Coordinator: the VC or Director of Volunteer Efforts (DOVE) recruits and trains all volunteers for the evening (look for: Recruiters)




Registration Coordinator: the RC is in charge of monitoring and overseeing the entire registration process (look for: Detail-Oriented)


  • Registration Coordinator Job Description

  • A good RC is detailed, organized, and personable as they will be receiving your guests at the event or training those who will.

  • Needs to be trained in the Ministry Sync software before registration is set up (explained below in Registration). It's preferable to find someone who has used MinistrySync before.




Table Host Coordinator: The THC communicates with, coaches, and motivates all Table Hosts (look for: Encouragers)


  • Table Host Coordinator (THC) Job Description

  • A good Table Host Coordinator is personable, comfortable talking to strangers, engaging, and can persevere when they don’t hear back from the Table Hosts.

    • Calls and emails Table Hosts regularly, encourages them and keeps them accountable for inviting their guests from the moment the Table Host receives their Table Host invitation packet.

    • Keeps them on track for sending out all necessary materials.

    • Needs to be trained in Ministry Sync software (explained below in Registration)

    • Helps Table Hosts to brainstorm names of friends to invite.

    • Prays with Table Hosts for their guests regularly.



Editable versions of files for Table Host Packet can be downloaded in Lap 5.



The registration process can be frustrating or fun! Cru has a national deal with the best dinner registration system on the market; Ministry Sync. Through our partnership, you can use Ministry Sync (AttendEasy) for free instead of the standard fee $699. Trust us - this software will save you time, money, and staff sanity! It will help you to not only register guests, but will give your table hosts the ability to manage their table - moving guests on and off as needed. It’s also a great tool for follow-up and sending thank you’s after your dinner.






  1. Sign up for a MinistrySync account by contacting your local Development staff. If you don't have any Development staff in your area, email joe.summers@cru.org

  2. Get trained on how to use MinistrySync (after you log in, click “video training” and watch). Arrange to get formal training on MinistrySync for you, your Registration Coordinator and Table Host Coordinator. Ask your local Development staff if there is a training scheduled any time soon. If not, you can arrange an hour-long training with MinistrySync directly or go through all the tutorials yourself by logging in and clicking “Browse Help” in the upper right-hand corner which leads you to the knowledge base of video and article training. 

  3. Create a registration redirect link on your movement's website. The link should redirect to your MinistrySync Event's Web Page (click 'Event Setup', 'Web & Email Templates', 'Save & Preview' to find this URL) which you will be updating in the next lap.

  4. If you are Cru staff, MinistrySync also offers a free “add-on” package called Live Attendance. Live Attendance is great for any dinner of 150 guests or more. The normal process requires each guest to come to a laptop and a guest’s name is entered into the system to check-in. This will work with a smaller dinner (less than 150), but once you get to a medium or large dinner, every guest going to one station is too cumbersome. Live Attendance allows you to have multiple stations and guests can check-in simply by tapping a box next to their name on an iPad. Should you need this add-on package or even are just interested in seeing it in action, check out the link on the left side of your Ministry Sync event admin page.



You never want the speaker to be the reason why people are coming to the dinner - you want the evening to be about your ministry. For that reason, you should pick someone with a lesser-known name who cares deeply about Cru and can effectively communicate our vision. It's true that some dinners choose a big name speaker to draw more guests. However, large numbers of those guests will never give any money because they just came to hear the speaker. 


It is always recommended that your speaker addresses the mission of your organization and why your organization is uniquely qualified to address those issues (re-emphasize the problem that exists in the world and what the organization is doing about solving the problem. This was originally addressed by the ministry update speaker). The main speaker should have a compelling message that he or she can communicate well.  If the speaker's life was changed as a result of the ministry, say so. If the speaker can use stories from the ministry, that is great as well. The message must be communicated in 19 minutes or less.


Ask your local Development staff for names and contact information of potential speakers. Read more about picking your speaker in the FAQ below.



Hopefully, by now, you've picked up on a theme in how you will plan your Vision Dinner: quality. Whether it's the venue, speaker, food, or any other part of your Vision Dinner, we want our events to stand out to our guests. The night of the dinner isn't the first time your guests see this, however; it actually starts the first time your guests ever hear about your event.


Prior to your event,  your invitees will receive a printed Save the Date, Invitation, and Reminder. These, along with all other printed materials for your dinner, will set the tone of your event. Think of it this way: imagine you've been invited to two Vision Dinners on the same night and all you have to go off of is the invitation. One invitation is professionally designed and printed; the other was clearly made on Microsoft Word and printed on colored computer paper. Most of us would choose to go to the first dinner solely because of the impression that printed piece gave us. Because of this, it is strongly encouraged that you use professionally designed and printed pieces for your Vision Dinner. 


That said we know that not every team has access to that level of design and printing. Thankfully, some of the incredible members of Cru's Creative 1 design studio have created themed design packages for use at any Cru Vision Dinner. Each of these packages includes:


  • Web Banner

  • Save the Date Postcard

  • Invitation

  • RSVP Card

  • Reminder Postcard

  • Event Program

  • PowerPoint Slides

  • Thank You Card


Because these are professionally designed pieces, editing access is limited to members of the Creative 1 team. You will need to submit a request to Creative 1, who will customize each piece and have it printed and shipped to you. Because the Creative 1 team will be working at a high volume, customization of these packages is limited.


Two quick notes:


  1. The total cost of designing, printing, and shipping all of your media will vary based on your location and the size of your dinner. You can expect it to be somewhere in the $400-$800 range. While you may be shocked by that number, please understand that this is an amazing price considering the quantity and quality of printing. Also, remember that this investment will easily pay itself off by bringing more people to your dinner.

  2. You will need these printed pieces in-hand by 12 weeks before your dinner. To give our design team enough time to make that happen, you will need to have all necessary information submitted at least 4 months before the date of your dinner.






1. Choose your design package (click the links below to see a preview of each)



2. Compile and confirm all information necessary to submit your request to CreativeOne. You can find a detailed list with descriptions of each piece of information by viewing the Vision Dinner Printing Guide. If it helps, you can make a copy of the Printing Info | Template to make sure you have all the info you need. Remember, even if you use that document to plan, you'll still have to submit your info separately!


3. Submit a request to CreativeOne Media by at least 4 months before your event (see Vision Dinner Printing Request Form).


  • You will not be able to submit your request if you are missing even one piece of information

  • Keep in mind that if your Vision Dinner is in April, this means that you will have to have all information nailed down and submitted before Christmas Break!


4. You will receive your printed materials around 12 weeks prior to your event date. Upon receiving them, check a sample of each piece to confirm that there are no typos or printing errors. If you do see an error, send an email (including photos, if necessary) to melissa.summers@cru.org



  • Do I really need to include volunteers in key leadership positions? Shouldn’t the staff just fill those key roles?

  • Do I have to use MinistrySync? Why is this software so beneficial?

  • Should we try to get a "big name" speaker -- all the other ministries in town get one?

  • Why is it important to mail so many invitations and reminders for the dinner? Aren’t we bugging people?

  • Why a dress code (as seen on the invitation)?

  • Why does the invitation say “adults only”? And how do you explain that to your guests?

  • Why do you need to use each piece of the Design Package? Isn’t that a just a waste of time and money?

©2019 Cru. These materials cannot be duplicated in any form without the permission of James W. Dempsey, with the exception of worksheets and forms. None of these materials should be used for profit.