How to Word a Church Dedication Plaque

Words for the ages

A church’s dedication plaque is an engraved message that commemorates the formal opening of the church. It is a message to the future members that displays the date the church was built or occupied and often includes other bits of information. Often the names of founders, clergy or members of the church’s board are listed. Sometimes a mission statement, motto or quotation is featured. The congregation is sometimes asked to suggest motivational words for the plaque; others leave the wording in the hands of a committee or head of the church. You can help to word the dedication plaque with a few simple steps.

Talk to the people in charge of the project to understand the basic sentiment the congregation wants to preserve. Write down their ideas. Concentrate on three areas: the work or function of the church, who shall do the work and who shall benefit. When those ideas are clear, you can compose the wording on the plaque easily.

Lead the dedication with the most important idea. Write it after the following words: “This church is dedicated to.” For example, if the most important idea is to promote brotherhood, the sentence would start, "This church is dedicated to the promotion of brotherhood."

Follow that section with next most important idea. For example, if the people to benefit from the work is the community at large, the evolving sentence would read, “This church is dedicated to the promotion of brotherhood, to benefit the community."

Add the final area of importance to the sentence to complete it. It will now read, "This church is dedicated to the promotion of brotherhood, to benefit the community, by its faithful members."

Complete the plaque by adding the date of the dedication and any names deemed significant by the members in charge.

  • 1 All Write; Dave Kemper, Patrick Sebranek, Verne Meyer; 1998
  • 2 Write Source 2000; Dave Kemper, Patrick Sebranek, Verne Meyer; 1999

Clara Chavez is a freelance writer with 25 years diverse writing experience. She writes articles, inspirational messages, theatrical scripts, songs, screenplays, short stories, novels, grants and creates educational material. Chavez earned her undergraduate degree in Radio/Televison/Film from California State University, Northridge.