Saturday, May 8, 2021

Everyone on the front line

How many 'outreach' or 'open' activities does your church have?

I'm thinking of events or activities that seek to make contact with people outside the church  (the real 'church', i.e. not Christians).

A quick look around my location shows 'Mainly Music' for young children and their mothers (or fathers), English lessons, family education (generic life skills: raising children, managing marriage, handling separation, etc.), men's sheds, knitting circles, bush walking, fishing club, Whisky Tasting Sessions...and so the list goes on.

All good in their own way, but from people who I've met in these in many places, they are rarely part of a a church strategy for making contact with out-siders. There's no conscious 'relationship development' pipeline, and no mobilising of the many helpers to have Christian conversations.

Many helpers, I surmise, do these ministries because they are not confident in faith conversations.

Like many church-goers this would be because they've not be intentionally discipled.

All such helpers need to be trained: the Story of Reality the Bible gives us, how the Bible communicates this, the core beliefs Christians have taken from the Bible ('classical' Christianity), the most popular antagonistic views of the Bible and Christian faith and how to deal with them, and 'creative conversations'. Really confident conversations.

Units on Islam, Mormonism, Jehovah's Witnesses Unitarianism in its various stripes and Monism, in its many stripes are also relevent.

Then prep for some obvious questions: 'why do you: do this, go to church, believe the Bible, pray?' What do you believe, what is church about, etc.

All pretty easy and very threat-reducing.

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