Promotional Tools – Faith Sharing

 

Promotional Tools

Newsletter and Bulletin Articles


6-8 Weeks from Launch:

Faith Sharing Workshop Coming Soon!

We are often told to share our faith, to witness about Jesus, and to offer our testimony… but… how?  If you fear the very thought of evangelism, Anytown UMC wants to help you learn how to authentically share what God is doing in your life.  An upcoming 4-session workshop created by author and dedicated layperson Kay Kotan just for Arkansas United Methodists will give you the tools you need to feel comfortable inviting others along the amazing journey of becoming a disciple of Jesus Christ.  Unpacking Your Faith Stories is coming soon!

 


4-6 Weeks from Launch:

Unpacking Your Faith Stories

Learn how to share your faith in this 4-Session Class

Dates + Location

We are often told to share our faith, to witness about Jesus, and to offer our testimony… but… how?  If you fear the very thought of evangelism, Anytown UMC wants to help you learn how to authentically share what God is doing in your life.  Rev. Pastor will be facilitating the class, and we will be using a curriculum written by Kay Kotan, author Get Their Name and Gear Up! and keynote speaker at 2017 Arkansas Annual Conference.  In this class you will learn how to:

  • DISCOVER: Live life fully aware of God’s presence
  • CATCH: Capture your faith moments/stories
  • SHARE: Gift your faith moments/stories to others
  • LIVE: Live out your faith through prayers, presence, gifts, service, & witness

Join us on DAY, and experience the joy of sharing the amazing grace that you have experience through Christ! [Directions on where/how to register]

 


4 Weeks from Launch:

Unpacking Your Faith Stories

4 Session Class

Dates + Location

Sharing your experience of God can transform lives! Those holy moments in our lives were a gift from God to be celebrated and shared. Imagine the impact on our community if every member of Anytown UMC were equipped and committed to actively sharing our faith stories!  Join us on DAY for Unpacking Your Faith Stories to learn how to discover and share everyday God moments.  You can even bring your entire Sunday School Class! [Directions on where/how to register]

 


2-4 Weeks from Launch:

Unpacking Your Faith Stories

4 Session Class

Dates + Location

Anytown UMC is excited to begin Unpacking Your Faith Stories, a class designed to help us feel more comfortable sharing our faith.  In this class you will learn how to:

  • DISCOVER: Live life fully aware of God’s presence
  • CATCH: Capture your faith moments/stories
  • SHARE: Gift your faith moments/stories to others
  • LIVE: Live out your faith through prayers, presence, gifts, service, & witness

Join us on DAY at TIME for the first one-hour session, and experience the joy of sharing the amazing grace that you have experience through Christ! [Directions on where/how to register].  Contact Rev. Pastor with any questions.

 


1 Week from Launch:

Unpacking Your Faith Stories

4 Week Class

Dates + Location

Anytown UMC is excited to begin Unpacking Your Faith Stories NEXT week, a class designed to help us feel more comfortable sharing our faith.  In this class you will learn how to:

  • DISCOVER: Live life fully aware of God’s presence
  • CATCH: Capture your faith moments/stories
  • SHARE: Gift your faith moments/stories to others
  • LIVE: Live out your faith through prayers, presence, gifts, service, & witness

Join us next week on DAY at TIME for the first one-hour session, and experience the joy of sharing the amazing grace that you have experience through Christ! [Directions on where/how to register]

 


 

 

Evangelism Downloads & Resources

Lewis Center Resources

These web links are provided by permission from Leading Ideas, a free e-newsletter from the Lewis Center for Church Leadership of Wesley Theological Seminary and available at churchleadership.com.

Networks and Third Places are Today’s Mission Field

Where is community discovered in our time? In their book Fresh Expressions, Ken Carter and Audrey Warren argue that people today are less likely to be connected through their geographical neighborhood or nearby church. The virtual networks and “third places” where people gather are, therefore, an increasingly significant mission field.

 

Friendships and Reaching New People

Every church believes itself to be a welcoming and friendly fellowship, but this isn’t always true. Lee Spitzer shares that if our churches are to become spiritual communities where faithful friendship is expressed, we need to move beyond merely welcoming newcomers and one another. We must deepen our understanding of friendship to appreciate its role in our personal lives and how friendship informs the internal life and outreach ministry of a church in the twenty-first century. We must consider how we can open our friendship circles so that new people may explore Christian discipleship.

 

Missional Engagement: It’s All About Relationships

Junius B. Dotson says that church outreach has generally taken the form of community service or evangelistic efforts. But real missional engagement entails the building of authentic, organic, and consistent relationships that lead to intentional discipleship.

Evangelism Bibliography

“Get Their Name:  Grow Your Church By Building New Relationships” by Bob Farr, Doug Anderson, Kay Kotan
As a church leader, you are (probably) targeting the wrong people with your ‘evangelism’ efforts. You are operating a model that no longer works, because it is too passive, too polite, and focused in the wrong direction. You are not making new disciples, not adding significantly to Christ’s transformation of the world. And you—or at least your congregation–are (probably) unaware of this fact.There is hope, and you will find it in these pages. Farr, Kotan and Anderson reveal the ways most churches unwittingly misdirect their reach into the community. The authors show in practical terms how to change the habits of leaders and entire congregations, so that invitation is natural, constant, systemic, genuine, and easy. Get Their Name clearly demonstrates how your church can change, and equips your people to share their faith in a way that is effective, biblical, and transformational.
   “CATCH: A Church-Wide Program for Invitational Evangelism” by Debi Nixon
Do you sometimes feel that you’re spinning your wheels trying to attract visitors and welcome them into your church? Help is on the way. Catch is a comprehensive program for invitational evangelism developed by the United Methodist Church of the Resurrection, one of the fastest-growing churches in the U.S. This newly revised and updated resource shows you how to attract visitors to your church, connect them with your faith community, and help them learn to know, love, and serve God. Boxed Kit includes Program Guide and DVD-ROM, Small Group Participant book, 4-week program Leader Guide with DVD, and Implementation Guide.
   “Clip In: Risking Hospitality in Your Church” by Fiona Haworth and Jim Ozier
When a cyclist clips into the pedals, a huge risk is involved because he or she must learn a new way to achieve balance and momentum. Creating a culture of hospitality within your church involves the same intricate process. Not only do balance and momentum go hand-in-hand, one can’t exist without the other. Growing a church requires the same kind of delicate interplay: balancing attention toward existing members and generating momentum through reaching new people. Without both, the church won’t grow. Creating a culture of hospitality involves risk and relearning old habits, but facilitating both will yield fruitful results.
   “Unbinding the Gospel: Real Life Evangelism” by Martha Grace Reese
Based on a major, four-year study of superb evangelism, funded by the Lilly Endowment, Unbinding the Gospel sparkles with life, practicality and spiritual depth. Unbinding the Gospel: Real Life Evangelism is a book for pastors who want to know the truth about the state of evangelism. Recently selected by The Christian Century as a featured “Take and Read” book (2007 book issue), Unbinding the Gospel is a book for Christians who want a hopeful, powerful, joy-filled way to learn to share their faith. (It’s also a book for people who cringe when they hear the “E” word!) Unbinding the Gospel, 2nd ed. is the foundation of the Unbinding the Gospel Series, which can lead to a six-week, all-congregation saturation study with individual prayer, small group study and all-church worship and prayer dimensions. See Unbinding Your Heart (the 6 week version of GOSPEL, with a different 40 day prayer journal) and Unbinding Your Church (the Pastor’s Guide). Follow up your all-church saturation study (the “E-vent”) with a small group based Experiment in Christian Prayer & Community using Unbinding Your Soul. Small groups will double when members invite their unchurched friends into the Experiment. The new second edition contains a personal 40 day prayer journal. Order one copy for each small group participant. From the Unbinding the Gospel Series.
   “Faith Sharing: Dynamic Christian Witnessing by Invitation” by H. Eddie Fox & George E. Morris
After careful evaluation of the original Faith-Sharing: Dynamic Christian Witnessing by Invitation with pastors and laypersons, Fox and Morris have revised and expanded this textbook on the why, what, who, and how of sharing the good news of Christ Jesus. Designed to help persons be competent and confident in witnessing for Christ Jesus, Faith-Sharing has been published in English, Portuguese, Estonian, and Russian and is a bestseller with over 150,000 copies sold. Use it in conjunction with The Faith-Sharing Congregation by Roger K. Swanson and Shirley F. Clement and Faith-Sharing New Testament with Psalms available through Cokesbury.
  “The Apostolic Congregation: Church Growth Reconceived for a New Generation” by George G. Hunter, III
A church in the heart of Manhattan and a congregation among the Inuit people of Northern Canada would seem to have little in common with one another. Yet in one way they are surprisingly similar: They are both apostolic congregations, churches whose every program exists for the purpose of presenting the gospel to non-Christians, and making disciples of Jesus Christ.What is the secret of churches like these; how have they learned to make evangelism central to everything they do? In studying apostolic congregations around the world, George G. Hunter III has discovered a set of perspectives and practices that they all share. With the passion and insight for which he is so well known, Hunter demonstrates how your congregation can learn to focus on the one thing that most matters: bringing people into a saving relationship with Jesus Christ.
  “Just Walk Across The Room: Simples Steps Pointing People to Faith” by Bill Hybels
What if you knew that by simply crossing the room and saying hello to someone, you could change that person’s forever? Just a few steps to make an eternal difference. It has nothing to do with methods and everything to do with taking a genuine interest in another human being. All you need is a heart that’s in tune with the Holy Spirit and a willingness to venture out of your “Circle of Comfort” and into another person’s life. Just Walk Across the Room brings personal evangelism into the twenty-first century. Building on the solid foundation laid in Becoming a Contagious Christian, Bill Hybels shows how you can participate in the model first set by Jesus, who stepped down from heaven 2,000 years ago to bring hope and redemption to broken people living in a fallen world. Now it’s your turn. Your journey may not be as dramatic, but it can have a life-changing impact for someone standing a few steps away from you—and for you as well, as you learn the power of extending care, compassion, and inclusiveness under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. The highest value in personal evangelism is cooperating with the Spirit, says Hybels. This means playing only the role you’re meant to play—walking when the Spirit says to walk, talking when he says to talk, and falling silent when he suggests that you’ve said enough. Hybels encourages you to “live in 3D” … Developing friendships, Discovering stories, Discerning appropriate next steps … as a means of learning to understand the Holy Spirit’s promptings. With fresh perspectives from his own reflections and experiences collected during his most recent decade of ministry, Bill Hybels shows with convincing and inspiring clarity the power of this personal, richly relational approach to evangelism. The stakes are high. The implications are eternal. And you may be only a conversation away from having an eternal impact on someone’s life—if you will just walk across the room.4 Session Study with DVD Resource
   “The Evangelistic Love of God and Neighbor: A Theology of Witness and Discipleship” by Bishop Scott J. Jones
There are, it seems, as many definitions of the term “evangelism” as there are people doing the defining. For some, it means proclaiming the gospel to those who have not heard it. To others, it means making disciples of Jesus Christ. To others, it means working for the transformation of the world into the kingdom of God. For still others, it has principally to do with building vibrant, healthy congregations. Underlying this confusion is a fundamental inability to locate the practice of evangelism within one’s overall theological convictions. We will never understand the part that proclamation, disciple making, kingdom building, and church growth play in evangelism until we first ask a more important question: What does evangelism have to do with who God is? What is it we know about God that makes evangelism a central part of what it means to be Christian? In this comprehensive theology of evangelism, Scott J. Jones proposes to ground the practice of evangelism in an understanding of God’s love for the world, specifically as seen in the incarnation of God in Christ. In Jesus, God took on all of what it means to be human.  Because of this, evangelism must be a ministry to the whole person. The typical distinctions between soul-winning, social action, and church growth evaporate; individual conversion and acts of mercy are part of the same ministry of bringing persons more fully into the reign of a loving God.
   “Transforming Evangelism: The Wesleyan Way of Sharing Faith” by Henry H. Knight III & F. Douglas Powe
Because of the more aggressive and confrontational tactics we hear about, evangelism has developed a bad connotation. Doors are shut hurriedly, phone calls end abruptly and emails left unanswered. After all, isn’t this a task better handled by the pastor? Perhaps it’s time to re-examine John Wesley’s model of evangelism as a full, natural circle – where it’s a communal beginning point rather than an solitary end. The central motive of authentic evangelism is: Having received a message that’s made all the difference in our lives, we desire to share that message with others in the hope it will transform their lives as well. Wesley models an evangelism that reaches out and welcomes, invites and nurtures, and speaks to both head and heart. “”Evangelism is about relationship,”” the authors write. “”How we are in relationship to God, who is able to transform us into new beings. How we are in relationship to our neighbor, whom we must love like ourselves.”” As one reviewer says, “”Knight and Powe have given us a relational book. They describe the deep connection between John Wesley’s thoughts, Charles Wesley’s hymns, scholarly thinking about evangelism and biblical understandings of the gospel – all in relation to the needs, concerns and hopes of everyday people.”” Learn on your own or as a congregational group from this practical study on living an evangelistic life that demonstrates the transforming power of loving God and neighbor.
  “VIRAL: How Social Networking Is Poised to Ignite Revival” by Leonard Sweet
The gospel is nothing without relationship. And no one gets it like the Google Generation.  God came to earth to invite us, personally, into a relationship. And while Christians at times downplay relationships, the social-media generation is completely sold on the idea. In “Viral, ” Leonard Sweet says Christians need to learn about connecting with others from the experts–those who can’t seem to stop texting, IM-ing, tweeting, and updating their Facebook statuses. What would happen, he asks, if Christians devoted less attention to strategies and statistics and paid more attention to pursuing relationships?The current generation is driven by a God-given desire to know others and to be known by others. Most of them, in seeking to connect in meaningful ways, have found a place of belonging that is outside the organized church. Why not bring the two together?Those who are sold out to relationships can teach Christians how to be better friends to people who need God. At the same time, members of the social-media generation can learn how to follow their desire for belonging, straight into the arms of God. It’s time for relationship to be restored to the heart of the gospel. And when that happens, can revival be far behind?
 

“Organic Outreach for Churches: Infusing Evangelistic Passion in Your Local Congregation” by Kevin Harney
Nearly all churches and ministries consider themselves dedicated to evangelism, and many explicitly include outreach in their mission statements. But few are actually bearing fruit. Kevin Harney diagnoses this problem and offers guidance for multiplying the outreach impact of churches. Organic Outreach for Churches provides direction for local congregations to weave evangelism into the fabric of the church. Commitment to the Great Commission is not simply about sending money and prayers to missions or holding occasional events to reach out (although these things are good). Organic outreach happens when evangelistic vision and action become the domain of every ministry and the commitment of every person in the congregation. This will not happen accidentally. There is huge spiritual and practical resistance to such changes. But the only way evangelism will become an organic part of a church is when every leader and each member is gripped by a commitment to proclaiming the gospel. This book is a roadmap for pastors and leaders who wish to infuse evangelistic passion into every aspect of their church’s life.”

 

Unpacking Your Faith Stories is Produced By: