30 ideas for community outreach (1 of 3)

This is Part 1 of a 3-part series. Read part 2 and part 3, and see more articles on outreach.

The people in our communities need to hear about Jesus. And on the whole in Australia (and you can share what it’s like in your country), I don’t think we doing a great job at connecting with our communities. How many people are attending our churches who have never been to church before, or haven’t been in years? Or as I asked earlier in the week, if your church burned to the ground would the community care or even notice?

Over the next three days I’ve decided to share ideas for how we can get involved in our community, and by God’s grace, connect with the people who need to hear about Jesus. I’d love to hear your ideas too – let’s put our heads together and see what we can come up with. Our communities need us to do this.

Here’s 10 to get us started:

  1. Host a fair trade market (selling fair trade coffee, gifts, toys etc). Check out Tribes and Nations. My church hosts three or four per year. We also give away free cupcakes and fair trade coffee samples.
  2. Host a free community lunch. My church runs one of these every 6-8 weeks, and between 20-40 from outside church will join us.
  3. Get a decent website with quality, regularly updated content. Sure, this is my hobbyhorse, but people will check out your website once your church starts to gain a bigger presence. You don’t want your website to turn them off.
  4. Run a fitness session in a local park with a personal trainer. My church be doing this as part of our 125-year anniversary celebrations later this month.
  5. Hand out bacon and egg rolls to commuters on their way to the nearby train/tram station or bus stop.
  6. Volunteer your church to doorknock for a charity (e.g. Red Shield Appeal).
  7. Hold a church service outdoors (e.g. in a local park). This will make it easier for people to see what a church service is like, without the fear-factor of venturing into an unknown building.
  8. Encourage the people in your church to participate in a ‘invite your neighbour to lunch’ Sunday.
  9. Sign-up your church to Outreach Posters.
  10. Send a media release to local media each time a new event is run.

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Comments

  • Pingback: Community Engagement 101 « Thinking it through…

  • http://www.gloscitymission.org.uk Brian Johnson

    Do a regular outreach to the homeless, drug addicts and alcoholics in your area.

    This is not as scary as it sounds, but done every week by a committed team your regular “customers” will love you for it and will see the love of Jesus in what you are doing.

    You can do this with a small team of half a dozen or even less. What counts is your commitment to show Christ’s love to these people.Here in England, UK we provide hot sausage rolls and pasties from a local baker, together with tea, coffee, hot soup etc. We take this round the streets in small wheeled trollies that can be bought cheaply.

    We also hand out chocolates together with “God’s Promises”, single Bble verses folded and sealed with a small sticker. The Street People look forward to opening and reading these verses and often say “that’s just what I needed!”

    At Easter we hand out boxed Easter Eggs and at Christmas we hand out carrier bags full of food, clothes and goodies to each person attending our Christmas Carol Service.

    We always carry tracts, Bibles and New Testaments and share the gospel as we go. People listen when you have earned the right to do this by showng practical love in action.

  • http://www.thegospeloutreachministry.com PASTOR MICHAEL OKELLO

    I have read some of the approches that you have used to reach the community and you were able to get some of them to your churches.
    But in a situation where God has given you a vission for the rural gospel out reach mission working with the poor and desperate community where instead of the community coming to support the ministry , they need the support from the ministry and becouse we can not provide the local indignous ministry have always failed and yet the local ministries nomally make follow up when the internationl preachers have gone back after providing a lot to them including feeding them and we can not do the same thing and we have ended up loosing out christians to out brothers who have international ministrie and support to provide to them.
    Is partnership a solution to this for a younger misnistry?

    Thanks

  • http://www.facebook.com/wewithers Bill Withers

    By all means win some!