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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.