Aside from dealing with the changes involved in receiving coverage in new ways, the kind of news presented will shift to fit the medium more appropriately. Breaking news will be available online. Former printing partners (dioceses or congregations) now have the ability to tailor their publication to a far greater degree than the old system allowed. A new quarterly print publication will offer more opportunity for reflection and in-depth conversation than is possible in a daily or even monthly publication.
This has significant connections to evangelism – the ways in which we tell the good news of Jesus. Similar changes are needed in the ways in which we tell good news in our own communities, to those who know little or nothing of the gospel. We can no longer think we are doing evangelism simply by waiting for people to come to church on Sunday morning – that isn’t adequate in most of the contexts in which the Episcopal Church exists, if it ever was.
Increasing percentages of the population around us don’t know who we are or why we exist. We need to find new ways of telling the old, old story – ways that are congruent with the joys and challenges of the people and societies around us.
On the whole this is good. Especially check out the link to the Diocese of Bethlehem (northeastern Pennsylvania)‘s evangelism resources - good stuff.
The idea that listen is an important part of evangelism is critical. The Evangelical world is awakening to this fact. Listening for what God is already doing in a person’s life is crucial to the process (for example, it is good to know if the person you are talking to believes in God or not - talking about Jesus to one who does not can be a waste of time).
Telling one’s story is also important, if for no other reason, it is very hard to argue against someone’s experience.
But there is an obvious precondition for telling your story, and that is that you have seen Jesus in your story. If Jesus is not a part of your story, then you are not doing “evangelism.” Vague stories about “the Spirit” are not evangelism, either. The “Holy Spirit” is, on the other hand, in the mystery of the Trinity, the same God as is Jesus. Looking at the archetypal stories of the Holy Spirit in Scripture, we see that this is no warn fuzzy sort of story. Yes, the HS ministers God’s love to us, but also brings conviction of sin and sends us out into the world in witness and service.
So by all means, tell your story, but insure it is Jesus story first and foremost.Share on Facebook