A Time for Outreach (Part 2)
Keeping Congregations Connected is a series on strategies and tools for helping congregations survive and thrive in the face of the COVID crisis. Click here for the previous post.
Last week, Mary Frances, Senior Associate Consultant with FaithX, wrote a blog encouraging churches to continue to think about outreach. It can feel scary and maybe even premature to think about reaching out to our neighbors and inviting them into our faith communities again, but as Mary pointed out, the limitations of COVID-19 are challenging us to find new avenues of faithfulness – even with regard to outreach in a time of quarantine and social distancing.
FaithX can help. As experienced church planters and church redevelopers, we have learned to think strategically and creatively. We also see great value in “trying things on” to see what practices and experiments might work.
One tool of great value to faith communities right now is a free COVID-19 resource available through our affiliate, Datastory (click here for the link as well as other COVID19- resources). With this tool you can identify populations in your neighborhood at greatest risk. What connections and possibilities might emerge for outreach if your church hosted an online session using this free resource and invited your church leaders as well as leaders from other neighborhood faith communities and nonprofits? This creates the possibility for collaborative ministry as well as building important relationships in the neighborhood.
This blog post is part of an ongoing series. Future posts may include:
CDC Social Vulnerability Scales and Other Tools and Strategies to Locate Vulnerable Neighborhoods and Populations
Things your congregants can do to create a sense of community with their own neighbors and neighborhoods.
Tools and strategies for hosting online fellowship.
Tools and strategies for facilitating online bible study and formation.
Tools and strategies congregations can use to locate and reach populations most vulnerable to COVID19.
Tools and strategies by which judicatories can resource their congregations.
Before You Go Back to the Building: Tools and Strategies to Prepare You for the Aftermath and Recovery.