Spreading the Word with MediaOctober 17, 2007
Church communications consultant Woody Murray has a Baptist Press piece today entitled "Spreading the Word with Media." He offers some good advice for church leaders to consider. Here are some highlights:
There are so many ways to share your ministries and reach beyond the walls of your church.There are lots of ways we can work on more effectively sharing the love of Jesus with more people. These ideas may not be the right ones for you and your church, but I hope his piece at least inspires us to think about what untapped communication opportunities may exist.
For example, can your pastor write a regular devotional for your local daily or weekly newspaper? How about a community magazine? Even the smallest local newspaper or magazine has the potential to reach many hundreds of people who otherwise may not ever know about your church. One short devotional from your pastor might be just the message someone hurting needs to read. It may touch a heart, and that person in turn may visit your church and have his or her life changed for Christ.
Can you offer your weekly worship services on a local Christian, or possibly secular, radio station? Sometimes there are very small local radio stations, both AM and FM, that may not have very powerful signals, but still reach thousands of loyal listeners in your community. Occasionally, these stations are looking for programming on the weekends or at night. They may be willing to air your Sunday messages and expand your worship services well beyond the people who visit your church each Sunday. You could let your members, particularly shut-ins, know that they can catch your Sunday worship on the radio when they can't attend.
... There really is no limit to what God can do with your church's ministries. You just need to take a first step and see where He will lead you. Begin picking up and reading through the free local newspapers and magazines you see at the supermarkets and drug stores. Spend a little time scanning the radio stations on your AM and FM dials, particularly at night and on the weekends. Use your TV remote control to check channels that might be available for covering your worship. Then take some time to visit the local newspaper offices or your local radio and television stations. Ask if there are any needs your church might fill. You may find that God has already been at work opening doors for you.
... Also ask if there might be a member of your church who owns some farmland near a major freeway or highly traveled road. Would that person allow you to erect a sign for your church giving directions and possibly allowing a very brief ministry message? This kind of sign can reach so many people driving by each day and encourage them to attend your worship service. Make sure you have a professional sign painter do the message and stay within your local sign ordinances.