Find resources here pertaining to connecting, inviting and welcoming.

July 22, 2020 - Connecting College Students

Often college students are one of the most underserved groups in terms of engagement and discipleship in faith communities. That may be due to a congregation not having the volunteer, staff person or resources to create a ministry targeting the needs of this demographic, or the clergy and lay leadership just not knowing where to start.

Rev. Hugh Griffith, campus minister at MSU Wesley Foundation and Katie Heckel, associate campus minister at MSU Wesley Foundation have created a blueprint for connecting college students as a resource to aid your Digital Discipleship. This blueprint for college students is easily adaptable to your church’s size, culture and context.

Click to download a full color or black and white version of the accompanying connecting college students blueprint.

June 8, 2020 - Online Engagement Strategies

A key component in any organization's vitality--including churches--is its ability to be flexible and attentive to the "signs of the times" in order to adapt quickly to incremental or sudden environmental change. Senior pastor at Indianola First United Methodist Church, Rev. Trey Skaggs shares how in collaboration with his church's staff and leadership team, Indianola First UMC shifted their worship strategy to focus on online engagement. Click here to read more.

Guidelines for Measuring Engagement - Numbers, whether good or bad, can help gauge what is working (or not), and should be your greatest motivator – driving you to greater action, prayer, humility, visioning and innovation – helping you to dream “what’s next.” Find guidelines for tracking online attendance for VitalSigns Reporting here. Also see, MyCom: How Many People Are Watching Your Videos?
Using Engagement data to Generate Growth - If you want your church to grow online, move beyond just trying to attract people — start engaging and responding to them. Don’t just count how many people showed up online. Engage and respond to new “guests” and help them take the next steps in their faith journey. Viewers watch (passive); engagers participate (active). Making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world, is the win. Learn more here
Tips and Tools to Help Navigate Through This Challenging Time - An organization’s survival in the weeks and months to come depends far more on radical innovation than on tactical cutbacks. This will mean iterating and experimenting very quickly in the coming weeks. We must all commit to learning and adapting (some experiments will be more successful than others) as we continue building trust with one another to discern together how to advance the kingdom in a completely changed environment. Learn more here
Digital Media for Ministry ($19): Provided by UM Communications. An in-depth guide into the most effective ways to communicate using technology that people in your church and community already use. This course will help you create engaging podcasts, captivating videos, blogs, and email newsletters that nourish the souls of your audience. You’ll also learn how to leverage your digital media message using social media and other platforms.
No Tech - Low Tech: Ministry Ideas for Local Churches by Rev. Susan Arnold, Holston Conference: Simple, low to no technology opportunities for staying connected as the Body of Christ, as a community, and as a congregation to use in conjunction with (or not) what you are doing digitally. 

Churches Who Survive the Pandemic Will Do Three Things by Chris Morton, Fresh Expressions: With over three months of pandemic life behind us, the world has changed. With a vaccine months away at best, increasing financial turmoil alongside the global response to the killing of George Floyd, it would be unwise to prognosticate about the world to come. But the fact is that many organizations, businesses, and yes, churches, will not survive the pandemic. This article outlines three key areas for churches to focus on in the days to come.


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