This is the first in what will hopefully be a series of regular weekly blog posts where I talk about, well, whatever is on my mind!
What’s on my mind this week is Communication. As the “program year” begins, we all want to make sure that people know about what’s going on at church. We communicate in a myriad of ways these days, and keeping on top of them all is quite a job.
If you’re reading this, you probably got here either from my personal website, (possibly via the church website), the weekly MailChimp email, or the church Facebook page. These are all excellent ways to stay in touch, and we strive to keep them up to date. More traditionally, there are the announcements in the bulletin, and posters and photos posted on the church bulletin boards. Our new church sign also allows us more creativity in announcing events to the public via notice boards hung underneath it.
Our stalwart Newsletter editor, Barbara Peden, recently announced her “retirement” after many years of service. The newsletter was a well-liked part of our communication strategy, so we would love to find someone with the skills to take on that portion of the ministry! Trevor Smith also consistently provides us will excellent photos of church people and events.
One new thing we’re trying is a series of videos on Facebook Live (clicking that link will take you to the first one, recorded earlier today)! These are shareable to your friends and family if you’d like to introduce them to some of our faithful church folks. Thanks to Bob Morell for being the guinea pig and going first!
Communication is important both because it helps to keep our community strong and because it helps us to share what goes on here with those outside the congregation. Every day, as individuals and as a parish, we are striving to live in accordance with the Good News of Jesus. But as St. Paul says, “how are they to hear [of Christ] without someone to proclaim him?” (Romans 10:14) In Paul’s time, communication happened in person or via letter, and in fact his letters, preserved in Scripture, are kind of a combination of sermon, church newsletter and the minutes of a rather contentious parish meeting!
Many people, both in general and in Quebec in particular, think of Christians as narrow-minded, judgmental, hypocritical people. No wonder they’re not interested in church! As a result of my personal social media presence, I have had numerous people tell me that they now understand that there are Christians who genuinely live according to Jesus’ message of love. Our goal with church communications is to help ourselves live that way and spread the news that we are here and that Jesus is present and active in this community. Whether by signal fires or TikTok*, if we get that message out there, then our communication will have been a success.
*Don’t ask me to explain TikTok, but there’s an Episcopal priest in Texas who’s been profiled in newspapers on three continents because of his TikTok videos.