Archive for the ‘Pentecost’ Category

Fifteenth Sunday of Pentecost Aug 29

26 Aug

Finding the Resources-Many churches tell me they don’t have the resources to do outreach. My wife and I once belonged to a house church with only six families. One day I spent an hour on a railroad bridge convincing a teenage girl that she didn’t really want to jump. I later related the story to the church. They were very concerned about the high suicide rate in the county and that galvanized them to act. They contacted an organization called Contact USA which helped them plan and organize the needed organization. They were able to recruit and train 129 volunteer phone workers and secure enough local funds to pay the cost of office rent, utilities, and the phone bill. The phone bill alone was over $1500.oo a month for feeder lines allowing someone to call from anywhere in the county toll-free. They went on the phones just a year after I sat on the bridge with the girl and have continued to serve that community 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for over 40 years with no government help. Can you imagine what the average church could do if they had a half dozen couples that were that committed to a ministry.


Fourteenth Sunday of Pentecost-Aug 22

21 Aug

Neighborhood Bible Studies Neighborhood Bible Studies-Many people in neighborhoods are becoming isolated and have little interaction with neighbors. With families moving a great deal, they often have no family nearby and the only cheap entertainment available is to go to a bar or neighborhood parties where beer is often abundant. Church families can start family friendly get-togethers and even Bible studies in their neighborhood by getting to know their neighbors and inviting them to cookouts in the back yard or other activities where neighbors can get to know each other and do things together. Once they get to know the church family in their neighborhood, they may be more open to attending church and even more so as some of their neighbors begin attending the church


Thirteenth Sunday of Pentecost-B

11 Aug
Mother’s Clubs-Mothers who do not work may feel isolated and become frustrated with no social interaction besides their kids, especially if their
 husband is gone all day at work and even more so if they are a single parent and have no other adult interaction. Today, many mothers no longer 
have family living nearby to help. Since families are having fewer children, many mothers did not grow up with younger siblings and did not learn 
to care for children. As a result, they need help learning to manage their kids. They are glad to get together with other mothers who can help them 
to deal with the problems they face caring for young children. In addition, many parents no longer let their kids roam the neighborhood and it gives 
children the opportunity to play together and learn to deal with others. Mobile home parks, apartment complexes, and new neighborhoods often 
have a lot of families with young children, and are fertile for neighborhood mother’s clubs. It is good to have an older church woman whose kids 
are grown who can work with the young church mother who hosts the group to help her deal with problems she hasn’t experienced yet. Older
unmarried college age girls can help watch the kids and keep them occupied while their mothers meet giving them valuable experience dealing with
 kids, or the mothers may take turns watching the kids if no one else is available. You may also have older women whose kids are grown teach a 
children’s Bible Club for the children of the mothers who participate and other neighborhood children who wish to attend.

Thirteenth Sunday of Pentecost-A-Aug 15

11 Aug

Mothers Clubs-(A) Since many households in poor areas are single parent households, there is also a need for social and spiritual ministry to the mothers, but many churches aren’t interested in reaching out to the mothers. Churches often only provide  children’s activities one day a week and because of the neighborhood environment in poor areas, mothers have to keep close watch on their kids. As a result, the mothers take the time during after school programs for washing and cleaning. Such neighborhoods may require more work with the kids to free mothers for time to get together. Unfortunately, many of those that do run outside ministries do it to attract people to support their failing church and not to minister to those who are in need. Christ cared for the lost and ministered to the needs He met. He fed the hungry, healed the sick, and comforted those who grieved to meet their needs, not just to get them to follow Him and He calls the church to do the same.


Twelfth Sunday of Pentecost-B

05 Aug

Neighborhood Children’s Bible Clubs- You can start one by holding a neighborhood VBS, driveway basketball games, or backyard activities. You reach more kids since kids in the neighborhood can walk to it so their parents don’t have to take them and they aren’t as afraid of attending  since they probably know the other kids there. Church members can host it and trained teachers can teach it. With families having fewer children and becoming more isolated, children have little to do but watch TV and play video games. Many are glad to participate in neighborhood Bible Clubs. Many kids will want to go to Sunday School after hearing about the fun things they do from kids that already go, and their parents may begin attending your church if there are fun activities for their kids, their kids want to attend the Sunday School, and they know someone from their neighborhood attends.


Twelfth Sunday of Pentecost-A-Aug 8

05 Aug

Neighborhood VBS Many churches have large Vacation Bible Schools in their church but often only those from church come. Usually there are only a few visitors unless the church makes a great effort to reach those in the immediate area of the church. Kids can not come without transportation and often parents are busy or not interested. In addition, churches often have difficulty getting enough volunteers to staff it. By having small neighborhood VBS at homes of members, it enables members to reach the children in their neighborhood. More children can attend because they don’t need transportation. Since they can walk to it, their parents don’t have to take them. It also requires a lot less volunteer staff. The church member hosts it and can help with it and those who feel called to teach can conduct several VBS sessions on different weeks in different areas. Members can also get to know their neighbors as they hand out invitations.


Eleventh Sunday of Pentecost-B

05 Aug

Children’s activities-B Such activities should be out of concern for the lost, not just for show. When I first went to work with the Salvation Army, I saw a lot of clients from a low-income housing project. I knew from experience that there was little for the children to do and little contact between mothers and so I organized an after-school program for the kids during the summer. I enlisted a church nearby to run it and enlisted a woman from the church to assist me in visiting the mothers to organize a mother’s club. The after-school program attracted a lot of kids who eventually started attending the church’s Wednesday night children’s program. Unfortunately, the church did not support the work to reach the mothers in the complex. It also dropped the after-school program once they got a good number of kids from the project attending their Wednesday night program. Unfortunately, while having active children’s programs make churches look good, the programs are expensive and not very effective if they don’t work to reach the parents as well. It has often been difficult getting churches to support the trailer park ministries. Many churches don’t do outside ministries because they don’t want “THOSE” kind of people (the unchurched) in their church and unchurched kids are often unruly since they weren’t raised by Christian parents.


Eleventh Sunday of Pentecost-A-Aug 2

05 Aug

Children’s activities-A  My wife and I have lived in Trailer parks (now called Mobile Home parks) throughout our marriage. Previously, trailers were usually small and easily moved and many residents moved frequently. People rarely bother to get to know their neighbors because they would move soon although more trailers are becoming bigger and harder to move. There is rarely anything for the kids to do. Many parents let their children roam the neighborhood without any supervision and they often get into trouble trying to create their own activities. The same goes for large apartment complexes where there are a lot of families. In addition, as many neighborhoods have become more dangerous, parents don’t want their kids running the neighborhood without supervision and keep them cooped up in the trailer. Parents and managers are often happy to see someone organize supervised activities for children to keep them out of trouble. Managers may be reluctant if an outside group wants to start it but are more willing if it is headed by a family in the park. Other managers may just be glad someone wants to start it. Many mobile home parks and apartment complexes now have community rooms for activities but they are seldom used because there is no one to organize activities. Such activities draw kids and provide contacts with their parents that open the door to developing a relationship with the parents. People in general are becoming more isolated from those around them. Many people in permanent housing neighborhoods are becoming as isolated as mobile home parks and apartment complexes and need children’s activities as well.


Tenth Sunday of Pentecost- Jul 25

22 Jul

Reaching the Lost in your neighborhood-Pentecost is a good time to renew your resolve to reach those who have never heard the Gospel. While many Christians still think of the United States as a Christian nation, since the 1960’s, many children have grown up with no contact with the church. Many families don’t attend church and usually won’t send their children to Sunday School but will allow them to attend neighborhood activities. Many members have no idea that many of their neighbors have no church connection. The best place to start is where they are. Now is a good time to begin planning ways to reach those in your neighborhood who have never heard the Gospel. While many Christians feel that unbelievers are generally resistant to the Gospel, most have never heard the Gospel and see no reason to attend church, but would if they had a reason to.


Ninth Sunday of Pentecost-July 18

16 Jul

Personal Witness-B  Up until the middle of the last century, the church was often the center of the community. It held Vacation Bible Schools, church dinners, and concerts where many in the community attended. However, few outside the church attend church activities today. If the church is to reach the lost, it must go where they are. In addition, church members must be trained to reach out to those around them and establish contacts that will enable them to recognize needs and respond to them. The early church attracted new members when unbelievers saw the love they had for each other and those around them, however the church today has isolated itself and does not provide opportunities for unbelievers to see that love.