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Amazing Facts - Evangelism Manual 2
TABLE OF CONTENTS Introduction 3 CHAPTER ONE When Evangelism doesn’t work 4 CHAPTER TWO The Evangelism Cycle 6 CHAPTER THREE Pre-Work Events 9 CHAPTER FOUR Outreach Leadership Team 11 CHAPTER FIVE “Share and Care” 12 CHAPTER SIX Bridge Events: Short Community Seminars 15 CHAPTER SEVEN Pre-Registration 16 CHAPTER EIGHT Prayer Ministry 17 CHAPTER NINE Reclaiming Lost Members 19 CHAPTER TEN Bible School Interests 22 CHAPTER ELEVEN Evangelistic Campaign 25 CHAPTER TWELVE Spiritual Friends 28
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“GO YE THEREFORE AND TEACH ALL NATIONS.... AND THIS GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM SHALL BE PREACHED IN ALL THE WORLD…. THEN SHALL THE END COME.” Matt 24:14, 28:19. Amazing Facts is delighted that your church is committed to doing evangelism. We are an evangelistic church, called by God to proclaim the everlasting Gospel to the world in the final moments of earth’s history. A number of unique and exciting opportunities are opening up for many churches to get involved in lay-evangelism. Without lay-evangelism the church will never accomplish the work God has given it to do. We are convinced that with the right commitment, resources and training, every Adventists church can greatly multiply its effectiveness in reaching souls for the kingdom of Heaven. Evangelism can seem daunting, and some of the members of the church might feel overwhelmed by the thought of fitting something else in their busy schedules. To help alleviate the stress and strains of evangelism, we have prepared this manual which outlines step-by-step what a church needs to do to maximize its effectiveness and opportunities for soul-winning. This manual will provide an easy-to-follow outline of the process of running successful evangelistic meetings from pre-work to establishing of new believers in the truth. We encourage you to read the materials carefully and adapt them to your specific needs. In order to make this evangelism program as practical and helpful as possible Amazing Facts has teamed up with Share Him, formerly Global Evangelism, to bring you cutting edge training and helpful evangelistic resources. This manual is built on a two evangelistic campaigns per year schedule and encourages church members to participate in every aspect of evangelism. Thank you for your commitment to be involved in the greatest work ever entrusted to man, that of seeking and saving the lost. Our hope is that you will prayerfully consider how God can use you to reach your community in ways that will lead others to see Jesus.
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WHEN EVANGELISM DOESN’T WORK And it came to pass that a certain farmer decided to grow wheat. He spent weeks researching the best methods of planting. He cultivated the soil carefully, fertilizing and setting up his sprinkler system. He drove his battered truck to town and bought a tractor and a harvester. Then he impatiently waited for the first emerald sprouts to appear. But day after day as he bounded out of bed and peered across the misty fields, he was disappointed. His precious wheat simply wasn’t growing. He checked the sprinklers, researched the soil, and prayed earnestly. Finally he bit his lip, went to his wheat farmer neighbors and asked the obvious question, “Why do you think my wheat isn’t growing?” His farmer friends’ trucks charged into his driveway in clouds of dust. Together in silence the farmers marched out to view his dark fields, in strange contrast to the brilliant green all around. They scratched their heads and asked, “What kind did you plant?” Our farmer friend was speechless. He kicked a clod of dirt around, shuffled his boots and mumbled awkwardly. “I prayed for wheat. I worked hard. I really wanted it to grow. But I guess I never actually planted seeds.” No one needs to tell you that the parable of the farmer isn’t a true story. No farmer would expect a harvest when he hadn’t planted anything. Unfortunately, the same is not true of all churches. Professional public evangelists can all testify that successful evangelism is 90 % pre-work and 10% preaching. To often churches sow few or no seeds in the community and end up frustrated and bitterly disappointed because their evangelistic meetings fail to be successful. Time after time the disillusioned words have been heard, “Evangelism just doesn’t work anymore.” As II Corinthians 9:6 reminds us, “He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully.” Galatians 6:7 adds, “Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” This is our promise to claim: If we sow wisely and bountifully, God will give us a rich harvest. Thousands of dollars were poured into evangelistic meetings in which few, if any, baptisms resulted. Why hasn’t evangelism worked as well as it should? There are three principal reasons:
1. In this busy age, churches tend to rely on handbills and advertising to bring people to the meetings. (However, typically only 1 per thousand comes from handbills alone.) If members do not invite their friends, very few people turn out for the evangelistic series. It is impossible for the meetings to reap a harvest that has not been sown.
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2. Some churches expect people to drop their former lives and spontaneously join the church. With no personal encouragement, few will be so inspired. Successful evangelism includes, pre-work, personal invitations, a well-organized meeting, and effective follow-up.
3. Little or no money, time or energy is expended in preparing for the meetings.
If evangelism is simply one more program in church members’ overstuffed calendars, then the churches evangelistic efforts will likely bring disappointing results. We invest in what we value. Investing prayer, money, time and enthusiasm in pre-work will transform your church’s evangelism experience!
This is not to discourage those who have worked hard to share the gospel, and still have been disappointed. Sowing seeds does not necessarily ensure a rich harvest. However, God has promised to bless our wise and earnest efforts, and the proven process of sowing and cultivation is the best preparation for abundant reaping! The truth is, public evangelism does work. It is one of the most effective forms of harvest available. However, public evangelism alone seldom works! Often we have overlooked the secret of the harvest: sowing seeds. As your church launches its evangelistic plans remember the simple Biblical principle of sowing and reaping.
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THE EVANGELISTIC CYCLE Barns full of ripened wheat come from hard work in the field and a careful process of nurturing seeds to full growth. And the barns are not the end of the journey, for from that crop come new seeds ready to be replanted for the next harvest. Thus, the harvest is not simply an event, but part of a cycle. The key to successful evangelism is implementing the evangelism cycle. When we compare evangelism with the harvest cycle, we see that the cycle of evangelism consists of several specific steps, each of which is important for a successful harvest:
1. Training the Sower (training and equipping) 2. Preparing the Soil (literature distribution, community outreach) 3. Planting Seeds (Bible studies, prophecy seminars) 4. Cultivating the Crop (short bridge events) 5. Harvesting (public evangelistic seminar) 6. Preserving the Harvest (nurturing & discipling)
Remember to REPEAT THE CYCLE! The seed is in the harvest. There are two main reason why evangelism often falls short of its goals:
A. Reason #1 We plant few or no seeds in preparation. B. Reason #2 We forget to keep the cycle going.
Many people take time to warm up and “ripen” for harvest. Most of us can remember a time when someone had to patiently sow seeds and wait for us to “sprout” spiritually. This is part of why the cycle of evangelism must never cease—at the end of almost any evangelistic effort many promising prospects have not yet made their decisions. But many of these “disappointments” will yet ripen if they are not left to wither and die. Ecclesiastes 11:1-6 promises, “Cast thy bread upon the waters: for thou shalt find it after many days…. In the morning sow thy seed, and in the evening withhold not thine hand: for thou knowest not whether shall prosper, either this or that, or whether both shall be alike good.” We must keep inviting until the banquet hall is full (Matthew 22:1-14).
AN EVANGELISM CALENDAR Success with the evangelism cycle demands a definite plan, a continuing cycle, and “waterproof” links between phases in the cycle, ensuring that people do not “slip through the cracks,” but progress to reaping if possible. In order to be most effective, there must be specific objectives for each phase as well as the entire cycle. Goals for measurable results are amazingly inspirational.
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To accomplish this, your church must implement an evangelistic calendar. This simple tool helps all church members to easily follow the church’s progress and become aware of the cycle. Emphasize its importance and where you are on it weekly. This will go far in motivating and uniting your church. On the following page we have listed a sample chart that you can use to start planning for your church’s own evangelistic cycle.
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SAMPLE CHURCH EVANGELISTIC CALENDAR PHASE DATE EVENTS GOALS
REVIVAL Month 1 – Focus on revival.
Revival week-end Video – AF revival series.
To create an atmosphere of prayer and nurture spiritual growth within the church family.
Training the Sower
Month 2 – Organizing and training the church for outreach.
Outreach Leadership team Setting evangelism goals
Organize the training and outreach efforts of the church.
Preparing the soil.
Month 3 – Community outreach and literature distribution.
Mail out Bible study cards Distribute literature Community Prayer teams Community surveys
Connect with the community and prepare the way for Bible studies.
Planting the seeds.
Month 4 - Bible Studies and small groups.
Visitations Bible studies Prophecy seminars Small groups
Involve as many church members as possible in small groups and Bible Studies.
Cultivate the Crop.
Month 5 – Bridge events and health seminars.
Felt needs seminars Health seminars Musical concerts
Break down prejudice, awaken interest in the biblical topics, and invite visitors to evangelistic meetings.
Reaping the Harvest
Month 6 – Evangelistic campaign
Evangelistic campaign Reaping from pre-work interests.
Preserve the Harvest
Month 7 – Establish new believers in the truth and getting them involved in ministry.
Spiritual friends Small Bible study groups Revelation seminar
Establishing new believers in the truth and involve them in ministry and outreach.
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OVERVIEW OF PRE-WORK EVENTS This chapter consists of an overview of the programs available to your church, and gives organizational tools to help in their implementation. It is designed to make you familiar with the big picture so that your church can develop an effective evangelism calendar.
There are a number of excellent resources for igniting revival in your church. The following are some outstanding resources that can be obtained from Amazing Facts. 10 part DVD – Annual Revival series (04 Revival; 05 Revive). Revival books – To live in His sight and Twelve steps to revival.
2. OUTREACH LEADERSHIP TEAM The Outreach Leadership Team launches two important aspects of church outreach: 1) organizing church outreach and 2) empowering and mobilizing the church membership through “Share and Care” program—see next section.
2. “SHARE AND CARE”
“Share and care” is a weekly program for the church family to come together for fellowship and service. The program provides inspiration and organization through prayer, hospitality, literature distribution, visitation, mailing, Bible studies and many other ministries. It is one of the most effective ways to develop “togetherness” and simultaneously mobilize in the great work of seeking and saving the lost.
3. BRIDGE EVENTS
When Jesus came to save sinners, He caught those sinners’ attention in a variety of ways. Today many thirsty souls do not even know they are longing for the Water of Life. In their search for meaning, they long for health, happy families, financial stability, and other things. These bridging programs help the church minister to felt needs. They are an ideal opportunity to invite friends and family, break down prejudice, and awaken interest in the biblical and prophetic topics that will be presented in the evangelistic seminar.
4. EVANGELISTIC SEMINAR The high point of the evangelism calendar is the evangelistic seminar. This needs to be a dynamic, Christ-centered presentation of end-time prophecies and biblical teachings. There are a number of excellent resources to help in conducting a successful series of meetings. To get information on evangelistic sermons
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and slides contact Share Him, formerly Global Evangelism, at www.global-evangelism.org
6. SPIRITUAL FRIENDS
The Spiritual Friends program is an excellent follow up for new believers in the church. It guides church members and leaders in effective follow-up and can be downloaded from the Empowered church website.
Pre-work Overview (Adjust dates to meet your church’s specific needs.)
Task List (Find resources online at www.empoweredchurch.org)
REVIVAL EVENTS First Month
• Week of prayer • Revival weekend • Special emphasis on prayer
OUTREACH LEADERSHIP TEAM Start the second month Weekly planning meetings
• Gather core group of potential leaders and organize the Outreach Leadership Team.
• Order needed resources for the churches outreach. • Assign leaders for the churches various outreach ministries. • Set up time and place for Share and Care program. • Promote and invite members to attend Share and Care program.
“SHARE AND CARE” OUTREACH Weekly outreach program Start the third month and continue to the end of the fifth month
• Start weekly training program. • Divide members into various outreach teams and ministries. • Set up a Bible School in your church. • Do a mailing of Bible study interest cards. • Mobilize Prayer ministry team. • Involve youth in literature distribution. • Compile contact interest list. • Follow up media interests. • Visit inactive members. • Give Bible Studies.
BRIDGE EVENTS Bridge events to built attendance for evangelistic seminar Start the fifth month
• Distribute bulletin inserts for bridge events. • Encourage members to invite friends and interests to attend. • Mail invitations to church interest list, informing them of the events
and programs. • For a suggested list bridge events at to www.empoweredchurch.org.
PRE-REGISTRATION Pre-register friends and contacts for the evangelistic series Two weeks before evangelistic meetings
• Send invitations and handbills to friends and church interest list. • Pre-register interests for evangelistic seminar. • Review instructions for pre-registration (available at
empoweredchurch.org). EVANGELISTIC SEMINAR Six month
• Conduct an evangelistic series at the church or auditorium. • For sermon outlines and slides go to www.global-evangelism.org
FOLLOW-UP PROGRAM Seventh month onwards
• Start the “Spiritual Friends” program in your local church. • Start a new believers Sabbath School class. • Invite new believers to a Revelation seminar at the church.
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OUTREACH LEADERSHIP TEAM The Outreach Leadership Team is essential for equipping and empowering your church family for outreach. It organizes pre-work, visitation, and follow-up in your community. It organizes and leads out in training and mentoring church members during a weekly outreach program called “Share and Care.” Each member of the Outreach Leadership Team should be selected based on love for Jesus, desire to reach out to the community, and their potential for leadership and training of others. We recommend a core group of about 6 people. Team members will be asked to:
• Attend weekly organizational meetings—consistency is important. • Participate in Share and Care program. • Mentor & train church members during the outreach time.
The Outreach Leadership Team can best be implemented as follows:
• Pastoral staff chooses a leader for the team. • Venue and start date for meetings are determined. • Pastoral staff and team leader select and contact team members. • Review schedule of Share and Care program. (See next section in manual) • Set up place and time for Share and Care program. (See next section in manual) • Think about ways of promoting the program to get maximum participation. • Create the churches outreach calendar. • Order Winsome Witnessing from Amazing Facts 1800-538-7275 during office
hours 8:30am-6:00pm Pacific Time (Monday-Thursday). Winsome Witnessing Resources
• Winsome Witnessing DVD which consists of 12 half-hour programs on 3 DVDs. • Winsome Witnessing book (order one per person attending Care and Share
program). • Winsome Studies in Prophecy (order one for each person planning on giving Bible
studies). Prophecies of Hope
• Prophecies of Hope is a series of Bible studies designed to go along with Winsome Witnessing training materials. They need to be ordered from the Adventist Book Center online at www.adventistbookcenter.com or from your local ABC store.
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SHARE AND CARE People love to get together for food and fellowship. Why not try a weekly experience of community outreach? That’s what the early Christians did in the book of Acts (see Acts chapter 2), and the gospel quickly reached throughout the then-known world. It can happen again when believers come together with love for Jesus, love for the lost, and a common mission. Share and Care is a weekly program to bring your church family together for fellowship and service. The program provides inspiration and organization in prayer, children’s ministry, hospitality, literature distribution, visitation, mailing, Bible studies and more. It is one of the most effective ways to mobilize Christian fellowship in the great work of seeking and saving the lost. PLEASE NOTE: Do not overload. Start with a realistic number of ministries you can manage with the leadership and people available, even if this means only one or two. By not overwhelming the members you will help keep the program fun and inspiring. PROGRAM & OVERVIEW OF MINISTRIES Suggested schedule: Sabbath Afternoon
• 1:00-2:00pm Fellowship Lunch • 2:00-2:30pm Training video (see accompanying schedule) • 2:30-3:30 pm Ministry activity • This schedule may be adapted to meet the needs of your church. Find a time that works for your church. (Some congregations meet one evening during the week.)
Suggested Ministry Activities:
• Hospitality Ministry o Prepare the meal for those who participate in Share and Care program. o Bring baked goods to share with others (Cookies or bread for visitation
teams). • Children’s Ministry
o Provide a program for the children of moms and dads who are involved in the various ministries.
o Think of mission projects for the kids to do: make cards for the shut-ins, etc.
o Have the older children join the teams that go into the community to distribute literature.
• Secretarial Ministry o Handle copying, record keeping, and other administrative services. o Prepare visitation cards for teams. o Organize mailing of letters, brochures, or other items. o Mail & grade lessons for correspondence Bible studies.
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• Prayer Ministry o Pray while visitation and Bible study teams are out in the field. o Pray specifically for names of those being visited (secretary provides copy
of interest cards) and for the needs of the church family. o Take prayer walks in the community praying for the families that will be
contacted. • Literature Distribution Ministry
o Distribute literature door-to-door (Literature may include Bible study enrollment cards, advertisements/invitations for up-coming programs and seminars, small non-confrontational books such as Happiness Digest, etc.)
• Visitation Ministry o Visit members, people in the hospital, new residents of the community,
non-attending members, and others. o Bring gifts or minister to needs. o Pray with those visited.
• Bible Study Ministry o Offer Bible studies to those on the church interest list, follow up on
requests for Bible studies, conduct door-to-door surveys, give Bible studies.
o Generate Bible study interests within each person’s circle of influence (family, friends, work associates, neighbors) and include interests generated from mailing.
o Bible studies can be given in one or more of the following ways: � Weekly drop-off self-study lessons � In-home studies � Video drop off studies
• Phone Ministry o Make calls of encouragement to sick, shut-ins, or those who miss church. o Call members to ask about their friends, neighbors, or work associates
who might be open to a Bible study, visit, or invitation to special programs.
o Call to invite people to upcoming seminars.
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SHARE AND CARE OUTREACH SCHEDULE
WEEK TRAINING OUTREACH ACTIVITIES Week 1
Winsome Witnessing DVD part 1 Witnessing must be Winsome Taming your nerves
Organize ministry teams Plan ministry activities Consider ministry resources
Winsome Witnessing DVD part 2 Winning ‘Em without killing ‘Em Remedy for Laodicea
Compile an interest list for each ministry Review ministry activities and add new activities Order ministry resources / Mail Bible study interest cards Pray for the names on interest list
Winsome Witnessing DVD part 3 Thawing Frozen Churches How to double God’s Joy
Add names to interest list; create visitation cards Organize to start ministry activities the next week Review ministry materials Pray for names on interest list
Winsome Witnessing DVD part 4 Favorite Fishing Holes
Add names to interest list, create visitation cards Organize for ministry Pray over ministry names Ministry activity
Winsome Witnessing DVD part 5 Jesus’ Method Works
Report on last weeks ministry activity Add names to interest list; create visitation cards Pray for names on interest list Ministry activity
Winsome Witnessing DVD part 6 Leading a Person to Chris How to Give your Testimony
Report on last weeks ministry activity Add names to interest list; create visitation cards Pray for names on interest list Ministry activity
Winsome Witnessing DVD part 7 Sit Down or Drop Off Which Studies should I use
Report on last weeks ministry activity Add names to interest list; create visitation cards Pray for names on interest list Ministry activity
Winsome Witnessing DVD part 8 Resources Available Answering Difficult Questions
Winsome Witnessing DVD part 9 Tiny Tots and TV Avoiding Common Mistakes
Winsome Witnessing DVD part 10 Studies on Steroids Spend time with Qualified People How to Get Friends to Church
Winsome Witnessing DVD part 11 Overcoming Obstacles to a Decision
Winsome Witnessing DVD part 12 Decision Signals Steps to Victory Organizing For Success Give a Portion to Seven Le’ts Get Started
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BRIDGE EVENTS—SHORT COMMUNITY PROGRAMS In today’s restless world, many who are thirsting for the gospel don’t even know it. In their search for satisfaction they are troubled about health, finances, marriage, and parenting. Programs on such topics provide a great way to break down prejudice, and awaken interest in the biblical and prophetic topics that will be presented in the evangelistic seminar. GUIDELINES
1. Short bridge events are best. Long programs wear people out and overload them, sapping their energy for attending the next program you offer. Short programs leave them hungry for more—that’s what you want!
2. Offer the bridge events close to the opening night of the evangelist seminar
(within 30 days) and be sure to include an “advertisement” for the upcoming prophecy seminar. Promote and give out pre-registration cards for evangelistic seminar.
EVENTS/SEMINARS TO CONSIDER
1. Cooking 2. Stress 3. Health 4. Weight control 5. Parenting 6. Marriage 7. Auto maintenance
8. Finance 9. Debt reduction 10. Musical concerts 11. Holiday features 12. Creation vs. evolution 13. Much more….
To order material and resources for bridge events contact plusline
http://www.plusline.org/resource.php?id=1993 DivorceCare http://www.plusline.org/resource.php?id=1903 LifeLong Health http://www.plusline.org/resource.php?id=1902 LifeLong Health http://www.plusline.org/resource.php?id=4101 LifeLong Health http://www.plusline.org/resource.php?id=2106 Parenting with Grace http://www.plusline.org/resource.php?id=4059 Stress http://www.plusline.org/resource.php?id=3822 Women in Driver's Seat http://www.plusline.org/resource.php?id=3640 Cooking School http://www.plusline.org/resource.php?id=1632 Loving Relationships http://adventsource.org/dvdvideo_2.aspx?ID=30498 FTDF Marriage Conf http://adventsource.org/dvdvideo_2.aspx?ID=21293 Pre-marriage http://adventsource.org/dvdvideo_2.aspx?ID=19786 Kay Kuzma http://adventsource.org/book.aspx?ID=20759 marriage & parenting http://adventsource.org/dvdvideo_2.aspx?ID=30792 Family Success http://adventsource.org/dvdvideo_2.aspx?ID=19678 Parenting w/Grace http://adventsource.org/dvdvideo_2.aspx?ID=19674 Parenting/teens http://www.plusline.org/resource.php?id=2607 Weight Control
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PRE-REGISTRATION AND INVITATIONS Two principles show us to how to effectively promote religious events:
• Repeat & enlarge. When inviting people to a religious event, it is wise to mention it, then give more detail next time you talk about it, letting interest build. • Remind. Satan will try to get them to forget, so wise soulwinners make a point to remind interests of the upcoming evangelistic meetings.
POSSIBLE INVITATION SCHEDULE FOR EVANGELISTIC MEETINGS 1. First invitation—one month ahead. One month before opening night, make
public announcements at church and encourage members to give verbal invitations to friends and family, promising a handbill later with details.
2. Second invitation—two weeks ahead. Two weeks before opening night, personally distribute handbills to all names on church interest list as well as to friends and family. When you share each handbill, have each person complete a pre-registration card (if these are being used) to ensure seating or try to get some kind of commitment from them. Handbills and pre-registration cards are available from Color Press at www.adventistevangelism.com or by phone at 800-222-2145.
3. Third invitation—as soon as pre-registered. Mail confirmation letters to all who have pre-registered.
4. Fourth invitation—three days ahead. Call all pre-registered guests three days prior to opening night to remind of meeting, see if they have any extra guests who would like to come, and see if they have any transportation needs.
5. Fifth invitation—after opening night. Visit or call those who pre-registered but didn’t make it to opening night. Bring them a handout from the meeting. Don’t say, “We missed you”—that can make them feel guilty or pressured. Try, “I know you wanted to come, so I saved you an outline from the meeting. Just look it over and you’ll be caught up for the next meeting. Tonight’s meeting is about ____. Hope you can make it!” If you don’t have time to visit everyone, call them and let them know what the next topic is and that you will save some materials for them to pick up.
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PRAYER MINISTRY An excellent neighborhood-based intercessory prayer ministry is outlined below and has been adapted from material by Russell Burrill, Director of the North American Division Evangelism Institute.
1. Get together with a few like-minded people who share your passion for soulwinning.
2. Communicate your vision to the rest of the church. One possible approach is to celebrate communion and invite others who wish to make a covenant with God to join the effort at this time.
3. Have a week of prayer or prayer meeting series on intercessory prayer. Especially focus on the principles of intercessory prayer and neighborhood prayer ministry. Use one of the following as a guide: a. Roger J. Morneau’s books and videos, focusing on faith stories and the
principles of intercessory prayer: Incredible Answers to Prayer More Incredible Answers to Prayer When You Need Incredible Answers to Prayer (Hagerstown, MD: Review & Herald Publishing Association, 1995)
b. Ron Halvorsen’s Prayer Warriors Manual (Fallbrook, CA: Hart Research Center, 1995)
c. Joe Engelkemier’s Thirty Days to a More Effective Prayer Life (Nampa, ID: Pacific Press, 1998)
4. Start small neighborhood intercessory prayer groups. 5. Decide together what geographic area your group is going to reach for God. 6. Recruit three levels of prayer warriors:
Level 1 Prayer Warrior: Pray daily for the church, evangelistic meetings, and the requests coming in from the community. Meet for ten minutes with fellow prayer warriors each Sabbath (time to be specified). Prayer requests should be specific; when God answers, prayer warriors will be encouraged as they see their petitions being fulfilled. Level 2 Prayer Warrior: All that Level 1 does, and in addition select a block in the neighborhood that your group decided it would work to prepare for the series. Walk the area with your family or with your prayer partner, and as you do, talk to God about each neighbor. Take time to listen to what God tells you through the indwelling Holy Spirit. (See John 10:27; 14:26; 16:13,14.) Don’t be surprised if, as you walk by a certain house, the Holy Spirit leads you to pray in a very specific way. (See Rom. 8:26; Eph. 6:18.)
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Level 3 Prayer Warrior: Include all that Levels 1 and 2 do, and in addition, leave a prayer request doorknob hanger (Available from Color Press) or a note to let the neighbors know that you are praying for them regularly, and that you would like to know their specific prayer requests. Ask residents to place these on their doorknobs to be picked up at a specified time. The next week stop back at the homes and ask how things are going, building relationships based on people’s needs and interests.
7. Share reports of answered prayers to the church.
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RECLAIMING LOST MEMBERS There’s good news: the Holy Spirit is convicting former members of your church to return. These non-attending members are “ripe” for an invitation to come home. There are three basic steps in reclaiming lost members:
1. Get names and find out why people left. 2. Visit the former members and seek to reclaim them, listening to them and inviting
them to events. 3. Nurture these new believers into a renewed commitment to Christ and His church.
Getting names of non-attending members In large congregations many names on the church books may not be recognized by church board members. Probably the simplest way to discover who these people are is to distribute a list of unfamiliar names to the church members, asking them to fill in any information they have about any names on the list Visiting non-attending members Wherever possible, “match up” visiting members with the ones being visited according to similar cultural backgrounds, careers, income levels, family backgrounds, etc. Consult with your pastor before setting out on your mission. Be a Christ-like friend. Remember that most of your job consists of attentive and sympathetic listening. Pull over before you are within view of the house and pray for the Holy Spirit’s guidance. When you go to the door, you can say something like this: “Hi, I’m ___________ and this is ___________. We’re with the _________________ Seventh-day Adventist Church. We wanted to come by and get acquainted.” Be friendly and warm but not too gushy. If they invite you inside, ask about job, family, and other friendship builders. After a few minutes or when it comes up naturally in conversation, ask: “You used to attend our church. How long ago was that? Have you thought about coming back to our church?” This may open up a lengthy discussion. Listen attentively, making sure you hear all they have to say. Reassure them that the church family will seek a resolution if needed, and wants to see them back again.
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A few do’s
1. Get to the point within a few minutes. 2. Listen kindly; listen interestedly; listen calmly. 3. Always close your visit with prayer. 4. Give a brief invitation to come out to the evening seminar meeting or to church
the next Sabbath. 5. Leave immediately after prayer.
Suggested closings to a visit Close your visit something like this: ‘Well, we must be going. [That statement always relaxes people!] But before we leave, let’s just bow our heads for a moment of prayer.’ And as you are saying this, just bow your head and start praying a short, sincere prayer. In your prayer, you can say things like, “Forgive us for the hurt we in the church have caused him, and may he know there’s a welcome awaiting him upon his return.” “May he know that we love him and that You love him, and in spite of all the unkindness he has endured, may he be willing to forgive the past.” “Help us to be more careful in the future not to wound Your child again.” “We remember that it says of Jesus, Those are the wounds with which I was wounded in the house of my friends” (Seeking His Lost Sheep, p. 76). A few don’ts
1. Don’t betray the backslider’s confidence. 2. Don’t act shocked. 3. Don’t defend anyone. 4. Don’t stay long. Ten to fifteen minutes is usually long enough. 5. Don’t dismiss a backslider as hopeless because he is too far away. 6. Don’t argue about church standards.
Nurturing them back After your initial visit, put their name on the church list for social events (NOT solicitation events). Stay in touch. From time to time, telephone the former member, keeping him informed on interesting church-family news.Use important coming events as an excuse for a return visit to invite him out. Help solve personal problems that obstruct church attendance, such as babysitting, transportation, or care-giving. Take a personal interest in his children. Put forth every effort in your power to see that the former member is present during a call for surrender or at a special Sabbath morning consecration service (baptism). If the family has financial needs, present them to the appropriate church leaders/department.
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The search for straying members is a real battle in a real life-or-death war. Intercessory prayer is the most powerful weapon in this conflict. Solicit a commitment from your church family to pray each day, perhaps at an established time, for the non-attending members on the list. Pray for those doing visitations as well. Additional Resources
• It’s About People, by Jim Hohnberger, offers a deeper appreciation for the ones for whom Jesus gave His life. It will open new insights into the reason we seek after the backslidden.
• Seeking His Lost Sheep by Fordyce Detamore provides a wealth of information in seeking and responding to the needs of the backslidden. You will get a firsthand look at many in-home encounters with lost members, and get practical, effective know-how in reaching them for the Lord.
• Finally, you can also get in-depth programs and materials from Adventist Reconciliation Services at the North Pacific Union (email@example.com).
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COMBINING EVANGELISTIC MEETINGS WITH A BIBLE SCHOOL
Having a Bible school is one of the most effective means of preparing your community for a seminar or evangelistic meetings. The Bible lessons review and reinforce the message heard from the pulpit, helping listeners to retain more of the message. They give participants an opportunity to respond through the answer sheets, and to interact with someone in addition to the evangelist. Some of the visitors attending the reaping meeting will not fill out the decision cards; however, many will enroll in the Bible course during the meetings and will record their decision on the answer sheets. Saturate your community Thousands of souls can be won by enrolling people in a Bible study course. Requests for Bible lessons can be serviced by personal delivery, videos, in-home group studies, correspondence or a combination of two or more of these. Following are several ways to reach people:
1. Enroll friends: Enroll friends, family, co-workers, neighbors and casual daily contacts using lesson #1 or an enrollment card. Keep a supply of enrollment cards in your car, home, pocket, or purse, and offer to mail the enrollment card for them. Have Sabbath School members take and hand out cards weekly. Hand out cards during the “Soup and Salvation” program.
2. Cards in personal mail: Enclose an enrollment card with utility, credit card and other payments, with Christmas, birthday, anniversary and graduation cards and in other personal mail.
3. Mass distribution of enrollment cards: Enroll people by a mass distribution of enrollment cards. The Voice of Prophecy has information regarding bulk mailing services (1-877-955-2525 or 805-955-7659). Project: Steps to Christ is offering bulk mailing of Steps to Christ with a Bible study enrollment card insert (1-800-728-6872 or 518-358-2541). Color Press, Graphic Printing and Hamblin Press offer a variety of Bible study enrollment cards. The cards come to a central address and are distributed to your school on a daily basis.
4. Radio spots: Purchase radio spots for an advertising blitz that supports and increases the results during a mass distribution of enrollment cards.
5. Newspaper inserts: Have Bible study enrollment cards or specially designed newspaper inserts placed into the local newspaper.
6. Display ads: Place ads in newspapers, newsletters and local magazines. Amazing Facts has excellent ads available in a number of sizes and styles. They can be accessed online at www.amazingfacts.org by clicking on the link “Get Involved” just under the Amazing Facts logo, and then clicking on “Advertise” (in the top right-hand corner).
7. Small groups: Enroll people in a small group Bible study course.
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The Amazing Facts Bible School will provide assistance by taking students through the Bible correspondence course at the Amazing Facts corporate office, graduating them and providing reports on their progress. These student activity reports are an excellent source of names of persons to invite to any evangelistic meeting or seminar. For further assistance, call the Bible school coordinator Carolyn Moxley, at (916) 434-3880, extension 3018, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. How to use Evangelistic Videos / DVDs Amazing Facts is recommending the use of Millennium of Prophecy (Net New York ’99) and the Prophecy Code (Net Washington DC ’05) videos and DVDs as pre-work for your own evangelistic series. These videos can be obtained from Amazing Facts at 800- 538-7275. Instructions for Sharing the Video and Lessons:
1. Leave the Bible study and video/DVD with the interest. � Tell contact/friend a little about Pastor Doug (one of my favorite speakers,
very entertaining, etc.). Especially mention anything you think they will relate to in his testimony or find interesting.
� Tell them to write down questions to ask next week. � Explain that the Bible study is theirs to keep for free, and the video is
loaned to them for a week to enhance the study. (There are two studies on each video.)
� If they seem hesitant, suggest they try it for a couple of weeks and see how it goes.
2. Set up an appointment for next week. � Write the date and time of next week’s appointment on the top of the
lesson. � Let them know you will only have 15-30 minutes to review the lesson
with them, depending on how many questions they have. � If appropriate, ask if they have any prayer requests. Offer to pray with
them there, or at home tonight, whichever they prefer. Instructions for Studying the Lesson Together
1. Mention that you have enjoyed going through the study this week yourself. Tell a short personal testimony about how it inspired or helped you.
2. Ask if they had any questions about the study. 3. If you don’t know how to answer a question, say something like, “That’s a
good question. Let me study about that this week and get back to you. I know what I think, but I don’t want to share what I think. I want to find what the Bible has to say about it for you.”
4. If they ask about something that is to come in the future, say, “That’s a good question. We have a study on that topic coming up later.”
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5. At the end of study, summarize by: � reviewing the applications. � condensing these thoughts into a decision. � sealing the decision with prayer.
Online missionary program with Amazing Facts Bible Universe If your church members have access to the internet, some of them may want to consider becoming an “online missionary” with Amazing Facts. By attaching a link to their emails, they can invite people to enroll in the free Bible Universe courses. Reports on the students progress are then sent to the online missionary who in turn is able to follow up with that person and give them gift booklets. The online missionary also receives information on all Bible students in their area. For more information please go to www.bibleuniversity.com/associates/logon.asp.
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EVANGELISTIC CAMPAIGN Evangelism is a team ministry. Your evangelism will be most effective and fulfilling if you involve a team of committed believers in your effort. While the evangelist will present Bible truth each evening, it is the relationships your members develop with people that will help them decide to follow Jesus and join your church family. Share Him, formerly Global Evangelism, has great evangelistic sermons and slides for pastors and lay-members. You can visit them on the web at www.sharehim.org The New Beginning evangelistic series is also a great source of sermons and slides, and can be obtained from Advent Source at www.adventsource.org
OUTREACH LEADERSHIP TEAM The outreach leadership team is responsible to:
• Give overall direction to the plans and preparations for the meetings. • Develop an overall evangelism plan and budget. • Plan an effective friendship evangelism and outreach program prior to the
meetings. • Appoint committee coordinators.
The prayer coordinator is responsible to: • Organize one or more prayer bands. Each prayer band should meet regularly to
pray for the upcoming meetings, for members’ contacts, and for the church’s spiritual readiness.
• Give at least one short presentation on the power and necessity of prayer before the seminar begins.
• Have a special prayer session before the meetings begin. • Set up a prayer request box or other system for getting prayer requests from
seminar attendees. • During the seminar, set aside a private room and gather a group each night to pray
during the meeting.
USHER/GREETER The usher/greeter coordinator is responsible to:
• Help people find seats. • Make friends and give a good first impression. • Distribute and collect quiz envelopes, decision cards and pens/pencils. • Handle possible disturbances. • Take up offerings (one bucket per row, so that it will be quick). • Bring in extra chairs if necessary.
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REGISTRATION AND ATTENDANCE TRACKING It is highly recommended that churches engage in a pre-registration and registration process to track their visitors. This process has been used very successfully by Amazing Facts to help create and maintain high attendance, and to facilitate effective follow-up. Amazing Facts will supply free software for those able to track attendance with a computer. This free software can be downloaded at www.gospelharvest.org
The materials coordinator is responsible to: • Order materials to be handed out to attendees (study guides, decision cards,
offering envelopes, tickets, gift books/tapes/CDs/DVDs, etc. • Buy pens/pencils for ushers. • Appoint people to stand at each door and pass out materials when attendees
leave. • Make sure materials from past nights are available each night.
The technical coordinator is responsible to: • Ensure that the projector is functioning and has a spare bulb. • Ensure that sound is correctly relayed through the sound system each night.
The visitation team will be responsible for reaching out to seminar attendees in a personal way so as to help absent attendees to return, answer objections and clear people for baptism. The teams responsibilities are as follows:
1. Invite people from the church’s interest list to the meetings 2. Follow-up on those who have stopped attending meetings after the first weekend.
The first visit should be both informal and brief. You will want to leave the material from the night that they’ve missed and invite them to come to the next meeting.
3. Follow-up on those who have stopped attending the meetings, be prepared to answer objections on the Sabbath as well as other doctrinal issues. Also follow-up on those who have indicated an interest in baptism.
4. Third week of the meetings: Begin the clearing process for those who have been filling out decision cards. Answer objections.
5. Continue to visit good interests and baptismal candidates following the meetings.
CHILDREN’S PROGRAM COORDINATOR Many families simply cannot attend evangelistic meetings if there is no children’s program. Children who are excited about the children’s programs also tend to bring their parents back to the meetings. And children’s hearts are perfect ground for sowing the seeds of the kingdom. For these reasons and more, the children’s meeting coordinator is vital to the success of the overall evangelistic meeting.
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The child care coordinator is responsible to: 1. Organize child care for ages 0-10. If possible, have at least two separate
programs, one for younger children and one for older. 2. Plan an effective program either using an existing children’s program or your
own. 3. Recruit at least two staff members for each childcare program each night. Make
sure that they will be there early and be able to stay until all children have been picked up. (Sometimes parents need time to ask questions after the meeting.) Provide a sign-in sheet where parents sign their children’s names and their own names. Be sure that the same person who signed the child in is the one who signs him or her out.
4. Make sure you order your children’s materials well in advance.
The music coordinator is responsible for arranging the musical program in coordination with the pastor/platform chairperson.
The transportation coordinator is responsible to: 1. Have phone number or contact details listed in the bulletin a few weeks in
advance so that they can be contacted by any church members who are aware of people who need rides.
2. Either provide rides personally or get people’s names and phone numbers, and tell them you will organize a ride for them. Call them back and let them know the arrangements you have made. (IMPORTANT: DON’T COUNT ON SOMEONE ELSE TO CALL THEM—DO IT YOURSELF.)
3. Give address or directions to homes, as well as names and phone numbers, to those who are giving rides to others.
To make sure that this is a beautiful and unforgettable experience for each person baptized, the baptism coordinator is responsible to:
1. Ensure the baptismal tank is in good working condition, with no leaks, and that paint is not chipping or peeling . If available, make sure the heater is working.
2. Ensure that there are enough baptismal robes of various sizes to accommodate all individuals.
3. Provide handkerchiefs and/or washcloths to put over baptismal candidates’ faces so that they don’t get water up their noses, etc.
4. Ensure that changing facilities are clean and privacy is available for changing clothes.
5. Ensure that there are extra towels in case anyone forgets to bring their own. 6. Enlist a couple of deacons or deaconesses to assist candidates getting in and out of
baptismal tank, as well as drying and dressing if needed. 7. Purchase a gift for each person being baptized. A card, rose or other symbolic
memento may be appropriate.
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SPIRITUAL FRIENDS Follow-up is as equally important as the pre-work and the reaping meetings. The true purpose of follow-up is much broader than just keeping new members in the church. It involves fulfilling the Great Commission to “go therefore and make disciples” (Matthew 28:19, NKJV). A disciple does more than assent to the correctness of truth. For our purpose, a disciple is a productive and useful member who is advancing the cause of God through his/her life. Research has shown that if a person can make at least seven new and close friends within the first six months of joining a church they have a greater rate of remaining faithfully involved. Notice the words “close friends.” This means more than just giving a handshake on Sabbath and saying, “Happy Sabbath.” The level of friendship required must go beyond the Sabbath hours. This chapter gives specific ministry activities to do each week for 13 weeks that will build spiritual friendships with new believers. Sample Activities for Spiritual Friends
1. Make weekly visits and/or phone calls. 2. Invite new members home for Sabbath dinners once a month. Include other
members who may have things in common with the new members. This will help the new member become acquainted with more people in the church.
3. During the week, invite the new member to meet you for lunch at a local restaurant.
4. Do social activities together. If you are planning a day of recreation, include your new member friends. Train yourself to think in terms of including new members in all of these activities.
5. Sit with your new member friends in church, at fellowship meals and church functions.
6. When making friends with new members there are some areas where you will need to exercise caution: • Be careful not to take new members too fast in areas of diet, reforms, etc.
Ellen White cautioned that it is better to err on the side of the people and to be one step behind them than to be one step ahead of them.
• It is never appropriate to give a new member materials from groups that have an ax to grind. You may think this is grand material, but it will only suffice to destroy their confidence in the church and message.
7. There is a need to be patient with new members. Conviction regarding lifestyle issues often develops over time as the new member grows in knowledge and experience. During this time of growth we need to be patient, loving, and kind.
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Conversations with New Attendees Here are some ideas for carrying a conversation. Remember this acronym— TOPICS: ( Dale Cobb, How to Help Greeters Extend a Warm and Caring Welcome, 1989, Church Growth, Inc., Monrovia.CA) T — Talk about Today’s immediate situation and surroundings. “Is this your first time
here? How did you learn about this church?” O — Occupation & Educational Background. “What kind of work are you in?” P — Place they’re from; Partner (Married?); Parents (Family?) “Do you live close by?
Are you originally from Xyz city? I — Interests (hobbies, recreation) “What do you do for fun?” C — Current events (news) “Did you see that Super Bowl/World Series...?” S — Share (about yourself, church, Sabbath School class, etc.) Another acronym that is very easily used is FORT: F — Family: “Is this your family? Is your family from around here? Tell me about your
family?” O — Occupation: “What kind of work are you in?” R — Religion: “How did you hear about our church? What has been your religious
background?” T — Testimony: (First, how the Lord led you to Himself. Then how you found Bible
truth.) Caution: The Gospel is the plan of salvation and this should be the theme of our testimony, not how we found the church or the Sabbath. When you ask a person these questions try to phrase them in such a way that they cannot be answered by a “yes” or a “no.” By the way, once you have found a topic that a person shares freely, it is best to stay with that topic. There is no need to go through all these topics at once. Also, remember to keep the conversation from being one-sided. Don’t be the one who is asking all the questions. After a person has shared an answer to your question, you should share your own answer to that question. Be an Introducer A simple, yet vital part of your ministry as a Spiritual Friend is to introduce new members to other church members whom they have not already met. Just say, “I want you to meet _________.” Then go to the member and say, “John, have you met (the new member)?” Turning to the new member, say, “John runs a contracting company in town.” Make certain you then steer the conversation through one of the acronyms above. At different times it may be appropriate to suggest to a member to go over and visit with a new member or attendee. Take the initiative and make these things happen. This is your ministry.
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TEN DON’TS FOR SPIRITUAL FRIENDS
1. DON’T let two weeks pass without contacting your new friend. 2. DON’T preach at your new friend or criticize them for views they hold or things
they do. 3. DON’T answer their questions with “Ellen White says...” We are to be people of
the Bible. Before answering questions ask the person how they view the topic or why they ask. Listen. Answering questions is two-thirds listening. Your ears outnumber your mouth two to one.
4. DON’T be shocked at new members who make suggestions or remarks not in harmony with the faith. They will grow in time as you give them love and understanding coupled with sound Biblical teaching.
5. DON’T act superior or condescending because you’ve been a member longer. 6. DON’T give extra reading material above that which is provided for in this
program. If you feel they need a particular book, contact your pastor and talk to him about it first. DON’T overload. DON’T push your own peculiar brand of theology or hobbyhorse.
7. DON’T ever tell the new member that you are assigned to check up on him/her. This is not what your ministry is about. You are making friends.
8. DON’T ever tell the new member that you fill out a ministry assignment card or let them see your cards. Make your ministry activities a spontaneous expression of your love for your new friend.
9. DON’T share church problems or gossip with the new member. 10. DON’T downgrade other denominations. If they mention another church, say,
“There are many wonderful people there.” TEN DO’S FOR SPIRITUAL FRIENDS
1. DO love this soul for whom Jesus died. 2. DO complete each assignment in sequence. Make it your week’s goal to complete
the project and to make it a spontaneous expression of your love for your new friend.
3. DO give your ministry assignment cards to the coordinator as soon as the activity is done. Make frequent reports to your pastor concerning the progress of your friendship.
4. DO greet the new member at all church services and programs. Invite them to stay for fellowship dinners and to sit with you.
5. DO look for ways to involve the new members in church programs and activities. 6. DO introduce the new members to other members at every activity. 7. DO verbally express your appreciation to the new member often. 8. DO speak in only positive terms regarding the church, the pastor, the Conference,
etc. 9. DO leave each visit on a happy note. Keep visits short and sweet to begin with. 10. DO add any comments you wish to the assignment cards when you return them to
the team leader.
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Sample Schedule for a Spiritual Friend The following activities are suggestions for how one can build a friendship that has the spiritual goal of making disciples for Christ. You can keep rotating through these activities until your friendship is well established and your spiritual friends are well grounded in the faith. Week One: Invite your new friend to your home or to go out for a meal. You may invite another member to join you in this activity. Please do not let vegetarianism become an issue. Week Two: Share a spiritual book or set of Bible studies. Examples of good books to share include Desire of Ages, Steps to Christ, etc. It might be a good idea to encourage them to start a Bible study course such as the Storacles Bible studies (Amazing Facts). Week Three: Plan a recreational activity together. Plan to do something recreationally together that suits both the age and interest of the new attendee. Here are a few suggestions: miniature golf, tennis, golfing, nature walk, swimming, concert, hobby (this is especially good for the elderly. Show them one of your hobbies, or let them show you one of theirs. Examples: gardening, crafts, etc.) Week Four: Deliver a church periodical. You can use one of the church magazines (Review, Signs, etc.), Amazing Facts’ Inside Report, the local Union paper, etc. Read it first to be able to interest them in some specifics. Explain that it tells about the work of the SDA church and that it will be an inspiration to them as they read about how God is leading in people’s lives. If appropriate, have a short prayer with them. Leave on a happy note— “We feel so happy to have you as members and friends in our church!” Week Five: Involve the person in a ministry or spiritual activity. Have them attend a family worship with you. Invite them to come to a Bible study or to join a small group that you attend. Have them share their testimony at a vespers or Sabbath School (but be careful not to pressure them to do this). Keep any up-front time brief but meaningful. Other good activities include literature distribution, visiting “shut ins,” helping with a soup kitchen, etc. Using a Ministry Assignment Card The cards on the next page are designed for you to be able to fill out each week and return to your pastor or team leader. We want to minister to our new friends in the most effective way possible. In order to do this we need to be kept informed of areas of special need. Remember, your purpose is not to be a “holy spy” or judge. Always keep in mind that people need time to grow. Don’t expect perfection, or for people to look at things in exactly the same manner you do. Respect people for who they are. Let God lead in their lives.
Ministry Assignment Card Spiritual Friend: ___________________________ Date: ______________________ Your Name: ______________________ Telephone: _______________________ Contact made or activity with your spiritual friend this week: 1. Contact at church 2. Had meal together 3. Dropped off spiritual book 4. Socialized outside of church 5. Visited in their home 6. Family worship together 7. Assisted with crisis 8. Other _______________ Did this new member attend this week’s Sabbath services? Yes ___; No ___. Circle any areas that might need the pastor’s personal attention:
1. They’re experiencing opposition from or conflict with family members 2. Previous church friends, or their former pastor, have visited them. 3. They have reverted to destructive habits (tobacco, alcohol, etc.). 4. Having job problems (Sabbath work problems, lost a job, etc.). 5. They need creative ideas to help enjoy the blessing of the Sabbath. 6. Lifestyle practices are not harmonizing with God’s principles. 7. Diet, health issues. (Reforms prematurely put upon them.) 8. Friendship. Social needs not being sufficiently met by the church.
Ministry Assignment Card Spiritual Friend: ___________________________ Date: ______________________ Your Name: ______________________ Telephone: _______________________ Contact made or activity with your spiritual friend this week: 1. Contact at church 2. Had meal together 3. Dropped off spiritual book 4. Socialized outside of church 5. Visited in their home 6. Family worship together 7. Assisted with a crisis
8. Other _______________ Did this new member attend this week’s Sabbath services? Yes ___; No ___. Circle any areas that might need the pastor’s personal attention:
1. They are experiencing opposition from or conflict with family members 2. Previous church friends, or their former pastor, have visited them. 3. They have reverted to destructive habits (tobacco, alcohol, etc.). 4. Having job problems (Sabbath work problems, lost a job, etc.). 5. They need creative ideas to help enjoy the blessing of the Sabbath. 6. Lifestyle practices are not harmonizing with God’s principles. 7. Diet, health issues. (Reforms prematurely put upon them.)