Church Involvement

Creating a Culture of Involvement in Every Church – 2018 Church Involvement Conference January 19 & 20

Category: Ministries

Is IM as Important as the Pulpit or Youth Ministry?

Most congregations (that can afford two ministers) usually have a pulpit minister and a youth minister.   I have been both.   I enjoyed 30 years of full time pulpit work and about 5 years of part-time pulpit ministry.   I have also done youth work.   I mention this so no one misunderstands what I’m about to share.

I have also done “Involvement Ministry” for 9 years and I am convinced that it is just as important as pulpit and youth ministry.   Why would I say such a thing?

For the following reasons.   Involvement Ministry (IM done well) is important to a local church because

It helps members discover how God has designed them for service.   It intentionally seeks to inform members of their spiritual gifts, passions and other things that show members how God has designed them for service as individuals.   Who is going to do this?    For all intents and purposes, this is not being done in local churches.

It assists members in becoming fully fruitful.   Sitting in a worship service or a Bible class does not make one fruitful (by merit of the sitting and listening).   IM educates brethren how to bear fruit for the Lord in at least four different ways:

Authentic character, decisive living, vivid worship and courageous sharing.

It promotes proper church organization and ministry.   Much emphasis is upon leadership in most churches.   However, IM promotes the priesthood of believers: that is, every member is a gifted servant of the Most High God.

It allows for more ministry not less.   Depending where you worship, a large majority of your congregation probably is doing more than just attending and listening.   IM trains and coaches members for ministry.   Opportunities to serve the church and community become more numerous when IM is done well.  We can actually do more because more are serving and using their gifts.  New ministries can emerge.

Most congregations have maintenance ministries that are church centered. With IM, the local church starts ministry that is evangelistic in nature and externally focused.

It gives glory to the Lord who gifted us.   ‘Nuf said.

It can show a congregation direction.   Many of our congregations have no future plans for numerical or spiritual growth.   IM motivates the local church to plan and work with its future in mind; it sets goals.

It restores, promotes and perpetuates congregational excitement. There is seldom a dull moment in churches that have a spirit of expectation. These are churches that have weekly if not also daily baptisms and new members coming in all the time.  Members are stimulated unto love and good works. IM promotes and perpetuates excitement in the local church.   Trav

Some Possible Ministries for Your Church

Shine3Some Ministries at Athens Church of Christ

When I first came to Athens in October of 2008, the church here had 43 ministries.   Today, we have 38.   Some ministries were no longer viable and some new ministries were started.   Below are some of our ministries.   Most of these are traditional and some are not.   I will also list their mission or purpose.

Financial Peace University

We are blessed to have a young man who is a CPA and he leads this 9 week class. This is a much needed class for church members and folks in the community, and it is well attended.   Many folks are in financial crisis.   However, taking this class pays for itself (more than you’d pay) and it prevents financial disaster while preventing marital issues related to money and it helps folks plan for retirement. Members and non-members attend and this class can be a vehicle in getting non-members to start attending your church services.   Go to www.daveramsey.com for more information.

Mission statement:   to assist families and individuals in becoming better stewards of God’s blessings.   FPU provides the needed curriculum materials, the group dynamic and the learning atmosphere to assist in this process.

You may have to charge full price for the materials or the church may have to pay part of the price and/or provide scholarships to the class.   It is well worth any expenses.

Grief Share

A large number of your church members and people in your community will be touched by loss issues this year.    This ministry is designed for these folks.

Mission statement:   to provide a grief recovery support group where you can find help and healing for the hurt of losing a loved one.

We are blessed to have a mature Christian woman who has lost loved ones and has been instrumental in helping dozens of folks who have experienced loss.   The church provides the videos and materials for the class.   For more information about Grief Share, you can go to www.griefshare.org

Hearing Impaired Ministry (Deaf Ministry)

The volunteers in this ministry ‘sign’ for those who are hearing impaired in our worship services and some even teach American Sign Language (ASL) to others so they can communicate with those in and out of worship services who are hearing impaired.

Mission statement:   to extend the borders of God’s kingdom to include deaf people in Athens and surrounding cities, towns and communities.

We are blessed to have two members who are deaf; one of them is a lady who helps those of us who are ‘hearing’ (who are able to hear) to understand her culture and she also helps teach ASL.

Email Ministry

Most of our families are on a group email list and we send them emails about sicknesses, surgeries, hospitalizations, deaths, bad weather, church events, cancellation of church services, special prayer requests,  and other church-related matters.   This is the mission of this ministry.   Many of our ministries use this group email to inform members of their events and to seek volunteers.

Time Travelers (formerly Senior Saints)

The mission or purpose of this ministry is to provide retirees with social activities, service projects and soul-winning opportunities.   Our retirees are very active and they really enjoy being together.  They ‘are’ the Bear Ministry (which provides small cloth bears for children for the local ER, children’s doctors and EMS).   Many of our retired ladies are heavily involved in ladies’ ministries and in providing and serving food.

Our Congregational Mission Statement

Our congregational mission statement is taken from Matthew 22:37-40: “Love God & Love Man.”   Our ministries exist to fulfill both loving God and loving man.   For a full list of our ministries, please go the church website at www.athenschurchofchrist.org

Please write me and let me know about some of your ministries and what you would like to accomplish through them.   Trav     travisirwin@att.net

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