The Evangelism Committee met on August 15, 2013. Present were: Fr. John Kline, Fr. Garrin Dickinson, Ghahre Pascal. Kay Wynn, Malcolm Catter, Adrienne Leonard, and Jon Browne.
Malcolm read Psalm 139. Then Fr. Kline then gave the opening prayer.
Ghahre share thoughts from his reading of note from Rebecca Pippens, “Out of the Salt Shaker.” He believes that rather than “compartmentalizing” our Christian life, we should be ourselves in Jesus, thereby evangelism by letting our faith shine through us.
Father Garrin observed that he endorses being ourselves and radiating Jesus. Formal Evangelism programs can be “extreme.” He would prefer something less formal.
Ghahre mentioned that there are probably a few members of our Parish who are natural evangelizers. This led to a discussion of spiritual gifts. Perhaps through a program to discern spiritual gifts, those gifted with a talent for evangelizing could be identified (or identify themselves.). Jon said that a “critical mass” of such people might positively influence some others. Fr. Garrin then speculated about having an “Evangelism Guild,” a thought which was generally well received.
Jon said the Stephen Ministry has a six week program on its website for discerning spiritual gifts, He will send the website URL to the committee.
So, no conclusions were reached, but there is some more thinking required.
Next meeting will be September 19.
21.06.2013Blog, Evangelism, VBSComments Off on Evangelism Committee Meeting – 06/20/13
Present were: Fr. John Kline, Fr. Garrin Dickinson, Jenny Dickinson. Kay Wynn, Malcolm Catter, Adrienne Leonard, Phil Masquelette and Jon Browne.
Malcolm read Colossians 1: 15-23 regarding the supremacy of Christ. Fr. Kline then gave the opening prayer.
Jenny Dickinson described the plans for the closing evening of VBS on Friday, July 26. This presentation was both to inform and to elicit help/suggestions from the committee members. It was well received, The Friday night dinner will be held in the Parish Hall for VBS children and families. As yet, no one has volunteered to be in charge of the dinner. On July 14, invitations will be distributed to the community to come to a Renaissance style fair to be held in the courtyard following the families only dinner. Desert will be served at the fair. The fair will be a more intentional evangelism and outreach effort than in past years. Individual copies of the New Testament will be available, as well as a Holy Nativity brochure. Members of the committee and of the Parish will be encourage to attend the fair and to talk with the invitees.
We then discussed how we should keep track of and contact members who are absent from church for some weeks. Whereas we want those missing to know they are cared about, we don’t want to so systemize the follow-up that it appears intrusive. An informal approach may be best. Jon suggested that a few members of the committee meet periodically to note those who have been repeatedly absent, then consider how and who to best contact them. Fr, Kline will discuss this Malcolm and Kay.
Fr. Kline has looked at the Parish website and believes there is both missing and out of date material on it. This is another problem aggravated by our lack of staff. Our web master needs help here. Kay will meet with him to provide some help.
Fr. Kline ten shared passages from Becky Pippert’s Sharing our Faith Today, three God-given ways to do evangelism. The three primary ways are:
1. We need to proclaim the Gospel/tell His story and our story in hope that it may become “their story.”
2. We can demonstrate Christ’s love by caring and giving of ourselves.
3. We need the power of the Spirit to give our words meaning and effectiveness.
Discussion followed the importance of reliance on the Spirit (point three) was stressed.
Next meeting is tentatively scheduled for Thursday, July 18.
26.03.2013Blog, EvangelismComments Off on Evangelism Committee Meeting – 03/21/13
Present were: Fr. John Kline, Fr. Garrin Dickinson, Kay Wynn, Malcolm Catter, Adrienne Leonard, and Jon Browne.
Fr. Kline began the meeting by reading Collects 81,11, and 8 from the BCP. He then prayed for wisdom and guidance..
Fr. Kline then asked us to comment from the perspective of evangelism on five “I am” statements from the Gospel of John. These are:
“I am the light of the world.” –John 8:12
“I am the good shepherd.”—John 10:11
“I am the resurrection and the life.”—John 11:25
“I am the way, the truth and the life.”—John 14:6
“I am the vine, you are the branches.”—John 15:1
A good discussion followed. Fr. Garrin commented that Colossians 1:15-20 is a fine summary of the Gospel.
Kay and Malcolm have finished a seating chart showing where members sit most often at both services. The purpose of this is provide a loose system for identifying those who are absent for, say, three weeks. Hopefully, someone who knows and, perhaps sits by the missing member(s) could contact them to tell them they are missed and ask if there as anything wrong. This program is merely “Christian caring.”
Jon updated the committee on Small Group. A new couple has been added and we hope to add more.
The subject of improving the Trumpet and Website information was discussed. We really need a communications leader or team. Some of those in charge of various ministries or functions are not faithful in providing updates. Adrienne volunteered to identify the various ministries/functions and to encourage updates.
We re-visited the question of having a coffee hour. Fr. Kline will to speak with several parishioners who have previously been involved to get their thoughts. We recognize the lack of a suitable location and the conflict with adult Sunday school.
The following move – “180” – is part of the outreach from Ray Comfort of HeartChanger.com. This video has been part of the outreach against Abortions and is very dramatic in results. While over 30 minutes in length, be sure to watch the entire video.
18.01.2013Blog, EvangelismComments Off on Evangelism Committee Meeting – 01/17/13
Present were: Fr. Garrin Dickinson, Fr. John Kline, Malcolm Catter, Phil Masquelete, and Jon Browne.
Fr. Kline began with prayer, asking God to give us insight , There was a period of silence for us to listen. Then Fr. Kline ended with thanks.
Fr. Kline then raised the subject of parishioners who have been absent from services for some weeks. In many cases, if they are not called, they will not return. Their absence may be due to any one of a number of factors such as illness, spiritual or personal issues and other. We discussed how to identify the “missing,” Many parishioners sit in the same seats each service. Their absence creates gaps, visible to those who have sat near them. A seating chart will be created by Malcolm and Kay for our next meeting. We hope to recruit faithful parishioners in each quadrant of the Nave to assist with identification and contact of the “missing.”
We then turned to the subject of Small Group. Fr. Kline noted that he understands that those in a small group may not wish to break off to form a new one. Jon Browne said that our current small group has two issues: 1.) the need to grow , and 2.) the need to split so that more small groups may be formed. Fr. Kline has several couples in mind who will be contacted.
Fr. Kline has compiled a list of visitors who have not returned, at least not regularly. He will contact those on the list to learn their status.
A faith sharing conference was recently held at Incarnation. Fr. Kline believes that faith sharing at Holy Nativity would be re-invigorating. He and Fr. Garrin will discuss further steps.
Better communication through our web site was then discussed. Our web site concept has been that those in charge of the various ministries and programs would regularly update their activities to John Phipps, our web master. Updates have been “hit or miss.” Ideally we could appoint a communications director who would recruit helpers. These would write-up news items pertaining to ministries and programs to be included on the web site. Unfortunately, no conclusion was reached.
Finally, we discussed the need to encourage members of the Parish to attend the several renewal programs offered in the Diocese. These are:
Cursillo: Feb. 14-17,Camp Crucis; April 18-21, Star Brand Ranch; July 25-28, Camp All Saints; September 12-15, Camp All Saints; November 7-10, Camp Crucis
Cursillo: English/Spanish; September 29 with witness talk by Bishop Stanton at St. Mathews Cathedral
Present were: Fr. Garrin Dickinson, Fr. John Kline, Malcolm Catter, Phil Masquelete, Adrienne Leonard and Jon Browne.
Fr. Kline began by reading from the 12th chapter of Romans, then led us in prayer
Jon Browne then reported on the status of the Pilot Small Group. This group was intended as a first step towards forming additional small groups in the Parish. Members of the Pilot Group would, at the proper time, split-off to form and lead additional groups. The eight members have been meeting faithfully twice a month for about nine months and have been discussing when and how to split-off. One option is to invite interested parishioners to a “formation” meeting in which attendees could divide up into one or more new small groups. Another option is for the Pilot Group members to form new small groups through personal recruiting. Obviously, these two options could be combined in various ways. Jon and Marilyn will hold further discussions within the Pilot Group and report back to the Evangelism Committee next month.
Fr. Kline passed out a compilation of questions asked during interviews with those who have either recently joined Holy Nativity, or have visited on a more or less regular basis. Canvassers recorded answers from 16 adults representing 11 family groups. This is about 50% of those whom we wish to interview. Efforts will continue to interview those remaining, Purpose of the survey is to ascertain what attracts them to Holy Nativity and the life of the Parish.
Adrienne commented on problems with emails to parishioners. Evidentially, some members are no longer receiving them, Fr. Garrin is aware of the problem and will work on it.
Next meeting will be October 18.
02.08.2012Blog, EvangelismComments Off on Evangelism Committee Meeting – 07/19/12
Present were: Fr. John Kline, Fr. Garrin Dickinson, Kay Wynn, Malcolm Catter, Phil Masquelette and Jon Browne.
Fr. Kline began the meeting by reading the words to Hymn 501. Then Malcolm read Peter 2: 4-5, 9. This was followed by opening prayer.
We reviewed the minutes from the last meeting. Game nights are now happening. Deacon West is hoping to get the young adults in the parish together and has scheduled a planning meeting with those interested.
Fr. Kline asked Jon about the possibility of having Dr. John Tolson address a large portion of the Parish, perhaps this fall. Jon replied that he didn’t believe that possible given the difficulty of assuring sufficient attendance. Discussion followed. Malcolm suggested starting smaller, with perhaps four dinner speakers a year, focused on one or more themes. Fr. Kline mentioned the theme of “formation,” by which he meant: “Now that we are Christians, what do we do next?” Fr. Garrin agreed to have one such dinner before Advent. Details are to be worked out.
Fr. Garrin observed that the Evangelism Committee should “morph” from a focus on brainstorming to a focus on follow-up. The problem here is getting one or more members to “take charge” of a task.
Jon asked for a sense of how widely read the Trumpet and Parish website are. This question arose from a discussion of the efficacy of Parish communication. We should encourage parishioners to keep current. In this regard, Fr. Garrin should catch up with posting his sermons. Deacon West has put helpful worship notes in the Pew Bulletin. Fr. Kline noted that we need someone to take charge of Parish communications, not the printing, but pulling material together.
We then discussed discovering what has brought in our newcomers who have been with us some months. The thought is to ask questions such as : “What brought you here/” and “ What keeps you here?” Fr. Kline has a list of 26 names. We agreed that committee members will interview these individuals starting this fall. Assignments will be discussed next meeting. Kay Wynn distributed a draft of questions we could use. Fr. Garrin is especially interested in what attracts these newcomers. He knows what we are doing wrong. What are we doing right?
Fr. Garrin then discussed the fall program he has planned. There will be a Game Night the last Friday of every month from ~7:00 to 9.00 PM. He described this as a Parish “Hang Out” time. The Friday night after Labor Bay, the movie “Courageous” will be screened. Other viewing opportunities will be made available. This will be followed by an eight week discussion program during Sunday Adult Sunday School. Workbooks drawn from the movie will be available.
There will be no August meeting. Next meeting will be September 29.
24.05.2012EvangelismComments Off on Evangelism Committee Meeting – 05/24/12
Present were: Fr. John Kline, Kay Wynn, Adrienne Leonard, Marnie Tao, Phil Masquelette and Jon Browne.
Fr. Kline began the meeting by reading excerpts from both the Introduction and Final Chapter of Out of the Salt Shaker by Rebecca Manley Pippert. This excellent book on Evangelism was reported on at the February meeting. Key points noted are:
We should focus on the person of Christ, who and what he is.
There is a crisis in our modern culture. We should give seekers a sense that they belong, that we care about them as persons.
Marnie reported on a conference she attended where Liz Babbs, a British evangelist spoke. Topic was Into God’s Presence. One thought presented was that in speaking to others about Christ, we should have in mind something God has done for us lately that we can relate. Carrie Boren wants to use Liz Babbs as a presenter within this Diocese.
We then reviewed the minutes of the April meeting at which the list of ideas from past meetings had been “boiled down” to eight. Discussion followed, adding the following:
Some churches have a “Sunday Night Live,” featuring entertainment with a Christian twist, or, perhaps game night. Other churches have invited in musicians for free concerts for the community.
Marnie mentioned that Carrie Boren would be happy to do anther Evangelism class. It was then suggested that Carrie do a “kick-off,” presentation to which our whole congregation was invited. This would be followed by periodic (perhaps monthly) roundtable discussions regarding evangelism. Kay noted that evangelism should not be regarded as a program, but, rather, as “who we are.” Involvement of many members is important.
Adrienne said that we need a “chief” who will take charge of one or more of our ideas. She thought that this would be no more than a one year assignment, at which point it would be passed on to another member. Kay noted that nothing will happen unless someone steps up to be in charge.
Fr. Kline closed the meeting by asking us all to pray for guidance in discerning how and where to proceed.
Charly Clark has dropped from the committee due to her work demands. She will remain active in her work with newcomers.
Next meeting is Thursday, June 14. This is one week earlier than usual.
26.04.2012EvangelismComments Off on Evangelism Committee Meeting – 04/19/12
Present: M. Catter, C. Clark, V. LaMaison, A. Leonard, P. Masquelette, K. Wynn, Fr. Garrin and Fr. Kline. Absent: J. Browne, D. Chumley, S. O’Neill and M. Tao.
Scripture: John 20:119-23; 26-31. Sharing. Prayer: Epiphany 2 (BCP p. 163)
Feedback re: “List of Items on Our Plate:”
In general, a study was done regarding making changes and worker productivity. The study of workers revealed that their productivity increased when the lighting was increased or decreased just a little. Among other things, this suggests that, when making changes, perhaps they ought to come in small vs. huge doses, and incrementally vs. abruptly.
We need to seek innovative ways to reach out, not only in the neighborhood, but to the larger community (we are now the only Episcopal Church in Plano).
We recognize that our worship does not appeal broadly to a largely non-liturgical protestant culture. We should make full use of our website to help others discover us, what we stand for and how we worship and serve our Lord Jesus Christ.
Re: Sunday visitors:
If coffee is available in the hall, invite them to partake and meet a few persons upon arrival. Following the Mass, a few members (3-5) might invite a visitor(s) to accompany them to lunch. Then a follow-up visit by two parishioners.
We recognize the need for Christian formation – now that we are “Christians” what does that mean in terms of our faith and spiritual discipline (clergy input). Formation could be dealt with in a class or in a small group (home) setting. It was noted that the youth group has faced some aspects of this.
We recognize that we are unlearned and unskilled regarding sharing our faith with others; but we now have an excellent (Episcopal) resource to teach us how we, as Episcopalians, can learn to share our faith with other people. We need to offer that opportunity in a class setting.
Some parishioners have said that they are hesitant to invite others to worship with us, because they do not fully comprehend what this or that means, or why something is done or happens. That is an important concern and needs to be addressed.
The regular (after Mass) offering of prayer by Stephen Ministers obviously meets a need. Perhaps having two persons available would encourage more members to utilize this ministry. This possibility will be explored.
Next meeting: Thursday, 24 May 2012 (because the 3rd Thursday is Ascension Day)