Summer is here, and I hope you’re doing well! If you’ve got time between camp, VBS programs, and all your summer programs to think about evangelism and outreach, I hope this is helpful for you.
Information worth checking out: Design thinking
Design thinking is a process of planning with a team that that is people-centered, not problem centered. If you’ve heard people from the tech industry talking about failing forward or fast, this is where it comes from. As we are trying to reach a group of people and invite them to participate in our communities of faith, this may be a way of thinking or talking that pushes your evangelism or outreach teams out of preestablished patterns and bring life to new conversations and approaches. In brief, the five components are (a) empathize, (b) define, (c) ideate, (d) prototype, and (e) test, done non-linearly with the idea that you learn and adjust as you go. If you’re working with a team to discuss your congregation’s outreach strategies, this is an approach worth looking into that can lead to new discussion.
You can read up more on this on the ELCA’s Innovation Lab blog here. Or, if you’re looking for a deeper look of how it can contribute to a congregation’s faith life, check out chapter 5 of Deep Roots, Wild Branches by Michael Adam Beck or click the links at the bottom of the ELCA Innovation Lab’s blog.
Resource worth looking into: Faith in Action grants
It’s that time of year when you may be thinking about what you’re going to be doing as the school year starts back up or what fall plans are looking like in the congregation. The South Carolina Synod’s Faith in Action grants are available for congregations to help you faithfully reach out in ministry among your wider community and make God’s love known. LuMin at Carolina has already put this to good use in the spring with an outreach project to great success. If there’s a creative new idea that needs a boost of resources to get it going, take the time and fill out the application. There are no deadlines, and our goal is to respond as quickly as possible. If this is something that can be helpful to your ministry, please consider applying for the grant or talking with your congregation about how you might use one in the future.
Thanks for reading!
If you’ve got an idea for a Faith in Action, or if you want to talk more about design thinking, be in touch! I’m always happy to have conversation and work with you as your DEM in whatever way I can be of value in your context.
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