What would you do if you were not connected? If somehow all of the connections and relationships that shape your life were simply gone? Life for most of us would be very strange and different. Our connections are important to us, and all the more so in the complex world in which we live today. We have more opportunities than ever to be connected. We connect with cell phones, email, text messaging, webpages, radio, television, walkie-talkies and a host of new media devices that are being born at this moment. Yet, connections have always been important for those who would follow Jesus Christ. The foundational teachings of Jesus tell us that our connection with Him and with each other gives our lives meaning and purpose and hope. Those connections stir us to invite others to make the same connection.
The yearning and call to connect that stirs within each follower of Christ is the same yearning that led to the development of Evangelism Connections. Leaders from a variety of denominations with a passion for evangelism on behalf of their churches began to ask:
What would happen if those of us working in the area of evangelism for our denominations would.
- Work together to share ideas and resources
- Combine efforts to teach and train our constituencies
- Create a way of making all of our best resources available to all of our churches and members?
Evangelism Connections was born out of that vision and opportunity to share in this common work. Initially, in cooperation with Net Results, we provided national evangelism workshops in ten cities in 1998, 2000, 2002 and 2003. Now we are pioneering an effort through the Internet, to connect as many persons and congregations as possible with the very best ideas, thoughts, practices and resources that we can offer.
Though we represent different denominations, each with a rich heritage of belief and practice, we are convinced that Christ has called us together to be connected with Him and with each other, and to extend that privilege to all who might respond. We know that we can learn much from each other, and look forward to you learning with us.
Each of our congregations is a learning community. It is our hope that your congregation can be linked through Evangelism Connections, to the learning and experience of many others who are striving to serve Christ faithfully as they share the Gospel in a variety of ways.
We invite you to browse through our web site. We encourage you to read, to think and to pray about how you might better reach those in your communities in the name of Jesus Christ. We want to provide an opportunity for you to learn and to share your learning with others. We pray that God might use this avenue as a means by which we may offer you hospitality, inspiration, teaching, training on the journey of faith. It is our deep desire that you may be equipped and encouraged in your own community's efforts to share the Good News and to make disciples for Jesus Christ.
In addition to the insights that we can offer, we also intend to offer you links to other web sites which share wisdom for this common task of "making disciples". And all this within the context of healthier congregations focused on the mission given to us by our leader, Jesus Christ.
So, come join us now in our efforts to live out what we promised back in 1994 when we wrote Jesus Christ and God's Reign: A Call to Dialogue and Action in Evangelism, adopted unanimously by the National Council of Churches of Christ:
"The world needs a common witness to Christ. Therefore, ecumenism and evangelism must be inseparable. Standing and witnessing together as one evangelizing Church is to trust God to transform in ways not yet known. We acknowledge this future and reaffirm our readiness to respond to God's call to united witness and action." (From a policy statement adopted by the General Board, National Council of Churches in Christ, November 12, 1994. To receive a copy of the full text write: National Council of Churches of Christ, 475 Riverside Dr., New York, NY 10115-0050)
Since our website is meant to be "from the church and for the church," we invite you to send us your best practices, ideas, experiences and resource recommendations. We genuinely want this to be your website, too.
Your partners in evangelism, Evangelism Connections