October 23, 2019

Five Resources for Community Outreach

This month we offer five resources on community outreach. Please share this digest with new members of your vestry and extend an invitation to subscribe to ECF Vital Practices to receive Vestry Papers and the monthly digest.

1. What does a New Orleans magician have in common with the early church? In Street Performers, Strangers, and Community, Alan Bentrup makes the connection that the early church drew people to it by virtue of what that smaller community was doing for the larger community – caring for the poor, feeding the hungry, etc. What could our modern church learn from that experience?

2. Do you know your neighbors? When Bishop David Rice joined the Diocese of San Joaquin in 2014, he asked “who are our neighbors?” As he and Canon Carmichael share in Taking Church Out into the Community, he challenged the clergy and laity to go out into the community and meet their neighbors.

3. Are you looking to expand your church’s community engagement? In Community Engagement: A Little Church that Could, Erin Weber-Johnson shares the example of Good Shepherd Episcopal Church in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, a small church that actively partners with their community.

4. Did your church have an outreach program that fell by the wayside? In Outreach: Getting Started #101, Bob Runkle shares some ideas on how to start up an outreach program.

5. Wondering how to include your community more intentionally? Bob Leopold, of Southside Abbey in Chattanooga, writes about how they brought in the surrounding community from the first day they opened the doors of their new parish in Jesus Was Right There, in the Bounce House.