Evangelism and Communications Committee update
Bishop Suffragan Paul Lambert, Evangelist Carrie Headington and Deputy Bill Murchison, member of Incarnation in Dallas, have been working on several resolutions to advance evangelism in the Church.
As part of the Evangelism and Communications Committee the group has been working on three major resolutions including B009 will cost $3 million for the implementation of improving the search engine optimization for the Episcopal Church when people use Google to ask questions about Jesus.
The resolution enjoyed a lot of support on social media during the convention particularly on Twitter at #gc78. When passed, Headington said she was elated that the resolution was approved.
"The Internet is where people go first to ask spiritual questions. We are meeting seekers where they are. We are taking good news to people who might not ever initially darken the door of church," Headington said. "In order to reach the unreached we need to engage people via social media. B009 will provide tools for all of the Episcopal Church to use. We have good news to share with a hurting world. Let's do it."
Lambert proposed A172 Leveraging Social Media for Jesus, which will create the development of curricula for clergy, lay and all parishes on how to best leverage social media for spreading the Gospel, including funding for seminary education on the use of media.
Headington proposed A173 Energizing the Church: Gathering and Sharing Evangelism Resources which includes holding an Evangelism Summit of key practitioners from throughout the Episcopal Church in the area of evangelism and to develop resources. The most recent version of the resolution is below:
ENERGIZING THE CHURCH: Gathering and Sharing Evangelism Resources
Resolved, The House of ___________ concurring, that the 78th General Convention shall promote the gathering and sharing of evangelism resources for the purpose of energizing the church to boldly and fearlessly share the Good News of the Risen Lord Jesus Christ; and be it further
Resolved, That Forward Movement, in collaboration with the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society, shall convene an Evangelism Summit, by December 31, 2016 a gathering of leaders from across The Episcopal Church who are engaged in the work of evangelism, in both training and equipping and be it further
Resolved, The Evangelism Summit shall identify existing evangelism resources, gaps and challenges. The purpose is to develop an evangelism road map: to propel the church beyond its walls to spread the Gospel, proclaim the Kingdom, and to share the love of God in the world; and be it further
Resolved, That these evangelism resources, including a plan of action be shared no more than sixth months following the conclusion of the Summit, with the wider Episcopal Church by the attendees of the Summit within their networks, such as the Episcopal Asset Map (www.episcopalassetmap.org), and in other ways; and be it further
Resolved, That Forward Movement collaborate with the Development Office of the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society to fund this work through grants and contributions for the implementation of this resolution, especially to ensure the widest representation of all God’s People.
PROPOSER: GC78 Committee on Evangelism and Communication
The mission of the Church is to restore all people to unity with God and each other in Christ. (BCP, p. 855) The Church holds the Good News of the risen Lord Jesus and all members of His body are called to share this Gospel message in word and deed. (BCP, p. 305) The church needs evangelism resources to live out the Great Commission, to “proclaim the gospel in varied and ever changing neighborhoods.” (Memorial to the Church, Task Force for Reimagining the Church). This resolution is dedicated to equip all Episcopalians to be “ambassadors for Christ.” (2 Corinthians 5:20)