Looking Forward: Church Planting and Technology
For a while now we have been brainstorming on how we can be more effective in both our church planting strategy and communicating prayer requests and God stories to supporters, churches and those who have had a part in sending missionaries to the field. After doing some research on different applications that would enable us to centralize our contact information we have determined that iPhones will enable our teams to be more effective in their ministry. Brian Tibbs shares this example of how smartphones will facilitate church planting in an urban context:
A pair of 40/40 church planters, Mike & Heyner, are holding a cell group meeting in Patty's house. A new girl, Alexandra, comes to the cell group. She is deeply moved by the lesson and accepts Christ. To mark the occasion, Heyner takes a picture on his iPhone of her and Patty with big smiles. He immediately emails Alexandra and Patty a copy of the photo with a date stamp to always remind her of the date of her spiritual rebirth! He includes in the email information about how the church is here to serve her. Heyner blind-copies this emailed photo to his prayer partner and main donor in north Peru so they can celebrate the victory together. In the taxi returning home after the cell group meeting, Heyner stores that photo and Alexandra's personal info in the centralized Extreme church plant database. He then uploads the photo and an inspiring note and request for prayer to Facebook. A calendar invite is sent to one of the women on his team to visit Alexandra in her home the following week and sets himself a reminder to call her and invite her to next Sunday's service as well. Once in the database, she is included on the email and phone call chain. The benefit for Mike and Heyner is that, the fruit of their labor is recorded, future tasks are set and leadership is informed before they get home for the night.
We are excited about the possibilities this will open up for ministry. Want to help make this happen? To donate new or gently used phone, (iPhone 3 or newer) mail your iPhone (well packaged to protect against water and handling damage) and WITHOUT your SIM card to:
Extreme Nazarene Ministries
410 S. Orchard St. Ste #128
Boise, Idaho 83705
Please include your name and mailing address so we can send your tax-deductible donation receipt.
If you don't own an iPhone (you're an Android user or still send messages through smoke signals and carrier pigeons), you can make a cash donation with which we will purchase an iPhone. Click iPhones for Church Planting to donate online. Gently used or new iPhones will cost $200 to $400. You may also donate other phone models, which we will sell and use the proceeds to purchase iPhones. Ship the device (without SIM cards) to the address above.