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Make Communications a Major Draw on Your Time

You should be spending as much as 50% of your time on communications, I told a group of clergy at the Kenyon Institute’s “Beyond Walls” writing seminar for religious professionals.

That means time spent blogging to the vast world outside your walls, engaging with prospects, and communicating with your flocks. It means email campaigns, as well as ad hoc emailing. It means creative use of social media, especially Facebook. It means messaging. But always, three audiences, and distinct messages tailored to the questions, hungers, issues, yearnings that actually occupy each audience.

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SPECIAL REPORT: Usable Technology

A reader asked for tech guidance.

“I know you make tech choices thoughtfully and from experience,” he said. “So, I’m always happy when you share your knowledge of particular software/apps, including the pros and cons of each.”

I am happy to oblige, for technology is a critical tool in our respective work. For me, the key is usability.

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Let’s Talk About Scheduling

Let’s talk about scheduling. It’s the bane of any complex organization, and yet handling schedules poorly is guaranteed to hurt and offend constituents.

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Wellness Gift Giving Guide – Natural + Organic Gifts

By Katie at Wellness Mama

What is on your Christmas list this year? What are you getting for friends and family? Check out this great resource compiled by Katie at Wellness Mama of natural and organic gifts!

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Man vs Earth

by Prince Ea

Are these the final seconds of mankind?

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The View from Job’s Dung-heap: Peering Beyond the Heavens Toward a Theory of Everything?

Ruminating over this Sunday’s prescribed reading from Job 38, my mind harkens back to 2012, when I had the privilege of attending a series of lectures given by the great Phyllis Tickle who described the current reformation that the church is experiencing as part of a cultural phenomenon that happens about every 500 years, which she calls “The Great Emergence”. When asked what skills religious leaders will need to navigate the information age, Tickle insisted that the best advice we could give to anyone considering a religious vocation was that they should study physics.

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 The Paris Climate Conference: Last Chance for Planet Earth?

 By Mark Hertsgaard

Everything is coming together as everything is coming apart.” So said Jamie Henn, strategy and communications director at 350.org, after he and the other organizers of the People’s Climate March put hundreds of thousands of people on the streets of New York City in September 2014 for the largest climate demonstration in history. Henn’s observation has grown even more apt over the last 14 months, especially the “coming together” part. Interviewed in Germany during the final negotiating session before the Paris climate summit in December, Henn predicted that “Paris won’t deliver everything we need, but the dominoes that will take out the fossil-fuel industry have already started to fall.

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Lifeline for the End Times: Creating a New Humanity During the Apocalypse and Beyond

Part One of Lifeline for the End Times shows how the fundamental problem underlying the destruction of the earth is civilization and its inherent domination system based on violence. It begins by discussing the origin of the malignant fatal disease of our civilization; the domination/violence system. It looks at the foundation of civilization and how changing technologies have brought us to the end time. Today it is not a violent king who rules, but an oligarchy of predatory-capitalists. Part Two proposes a new humanity that is neither hierarchical nor violent and can be built on new memes of love and trust as the foundations of a new social structure.

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Adam Smith’s “Hidden Hand” Veneration of Another False God ?

In Pope Francis’ recent environmental encyclical and in his many pronouncements since them, most notably his address to the US Congress and at the United Nations, he was in effect telling the world that the time has come for all of us to take a long hard look at a false god that has, since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution been and continues to be venerated by so many.
 

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Communication, Communication

Want some advice on how to grow your church? Hire a communications director. Yes, you heard that right. A communications director. Not an additional pastor, not an education director or another musician. But a professional communicator to …

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Curriculum Sale! 25% off “A Joyful Path” Full Year Versions

This behavior-over-belief curriculum connects children with their own inner wisdom.  It teaches interdependence, self awareness, respect for nature, stillness, forgiveness, prayer, meditation, and integrity.  Using the Bible and other wisdom stories, A Joyful Path helps children learn how to follow the path of Jesus, other teachers, and real life heroes in today’s world.

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Make Time for Marketing

If church leaders want people to “buy” their “goods and services’ — come to worship, take a class, engage with the community, grow in faith, serve God — they can’t just open the door on Sunday or send out a weekly newsletter stuffed with announcements. They need to do solid marketing. They need to do the basics as outlined above: catch people’s attention, explain offerings, present opportunities to engage, lead people to various forms of participation, form relationships, provide customer service.

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Remember the S Curve

The S curve — shows what happens as a new idea takes hold, or a compelling vision, or fresh leadership, or a new mission thrust. If the idea or vision has legs, it will start slowly, then gather momentum as people buy into it and become excited by it. This new vision captures many imaginations. It puts into action the deepest values of the organization — in this case, a congregation.

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Setting Up A Membership Tracking System

People connect with you on a spectrum, ranging from minimal awareness to deep engagement. Connecting with a church is a complicated process that requires multiple pathways, rather than a simple but misleading distinction between member and non-member (or “unchurched”).

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SALT Project

The SALT Project is a not-for-profit project committed to creating beautiful and theologically interesting church media!

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A Letter from Pope Francis on Climate and Environment: Why a Papal Encyclical May Matter

Pope Francis and the Environment: Yale Examines Historic Climate Encyclical. What follows are the transcripts from the Panel on the Papal Encyclical held at Yale University on April 8, 2015.

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We are the Gods Now – Jason Silva at Sydney Opera House

Keynote speech by Jason Silva at the Festival of Dangerous Ideas – which took place at the concert hall of the Sydney Opera House.

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Using social media to grow your church

Any enterprise needs fresh people. Without 20% new members every year, a church won’t keep up with attrition. Ideas will go stale. Even regulars will lose interest. Your goal is to draw people into the space where you can “touch” them, that is, get their email address and start sending them pertinent emails. Your blogpost, therefore, should have a “call to action” link that invites them to read more, download a paper on this topic, subscribe to your blog – not attend your church, for that is way premature.

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