For Christmas this year, our one-year-old son received a fisher price basketball hoop. It has been played with for about 40 hours since he got it. His time with the toy amounts to less than an hour. Dad loves it, sisters love it. We recently had some friends over and their son had just seen ‘Dude Perfect’ on YouTube. It is a group of Christian guys who perform various trick shot videos. The kids spent the next few hours creating and attempting their own ‘Kid Perfect’ shots. It was amazing, entertaining and, come to find out, a great way to evangelize.
God is working in some very powerful ways, especially in the medium of technology and media. Here are 4 amazing means of Evangelization that you should know about.
RENEWAL IN MOTION.
The Franciscan Friars of the Renewal, once famous for the rapping friar, Fr. Stan Fortuna, were inspired in similar ways as my children, to do a trick-shot style video. The series combines the best of creativity and charity. Check them out.
Why I love this: This form of Evangelization brings friars into the faces of many. Not every Christian has the opportunity to get to know people dedicated to following Christ like a friar or a missionary. This movement brings showcases holy people in a personal way. It also showcases the reality that following the adventure of God’s Will is an exciting endeavor.
Challenge: How can you present the faith in a more dynamic way? How can you craft an experience where people can encounter Christ and simply have fun?
REDEEMED ONLINE #ShareJesus.
Redeemed Online, headed by Andy Lesnefsky, has fiercely embraced social media as a necessary tool for furthering the Gospel. Their goal is not just to produce great content, but to produce great content that is shareable. Everything about the #ShareJesus campaign asks the viewer, the Christian, you to utilize your social networks to further the gospel utilizing the daily videos. It is the largest social media project the Catholic Church has seen.
Why I love this: It depends on the viewer to be the agent of evangelization. Everything about this campaign requires buy-in and action from the body of believers in order to be successful. This is true all the way down to crowd funding through a Kickstarter campaign. Each message sent has the message showcased in a variety of formats so you can share it with whatever social media platform you utilize. Just sign up, view and share. Simple emails with links, see below.
Challenge: How can you better utalize and integrate the Gospel into the social media you and your ministry team use?
Tiny Saints are adorable charms made to represent saints. Joe Klinker founded Tiny Saints because he loves Jesus and loves his children. A quarter of a million Tiny Saints later, he is finding out that everybody loves these things. They can fit on your bag or keychain and are certain to be a conversation start that has the phrase ‘aww, they’re so cute’.
Why I love this: I love collectibles. I love that these are made specifically to reach the youth. These little holy rollers are a great answer to the Shopkins craze taking over elementary schools these days. Tiny Saints remind us that the task of Evangelization is for all the baptized, not just those who are adults. They are also a non-threatening way to share the Gospel by simply having a cute little saint to help get the conversation started.
Return is a program that seeks to empower parents to draw their children back into the church. This is aimed at adult children and empowers the parents to understand the vast reasons why people leave the church and then equips them with the tools needed to invite them back in. Brandon Vogt works for Bishop Robert Barron’s Word On Fire movement and has been dynamically invested in reaching out to non-believers and atheists. While this is a product, he will give you a free copy of his book here.
Why I love this: The evangelization taking place here is extremely specific, parents who have adult children who have left the faith. Starting with this vision Brandon has been able to create content that is targeted and tailored.
Challenge: How can you better understand the demographic God is calling you to evangelize? What can you do to shape your message to custom fit their unique needs and challenges?
Be inspired by what others are doing and inspire others with what you are doing. God is working in powerful ways. Experimenting with new ways to showcase God’s love gives Him another platform to share that love. Be bold, be creative, and have some fun. God can use a trick-shot to #ShareJesus.