- Channel topics
- Finding faithHow people become Christians
- Effective communicationApproaches for biblical communication
- Bridge the gapMeeting people on the common ground of their interests & needs
- Bridging opportunitiesExamples and opportunities for using the Bridge Strategy
- Using cultureTypes of culture; understanding & using culture in evangelism
- Websites that workIssues for site planning, usability and promotion
- Problems in evangelismThings that stop us being effective
- Mission opportunitiesDigital evangelism & cross-cultural mission, mission & literature resources
- Writing wellHow to write effectively for the web or print media
A Communication Channel page
... our resource covering a wide range of evangelism issues
View entire listing here or use left-hand subject menu.
Free: articles are freely available to republish or adapt for print media, and can be syndicated into websites using a simple insert code.
Creating a sense of community around a website
A community is a group of like-minded people. You are probably part of several different communities – the town/village where you live, the place where you work or study, a group of friends with whom you play sport or other hobby activity, and your church fellowship.
A community of people usually has most of these characteristics:
- shared interests
- shared values
- shared problems/enemies
- mutually supportive
- physical face-to-face interaction at specific times
The Web’s unique properties – a pull medium with interactive two-way capability – gives the opportunity for this sense of belonging and relationship which is a deep human need. Two-way relationship is increasingly a key part of the so-called Web 2.0 – the mature web.
Community online within evangelismSome evangelistic websites lend themselves to creating this sense of community. The Gospel most easily flows when there are shared interests and relationships. A single 'cut and run' exposure to the Gospel is not usually effective. To echo one large church’ ethos, an evangelistic website should be ‘la safe place for a dangerous message’, and should ‘create space for non-believers to come and investigate the radical claims of Christ at their own pace.’
To have a sense of community, a website needs to be welcoming and non-condemning. It must meet people where they are, and demonstrate an understanding of their feelings and problems. They must feel that they somehow ‘belong’ to the site, and can also offer their own feedback and opinions as well as receive advice. In other words, the website must also be sticky and encourage return visits.
BelongingOptions which help visitors to feel that they belong:
- The site must not be anonymous, but demonstrate that it is produced by a real person(s), with picture and personal story online. Then visitors feel that they know and can identify with him or her.
- A regular newsletter can keep people in touch – Women Today Magazine produce one specifically for non-Christians.
- Blogs or forums make it easy for people share their own comments and thoughts.
- An overall sense of welcome, informality and un-preachiness.
related pages within the Websites that work menu links
recommended books on web design, including free downloads
valuable online videos about web ministry