This year Olive Tree Media partnered with McCrindle Research to publish their research on ‘Faith and Belief” in Australia. This research presents us with an opportunity to take stock of the current temperature of the religious beliefs of our community, free from the emotive narrative being driven by parts of the media. What does the data tell us and how can we respond to the opportunities and challenges that we are presented with?
Many churches have become internet savvy and rightly invested time and money into having social media and websites that connect with their communities. These virtual doors into the church are becoming the first place people open, and it is important we continue to lay out the welcome mat in the virtual world. However, we must not fall into the trap of thinking all of our community connections will come via a screen. The latest data shows that local churches are becoming less connected to their neighbours. The Faith and Belief research shows that 56% of people are unaware of the local church – this is a big challenge to our mission to share the good news of Jesus with our neighbours.
You might be surprised to know that 52% of Australians are open to changing their views on religion given the right circumstances and evidence. Further, 55% of Australians say they talk about religion or spirituality with their friends at least occasionally. Jesus is still held in high regard – one in two Australians (53%) consider Jesus’ life to have had a significant impact on the culture and history of the world. Despite what some might say, Australians haven’t shut their minds or mouths to evidence or questions of spirituality and people are aware that the teachings of Jesus have made a difference to the way we live.
These findings present us with a wonderful opportunity to engage with our friends and local communities and present them with evidence that Jesus Christ really is the “Game Changer”.
Jesus the Game Changer 2018 National Campaign
Baptist Churches across Australia are working together in 2018 to make the most of the opportunity to reach our local community and present the life-changing and life-saving person of Jesus by running the “Jesus the Game Changer” course. The course will start on the 25th February and will run over the six weeks before Easter, with the final week focusing on the theme of forgiveness to tie in with your Easter Sunday messages.
This award-winning series looks at how the life and teaching of Jesus changed the world 2000 years ago and why it still matters to us today. Christians will be inspired by the example of others and non-Christians will hear of their need to trust in Christ and follow his example. Professionally presented topics from the series include the equality of all people, women and children, leadership, education and health, democracy, forgiveness and more.
3.8 million people will hear about the campaign through a partnership between Olive Tree Media and Christian Radio across the country. Participating churches will be able to hang “Jesus the Game Changer” Banners in prominent places, and your church will be given social media graphics. But most importantly, your congregation will be able to invite their friends to join with them to hear about the difference Jesus has made to the world we live in.
The course can be run in a home, church or local hub and Olive Tree Media have training videos, extended interviews, discussion guides and everything else you will need to run the course. We are asking that you will discuss this with your leadership team and sign up at JesustheGameChanger.com by December to be involved in influencing your community with the message of Jesus.