Christian evangelism and missionary work is most often associated with outreach in impoverished nations around the world – but growing secularism in Europe is forcing some organizations to focus on the continent where much of the church underwent its early development.
The rising trend of secularism has been well documented in recent times – in a 2005 Eurobarometer Poll, 52 percent of European citizens who responded to the survey said they believe in God. In some nations, like Sweden, that number was as low as 23 percent.
As immigrants continue settling in Europe and changing the demographic and social landscape of the continent, however, new evangelism opportunities are unfolding, and some organizations, such as Comboni Missionaries of the Heart of Jesus, an Italian-based group that provides evangelization, education, and advocacy around the world, are looking to develop new strategies to get Europeans believing in God again. The organization was founded in Italy in 1857 by St. Daniel Comboni and is a congregation of priests and lay missionaries of many nationalities. more >>
NASHVILLE – A youth-focused minister of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association is stressing that loving God and students is more important than trying to constantly stay culturally relevant.
Chad Miller, ordained in 2000 as a non-denominational pastor, is currently serving as director of Dare to be a Daniel, a BGEA youth evangelism training project, and as an associate pastor for West Cabarrus Church in Concord, N.C. "Dare to be a Daniel" is attempting to raise a new generation of evangelists.
"You will wear yourself out being culturally relevant as you think you may want to be," Miller told The Christian Post on Saturday at the National Religious Broadcasters convention. "The problem is in trying to communicate with cultural relevance, it's possible to become biblically irrelevant. In our foundation, our beginning, middle and end, our faith was authored and finished by Jesus Christ; the word as flesh." more >>
The North American Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention hopes to found 75 new churches in the city of St. Louis, Mo. – a city that many evangelicals have abandoned.
For every 7,037 people in St. Louis, there is only one Southern Baptist Church, according to the Association of Religion Data Archives. Only 14.8 percent of residents identify themselves as evangelical.
The urbanization of St. Louis and its rising crime issues, as well as a preexisting racial divide made worse with time, have forced many churches to leave the city, Jason Zellmer, pastor of Peine Ridge Church in Wentzville, lamented. more >>
The greatest evangelical impact Christians can take part in is to plant new churches, say leaders at the Acts 29 Network, an organization aimed at facilitating a global church planting movement.
Pastor Scott Thomas, who is the president of the group and lead pastor of church planting at Seattle-based Mars Hill Church, recently re-published an article by pastor and bestselling author Tim Keller on the subject.
Keller, who leads Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City, published his thoughts about the importance of starting other churches 10 years ago. His article was condensed in a post last week titled, "Why Church Planting?" on Acts29Network.org. more >>
Southern Baptists are set to plant as many as 100 churches in Cleveland over the next five years, according to a new initiative by the North American Mission Board (NAMB).
About half of Cleveland residents do not affiliate themselves with a church, NAMB reported, calculating that one Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) church exists for every 42,500 Cleveland residents.
Church members from around the country are being called into action to help plant churches in the northeastern Ohio city. According to NAMB, the SBC network is critical to initiating and supporting nascent churches in Cleveland. more >>
Dimas Salaberrios, pastor of Infinity Church in the Bronx borough of New York City, led a protest Thursday, Jan. 5, outside the offices of the New York City Law Department over his ministry's eviction from the Bronx River Community Center, owned by the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA).
Pastor Salaberrios claims that NYCHA was following in the footsteps of the NYC Board of Education, which served eviction notices to religious groups who use public school facilities after school hours for their ministries. The education department's move stems from the Supreme Court's refusal in December to review a lawsuit filed on behalf of the Bronx Household of Faith that challenged the Board of Education’s policy.
As a result, the Bronx Household of Faith congregation was told by the Board of Education that it had to quit the school auditorium it has been using as a worship space since 2002 by Feb. 12, 2012. Dozens of NYC churches have been affected by the Board of Ed's decision, which goes back to its victory in the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals. The appeals court had decided in June to uphold the board’s policy against religious activity in public school facilities. more >>