This is the third in a series of posts about Cultivate ’09, a one-day conversation held at Park Community Church in Chicago about church communication. Born out of conversations among some respected consultants in this field (Dawn Nicole Baldwin, Tim Schraeder, Kem Meyer, among others), Cultivate was the first of what I hope will be many similar gatherings.
In my mind, there is an obvious connection between church unity (my calling) and church communication. Church unity is all about relationships. Relationships, in turn, are all about communication. You can do the logic from here.
There is an element to church communications which is not so much about PR or marketing or branding or logos. A critical part of the ministry of church communications is how a church communicates within the body of believers. The ministry of church communications necessarily must include some strategies about how to facilitate conversation among the church itself. Sitting and talking with Cultivate participants, it was clear to me that many of these communications professionals at least have a glimpse of what this means (actually, some have much more than just a glimpse). There is power in formatting how a story is told. More importantly, there is responsibility in using that power to bring about God-honoring results.
In a session with Kent Shaffer (of Bombay Creative and churchrelevance.com), he said it this way: “Communication [in churches] is more than just sending the right message…it is evoking the right response.” When we begin to take seriously our objective of “evoking the right response”, we begin to see that we can actually empower how people see each other. We can facilitate conversation among them, strengthening relationships. We can help bridge communication gaps within a church body, and thereby “preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond …