Wednesday 10th May 2017
9am - 4pm
MBM Rooty Hill
Reaching Everyday People
- By Bruce Bennett
Who comes to your church? By ‘who’ I mean what ‘type’ of people come to your church/ Take a moment and think your way through last Sunday’s ranks. For the sake of the exercise think in terms of university educated (UE) people (accountants, teachers, engineers and health professionals) and non-university educated (NUE) people (secretaries, factory workers, bus drivers, mechanics, hairdressers). What do you reckon is the rough percentages of each? (%UE / %NUE)
I am sure that there are exceptions but my guess is that in the majority of Evangelical churches, there will be a disproportionate percentage of UE’s to NUE’s.
Now compare your brief (rough) analysis with the make-up of the Australian community. The Australian Bureau of Statistics tell us that approximately 25% of Australians have a university education and 75% of Australians don’t. Through conversation with evangelical ministers (particularly in the Sydney basin) my overwhelming impression is that the people mix in their churches is more or less exactly the opposite — 75% UE / 25% NUE. If all of this is somewhere near the mark then I have only one conclusion - Australian evangelicals are missing the mark in reaching the vast majority of Australians with the Gospel.
The situation in the New Testament could not be more different. Jesus selected and discipled twelve everyday men as his A team. He then empowered eleven of them (those who made the grade) by his spirit and sent them into the world to make more disciples. The result was an early church made up of people from every sector of society (the majority from the middle and lower classes). So, where have we gone wrong?
It is hard to nail down exactly where we have gone wrong and it is much easier to notice a problem than to fix it. But a few of us are convinced that we have gone wrong and that we need to address the issue. And that we need to do it now! For a while now a few of us have been planning a conference that will address this issue. Reaching Everyday People is a conference that is a first small step to address the problem and (with God’s help) begin to change so as to reach everyday people with the Gospel.
We use the term ‘everyday people’. We think it’s the best way to describe the kind of people that are missing from the majority of our churches. Those of us running the conference are people who are committed to reaching everyday people with the Gospel and training them. None of us are experts but we have been practicing what we preach. We want to encourage you to take up the challenge as well. If you are concerned for the salvation of 75% of the people in your street. And if you want to raise up everyday people to reach everyday people in your neighbourhood, then I encourage you to come along and bring some like-minded friends with you.
You can find more information about the conference at:
(Senior Minister - Orange Evangelical Church)
PS - I realise that a Sydney located conference doesn’t work for everyone. If you want us to come to your neck of the woods … just holler.