On Evangelism – Research says, A Personal Approach Works Best
Great article on evangelism from Facts & Trends Mag – Go + Tell: Taking a Personal Approach to the Gospel:
“If you know how to pray, if you know how to be a friend, if you know how to help people experience God, and if you have learned how to tell the story of the gospel, you can do evangelism,” he (John Teter) says.
When it comes to evangelism, that kind of personal approach works best, according to a 2009 report from LifeWay Research. Most Americans are open to hearing about faith from a friend or neighbor (56 percent), or from a family member (63 percent).
Other approaches seem to turn off most Americans. Three out of four (76 percent) say they are unwilling to hear about matters of faith from people going door to door. Americans are also unwilling to receive spiritual information from door-hangers (66 percent), a letter in their mailbox (55 percent) or social media (66 percent).
Less than half are interested in a TV ad (40 percent) or radio spot (41 percent) on faith.
A personal approach is also a better way to invite people to church. Nearly two out of three (63 percent) Americans surveyed say a personal invitation from a friend or neighbor was an effective way to be asked to visit a church. An invitation from a family member was rated as effective by 67 percent of those surveyed.
Less than a third (31 percent) say a door-to-door invitation would be effective. Radio (33 percent) and TV (34 percent) also received low ratings. So did email (30 percent) and social media (30 percent).
About half (52 percent) say they might visit a church after receiving a postcard on a topic that interested them.
Time of year and current events also impact Americans’ openness to spiritual conversations. Americans were most open to matters of faith at Christmas (47 percent), Easter (38 percent) or after a natural disaster (34 percent). They were least open in summer (11 percent) or fall (11 percent).