A Good Website – What’s Stopping You?

By Bret Miller, GCI IT Manager The number one way many people find a church to visit is by searching on the internet. This means investing time in developing a good website is vital. A good website should tell people about the church. What’s a church service like? Where is it? When is it? If I have questions, who can I contact? But that’s not all; people are also influenced by how professional your website looks, whether the people look friendly, and whether they think they’ll feel at home. If your church has a website, when did you last look at it? Taking time to review your website periodically helps keep it both accurate and current. Ask yourself some questions as you view your website: If this was my first impression... Read the article

Read the article

The GCI Worship Calendar: Celebrating His Story

By John McLean, Director of ACCM The GCI Worship Calendar is designed to focus our worship and attention directly on Jesus – his birth, life, death, resurrection and ascension, and the giving of the promised Comforter. Each one of us has our own personal story. Our stories are—naturally!—very important to us. Our birth, growth, adulthood. Our achievements, our challenges, difficulties. And in its own way each story is unique, to be cherished and valued. And yet… Each of us knows in the depths of our being that if our brief span of life is all there is – if that’s it, “signifying nothing” as Shakespeare put it—our personal story can be frustratingly futile. Like the grass of the field, we wither and fade. And... Read the article

Read the article

Worship: Putting Others First

What does a guest think when they experience your worship service? By Randy Bloom, Regional Director, Northeast “Honey, we have some new neighbors. Let’s invite them over for dinner.” “That’s a great idea, let’s do it. What should we fix for dinner?” “Oh, I don’t know. Let’s just have our leftovers from the other day. That meal was pretty good and I think there’s enough.” “That sounds good. What do you want to do while they are here?” “Well, you and I enjoy sitting around and watching TV or fiddling around in the yard. They could join us in what we do. But, actually, I’m really busy this week and don’t have the time to think about it. We can figure that out at the last minute. They can... Read the article

Read the article

Church Hack – Call to Worship

In our constantly connected and fast-paced world, the call to worship is an opportunity to intentionally attune the hearts and minds of the congregation to our glorious God. It is powerful to remember that God is the one who calls to us and to corporately reflect on the same truth about his character and involvement in our lives. Click the link below to view and download this month's Church Hack and learn more about leading a call to worship. Click here or on the image below to download this month's Church Hack.   Read the article

Read the article

Welcoming Guests

By Heber Ticas, Superintendent of South America Growing up in the church and after 20 years of pastoral ministry, I have often witnessed how church attendees tend to gravitate to those with whom they have an established relationship. This is natural; however, the downside is that guests who visit a church for the first or second time can easily feel out of place. They can feel there might not be a place for them in the established community. On the flipside, in our attempts to be welcoming in our smaller congregations, members sometimes swarm a guest, creating an awkward feeling for them. For this reason, I believe a healthy church always seeks to create a healthy environment where both attendees and guests feel welcomed. This is not... Read the article

Read the article

GCI Worship Calendar

In the last GCI Update letter, Clarity, President Greg Williams explains the importance of clear communication. He emphasizes: As we collectively move forward toward Healthy Church, let’s not allow miscommunication to be a roadblock. Please access the vast array of ministry tools designed to serve you where you are in the journey and please feel free to access your ministry supervisors as well. It is imperative that we contextualize what it means to be Team-Based and Pastor-Led in our multiple cultures around the world, and in the midst of our cultural nuances that we share the Christ-like principles of understanding, respect, collaboration, and love, which apply in all circumstances. To create alignment across our international... Read the article

Read the article

Responding to Gabriel

A comparison of Zechariah's and Mary's response to the Angel Gabriel Written by Daphne Sidney, Church Administration GCI-Australia The Gospel of Luke seems best placed to explore this comparison. Luke was a highly educated man, trained as a doctor (Col. 4:14) and most probably a Greek. With Luke being a Gentile, he understood what it was like to be alienated and writes from an understanding of God’s love for all peoples and often details accounts of women, children, the poor and oppressed. It’s a Gospel with a message for everybody…[1]. With giving women and children more prominence, this Gospel contains the most detailed narratives of the birth of two very important babies, John the Baptist and Jesus the Christ. In the... Read the article

Read the article

Venue Resources: Advent PowerPoint

Advent PowerPoint with a graphic for each candle lighting and the accompanying scripture. Many GCI congregations celebrate Advent by having an Advent wreath on a table in the front of the sanctuary. The wreath encircles three purple candles and one pink candle. There is a white candle at the center of the wreath, representing Christ and the light he brings to the world. Each week a candle is lit; all are symbolic. This month, our church hack is a collection of PowerPoint slides to accompany the Advent candle-lighting portion of your Sunday service. Click on the image or here to access and download the Advent PowerPoint. Read the article

Read the article

Faith, Hope, & Love Venue Videos

Throughout 2019 we have focused on the Team Based - Pastor Led model for GCI churches. Pastors can set the pace through this overview by helping their congregations achieve health through what we refer to as the three venues of ministry: Faith venue (discipleship)—discipling people in the faith—small groups, discipleship classes,. Bible studies, missionary activities and [caption id="attachment_12470" align="alignright" width="199"] click on the image to download the pdf[/caption] events. Hope venue (worship)—the Sunday worship service—intentional preparation, inclusive gathering, inspirational worship. Love venue (witness)—mission and outreach—identifying a target community, building relationships,... Read the article

Read the article

The Significance of Christmas

Written by Danny Zachariah, Regional Director of the Indian Subcontinent One common reason that some are against celebrating Christmas is: “it’s not in the Bible!” If this reasoning is taken to its logical extreme, there are many things we could not do because “it’s not in the Bible!” Is it vital for believers in Jesus Christ to remember and commemorate his birth as a human being? Does it make a difference to our theological understanding when we consciously recognize and acknowledge the incarnation? Would this understanding improve our relational dimension with our Triune God? Here are three reasons that it does. It’s the only way to know and understand God As human beings, we are limited in our capacity to... Read the article

Read the article