I love my church and spending time with the people in my congregation. They are great people and there is plenty of time I can spend with them.
However, I also have a conviction that it is important to spend time with people outside the congregation. I see that as key to helping the church to grow. I don’t mean that I target specific people as potential congregation members. Rather, having contacts outside the church is just part of the process.
It would be easy to spend all my time outside the church but that won’t work. I have responsibilities to my congregation.
I have decided to focus my activity in two ways. One is as a chaplain at a local army reserve unit. The other is to write a religion column for our local newspaper. These opportunities give me a wider audience and fit with my gifts.
But that won’t work for everyone. Some people coach sports teams. I would be terrible at that. Other spend significant time volunteering at events. There are all sorts of other opportunities as well.
The point is, that pastors should have some sort of contact with the wider community, without neglecting congregational duties. This is what I do. What ways do you reach out to your community?