Meaningful Outreach: An Essential Guide for Churches

Meaningful Outreach: An Essential Guide for ChurchesA number of months ago my wife and I were sharing a meal with some good friends. All three of our families had been members of the same congregation several years before but we’d all moved on to different places. Our kids had grown up; what we’d discovered together was that all of our kids had drifted away from public worship. One could easily say oh they’re just young adults adrift for a while. The striking thing for each of us adults, all six of us, what we shared together as older couples now, is that we really struggle with the thought that our grown kids were not in worship. Each of the next generations of our families were away for different reasons. Well moms and dads out there, Grandpa’s and Grandma’s, and if you had those same feelings, similar worries, you know it’s not a good feeling when your loved ones become apathetic towards the Church gathered. In much of my work and I’m sure that of our guest with us today, with our work in the Church over the last years, we’ve encountered it, sort of a general fear and sentiment among congregational members, that our congregations seem to be dwindling; they’re getting smaller and that maybe brings a new kind of fear for us. 

But thank goodness our discussion topic today is with the leader in evangelism, in witness, and outreach… this is the Family Shield Ministries radio and podcast program. Welcome, welcome dear friends to another episode and conversation. I’m Pastor Mark Frith, chairman of the Family Shield Ministry board and today’s guest host in place of Kay Meyer, guest host for the Family Shield radio and podcast network. Thank you for being a part of the Family Shield family, where we continue to remind you and one another to put the whole armor of God on. 

Our special guest today is also the author of a new book titled Meaningful Outreach: an Essential Guide for Churches. He is the Rev. Dr. Mark Wood. He’s a native of Illinois, a resident of Arizona, Dr. Wood is a former parish pastor, and a church planter, currently the Director of the Witness and Outreach Ministry for the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod. He also wears another hat for our church body, as the Director of Revitalization Initiative. Dr. Wood is a family man; he’s married to Mary Ellen and celebrates with her the joy of having five children, seven grandchildren, and he just told me, now five great-grandchildren.