First published at Cataclysm Missions International (CMI) on June 16, 2015
By Anna Popescu
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The Role of Digital and Social Media in Evangelism
From November 19-21, 2013, Clyde Tabor was part of the Lausanne Global Consultation on the Gospel and Media. During this time, they were challenged to think about social media and the way the different media outlets could be used as evangelism.
From our time together, it was very clear that digital and social media have an increasingly important role to play in evangelism. That role varies across three continuous stages: SOW, REAP, DISCIPLE. At any given moment, there are hundreds of millions of people globally at each state with respect to their Christian faith—from a lack of interest in Christianity to a mature believer growing deeper in their faith.
- SOW– In this stage (that might be also referred to as pre-evangelism), individuals are not actively seeking Jesus. At this stage, digital and social media have a role to play in influencing the perception of Christianity and creating an environment that fosters openness and curiosity to engage.
- REAP– For our purposes, the REAP stage extends from when an individual reaches a place where they are beginning to seek answers, through to a decision to follow Christ. Digital and social media provide a unique and safe environment for people to struggle and question, often more in more vulnerable ways because of the perceived anonymity and safety of technology.
- DISCIPLE– After an individual becomes a believer, the lifelong journey truly begins. Digital and social media have a role to play in connecting the individual to a local church, in providing resources and connections to deepen in the faith, and can provide encouragement and tools to share Christ with others, thus completing a circle, looping back to SOW.
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