For every organisation in our society, communication is a major challenge. It’s never been easier to get in touch with people. But then that’s the problem. We are bombarded with so many images, so many messages, so much information. The vast majority of it we just have to ignore to stay sane. We get used to making instant judgements as to whether it’s worth giving any time to something before we move on – judgments that include how it looks, and whether the presentation fits with our preconceptions about what’s good quality.
As a family of churches, we are fortunate in being able to pool our resources, including the skills we have, to support our communications. We’re able to produce this weekly email bulletin and maintain our new church website, as well as our pages on A Church Near You.
We all benefit from that. But still, we’ve got some way to go in getting the various ways we have of communicating around the parish consistent, clear and good quality. We know we need to invest in that, which is why we’re hoping to launch a ‘rebranding’ exercise in the autumn with professional support.
Communication may be challenging, but it’s also at the heart of who we are. The business of the church is the communication of the gospel, the good news of Christ. That’s what we’re about. And it’s not always easy. We may feel unsure about what it is we have to say. And we may struggle too to find the right way to say it.
For many people in our society, including our families, neighbours, colleagues and friends, the good news of Christ is old news. It’s what people used to believe in the past, but now they’ve moved on. How do we get past that barrier?
Taking care over the words and images we put into the public domain – through our website, social media, notice boards, flyers – is certainly part of that. So is thinking about what we do in public worship, and what it might say to someone like the 17 year-old I met the other Sunday morning who had wanted to do something spiritual so decided to come to a church service. But we communicate also with our lives, our actions, our relationships, our attitudes. May we speak of Christ’s goodness and grace with all that we are.
Revd Dr Jeremy Worthen