Are you wondering how your church can reach out more to its own community? Do you ever wonder what evangelism even means and how it applies to you, your congregation, and community? WELS Commission on Evangelism offers the School of Outreach for WELS congregations.

The School of Outreach serves WELS congregations with planning, assistance, and resources for congregational evangelism programming and implementation of outreach strategies. There are two one-day workshops that are scheduled several months apart. Pastors from your area, who have been trained in the School of Outreach Program, make the presentations. At each of the workshops, there are breakout sessions at which the presenters work with individual congregations to advise them regarding outreach plans and strategies. In the months following each of the workshops, these advisors make several contacts to offer follow-up assistance specific to the needs of congregations.

There are four phases to the program. First, registered congregations complete congregational and community profiles and then congregational leaders gather for a workshop about evangelism organization and planning and outreach strategies. For phase two, Advisors stay in contact with their congregations after the initial workshop, specifically to assist them with their outreach planning and implementation of strategies.

Phase three happens several months later. A second workshop is conducted with presentations on friendship witnessing, church identity in the community, worship welcome, and assimilation. In breakout sessions with advisors, congregational leaders explore ways for accomplishing these important aspects of their evangelism program. And in phase four, advisors keep in contact with congregations for several months to offer help and resources.

The goals of workshops are to develop a workable organization for evangelism, a one-year plan of outreach strategies, managed prospect lists, and a program for training lay evangelists.

Learn more or to find out how your church can participate. Has the School of Outreach benefited your congregation already? Share how your congregation learned to reach out to its community.