Sometimes things have unintended consequences.
The CCIW ‘Adopt a Block’ program was re-launched this year with a greater focus and extended reach. The goal is to repeatedly connect with every household in the entire Parish - Ashfield, Five Dock and Haberfield - through well designed postcards, advertising our events and activities, as well as communicating more generally what kind of church we are - open, engaged, welcoming and convinced that Jesus remains incredibly relevant (to put it mildly)! So small teams of 2-4 people ‘adopt a block’ and take responsibility for delivering postcards to that block.
And it’s working really well.
We are delivering more postcards than ever, with less fuss than ever. And it is now relatively common to welcome people to an event, or even church on Sunday, as they carry postcard in hand.
But perhaps even better are the unintended moments.
Like when one person was delivering postcards, and the resident was out in the front yard. When asked what she was doing, the CCIW member said delivering postcards for the church. At which the resident made comments about how ‘she’d never liked the way St John’s had changed its name 8 years ago’. Of course, this was a golden moment to explain that the name hadn’t changed at all, and that she’d be welcome to come to church, and the resident said she just might!
The first goal of our approach to outreach is to provoke spiritual curiosity in people, and the Adopt a Block program is a terrific ‘slow burn’ part of that.