At Pentecost, it is said that the miracle wasn’t that the disciples spoke all of the different languages of the world, but that everyone there HEARD what they were saying IN THEIR OWN LANGUAGE. This is a hotly debated topic at our staff meetings; how do we best communicate? Because not everyone communicates the same way, and not everyone hears the same way. I have a friend who is in the philosophical camp why say one sentence when a paragraph will do? I know others who communicate everywhere on every platform, and others still who only communicate one way and expect everyone else to either listen that way or miss the information. This was one of my major difficulties of being a parent during the pandemic lockdown and trying to help my children with schoolwork. There was no set navigation path of how teachers communicated, what platforms they used, and how we found information. I had a huge spreadsheet with passwords and usernames that I had to consult every day.
The reason this is so hotly debated in our staff meetings is that we routinely hear from the congregation and people in the community that they don’t know about something going on. I’ve even said it, and I work there! We try a digital newsletter(which is snail mailed to those who wish to receive it that way), social media posts on Facebook and Instagram, a website calendar, bulletin announcements, verbal announcements, and messaging through a private server…and yet, we still miss people either by what we say or how we say it.
We know that all people hear differently. What we say might not be heard with the intention it is meant to be said. Body language, tone, volume, and hearing ability all play a part in how we communicate. It truly would be a miracle if we said something one time, and everybody heard it in their own language.
With that in mind, we are trying. We’ve heard from the Leadership Team about all of the updates and things we are working on. We are making improvements to the building, improvements in our finances, and improvements in our staff development all in the service of improvements to our mission and ministry in this community. One of those improvements that I think will have a major impact is an improvement in our communications. Over the next few months, there will be a rollout of a new website and app for our church. With these tools, we will better be able to communicate to the congregation, let people know about what is going on at our church, and help people find their way to the wonders of faith in Jesus Christ. We think this will go a long way toward our ability to communicate effectively and with purpose. While it might not be another Pentecost miracle, we are excited to share the Good News with everyone we can so that we all might hear the calling of the Holy Spirit.