Browse
How to Communicate in a Post-Christian Culture

How to Communicate in a Post-Christian Culture

Posted March 15, 2018 by Bryan Haley

Christendom as we’ve known it is a thing of the past. Christianity is moving toward the margins of society. I’m not here to talk about politics. But I do think it’s time we start realizing that western culture is not synonymous with Christianity any longer. Some might even say that Christianity and Christian values are under attack. Just look at Senator Bernie Sanders’ response when he discovered Russell Vought, deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget, holds to the Christian belief of salvation; or look at the media backlash when Dan Truett, CEO of Chick-Fil-A, reiterated his belief in the orthodox Christian view of marriage; or the fact that the United States Supreme Court is hearing a case (and appears split) in which a business owner chose to not do business with a potential customer because they were requesting a wedding cake he could not support because of his Christian views. I could go on.

It’s not just in the United States either. In Canada, doctors and law graduates are being refused licensing based on where they graduate from or what their personal views and objections may be. Western Europe has been far-more post-Christian than North America, and for quite some time now.

So, it’s safe to say that Christianity is no longer the “moral majority” of the past. As Christians, we are no longer at the center of political, social, or cultural power. I’d argue that’s a good thing. As pastor Matt Chandler points out in his book Take Heart, throughout history, Christianity flourishes while in the margins of society.

But how do we communicate to a post-Christian culture?
 

We need to be purposeful

As churches, we need to seek out opportunities to share the gospel with our neighbors and community. We need to take every opportunity that God provides us and make sure we’re living out our faith in everyday living. That means we need to equip our people to know how to share the gospel and to communicate what’s happening in the church. Being purposeful means we need to think through the details and have a strategy so we can be sure our message is clear and concise.
 

We need to be resourceful

It’s not going to always be so easy to advertise outreach events in our community. In some ways, we already see this. For example, any relationship between churches and public schools is either non-existent or is like walking a tightrope. Some businesses may choose to not promote a church-related or Christian event. So we need to be creative and resourceful in what we’re communicating with our neighbors and how we go about advertising. Rely more heavily on word-of-mouth marketing (or outreach). Relationships beget relationships. People trust brands, services, and causes that are talked about from people they know. Not everything the church does needs to have an elaborate advertising campaign in order to be effective. Use your resources wisely.
 

We need to be relevant

The gospel hasn’t changed. It’s not going to change. But in some ways, how we present the gospel does need to change. We don’t need to fully embrace the current culture. On the flip side, we don’t need to condemn culture entirely either. As local churches, our job is to make disciples. So that means we need to know our neighborhood, our community, and our people. Meet your audience (your community) where they’re at. Speak to them in a way that they understand. And redeem culture, when possible, for the glory of the gospel.
 

Communicating in a post-Christian society is a challenge. It’s going to continue to be more challenging in the years to come. So let’s be purposeful, resourceful, and relevant in our communication.

Filed under: Branding, Mission and Vision, Visitor's Perspective, Communications, Marketing, Outreach Projects/Events

About the Author

Bryan Haley

Bryan joined the ReFrame Media team in 2017 with a passion to help churches reach people with the gospel using effective church communications. As producer for Church Juice, Bryan helps congregations energize their church communications by overseeing the Church Juice blog, publishing in-depth ebook resources, and developing training on topics like marketing, branding, social media, internal communications, and website development.

Bryan brings years of communication and outreach experience gained both in full-time church ministry and the field of church website design. Bryan and his wife, Denae, enjoy Michigan summers, Detroit sports, and family time.

Don't miss a post

Join our email list

Comments (0)

Leave a Comment

Share your thoughts about this blog post with us.
All fields are required.

Recent Posts

5 Things We Do That Fail at Welcoming a Guest Back to Our Church
5 Things We Do That Fail at Welcoming a Guest Back to Our Church
0

Posted September 24, 2018 by Jonathan Malm

There are five main things most churches assume they need to do to get guests to return. They seem like the right ideas, but there’s often one thing missing.
5 Ways to Follow-Up Digitally
5 Ways to Follow-Up Digitally
0

Posted September 18, 2018 by Owen Scott

We work hard to follow up after major holidays in person, but it's a struggle to follow up digitally. Here are five strategies you can use to follow up with people who have engaged with you digitally.
What to Expect When You’re Expecting (To Visit a Church)
What to Expect When You’re Expecting (To Visit a Church)
0

Posted September 13, 2018 by Dave Hartwell

Sometimes the best way to understand our own church context is to see how things are done in another. This article describes how I went about creating a rubric for one of my most beneficial tasks as a church communicator: visiting other churches.
Here’s How to Get More Guests to Turn in the Connection Card
Here’s How to Get More Guests to Turn in the Connection Card
1

Posted September 11, 2018 by Bryan Haley

A lot of churches struggle with getting guests to turn in their connection card (or whatever it’s called at your church). Here’s why people aren’t giving you their information, and how to remedy the issue.
Your Website is Your First Impression
Your Website is Your First Impression
1

Posted September 6, 2018 by Owen Scott

Your website is your first point of contact with first time guests. Just like your church building, you need to think about the first impression your church website is making to newcomers.
Is Your Church Guest-Friendly?
Is Your Church Guest-Friendly?
3

Posted September 4, 2018 by Bryan Haley

Lots of visitors never return to a church because well meaning church “welcome” processes make them feel uncomfortable. Here are some things we can all do to help ensure our church’s are guest-friendly.
Low Hanging Fruit
Low Hanging Fruit
0

Posted August 30, 2018 by Bryan Haley

Fall is a great time to harvest some low-hanging fruit and make easy improvements in your church’s communication.
6 Proven Ways to Improve Your Church Communications
6 Proven Ways to Improve Your Church Communications
0

Posted August 28, 2018 by Jesse Wisnewski

Crafting clear messages is one of the most critical tasks of the church. Connecting the gospel of Jesus Christ and the Bible to the Average Joe sitting in the pew or living in your community is of eternal importance.
What Younger Generations Want the Church to Know About Social Media
What Younger Generations Want the Church to Know About Social Media
1

Posted August 23, 2018 by Jordan Gorveatte

Here are a few tips from a Generation Z-er on how your church can do stress-free social media well.
How To Write Terrible Church Emails in 7 Steps
How To Write Terrible Church Emails in 7 Steps
2

Posted August 21, 2018 by Joel Schaap

Let's talk about 7 ways you can write terrible church emails. Or, better yet, 7 things to avoid if you want to better communicate with your people.