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18 September 2017

What can I do to share Jesus? Pray, say, give, invite.

What can I do to share Jesus? Pray, say, give, invite.

New Talking Jesus research has inspired a new strategy for seeing people come to faith.

A new booklet, Talking Jesus – what can I do?, aims to help individuals think about how to make Jesus known.

The pray, say, give and invite strategy has been built on research which says many people are open to hearing about the Christian faith, and that conversations, the Bible and attending church are some of the key influences in people coming to faith in Jesus. 

Leaders from 18 denominations attending the Windermere Leader's Summit heard the results of the new Talking Jesus research, and the strategy for sharing Jesus in our communities. 

Andy Hawthorne from The Message Trust said, "People's hearts are open to the gospel. 

The Church is on the front foot in mission, the like of which I've not known in my lifetime."

The summit drew on the newly updated Talking Jesus survey of adults and teenagers, which shows that people of all ages want to know more about Jesus Christ and the Christian faith. 

Dr Rachel Jordan-Wolf from the Church of England, summarised the vision of the research as 'a growing Church'.

The strategy for seeing growth in the Church is to: pray for five people; say – talking about Jesus as the research shows that conversations play a key part in people becoming Christians; giving away Bible-based resources; and inviting people to church. 

The research found that 13 per cent of young people now describe themselves as practising Christians with 67 per cent of adults saying they know a Christian and consider them 'caring', 'generous' and 'good humoured'. 

The Message Trust reported that 600 young leaders have now moved counter-culturally into some of the most deprived communities as an incarnational Christian presence and CAP reported that they have become the biggest network of face-to-face debt counsellors freeing 2,500 people from debt every year and seeing 1000 of them converted. 

The prayer movement Thy Kingdom Come filled 34 cathedrals and 1,000s of churches with intercession at Pentecost with more than one million people involved in making it the biggest prayer meeting in the U.K. in a generation. 

Talking Jesus – What Can I Do? Asks four key questions: who knows Christians and what do they think of them? What do people think of Jesus? Are the people known by Christians having conversations with them about Jesus? How are people coming to know Jesus?

The Windermere Leader's Summit has committed to tracking progress in making Jesus known every five years to assess if churches in England can see more people coming to faith, to see more people acknowledging that Jesus lived, helping more people develop relationships with non-Christians, and see more people having positive conversations about faith. 

The leaders at the summit were representatives from Christian denominations and groupings including the Salvation Army, the Catholic Church in England and Wales, the Church of England, the Baptist Union, the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Elim, the Methodist Church, Kingdom Faith, the Apostolic Church, Assemblies of God, Pioneer, Korean churches in the UK, Church of God of Prophecy, New Frontiers, New Testament Church of God, Salt and Light, Ground level, the New Wine network, Cell UK, and Gather.

Other Christian ministries who were involved included 24/7 Prayer, Fresh Expressions, Evangelical Alliance, HOPE, The Message Trust, Christians Against Poverty, Tearfund, Christianity Explored, Alpha, Bible Society and leaders from some of Britain's fastest growing churches, Trinity Baptist Church, Foursquare Church, KingsGate Community Church, Kingsway International Christian Centre, New Covenant Church, Holy Trinity Brompton and All Souls, Langham Place.

The summit was hosted by Roy Crowne, HOPE's director (hopetogether.org.uk); Steve Clifford, general director, Evangelical Alliance (eauk.org); Dr Rachel Jordan-Wolf, national mission and evangelism adviser for the Church of England (churchofengland.org) and Rev Canon Yemi Adedeji, associate director for HOPE and director of the Evangelical Alliance's One People Commission.