Approaches to Town Centre Evangelism by Paul Hazelden
This document was put together for Christchurch,
Woking. This is an evangelical Anglican Church
situated on the town square, in Woking, Surrey, and has the
motto 'The Church in
the Centre' - meaning both the centre of Woking and the centre
of Godís will.
My hope and intention is that the ideas and approaches
described here will be generally relevant to any church located
in a town centre.
The typical town centre church will find its congregation
travels quite a distance to attend the Sunday
services. They will probably be reasonably
committed, but as they do not live locally, it is difficult for
them to attend evening meetings during the week.
The evangelistic effort needs to concentrate therefore on the
unchurched people who are around - the people who work
in the town centre and who may well be looking for something
interesting to do in their lunch hour.
Who are we trying to reach?
the lunchtime community
primarily shop and office workers
people with little or no active faith
(perhaps also) active Christians looking for
an opportunity to serve
What are they like?
What do we aim to offer?
We want them to understand the gospel
We want them to experience God's love
What therefore should we provide?
We need to provide a range of options:
opening the door to other possibilities
honest (deliver what is promised)
People are restless, so offer them peace.
a place of quiet in a noisy world
regain a sense of perspective
no preaching, no commitment expected or
"we are always here for you"
People are guilty, so offer them forgiveness.
"Peace with God"
Simple, direct evangelism
Basic message: if you want to find God, this is
how to do it
Presented with confidence and quiet
Features personal testimony: "how Jesus
changed my life"
People are confused, so offer them
"Exploring the Faith"
Provides people with a good excuse to come
Offers interesting topics
Presentation is professional and
Provide a short series (which can be repeated,
Address the intellectual issues people
Answer the questions people ask
Undercut the excuses people make
Focus on facts and truth, not how they apply to
Provide both continuity and variety:
Each Series has a Theme
Each Session has a Topic
Suggested session structure:
Handouts as you enter
Outline of the Topic, space for notes
Feedback sheet (good/bad, like/dislike)
Two minutes setting the scene, ground
Fifteen minutes teaching, working through the
Ten/Fifteen minutes questions and answers on