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Apr 10, 2012

Morning Roundup - April 10, 2012

Six Tips for Keeping New Small Groups Healthy -- Brett Eastman

In our 40 Days of Purpose campaign at Saddleback, we saw God work "exceedingly abundantly beyond what we asked or thought," as Paul said. We discovered that using videotape of Rick teaching the material enabled ordinary members to effectively lead small groups because they didn't need the same skills for teaching, facilitation, and knowledge of the Scripture as the pastor or other trained leader might have.

The result was that we trained more than 2,000 new hosts and launched 2,300 small groups that reached more than 20,000 people!

Suddenly, we had a powerful way to change the community around us through people who were living healthy, balanced, purpose driven lives together in these small groups. The challenge we faced was how to keep those small groups healthy and vital.

Here are six tips for keeping new small groups healthy so they can make the impact God wants:

1. Reload and re-fire
2. Curriculum is the second most important tool
3. Realize that reformation could be coming
4. Focus on what really matters
5. Begin with the end in mind
6. Recruit and develop a senior "leader of leaders"

My Advice to a Young Guy Starting Something New -- Mike Anderson

I got an email from Chris. He's just out of college and has been offered his dream job--but it's big. He grew up attending a church of 250 people, and now he's been asked to lead the community ministry in a church of 2,000.

Chris, here's my advice:

1. Focus first on developing a good relationship with a few leaders
2. Develop a simple strategy
3. Get a small win, then another
4. Make decisions
5. Find an expert in your field and meet them
6. Ask for feedback from the wisest people and the dumbest
7. Pray a lot--talk to God about what you're going through

Duggars to Promote Bible Translation Work -- Christian Today

The Duggars might soon be known for more than their large family and their TLC show "19 Kids & Counting". The bountiful family could soon be recognized for their help in Bible translation and video game development.

One of America's most popular conservative Christian families has partnered with The Seed Company, which has made claims to be the most rapidly growing Bible translation organisation in the world.

This collaboration includes the development of a virtual game to build Tanzanian villages from the ground up, including constructing churches, homes, churches, schools, clinics, markets, and other various forms of infrastructure.

In partnership with the Duggar family, The Seed Company will help raise awareness and promote the need for Bible translation for people around the world. The game will also help children to use creativity, enhance decision making skills, help with knowledge of geography, and learn about diverse cultures and agriculture.

52% of Reporters: Media Poor on Religion News -- Get Religion

You know it's sad when both the general public (57 percent) and reporters (52 percent) agree that the media does a poor job explaining religion to the broader public. And then two-thirds of the public think religious coverage is scandal-driven, compared to 30 percent of journalists who say the same thing, according to a new study from the Knight Program in Media and Religion at USC and the Ray C. Bliss Institute of Applied Politics at the University of Akron.

So why is there such poor coverage of religion?

Maybe it's lack of a basic understanding of faith and belief. Half of all reporters say a major challenge to covering religion is a lack of knowledge of religion, according to the report. Just 19 percent of reporters say they are "very knowledgeable" about religion, one-third consider themselves "knowledgeable," 40 percent say they're "somewhat knowledgeable," compared to about 10 percent who say they're don't know much at all. You can see reporters having a hard time admitting they don't know much about religion, so I would guess the number is even lower than what they self-report. But when belief or unbelief is so crucial to understanding so much of our world, it's an amazing state of the media.

On a pretty basic level, media outlets are fairly concerned with wide representation in the newsroom, ensuring race, gender, and other demographic qualities are covered. However, the report says that minority Christians and white evangelical Christians are under-represented among journalists who cover religion when, ironically, they are the groups that consume the most religion news.

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Posted:April 10, 2012 at 12:00 am

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Morning Roundup - April 10, 2012