‘I Still Believe’ releases March 13, 2020
From the creators of I Can Only Imagine comes the faith-movie event of 2020, I Still Believe. A love story for the ages, I Still Believe is the real-life story of chart-topping singer Jeremy Camp. I Still Believe is a powerful reminder that in the midst of life’s storms, true hope is only found in Christ.
I STILL BELIEVE CAMPAIGN PLAN
A great campaign begins with prayer and planning.
Begin by asking God to direct and inspire your plans for activities and events connected to the I Still Believe movie campaign. Pray that He will move within the hearts of your members and your community to bring people to a place of deeper trust in Him and commitment to His design for their lives.
Read through the sermons and other resources in this kit and watch the video clips. Giving yourself a good overview of the available resources will help you as you communicate with your leaders and plan your events.
3. Cast Vision.
Meet with your leadership team and cast a vision for how the I Still Believe campaign can affect your church and your community. Consider using the promotional materials in this kit, as well as prayer and discussion to help excite your team and create a unified vision.
4. Engage Your Leaders.
The I Still Believe campaign will provide ministry opportunities across all areas of your church, so plan to meet with all your ministry leaders to ask for their help and support. Be sure to listen to their ideas, suggestions, and needs in order to make this a meaningful campaign.
Encourage your leaders to make the events and themes of the I Still Believe campaign a focused priority and to pray for the services and sermon outreach plans. Keep communication channels open to help all your ministries work together and support the overall goals of the church through the events you plan. Some of the leaders you’ll want to coordinate with include:
• Teachers: The I Still Believe movie will likely stir up some important questions for members of your community about what it means to live on mission for God, or how they can best follow God’s calling on their life. Be sure to connect with a handful of mature believers in your church body ahead of time who will be available to meet with others in a more personal setting. They can provide a listening ear, prayerful support, and sound advice.
• Parking, Greeters, and Ushers: Plan for additional church service attendees during the two-week sermon series. Make sure you have sufficient volunteers and parking spaces.
• Children’s Ministry: Since you will have new families visiting your church, you can also plan on having more children in your children’s ministry. Talk with ministry leaders about lesson plans, visitor gifts, and information packets for visiting parents, as well as childcare volunteer requirements. See the Host section for more information.
• Small Groups: If you plan to invite visitors and church members to sign up for small groups during or after the two-week I Still Believe sermon series, make sure to talk with your small group leaders in advance. Encourage group leaders to prepare ways to communicate the small group opportunities and to register those interested. Encourage them to welcome new members and to be prepared to integrate them into their groups smoothly.
• Assimilation: Talk with your assimilation team about plans to follow up with visitors through phone calls, emails, letters, and visits. See the Follow Up section for more.
5. Create a Detailed Plan.
Use this guide, as well as the kit resources, to create a detailed plan and schedule that includes action steps, leader responsibilities, and deadlines specific to your church.
6. Partner with Other Churches.
An individual church reaching out to the community can have a transformational and lasting impact. But if one church can make a difference in a community, imagine the possibilities when multiple churches work together! The resources and potential in the church are immeasurable if we are only willing to join together as the whole body of Christ and invite entire communities to church in a unified effort. The I Still Believe campaign is an ideal opportunity to join with the broader Christian community in your area to accomplish something bigger together than you can alone. Churches that have teamed up for similar campaigns have experienced the benefits of unity, bonding formed around a common cause, greater media exposure, and continued, long-term partnerships. Here are some tips for a successful partnership:
• Form a prayer team. Allowing a way for representatives from each participating church to pray together creates unity and commitment throughout the community.
• Establish an area coordinator. This person is not necessarily a pastor, but will be the point person for the planning and logistics of the event. This person will be responsible for coordinating the roles of each church, which should be put in writing and distributed to help everyone share the same expectations.
• Engage senior church leaders. Inspirational vision casting by respected leaders in the church community is vital. Pastors listen to other pastors, so it is important to engage them in the conversation about the series and ask them to leverage their influence with other senior pastors in the community. Start with churches you already have a relationship with and work out from there.
• Establish regular communications. Make sure all of the partner churches know the best ways to communicate with each other. Distribute a contact list to everyone involved, with guidelines for how interactions can best take place.
• Promote together. Working together will help pool resources, as well as present a unified message to the community. Partner to promote the event using tips from the Promote section of this guide. As a partnership, you may consider putting up citywide billboard(s) and creating one Facebook page for the whole citywide movement.
PROMOTE YOUR CAMPAIGN
1. Start Early.
Begin promoting the I Still Believe sermon series at least three weeks in advance. This will allow church members time to invite family, friends, neighbors, coworkers, etc. We recommend that you either use the two Sundays before the movie releases on Friday, March 13th, or you use the Sunday before and the Sunday after the 13th to deliver the sermon series. These dates will help to maximize the effect of the movie with your congregation and give you the most opportunity with guests and visitors.
2. Cast Vision.
Good leaders are critical to the success of any effort. However, the impact of your event truly depends on the involvement of the whole church. Most members of a congregation rise only as high as the expectations set by their leaders, so cast a vision of complete participation. Help your congregation see that this is not just an opportunity for them to grow deeper in their trust for God. It is also a chance to throw open the doors of the church and welcome the people of your community to experience the love and truth of God. Ask everyone in the congregation to prayerfully consider how they can be involved in the outreach efforts, and whom they will personally invite to be part of the I Still Believe campaign events, including a trip to see the movie together. (Pre-Order your tickets HERE)
3. Communicate with the Congregation.
Get your congregation excited about how God will shape and transform their lives through the movie. Share details about the upcoming services and follow-up events. Also, ask for additional volunteers to act as greeters, childcare helpers, ushers, parking lot attendants, and hosts. Use your church newsletter, emails, announcements, bulletin inserts, etc., to inform and inspire your church members. Have each ministry communicate their volunteer needs so members can find the best place to use their time and talents toward this effort.
4. Equip Your Members to be Inviters.
While the promotional material will be helpful for the campaign, there is nothing like the impact of a personal invitation. Encourage and equip your members to invite their friends and family members personally. (Small group leaders can buy group tickets HERE.)
5. Maximize Messaging.
Communicate your goals and plans in a wide variety of formats and channels to reach as many people in as many ways as possible.
• Get online. Place a banner or button on your church’s homepage and create a webpage about the I Still Believe campaign and your church’s events using the provided social media images.
• Social media. Announce the sermon series on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, etc. This kit contains graphics to make it easy to generate attention through various social media platforms. Create a Facebook event and ask each church member to like, share, and comment on the page. Encourage them to post photos of their small groups and favorite church activities.
• Send texts and emails. Send announcements through your church email list that can be forwarded to others by members. You can also send suggested text and web links for church members to use to invite friends to the events related to the I Still Believe campaign.
• Post on community calendars. Contact newspapers, TV and radio stations, local magazines, mail-out coupon flyers, recreation centers or clubs—anyone who posts a calendar of events. Be sure to include promo copy, as well as specific time, date, and location information.
• Get on the air and in print. Ask local radio stations and newspapers to promote your events.
For more helpful tips on how to host and follow up after your powerful campaign, check out the I Still Believe Planning Guide.
This article originally appeared on ChurchLeaders.com and is reposted here by permission.