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WEB EVANGELISM BULLETIN

. . . learning from each other
W-E-B Issue 134 ~ June 06
Twice a month ISSN 471-0323

News this time...

MULTI-LANGUAGE OUTREACH WEB AND JAPAN
PARTNER OPPORTUNITY
TIPS
COMMUNICATING WELL
LOOKING AT YOUR STATS
IS THIS THE MOST STRATEGIC BOOK OF THE LAST YEAR?
IT'S THE WAY THEY TELL THEM
CHANGING BELIEFS
THE WORLD WE LIVE IN
TAILEND

MULTI-LANGUAGE OUTREACH

Top Chrétien, based in France, announced the latest language version of their multi-language range of outreach sites - and it's English:
http://www.lookingforgod.com

It joins their other sites:
http://www.connaitredieu.com/ French
http://www.renshishen.com/ Chinese
http://www.ikzoekgod.nl/ Dutch
http://www.gottkennen.com/ German


WEB AND JAPAN

"This Man I Met on the Internet Became My Godson" says Deborah Ruth.

Cross-cultural internet evangelism: Does it work? Yes! An instant message popped up on Deborah Ruth's computer from a young Japanese man, Hiroaki in Tokyo, who found her on ICQ's random chat. Hiroaki was only looking for English practice, but as they started chatting, it became clear he was rather down at the time and felt worthless.

They chatted and she shared the Gospel with him. After a while she put him in touch with her Christian friend Laurie near Tokyo, who brought Hiroaki to her church. He started attending worship, bought a Bible, went to a Bible study, and took the Alpha Course.

Months later, he sent Deborah Ruth an email, announcing, "I've decided to become a Christian next month!" When a friend told Deborah Ruth that Hiroaki would be baptized in a month, the same time she would be in Tokyo, she surprised Hiroaki by being at his baptism.

"Hiroaki's jaw dropped to see me there," she says. She adds, "Two of us stood with him during the Anglican baptism service, and a couple of weeks later I learned that my name had also gone on the godparent card, so this man I met on the internet became my godson."

Such stories encourage us to help network those doing web evangelism!
[Source: www.visionsynergy.net ]


PARTNER OPPORTUNITY

Would you like your ministry name and URL visible on every page of the Internet Evangelism Day site? Find out how:
http://www.internetevangelismday.com/partners.php


TIPS

- non-techies look away now

CSS Shorthand: the following code shows the verbose way of defining a style, writes Erik Goetze:
.header {
font-family: Verdana, Sans-serif, Arial;
font-size: 16px;
font-style: normal;
line-height: 20px;
font-weight: bold
}
Whereas the following line encapsulates all of the above into a much smaller single line:
.header {font: bold 16px/20px Verdana, Sans-serif,Arial;}
http://www.devx.com/tips/Tip/5829

ROUNDED IMAGES: if you want rounded graphic corners, rather than editing every image you have individually, you can do it using javascript and CSS:
http://www.elliotswan.com/2006/06/07/rounded-images/

ICON INDEPTH - like a Swiss Army Knife of icon and cursor manipulation. Image-editing features such as effects, filters, rotation, cropping, as well as a huge color palette, easy-to-use editor that has all the functions for creating/editing ICO, ANI, CUR, GIF, JPEG, WMF, EMF, TGA, and WBMP files, image filters, including blurring, sharpening, embossing, color balance, image effects:
http://www.networkingfiles.com/Compression/free_icon_indepth.html

PHP: if you have not considered or understood the advantages of using PHP for your website, read on:
http://www.devwebpro.com/devwebpro-39-20060526PHPRoadmap.html and
http://www.devwebpro.com/2006/0609.html

NON-PROFIT PRICING: more on the new Adobe policy which includes religious organizations:
http://www.web-evangelism.com/rd?06june-adobe


COMMUNICATING WELL

Wandered into someone's heart lately?
"Many evangelistic efforts often close hearts rather than open them. How can you lovingly help someone wonder her way to Christ?" says Doug Pollock:
http://www.christianitytoday.com/outreach/articles/wonderedinto.html

Informality attracts people?
"What do you think of these pages from the website of University Christian Fellowship in Syracuse, New York?" asks Frank Johnson in his Strategic Digital Outreach blog:
http://www.web-evangelism.com/rd?b06june-strategic

Things your site needs:
'Is Your Web Site Missing These Crucial Conversion Factors?' Although this SiteProNews article is written with e-commerce in mind, it has high relevance for Christian sites too:
http://www.sitepronews.com/archives/2006/jun/9prt.html

How I Learned to Love My Gay Neighbor:
http://www.christianitytoday.com/outreach/articles/reachingpeople.html


LOOKING AT YOUR STATS

Detailed description on how to interpret your web hosting statistics software; typically, the web hosting you have comes with its own web statistics program such as webalizer or awstats. There are also free traffic monitors such as servustats, web stats, and others:
http://www.web-evangelism.com/rd?b06june-search


IS THIS THE MOST STRATEGIC BOOK OF THE LAST YEAR?

WELL CONNECTED - Releasing Power, Restoring Hope Through Kingdom Partnerships
Phill Butler
Authentic Books/World Vision
ISBN 1-932805-54-0

Restored relationships are at the heart of the gospel. There is even relationship within the Godhead. And only through relationships can groups of Christians share the gospel (1 Cor. 12:12-31). Sadly, we are not always good at partnering across organizational or denominational boundaries. Yet there are many strategic outreaches which are only possible at this co-operative level.

Phill Butler's new book is born out of many years of helping missions, ministries, and churches to collaborate strategically. (Phil is the ministry leader of www.visionsynergy.net which exists to facilitate such collaboration.) He explains, with frequent case studies, the principles needed to unlock the incredible potential of partnerships. There is really no other book that offers all these insights.

The list of commendations for this book from mission, church and ministry leaders reads like a Who's Who of the evangelical world. It really is that good! Some organizations are buying the book in bulk for all their ministry leaders (see website for volume discounts). "It's a must read," says Bob Buford of Leadership Network. Sample chapters are available on their site:
http://www.connectedbook.com/

[You may re-use this review in any newsletter or blog]


IT'S THE WAY THEY TELL THEM

Story-telling is a wonderful gift - if you get the chance to learn story-telling, take it!

Secular story-teller Ben Haggarty claims his head is home to around 300 stories, from one minute to three hours long. And each time he tells a story, it's different.

In a world where we are bombarded with visual stimulation, story-telling bypasses it completely. It can be disconcerting the first time. Haggarty tells of a colleague performing in a New York School. "One of the girls was hanging back at the end," he recalls, "and came up to the colleague quite aggressively, and said, 'What did you do to my head? You put something in my head, what did you do?' She realised this girl had never experienced imagination before."
[London Times, 27 May]

The significance of stories is that they do indeed put something in your head you cannot easily get rid of. They can smuggle in ideas, questions, and a sense of longing, right past the heart's defenses. Sounds like a gospel tool to me! I wonder if anyone has used it before?


CHANGING BELIEFS

GENERATION Y BELIEVES NOTHING: a report 'Making Sense of Generation Y', (*those born 1982-2003 according to most) commissioned by the Anglican Church in UK, with evangelical leader Graham Cray, has thrown up some surprising conclusions. The authors began their work believing that even if the young had little knowledge of Christianity, they would still have religious or spiritual yearnings. They were shocked to find that they did not.

Their creed could be defined as: "This world, and all life in it, is meaningful as it is," translated as: "There is no need to posit ultimate significance elsewhere beyond the immediate experience of everyday life." The goal in life of young people was happiness achieved primarily through the family.

The researchers were also shocked to discover little sense of sin or fear of death. Nor did they find any Freudian guilt as a result of private sensual desires. The young people were, however, afraid of growing old:
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2-2169809.html

GENERATION G@P: Facts and figures for UK:
- 72% children 8-15 have access to digital TV
- 50% own a computer games console
- 48% of children 8-11 use the Internet, and 65% of those 12-15
- 20% of 8-15s claim to have set up own website or blog:
Source: OfCOM survey for UK, largest digital study yet done in UK:
http://www.ofcom.org.uk/advice/media_literacy/medlitpub/medlitpubrss/children/

REACHING THE EMERGING GENERATION: Truth is not viewed as absolute by the young people today; instead, truth is subjective. Anyone claiming absolute truth will be met with suspicion. This profoundly affects how we communicate faith today.

The emerging generation also tends to approach subjects in a non-linear way. The inner search for something more is driving many young people to look into spirituality. They tend to find themselves on a journey of discovery that looks at the world from different angles. They want both experience and logic to speak to them.
http://www.lausanneworldpulse.com/worldreports/357

CHURCH ATTENDANCE. I have always been skeptical about reported figures of church attendance in UK and elsewhere as wildly optimistic. Now, studies suggest that figures for USA are indeed less than thought:
http://www.crosswalk.com/news/religiontoday/1396537.html

WHAT DO THEY ACTUALLY BELIEVE? In the recent UK census, an overwhelming majority of people identified their religion as 'Christian'. However, were you to ask them what they actually believe, it would probably come out very much like Times columnist Caitlin Moran suggests, with her tongue barely in her cheek (there may be some English idioms in there you don't understand):

"Talk to people under 50 and they all, by and large, have a religion: a consistent, recognizable set of beliefs. It's just that it doesn't have a name yet. It usually consists of a selection of the following..."
[scroll to paragraph 5 to read her list]
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,10655-2156865.html

WATCHING CULTURAL CHANGES: If you are interested in 'future-watch' type articles, edited by a Christian commentator, check Tomorrow Today, with items on topics such as Boomers and Gen-Xers:
http://www.web-evangelism.com/rd?b06may-tomorrowtoday


THE WORLD WE LIVE IN

EUROPEAN UNION. The EU is a vast organization, with increasingly far-reaching decisions being decided at central level. If Christians wish to fulfill 1 Tim. 2:2 for the EU, they need information. Get if from EUReview & Call to Prayer (EURCP):
http://www.euprayer.com/

INDIA AND THE WEB: India will be one of the largest internet markets in the next 10 years, reports the Times of India, citing Eric Schmidt of Google. He claimed that Hindi would become one of the three top online languages, along with English and Mandarin.

MAPPING WITH A DIFFERENCE: see countries displayed in size according to their populations:
http://www.worldmapper.org/

C S LEWIS: if you are a Lewis fan and would like to hear audio recordings of his rich speaking voice, follow the links:
http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2006/118/43.0.html

RAY COMFORT'S TRACTS SEIZED BY SECRET SERVICE: Ray's ministry www.livingwaters.com recently produced a tract looking like a million dollar note!
http://www.assistnews.net/Stories/s06060015.htm
Sequel: Comfort announced the creation of another batch of 100,000 bills that comply with the new demands of federal officials. These bills, 1.5 times the size of a regular bill, have the words 'Secret Service Version' on them. "I think they will sell like hotcakes as a collector's item," says Comfort.

UNDERWATER PICS: Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution has announced WHOI ImageSource, an online image library that contains images spanning 75 years of ocean exploration.
http://www.researchbuzz.org/2006/05/woods_hole_oceanographic_insti.shtml

EARTHCAM - remarkable collection of webcams:
http://www.earthcam.com/index.php


TAILEND ô¿ô

Graffiti seen by your editor written in the grime on the back of trucks:
"Do not disturb: young lettuces planted here."

And a wise warning for tailgaters:
"Your skid stops here."

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