LUP025 – Military, Church, and Missions: Sean Coffey, Part 2

Here’s a quick overview of what you’ll hear in Episode 25:

  • Update: Questions on how to track communication preferences for churches and missionaries.
  • Encouragement: Hear the conclusion of Sean Coffey’s story, telling how God brought him from a life of fear and violence to service through pastoring and enabling church missions trips.
  • Tech. Tip: Learn how to keep your best Facebook posts on the top of your timeline.

Resources mentioned in this episode

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Update

  • Away this past week in Salt Lake City for the day job.
  • From the plane on the return flight, was chatting with a missionary about communication with churches.
  • Request overlapped with questions others had asked, as well as other ideas I had.
    • This question – what would it take to keep database of missionaries and churches and their preferred contact method?
    • Previous question – what would it take to track contact information for church members so I can reach out them just before visiting the church on furlough?
    • Previous question – what would it take to create a database to help me find churches compatible with my ministry during deputation?
    • Previous question – what would it take to track my direct communication with churches while I’m on the field so I don’t forget to keep personal contact.
    • Previous question – what would it take to track social media accounts of supporting churches so I can keep up with their current events when I communicate with them?

So far, the technical side of this isn’t hard. The challenge I keep running into is where the data is going to come from. What is a real, compelling motivation for a church to let us know when information changes? Or, if not the church, what would compel someone else to keep the information correct on the church’s behalf? I hear so often that most churches have a hard enough time keeping their own websites up to date.

If you have thoughts on how Edify Hub could keep the information current in a large, shared database of churches, I’d be very interested to know your ideas. Share them in the comments section.

Sean & Kathy Coffey - Churches In Missions
Sean & Kathy Coffey – Churches In Missions

Encouragement

Last week, I introduced you to Sean Coffey, now serving with Churches in Missions, a mission organization dedicated to assisting pastors and churches in short term mission trips. Let’s hear a quick reminder of his challenging childhood and the events God used to get his attention.

But he couldn’t tune out the message forever. God had plans for him, and He would keep working. Let’s hear the rest of his story, how God transformed a life and drew Sean Coffey to Himself and to ministry.

That was amazing! From outright rejection of God and tuning out of the gospel to serving churches and pastors, helping them experience the spread of the gospel around the world.

As I mentioned earlier, taking mission trips with my church had a huge impact on my life and my interest in world evangelism. If your church wants to share that experience, but you’re not sure you can tackle all of the details of organizing a successful trip, why not contact Brother Coffey and find out if Churches in Missions can help.

Tech. Tip

Last week, we talked about how to make sure that your carefully-crafted Facebook post looks exactly how you want it to look before you let others see it. There are just some messages that are important enough that you really want to make sure they’re perfect. But most of your posts probably aren’t like that. Most of them are usually a little more casual or spontaneous. They don’t need the same level of care; they don’t have quite the same significance, and they don’t bear quite the same weight in representing you and your ministry.

And because those more casual posts are also likely to be more frequent, they very quickly push your more carefully-crafted post farther and farther down in your timeline. As a result, people’s first visit to your ministry page on Facebook may not give quite the first impression that you want to give.

But there’s a way you can tell Facebook which post you want people to see first. You can take those more carefully-crafted messages and tell Facebook to keep them on the top of your ministry page.

After you’re done posting that amazing message and making sure it looks perfect, go back to that little gray down arrow in the upper right corner of your post, and choose “Pin to top” from the menu. This option will appear only for posts on a Facebook Page or in a Facebook Group. You won’t have this option for your personal Facebook Profile.

Choosing “Pin to Top” will, well, it will pin that post to the top of your Facebook Page so it’s the first message people will see when they visit your page. From that point forward, any of your more casual posts – those that you don’t “Pin to Top” will be added to your Page’s timeline below the post that you pinned.

Note that you can only have one post pinned to the top of your page. If you pin another post, any message that had been pinned before that will be pushed back into the timeline according to the date of the post.

Now, the fact that the timelines of your personal Profile and your ministry Page are ordered by date gives you another option. In that menu that shows up when you click or tap the gray down arrow in the upper right, you’ll also see “Change Date.” Clicking that will let you change the date assigned to that post. And when you change the date of a post, you also change where it sits in your timeline. And that option works for both Pages and Profiles.

So, if you have a Facebook post that deserves more attention than most of your others, you can “Pin to Top” on a ministry Page or Group to keep it there, or you can “Change Date” on a post in a Page, Group or personal Profile to move it to the top temporarily.

Closing

On today’s episode, you’ve learned how to make sure your ministry’s Facebook Page represents you well by keeping your best posts on the top of your timeline. You also heard the conclusion of Sean Coffey’s story and heard how to contact him to organize a short-term missions trip for a pastor or church group. Finally, you heard about some of the conversations I’ve had with missionaries on managing communication preferences and contact information for churches. If you have some thoughts or perspectives to share on this matter, please let me know in the comments.

And when you’re writing that Facebook post that you want to pin at the top of your Page’s timeline, consider Hebrews 12:12 and think – who will you lift up today?

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