Engage 2015 CEO, David Chawner talks about how Churches can follow on relationships and events developed from Rugby World Cup and use them to spur on further outreach. .
The Rugby World Cup was never seen as a “one-off” in terms of mission, but rather something that fitted into and stimulated the ongoing outreach programme of the local church.
Also the resources, both the Game of Life Pack and the Luke/Acts, were designed to have a longer shelf life than 2015, and will still be usable for the next few years. The Engage Media Hub (www.engagemediahub.com) will continue with videos of rugby players past and present talking about their sport and their faith.
Here are some ways that your church could follow up on activities from Rugby World Cup 2015.
Building on relationships begun through Rugby World Cup events through:
- Inviting contacts to Christmas events – carol services, Christingles etc
- Offering ALPHA/Christianity Explored courses in the New Year
- Planning Community Festivals during next summer – contact Fusion, Youth & Community (fusionyac.org)
- Further work in schools & with young people in the community – contact Scripture Union (www.scriptureunion.org.uk/sport)
- Creating or continuing men’s meetings at regular intervals – contact Christian Vision for Men (http://cvm.org.uk)
- Creatively plugging into other community events both local (e.g. carnivals, festivals etc) & national (see below for upcoming sporting events)
Continuing to engage in outreach around sport through:
- Building on links with a local rugby club (or any others sports club) by offering to do carols & Christmas songs at the club over the run up to Christmas
- Offering to serve the local sports club in other ways including talking with them about chaplaincy – contact Sports Chaplaincy UK for help with this (http://www.sportschaplaincy.org.uk/)
- Using the Christians in Sports’ Sports Quiz (christiansinsport.org.uk) each year
- Holding an annual guest service celebrating sport, to which local sports clubs can be invited
- Modifying existing outreach programmes around future international sports events creating widespread interest (see below for upcoming sporting events)
- Considering touch/tag rugby, football or any other sport relevant to your area as a means of outreach into the community – for options see uksportsministries.org
MAJOR EVENTS TAKING PLACE
- Six nations Rugby (6th Feb to 19th March) in England.
- European Football Championships (10th June to 10th July) in France.
- Olympics (5th – 21st August) & Paralympics (7th – 18th September) in Brazil.