Last Friday night, Crossfire had its first evangelistic night - "Ultimate Reality". It was part of Annandale Community Church's 'Start the Ultimate Relationship' week, and was a great night.
Here's how we planned what we did on our night:
1. First step was choosing the Bible passage for the evening. Although we had a groovy name for the event, a funky theme (Reality TV) plus great games and decoration - first up was working out what we wanted to teach from the Bible. So often, youth (and even church) events are planned the other way around. A theme is proposed and then the Bible is made to squeeze around an inflexible program, and so the 'big idea' that the kids take home is fashioned before the Bible is even opened.
We decided that more than anything, we wanted to take these kids through Luke 15, to show them that God loves them. He loves them and goes out looking for his lost children like the woman does with the coin, like the shepherd does with his lost sheep, and like the father does with his lost son. We decided that we would focus primarily on this last story - the prodigal Son.
2. With the Bible passage chosen, the rest of the night could flow from there. Next question was: What overall shape should the whole night take? As we read through the passage, it was clear that the story of the lost Son could easily be re-created into a reality TV show. There were a few other suggestions - but reality TV is something that youth get - and it looked like it could be a lot of fun.
3. We wrote a script for a TV show in 3 pre-recorded segments, which would be supplemented on the night with live interviews on a 'rove' style set. The TV show was about a son 'Nick' who was challenged by the producers of the show to demand his inheritance from his parents and leave home in order to win his freedom. Like reality TV shows, our video contained pre-recorded interviews with (fictitious) friends and family, and reflections from the protagonist on his actions - they'll be up on youtube soon.
4. These segments were broken up with games and activities and challenges - some loosely tying in with the theme, others not. We wanted to have time to meet and relate with newcomers as well as teach them about God. These were delegated to be organised and run on the night by a leader who was not required to be part of the 'TV' part of the night.
5. The video was filmed, edited and put on DVD with automated stops at the right places - to keep things technically smooth on the night.
6. The room decoration was delegated to someone who had read the script and understood what was happening. They brought in a lighting kit, big screen, couch, coffee table and posters and P.A.
7. We wrote the text for invite/postcard ad and then sent it to our graphic designer who came up with the final piece. This was letterbox dropped to the entire suburb along with the other mission advertising, as well as given to regular memebers to invite friends. We had more guests from personal invites than we had from the letterbox drop.
That was pretty much it. Any questions or comments?