Is there really any power in digital ministry? Is live streaming, podcasting, blogging, any of this church media worth it?
In today’s show, we interview Jacek Obolewicz to learn his story of how online ministry helped bring him to church and find Jesus.
About Our Guest: Jacek Obolewicz
Jacek is the founder of Tech Church, a company that helps create websites that bring people to church.
Church media can be expensive on time and money. So the question is often asked is, “is digital ministry worth it?”
We believe it is, so when we heard Jacek’s story, we went bonkers.
We originally reached out to Jacek to share some knowledge on church website design and strategy, but when trading emails we learned more of his backstory and knew this was something more important to share.
Let’s dig in…
The Power of Digital Ministry In Poland & Beyond
When Jacek was in high school he was struggling with his faith. Does it make sense to believe? Is Christianity the only way?
He read the Bible a little but not much.
After returning from a year in Ireland, Jacek’s roommate was a Charismatic Catholic. Through his roommate, Jacek noticed there was something about Christianity that he wanted to believe in.
With the encouragement of his roommate, Jacek started checking out churches. Which really meant he was checking out church websites.
From Digital To In-Person Ministry
Even though websites weren’t that great back then, Jacek found articles about Christianity and the Bible. He even went down to the computer lab to download everything he could to read throughout the week.
Through these articles over 2 months, Jacek discovered how much the Bible related to his life and how practical it is.
One Wednesday Jacek Googled a local church to check out and went to their Wednesday prayer meeting. Yes, a prayer meeting! But Jacek will tell you it was the most intense experience of his life. He met people that proved God was real. He knew he wanted the same relationship with God. And after leaving Jacek knew he wanted to come back.
Jacek wanted to go to every opportunity in the church to find out about God. Then during one service, Jacek remembered the testimonials he had watched before. They mentioned coming forward to be saved. And he was ready to go all in.
Jacek’s journey started online. He Googled how to pray and how to get to heaven. He researched and read in a way that was very convenient for him.
And that’s what many people do. They search online. Even though we have friends, our faith is deep. It’s not easy to just talk about with just anyone. But they will go online and search to find out if Christianity is the real thing.
People Are Asking Questions…Will You Be There To Answer?
Everyone is Googling everything now. Recipes, actresses in that movie, how to change your oil…you can check Google Trends to see the most popular searches right now. But they’re also searching for spiritual things.
The entire evangelistic process can be done remotely and almost in third-person. Yes, we believe the Holy Spirit can work through a screen.
So don’t fall into the trap of saying, “Come here so we can evangelize you.”
People are checking Google by default.
The Secret Advantage That Smaller Churches Have
Often we hear, “There are already 100s of articles about getting into heaven, we’ll never show up in search results.”
But that tide is changing. Google now recognizes that local search is important. And depending on what people search, Google will show a local listing ahead of national ones.
This means that when you get your Search Engine Optimization set up, you can answer any question and be found in search.
So be active in your community and create content like a local entity!
And Jacek, being an expert web designer and developer, has the inside scoop to get you started…
Answer questions people are asking. Don’t just write about what you want, create content based on what’s topical and relevant. That’s how people will find you and the Gospel.
Remember who you’re talking to. Church websites are for the unchurched. So use words that unchurched folk understands. We’re not saying avoid God or Jesus, but carefully select your words to make your website easily understood to anyone you want coming through the door.
Make local content. One advantage a smaller church has over a larger global church is being locally connected. Make your digital ministry relevant for your community. Recommend restaurants in the area, review local events, or even highlight local achievements. Very few people are doing this in your area. This is low-hanging fruit.
Jacek is living, breathing proof that digital ministry works.
It’s not a substitute for in-person church life and culture, but it is invaluable to getting people to connect, trust, and take first steps towards making a visit.
We try to transcribe the show in these articles, but if you can’t watch now, bookmark this episode or add it to your “watch later playlist” because Jacek’s story is so powerful, you gotta listen to it for yourself.
The internet is the great equalizer. Your church, while small and local, still has a ton of power inside of Google. Create content relative to your audience and that’s locally relevant. More people will discover you and get that much closer to becoming your guest.
Are you using digital ministry strategies like blogging to be discovered? Let us know in the comments below!