The potential for evangelism
What is podcasting? Simply, it involves ...
- an audio or (increasingly often) video file ...
- downloaded by your computer from the Internet, often automatically because you have subscribed to a particular podcast service ...
- which is then available to listen/watch on your computer, or to transfer to an iPod or other mobile device for later use.
Using it for evangelismMost Christian podcasts (as with other Christian media), are directed at Christians. It is the task of our website to investigate ways that go past this instinctive use of communication, and see where it can also be used for direct outreach.
Not-yet Christians, unless they are seekers, are unlikely to subscribe to Christian podcasts such as church sermons or other discipleship materials. The most likely material for them to choose will be lower-key bridge strategy podcasts, for instance on life issues or specific interests.
Some Christian broadcasters also offer their programming online by podcast.
Other uses of audio and videoIncreasingly, websites are offering embedded audio or video clips within a webpage, to listen to watch or listen as the user browses. This is an ideal way to enhance the communication experience through an evangelistic site. It has particular relevance for people in oral communication cultures.
Video can also be offered by podcast: the JESUS Film can be downloaded for mobile devices.
Examples of podcasts for non-Christians
- A school chaplain writes, “In the school where I'm chaplain, we've begun Chapell Radio as one means of involving kids in the chapel, and of extending the chapel’s work by creating a school news podcast with a slightly understated evangelistic edge. Most evangelistic podcasts I’ve seen are aiming at the world at large, but this ‘narrowcasting’ approach is proving very valuable in the school community, as well as attracting listeners from Sweden for some reason! The explicitly Christian communication is a minor part of the show, but I can tell you that nobody at school misses the point. They know what it’s about, and take note! It’s still in the early days but we're planning a move into video before Christmas. The audience has been increasing steadily week by week, and the conversations I've had with people as a result have been very interesting indeed.#8221;
- EveryStudent.com outreach site is soon to offer podcasts.