What’s the Go with the GFO and how do I explain it?

Until a few years ago I always struggled as a pastor to find the words to describe what Crossover was on Good Friday as I announced the appeal. That was until Room 3 helped us develop a fantastic series of animated videos to describe what we did, using Brian Winslade’s development of the 4 metaphors. From that time onwards all I needed to do was cue the DVD. This year is no different, we have a cracking video which explains why we exist and what we do – and it is proving very popular.

Sometimes we come across churches that are reluctant to show the video or take up the offering so here’s a handy guide to Frequently Asked Questions:

1. We don’t want to show the DVD/video because we “don’t want to show the fish how we intend to catch them”.

Lots of churches have people attending their Easter services who do not usually identify with the church or the Christian faith. Don’t worry, the video does not ‘show the fish how we intend to catch them’. It’s a funny, relevant, easy to follow explanation of the role of Crossover in helping churches do ministry beyond the walls. Anyone outside of the faith would have a basic expectation that churches are trying to reach out. It would come across as rather strange if a non-believer walked into a church that DID NOT want to reach out. Reaching out isn’t the issue, its the manner in which we reach out that causes image problems for some churches. This video tackles the issue sensitively without any cringe factor. Non-believers actually enjoy it as will your church. The first time we showed this video the congregation broke out in applause! It’s a brilliant day to focus on resourcing mission and evangelism. At the heart of our gospel is the crucifixion of Jesus; what better time to invite people to invest in spreading the news of the cross!

2. We don’t want to take up an offering when there are lots of non-believers there.

As above, people outside of the church have an expectation that churches DO take up offerings, and that this is how churches are funded. The issue is with ostentatious money driven churches – which yours isn’t, so don’t worry. If you do it sensitively people actually appreciate it and it helps correct wrong perceptions. Crossover respects and honours the decision of a local church (and its leadership team) with respect to when (or even if!) a Good Friday Offering is collected. You are the one’s God has planted in your community, you know your people and what is most appropriate. Crossover stands behind whatever decision you come to.

Inviting people to be generous in the cause of furthering the gospel is not an inappropriate element of Christian worship whenever the church gathers together. It ought to be a time of celebration and joy, not something done begrudgingly.

Bottom line: Crossover happily leaves the decision about whether or not to hold an offering on Good Friday in your capable hands. We reckon the Apostle Paul got it right when he said (2 Corinthians 9:7) “Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”

Here’s the 2011 promotional video – enjoy