Some churches have developed creative ways to use Chick tracts both to get public exposure for their church and sow the gospel into homes in their community.
Pastor Thomas Gresham of Charity Baptist Church in Dayton, Ohio graciously took time to write a letter to us describing two strategies he uses. One is to enter a simple float in local community parades. Banners with scripture and the church name are used to decorate a trailer pulled by a decorated van.
Members of the church walk along through the crowds who are watching the parade and hand out Chick tracts with the church name imprinted on the back page. Using this approach, the church distributed approximately 6,000 tracts at two parades.
Another approach that Pastor Gresham suggests, is used to enhance door-to-door visitation. Ten houses are selected on a street to be visited for five nights. Church members introduce themselves and leave a tract without trying to witness unless the homeowner appears to want a conversation.
This approach is repeated for four nights. On the fifth night an attempt is made to witness at the first house. If they refuse, simply leave another tract and let them know they are welcome to visit the church or call if they have further questions. Do the same at each house until you have covered the 10.
The reason for doing only 10 at a time, is that if you find several that want to talk, the others may "get cold" before you reach them. Pastor Gresham describes several advantages to this method of door-to-door soul winning.
- Many are not home on the first visit, so going back increases the chance of making contact.
- By simply leaving the tracts the first four nights, you let them know you are from a local church and not members of one of the persistent local cults. Also, they have a time to review the material, thus sowing the message of the gospel in their hearts.
Many people today have no Bible background. If they have read several tracts it is easier to talk to them if you know what they have been exposed to. If they refuse contact, leave a gospel of John on with the last tract you know that there will be a witness in the home for years to come.
- This approach builds a relationship between the church and the homeowners. If they visit the church, they will see a familiar face. People are more likely to visit a church where they know someone.
- It helps sort out those who are not interested at all from those who may be interested but are not available on the first night. If they may be eating dinner the first night they might be available on a later day.
Pastor Gresham says that most people have no Bible background today and the tracts work well to get their interest started. The days are gone when soul winners could reap from fertile ground planted by Sunday school or general knowledge of the Bible in society.