Internet Evangelism Day

Internet Evangelism Idea #1: Using CraigsList to Serve Local People in Need

Written by Paul Steinbrueck

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This post is a part of the series 20 Ways to Share Your Faith Online leading up to Internet Evangelism Day on April 25. We encourage you to tweet, share, blog & discuss these ideas in your church & circle of influence.

CraigsList has revolutionized the classified ad industry.  Not too long ago local newspapers had a virtual monopoly, and anyone looking to buy, sell, or hire had to pay big fees to run a classified in their local newspaper.

CraigsList changed all that with its free, online, community-monitored classified ads.

Now anyone can go online and post an ad for just about any item they want to sell, service they want to provide, or job opening they want to fill – for free!

That’s great, but what does CraigsList have to do sharing your faith?

I first heard this idea from Shelly Juskowicz, Pastor to Women at Mariner’s Church in Irvine, CA when she gave a talk as a part of Leadership Network’s AHA Online Conference.

The entire talk is inspiring and worth watching, but the part about CraigsList starts at 4:37

The idea is quite simple.

  • Go to CraigsList.
  • Click into the listings for your specific location.
  • Under the “for sale” heading click the “Wanted” category.
  • Find a listing for someone in need.
  • Meet their need.

Shelly tells of how she went onto CraigsList, found a listing for someone who needed blankets, bought the blankets, and brought them to her.

Most of the listings in the wanted category are for people who want to buy things – cars, scrap metal, jewelry, etc – but as I look at the wanted board in my own Tampa Bay area I see needs like this:

A kind heart needed:

OK HERE IT GOES -MY SONS BIRTHDAY IS SATURDAY 03-04-2010 AND I AM UNABLE TO BUY HIM ANYTHINGI , MY HUSBAND HAS ONLY BEEN WORKING ENOUGH TO KEEP OUR LIGHT ON…

Family in need:

hi my family just moved here 3 weeks ago we are getting out own place this week and we have very lil money and we are in need of kitchen supplys we have everything else so if you can help out we will greatly appreciate it im not asking for it for free but atleast cheap thank you so much

As with any kind of servant evangelism, you may not have the opportunity to share the gospel immediately (though maybe you will), but  maybe you can give the person your phone number of email address and tell them to contact you if they need anything else.  Maybe you can invite them to join you at church (bring a brochure or invitation card).

What do you think? Is this use of CraigsList a way you might connect with people in your community?

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About the author

Paul Steinbrueck

Paul Steinbrueck is co-founder and CEO of OurChurch.Com, husband, father of 3, blogger. You can follow him on Twitter at @PaulSteinbrueck.

30 Comments

  • Internet Evangelism Idea #1: Using CraigsList to Serve Local People in Need | Christian Web Trends Blog I was recommended this web site by my cousin. I am not sure whether this post is written by him as nobody else know such detailed about my problem. You’re wonderful! Thanks! your article about Internet Evangelism Idea #1: Using CraigsList to Serve Local People in Need | Christian Web Trends Blog Best Regards Cassetta Shane

  • Internet Evangelism Idea #1: Using CraigsList to Serve Local People in Need is a revelation for mission minded people. I love it and I would have to recommend it to my Church but I’m sure if ‘Craigslist’ covers my location i.e.”Abeokuta, Nigeria”. I have tried but I can not find my location. Thanks

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