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Blog » How They Did It: Bethlehem Baptist Church Case Study
How They Did It: Bethlehem Baptist Church Case Study
This spring Bethlehem Baptist Church came to the Table. The Minneapolis congregation, led by John Piper, has had tremendous ministry success with the Table. We've pointed to them for examples, including welcome videos, website links & help, and even their own help videos.
In this edition of the Round Table webinar one of Bethlehem's Table champions, Jonathan Davis, joined us to share their journey with the Table. He explains how they got leadership on board, the things they did to launch it as well as the impact the Table has had already with their community. This is a must see for any church on the fence about launching the Table!
Watch: How They Did It: Bethlehem Baptist Church Case Study (1:09:31)
Highlights from the Video:
Jonathan says that Bethlehem draws 4,000 to 5,000 people every weekend to nine services across three campuses. At the time of this interview they were at 1,700 members on the Table and steadily rising, which was surpassing their launch expectations.
Why a social network?
Bethlehem wanted to do social networking because they realized that it's a big part of people's lives and they want to redeem all things for God's glory. They also recognize that it's easy to be anonymous in a large church and this is another, less intimidating way to encourage interaction.
Why the Table?
Bethlehem took their time getting on board with social media because they wanted to get it right the first time. They explored a number of different options, including building it themselves, but ultimately settled on the Table. They thought it was simple, worked well and being free helped with the budget.
What helped secure leadership buy-in?
Three things made leadership buy-in easy:
1) An online picture directory that people kept updated themselves was a huge draw.
2) The way the Prayer Wall allowed people to engage with one another was a massive part of convincing leadership.
3) The Serve App was the final piece. For a big church it made it easy for people to make real life connections.
One surprise with the Table?
That so many volunteer needs have been posted in the Serve App. Jonathan expected to see a lot more items given away or shared, but the volunteer needs have surpassed giving or sharing stuff by far.
How many staff hours did it take to launch?
They had four people (three staff, one volunteer) spending roughly an hour a day to prepare for the launch. So it doesn't require a full time person, but it was still a significant investment. Jonathan comments that he appreciates how the Table runs itself once it's launched.
What are you doing to keep the momentum rolling?
Campus pastors shared personal stories from the Table. They also plan to do more videos to highlight testimonies of how the Table has helped people.
Advice for churches getting ready to launch?
Take your time and do it right. You can literally set up and launch the Table in minutes, but you need to put a lot more work into it. Do your research and when people aren't on board answer their questions and help them see the value. You may only get one shot to show them how the Table can be effective, so do it right.