For Zee Kleshchar, communications is a ministry of connecting. And in the CIS, a field of large and spread out countries, being able to effectively connect Nazarenes who are hours and days apart is critical to maintain unity and encouragement.
In her new role Kleshchar as communications coordinator for the CIS Field, she met in December with her new teammates, Joseph and Ree Sumi, as well as the regional communications coordinator, Dennis Mohn, to lay out objectives and goals, and to discuss ideas for how to support the CIS Field in communications.
Kleshchar has a communications experience through her job as web content and creative projects coordinator for the American Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine, where she lives.
“Just like no man is an island, church is the same way,” she said in an interview via Skype. “While it is easy and great to keep in touch with people at the local church, when you see a bigger picture through newsletters and websites and other means of communication, it is a blessing. I love to know what is going on in other churches because then I know what God is doing there and it gives me hope for our church.”
The team set four objectives for their new ministry:
- Inform: share the news of what God is doing; target audience is the general Nazarene lay person.
- Report: share the news of what God is doing; target audience is pastors and leaders.
- Equip: Education, primarily for pastors and leaders
- Proclaim: Sharing the Gospel with all people.
The main target audiences are young adults and pastors/leaders.
To minister to teenagers and young adults, the team is planning to start a video blog, or vlog, in April, featuring a host sharing answers to relevant questions that young people may have, and illustrating the answers with personal stories. Questions featured might include “What should I do if people in my class are teasing me for being a Christian?”
“While vlog in no way should cancel the direct talks, sometimes it is hard to admit even to yourself that you have [a certain] question or worry — and even scarier to admit it to someone who is your leader,” Kleshchar explained.
The first vlog would be hosted in Ukraine. There is the possibility of a second vlog starting in Russia, as well. The plan is to start one vlog and then teach leaders in other CIS countries how to start video blogs of their own.
The team will also start a Facebook page to unite and inform the youth of the CIS Field. The vlogs will be posted there, as well.
The CIS Field website is in the final stages of development, and is set to go live in March. The existing website for the CIS Field Partnership, www.cisnazarene.org, will remain in place, still geared toward compassionate ministries and recruiting volunteer teams for work trips, primarily from the U.S.
The team hopes to use the new website to direct pastors to resources they may not yet know about, such as theology books translated into Russian, as well as opportunities for further education.
“If we’re talking about establishing means of communication between pastors, it can also help them to share their needs with each other,” she said. “Therefore, I hope that by stimulating communication between pastors, they can help each other out. Some are located very close to each other, so knowing the need, they can help.”
“In these digital times, it is essential that we make professional use of social media. Therefore I am thrilled about the video blog,” said Mohn. “It will be a fantastic tool to proclaim the gospel to all generations. Communications is all about finding the means how people want to be communicated to. They found a way and I am sure it will bear fruit.”
You can read this article in its original form by visiting the Eurasia Region of the Nazarene Church’s site.