I guess the first thing I should do is stop referring to Faith News Niagara as a "newpaper". If you spilled you morning coffee on it whie reading it on your tablet, it would be a slightly bigger deal than reading it on actual paper. But that being said, you are reading a document geared toward giving you information you would not otherwise have, just like a newspaper.
Which leads me to the first of a number of reasons why I created Faith News. Do you know how many stories of what God is doing in our community are not being shared? I know of a few unsung heroes, working behind the scenes, doing things that would be even more effective if others were aware of what they were doing, and were able to come alongside to help. I'm sure you do too. (In fact I welcome you to let us know of these stories so we can share them with the rest of our community.)
Another reason for starting this online resource (which sounds better than "newspaper", wouldn't you agree?) is to be informed and up to speed on what's happeneing around us. If your church is involved in a ministry where still more volunteers are needed than what can be found in your church, informing the public at large could help locate other Christians that may be sympathetic to your cause.
And has this ever happened to you? A church is having a concert, or a speaker, that you might really enjoy taking in, but you only found out after the fact. Or you create an event on a certain day, but it conflicts with another worthwhile event-- and even worse, your event is similar to the other one. Faith News Niagara is the Region's bulletin board-- or it will be, as readers like you pass along information the Church as a whole will benefit from.
The local Church has, collectively speaking, many resources to do the work of God in our area. This website is another one. Which brings us to another reason why Faith Nes Niagara exists: to further unite God's people in the Niagara Region. I'm excited to see the level of particpation among our churches as it is; I hope Faith News Niagara can add to that... and maybe even increase it.
And if you're a Christian businessperson that wants to promote a service, product or business to other believers, we can help you reach your target audience, while at the same time helping you to support a valuable Christian ministry... more on that in a moment.
The last reason is a little more personal. It has to do with telling stories about ministries in our area that are serving in the unique way God has called them to. You may know of some. I do, and I see this space on the web as an ideal place to let others know of their hopes, dreams and passions, as well as their needs. One such ministry that comes to mind is the one that I consider my "day job". I am a missionary with YFC/ Youth Unlimited (Youth For Christ), working at 1/2 time out of the Upper Deck Youth Centre in Vineland.
When I was first hired, I was told of the importance of meeting with area pastors in order to create ministry partnerships. In fact, the idea for Faith News Niagara partially came about as I listened to pastors share about the needs in their churches. So I began thinking of how to meet their needs, trusting that God would speak to the people I'd meet along the way about how he could use them to meet my needs.
If I help you with your needs, God will make sure mine are met. What needs? From my FNN perspective, I want to raise 1/4 of my salary through donations from business people who see the value of supporting me while promoting their business. From my YFC perspective, I want to move to 3/4 time through donations from people who believe in reaching young unchurched teens with the Gospel.
We are finalizing numbers in terms of "buying ad space"-- donating to Steve's ongoing ministry needs, and being publically thanked for it. All donations will go to my YFC account, which is managed by our head office in Woodstock, ON. Donations to that account are tax-deductible, and donors get a receipt. And I get to keep serving teens, businesses, churches, and believers in general.
I should also add that we need content providers (photos, writers, etc.) and we plan on creating an account to pay contributers. So help us get Faith News Niagara to the place where we can give the creative people in our midst an outlet as well! Like it says on our sponsor page, we want to create win-win situations; situations where everybody benefits.
So... how can I help you?