Mission Site Reaches Hundreds of Thousands
November 04, 2010
By Larry R. Hygh Jr.*
10-Fold accomplished its purpose more than 40,000-fold.
The innovative online site attracted more than 417,000 people from 92 countries during a recent 10-day period, featuring live webcasts about United Methodist projects throughout the world.
Two of the lives enriched were those of the Rev. Mark Terwillinger, pastor of Beach Lake United Methodist Church in Pennsylvania, and a youth from the church.
Terwillinger was watching a webcast for 10-Fold when he noticed the status post of one of his youth on Facebook. The youth said she was "bored," so he invited her to watch the webcast about the "Shade and Fresh Water Program," a project featuring sports, health, and drama for children ages 6 to 14 from urban areas in Brazil. Thirty Methodist schools serve more than 3,500 kids.
By the end of the webcast, Terwillinger said, the youth "had asked questions, wanted to make a donation to Shade through the Advance, got UMVIM information to volunteer in Brazil, and wrote back to talk to me about leadership roles in the church."
10-Fold has been described as an online mission movement for the 21st century. For 10 days last month, the website featured live webcasts on church mission projects related to themes including children's health and wholeness, missionaries in the United States, missionaries around the world, church leader training, church planting worldwide, social justice, clean water and sanitation, health care in Africa, and sustainable agriculture. The website featured Skype, streaming videos, online chats, and downloadable podcasts.
During the campaign, people could help just by clicking the link of a particular project and becoming advocates. For each click, various church groups donated one dollar to the selected project, up to $10,000. More than 43,000 advocates were counted. An additional $30,000 was raised online for projects related to 10-Fold.
One strong advocate is Mark Terwillinger.
He challenges United Methodists to look for ways to make connections with youth and young adults. "In our connectional Church, we have so many amazing resources to plug in youth and young adults who are looking for something in life."
More information about the 10-Fold initiative is available at www.10-fold.org.
*Hygh is the associate general secretary, director of mission communications, for the United Methodist Board of Global Ministries.