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Ministries Urge Christians to Leverage Personal Online Networks to Spread Gospel During Social Media Week

Reach Beyond and GMI Providing Vital Tools and Resources to Share the Good News Online

Contact: Ty Mays, 770-256-8710

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo., June 26, 2014 /Christian Newswire/ -- As Social Media Day is celebrated around the world during the week of June 30, Reach Beyond (www.reachbeyond.org) and Global Mapping International (GMI) (www.gmi.org) are partnering together to encourage Christians to share their faith online and equipping them with vital, practical tools to do that.

Photo: GMI's "Missiographic," Three Revolutions Impacting Internet Evangelism, is just one of several infographics Reach Beyond will be sharing during Social Media Week, starting June 30.

According to Internet World Stats, more than 2.4 billion people around the world use the Internet -- one-third of the global population. In the last several years alone, the growth of social media has made it possible for people from all walks of life to communicate in unique, personal and effective ways. Mashable (www.mashable.com) launched Social Media Day in 2010 to commemorate and celebrate this online innovation.

The partnership between Reach Beyond and GMI utilizes the growing social media network of Reach Beyond and GMI's cutting-edge missions infographics. The hope is that the information will compel Christians to use social media to evangelize via their own personal online networks, and also to share these critical resources with other believers for the same purposes. Among the topics to be shared are "Effective Internet Evangelism -- Three Revolutions," "Global Church Planting" and "Sharing Bible Scriptures Online."

"The Internet -- and specifically social media -- connects millions of people each day," said Wayne Pederson, president and CEO of Reach Beyond. "Even in the most isolated areas of the globe, there are people online. During Social Media week, we want to encourage followers of Jesus to use all means necessary to give evangelism a powerful jolt. Our partnership with GMI helps more people engage with this important content and be inspired to reach out and share their faith."

For nearly 100 years, Reach Beyond has used technology and media to reach the unreached with the gospel. Through its radio ministry alone, Reach Beyond missionaries and radio partners air Christian programming in more than 120 languages and dialects across the globe.

Since launching its social media strategy in 2008, Reach Beyond has expanded its digital presence around the world. The ministry has begun offering social media training to its missionaries and radio partners -- providing them with state-of-the-art strategies for ministering in their spheres of influence.

Reach Beyond also is using social media to drive 100,000 Christians to sign its "Reach Beyond Manifesto" (www.reachbeyond.org/manifesto), which challenges believers and the church to reach beyond borders and comfort levels in an effort to accomplish the Great Commission.

GMI partners with global ministries to make use of mission information as they seek to mobilize others and make Spirit-led decisions for Kingdom impact. The ministry uses infographics -- called "Missiographics" -- as one way to communicate the stories of what God is doing around the world. These resources often cut through the clutter of articles and give readers immediate and useful information.

By providing these critical tools, Reach Beyond and GMI hope believers will see more clearly how and where to invest their social media efforts to spread the gospel.

"One hundred years ago, Christians began using the recently invented radio to advance the gospel," Pederson said. "Then came TV, computers, the Internet and now social media. Each generation is gifted with its own particular technology in which to use for gospel purposes. Through our partnership with GMI during Social Media week and the 'Reach Beyond Manifesto,' we want to challenge believers to leverage technology and to step outside their comfort zones and make Christ known locally, nationally and among the nations."

Those interested in learning more about Reach Beyond and its Manifesto can visit www.reachbeyond.org.

For 82 years the passion of Reach Beyond (formerly HCJB Global) (www.reachbeyond.org) has been to make disciples of Christ. Using mass media, healthcare and education and working with partners around the world, Reach Beyond has ministries in more than 100 countries. The gospel is aired in more than 120 languages and dialects. Thousands of healthcare patients are meeting Jesus. Local believers are being trained as missionaries, pastors, broadcasters and healthcare providers.

GMI (
www.gmi.org) is an international team of evangelical research, GIS and IT professionals passionate about informing, equipping and connecting the Church for more appropriate and effective mission. It partners with like-minded organizations around the world to produce and present world-class research that fuels emerging mission movements and leaders.

To schedule an interview with a key leader from Reach Beyond or GMI, contact Ty Mays @ 770-256-8710 or tmays@inchristcommunications.com.