Outreach Through Social Media Conference in Bulgaria

Outreach Through Social Media Conference in Bulgaria

A total of 17 Facebook pages were presented by the people who run them.

February 26, 2018 | Sofia, Bulgaria. | / Ivalina Ilieva, EUD NEWS.

A group of 60 lay-members gathered in Sofia this past Sabbath in order to discuss and share their best practices in reaching out through social media. In a way it was a foretaste of European GAiN Conference next month.

A total of 17 Facebook pages were presented by the people who run them. One by one administrators of the pages were coming on the stage sharing their experiences and inspiring stories.

The beginning was laid several years ago by Pastor Trifon Trifonov, Personal Ministries and Sabbath School leader for Bulgarian Union. He started with Facebook page where he presented real-life stories of Bulgarian Adventist members. As a result two books where published with two more waiting to be printed. Then he added Facebook pages on our Fundamental Beliefs; Daniel; Revelation; Sanctuary in the Old and the New Testaments; Prayer in action etc.

Seeing the impossibility to run everything by himself, he contacted lay members asking them to get involved. First he was joined by Doctor Veska Voycheva who undertook the administration of “Health and Wellbeing” and “For the Beginning of Your Day” pages. She was shocked to learn that her friends were forwarding her postings to their friends and they, in turn, to still others.

Karolina Koleva, still in high-school, runs “Creation or Evolution” page. She shared who mad she was that in schools nobody even talks about Creation and how Evolution is being taught not as a theory but as a proven fact.  She is now talking with a friend of hers from the church to start a Favebook page on archeology and the Bible.

Realizing the growing interest of the general public in psychology, Facebook page was developed under the title “Psychology for Every Day.” It is run by Yordanka Deycheva, professional psychologist.

Another project was presented by Katya Kupenova – her “Day By Day” FB page with inspirational thoughts. It has become so popular that even secular web-portals quote and promote it often. Out of that grew her mission initiative “Meet & Speak”. For more than an year now people attracted by her webpage meet and speak in English on different topics, formed a club and she invites them to church!

We should not bypass the “official channels” of the Union – Bible Correspondence Course, AWR Bulgaria, New Life Publishing House and Hope Channel Bulgaria were also presented at the Conference.

And then came really inspiring part: Statistics! A team of people is trying to process the whole information willfully disclosed by Facebook contacts. Currently 81 488 people follow our pages. Taking into consideration that they are run in Bulgarian language only this is a vast evangelistic opportunity for us! Out of the small amount processed profiles, the results are really amazing: The majority of the contacts are Bulgarians – and this is understandable. One third are Roma (Gypsies) and – again, only from the small amount of the profiles processed – 147 are Turks! Talk about reaching 10 / 40 Window!  Pastor Trifonov shared that for the past two month only 10 000 new people started to follow our pages.

The bottom line: Seventh-day Adventist Church in Bulgaria has 7 118 members. There are 81 488 people actively following our pages so far. There is a “hidden church” out there, more than 10 times bigger than the official one. Exciting times are ahead of us!

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