By Faith Hoyt
As Church Support Services Director Rich DuBose will tell you, his department is eager to help fulfill the mission of sharing the gospel. Formed to serve the needs of churches, his department has provided a host of resources to help churches share the gospel in the Pacific Union Conference territory.
DuBose joined the Pacific Union Conference as an associate director in the Church Ministries department in 1994. “Back then, we launched a new ministry help-desk called PlusLine,” he said. “We had an 800 number that local church leaders could call to help them find ministry-related tools and resources, and we handled event registrations. Toward the end, our staff answered as many as 100 calls a day.”
Soon, other unions were included in the service. Today, PlusLine, now known as AdventSource, is owned by the North American Division (NAD) and operates in Lincoln, Nebraska.
With the acquisition of PlusLine by the NAD in 2005, the nature of DuBose’s work transitioned to developing resources that could be used in local church ministry.
“Our mission is to develop and share curated content that inspires pastors, church leaders, and members to use their best gifts to connect people with Jesus,” DuBose said. “Our goal is to find and share knowledge and stimulate engagement that can help turn theology into biography.”
Over the years, Church Support Services has conducted seminars for ministry training; developed online study guides; created sharing cards and flyers on healthful living and other topics; and produced web ads and various theme-based websites for preaching, Bible study, and more.
Several recent projects include the creation of a smartphone app called SpiritRenew and an initiative called inSpire that celebrates and promotes using the arts in ministry. In addition, they’ve produced over 75 videos ranging from six to eight minutes in length that focus on specific ministries and individuals that God is using throughout the Pacific Union territory—a project called Stories of Faith.
“By far our most comprehensive website is Answers For Me,” DuBose said. “It provides content for people who may or may not be Christian-oriented. It has resources for users who wish to grow spiritually, but it is intentionally low-key in its approach.”
DuBose helps local churches use RSS technology to feature his department’s content, such as stories and recipes, on their church websites without diverting traffic away from their sites.
“It takes a village of ideas and efforts to help create a culture for change and experimentation,” DuBose said. “We focus on sharing traditional and innovative ideas that churches can experiment with to fulfill our shared mission.”
To learn more about the resources produced by Church Support Services, visit www.churchsupportservices.org.