Archive for March, 2007

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REGIONAL MULTIPLICATION TEAM MEETING 4/16

March 29, 2007

meeting.jpgFunding an ever expanding movement of new churches….brainstorming strategic next steps for classis leadership….listening in on Zeeland Classis Parenting Network….wrestling with encouraging new church organization.    These are a few of the issues facing the Great Lakes Region Church Multiplication Team meeting mid April.    The team is made up of representatives from each Classis in the Region along with the Regional staff.    Each one of the agenda items listed above is significant to this movement.   Your prayers are valued as well as input.   Contact Dann Stouten(Zeeland), Elizabeth Potter(Holland), Scott Van Arendonk(Northern MI), Jon Beyer(Lake Erie), Tom DeVries(So.GR, Jeff Port(SW MI), Rick Tigchon(No.GR) or yours truly if you have any input for that leadership team. 

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NORTH GRAND RAPIDS UPDATE…lead on Rick Tigchon!

March 27, 2007

north-gr.jpgRick Tigchon is a work horse for multiplication in North GR.   He has faithfully encouraged and envisioned planting for several years and we are encouraged by steps of progress.    Andre Daley the planter of Mosaic Life is in North GR and that ministry is doing well in heart of eastown.   Rick and the team there has an eye now on Belmont/Greenville/Sparta areas and have been seeking a planter to move into that area.   After a couple people that did not work out, we are encouraged by a possible planter that has come forward.   Pray for this individual as they discern their place in planting!   Also…Rick and his ministry partner at Rockford Reformed Aaron Van Mannen met yesterday to talk seriously about Rockford Reformed going multisite.   The consistory there is encouraging it and so plans are afoot.   We are blessed by people like Rick…and others that are not planters but are the keepers of the vision with us.   Go get ’em Rick! 

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ARK REPORT!

March 22, 2007

thumbnailcazx0pz8.jpgMany of us have been praying for the Ark after they dipped to 40 in worship…so here is an update.    They are now averaging about 80!   Several new families are connected in the last month or so…and some significant “bench strength”!   Randy is really encouraged.   Giving is up…they are meeting budget and launching Alpha again along with other community ministries.    Planting is tough work….really tough….Randy risked to share his heart cry from a painful place….and you can too!

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Wayfarer Moves to Organize…is it your turn?

March 21, 2007

thumbnailcal4qed0.jpg Josh Blunt announced it at the South GR Classis meeting Tuesday March 20th.  This is a significant step that we can all learn from and that most of us may delay longer than we should.    The “when to organize” question depends partly on the ministry model.   When there are enough people (qualified and gifted leaders) to reasonably deploy the ministry you are well on your way.   Clarity on ministry vision, responsibility of offices (elder and deacon), government (how major decisions are made…budget and ballot) and fundamental beliefs are part of readiness as well.     This calls for explicit teaching and instruction from the planter (that’s you!).   That can start anytime.    Sample documents (bylaws, articles of incorporation) and coaching are available at www.synodofthegreatlakes.org (under multiplicaiton resources find two documents, legal business side of planting and  organizing a church).    Bravo Wayfarer….lead on Josh!!!

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Stations of the Cross and Prayer Resources

March 20, 2007

Stations of the Cross downloadable for your computer.

Meditations on Jesus’ Last Hours.

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Rob, Josh, Brian & Todd may be calling…

March 15, 2007

thumbnailcak9xyxa.jpg Organizing a church and church organization can be different conversations.   Organization of a church relates to bylaws and Classis assessments etc.   It is a key issue for church plants that deserves some new creative thinking.   Church organization pertains to the proper role of consistory, accountable systems, authority for decisionmaking.   Plenty of organized churches are not organized well for ministry.   New churches do not want to go there!    This year our Regional assembly May 7 will focus on this discussion.   ORGANIZING TO SUCCEED will feature John Kaiser.     Todd Bush, Rob Link, Josh Blunt and Brian Steenhoek will be hosting planter tables at the event…if they call and invite you, say “yes”.  It’s our opportunity to have both conversations face to face.

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More Thots on Organization…are we “softies”?

March 14, 2007

thumbnailcawimvoy.jpgWhen a new plant launches in the Great Lakes Region, the Synod asks the planter so sign a New Church Covenant.  In that document the new church commits to sending 2.5% of their annual giving to the Classis, 2.5% to the Synod and 5% to other outreach efforts of their choosing.   This can be a means whereby new starts are “precalibrated” toward assessments as the very first offering includes a tithe back to those who helped start the church.   In denominations that are diligent about this it becomes a way of funding more new churches.  To date, the regional synod has no record of ever receiving a 2.5% gift.  Hummm.   We have not gone asking either so perhaps we are guilty of being a bit soft!    Question….what proportion of your giving goes to mission and what would it take for your congregation to value the wider church that helped give birth to their local church?