The Seventh-day Adventist Church in the Inter-American Division (IAD) wants pastors, lay preachers, bible workers, small group leaders, and every church member across the 23,000 local churches and congregations to be intentional about following Jesus and sharing the gospel at work, at school, and in their communities. It was the core message transmitted as more than 3,000 ministers gathered in their regional districts, conferences, and churches to view a special pastoral evangelism summit held recently from Miami, Florida, United States.
“Pastors, you are very critical to the evangelistic success in the Inter-American Division territory,” said Pastor Balvin Braham, assistant to the IAD president for evangelism and organizer of the event. “Pastors and lay members, you have rallied and prayed and worked hard for the harvest experienced from 2015 to the end of 2019 with over 900,000 new members added to the church.”
Pastoral leadership is the driving force that integrates all active church members to expand the growth of the church every year in Inter-America, said Braham.IAD President Pastor Elie Henry highlighted the commission God has placed on the church leadership down to every member, to be intentional about sharing the gospel, under the power of the Holy Spirit, with humility and purpose as the Apostle Paul referred to in 1 Corinthians 9.
“We have a commission from God to evangelize our communities,” said Pastor Henry. “God expects personal service from everyone to whom He has entrusted a knowledge of the truth of this time and we must understand that everyone needs to be a missionary, living life as evangelists, teaching, evangelizing and serving in the community.”
It’s about engaging church members into witnessing to others and more, said Pastor Henry. “Actively participating in equipping and developing them into disciple-makers.” That means you have to know your neighborhood, no matter how absorbed one can be with pastoral work, or regular work, “we must look everywhere for new opportunities to share Jesus and His love.”
“The people who need the Lord are not just going to show up at our doorstep,” said Henry. Church members must identify people in the community, connect with them and invest in their lives with the message of the Second Coming, he added.Pastor Henry’s words echoed with what top administrators and church leaders in the IAD have been emphasizing for over a year now and as the new quinquennium, or five-year period, for the world church is set to officially begin starting this summer. The strategies of focusing on educating, evangelizing, and serving all fall under the “I Will Go” theme the Adventist World Church, customized with initiatives and plans to be implemented this year.
The online summit was all about empowering pastors, leaders and lay members to join forces in executing evangelistic programs set already for Inter-America’s Year of Discipleship and Mega Soul-Winning across the territory.
The program featured presentations on effectiveness in evangelism campaigns, pastoral and laity campaigns, the role of prayer in the campaign, reclaiming former members, discipleship methods, as well as evangelistic budgeting and reporting, among others.
The summit also highlighted the role church ministries like children and adolescent ministries, women’s ministries, youth ministries, personal ministries, education, Sabbath school ministries will play in propelling 2020 into a fruitful soul-winning and discipleship year, said Braham.Inter-America’s evangelism year has been divided into the following seasons:
1st Quarter – Pastoral Evangelism Season
2nd Quarter – Laity Evangelism Season & Education
3rd Quarter – Youth Evangelism Season
4th Quarter – Children and Adolescent and Women’s Ministries Evangelism
To view the five-hour pastoral evangelism summit online held on Jan. 14, 2020, Click
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