On April 12, a group (pictured below) of 20 GCI pastors and leaders from California and Nevada known as the “SoCal cohort” held their first “mission field discipleship” meeting in Glendora, California.
Those invited to participate in the cohort are highly motivated pastors and ministry leaders who are interested in growing their congregations spiritually and numerically. The purpose of the cohort is to make disciples in the mission field using an organic process that includes engaging new contacts, sharing the gospel, discipling relationally in venues outside the church walls, and incorporating rhw new disciples into the body of the local church.
At the first meeting, regional pastor Lorenzo Arroyo made a presentation entitled, “rethinking evangelism.” He noted that evangelism and discipleship are two sides of the same coin that should be fully integrated. District pastor and church planter Heber Ticas led the group in sharing stories about disciple-making in their contexts. Church pastors Anne Stapleton, Manuel Ochoa, Glen Weber, Bermie Dizon, Ruel Guerrero, Enoch Palacios, Jose Luis Escalante, Angie Tabin and several others shared stories concerning their community engagement experiences. Those stories were then compared to events recorded in Luke and Acts.
The meeting concluded with prayer for more intentional engagement of those in need of experiencing the reconciliation that is already theirs, and for continued guidance and participation with what the Spirit is doing in their midst. In the next meeting, the cohort will tackle the nuts-and bolts of making new disciples in the mission field.