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Pray For One Another
To request prayer, email firstname.lastname@example.org
or call/text (520) 709-0815
Our pastors and their families
Our board members
The world as we all continue to navigate this Covid-19 pandemic.
Walt and Marlene's friend John
Talma's cousin, Don Ojeda
Alejha Neal and her family
The Larson's friend, Karen
Barbara Keeler's Brother-in-law, Larry
Mary Ann Watson
The many unspoken requests
Make sure you're a part of our Facebook group to get prayer requests as they come in: https://www.facebook.com/groups/21109057279
From the desk of our Distric Superintendent
Dear District Family and Friends:
None of us have been this way before, including our pastors. I am burdened for them due to the Covid-19 pandemic and its longer than expected duration. Many are tired, frustrated and discouraged. Additionally, there were no seminary classes or conferences or workshops for pastors to take on how to lead during a pandemic.
So just like you, your pastor has never been in this place before. But there are some things you and I can do to encourage them: be patient, be present, be personally encouraging and be praying.
Let me paraphrase a statement I heard by Mike Wakefield:
Remember, your pastor is not Super Christian. He or she is just a guy or gal, a fellow servant in Christ, with a high calling to lead the church. They are not going to be perfect, and they are prone to grow weary, just like you. That's why they always need your love, support, encouragement, and prayers. But especially during this season.
So let's do everything we can to encourage and assist our pastors as they faithfully and sacrificially fulfill their call to serve during this challenging season. I am confident we will get through this together!
Vision and Strategic Plan
It became clear to me about four or five months into the Covid-19 pandemic that the District (and churches) should not stand still and wait things out during this uncertain and disruptive time. With God's help and leadership we needed to move ahead safely and take our "next steps".
One of the first steps was to hire two part-time ministers to assist with District vision/mission facilitation: Dr. Brian Delbridge is now serving as Assistant to the DS and Rev. Matt Dennis is serving as NexGen Leadership Development and Technology Coordinator.
Plus, we continued to move ahead with our church planting and restarting strategic initiatives. During this season we launched Restoration Church in the Phoenix West Valley (Rev. Cody Abrahamson, Lead Pastor) and re-started two churches: Casa Grande New Beginnings (Darrell Weatherford, Lead Pastor) and Chandler New Hope Community (Rev. Will Hathaway, Lead Pastor). And we were not done...
On Sunday, November 15, Becky and I attended and participated in a combined service of three churches in the Yuma area. Originally, Bard and Yuma Connecting Point requested merger of their churches. I did not sense that was what we ought to do since we would end up with one church instead of two. We needed an innovative approach and solution.
After thought, prayer, and I believe Spirit-led inspiration, here's what Pastor Ray Jesser and I came up with, which was unanimously approved by the
District Advisory Board:
(1) Ray would resign as Senior Pastor of Bard Church and I would appoint him as Senior/Lead Pastor at Yuma Connecting Point Church.
(2) The Bard board and congregation would vote to close and the board would resign.
(3) I would transfer all Bard members to Yuma Connecting Point (most live in Yuma).
(4) We would establish our first Spanish Church on the Arizona District: Una Voz Que Clama En El Desierto Iglesia Nazareno (A Voice Crying in the Wilderness) and appoint Rev. Sergio Estrada as the new Lead Pastor. Connecting Point would be the sponsoring church.
So, two instead of one!
This step of faith accelerates our commitment to expand the diversity of churches on the District, which now includes the following multi-cultural churches: Tempe Tabernacle of Grace (Haitian), Las Vegas Grace Samoan, Phoenix Sudanese United Fellowship Church, and Bard Spanish. Plus, some of our churches have existing ministries to other language and people groups. We will continue to partner with the Southwest Latin American and Southwest Native American Districts as we can but will retain any new multi-cultural church plants on our District.
But we are not done. The Table Church will launch in Spring 2021 with Co-Lead Pastors Trevor Cherryholmes and Ryan Albaugh. They will locate in the far Phoenix East Valley. Their vision is planting a network of house churches and implementing this methodology to minister to people and communities.
We believe the timing is right for this approach, along with micro-churches and missional communities, as some churches, ministries and denominations focus on smaller groups of people, smaller more intimate worship settings and smaller buildings due to church trends of last 5 years, plus anticipation of post-Covid spiritual needs.
We celebrate each of these new churches and the progress we are making as a District. Now, I am praying about the District's next steps, how about you and your church? What are your next steps?
While I greatly missed gathering for District Assembly and Camp Meeting this summer, several weeks ago at Phoenix First Church we were able to ordain six ministers, plus issue a first District Minister's License to 4 people. We celebrate the significant achievements of the following people: Ordination - Trevor Cherryholmes, Katherine Holland, Daniel Poole, Paul Davis, Gaylene Simms and Geoffery Roediger. District License - Lynnette Buck, Gina Weeks, Randy Weeks and Christy Williams. In case you missed the online service with Dr. Gustavo Crocker, here is the link to view it: https://www.youtube.com
I appointed Rev. Perry Windecker as Lead Pastor of Safford Real Life Community Church. He began his ministry two weeks ago. Perry has been part of East Valley Church where he served as Associate Pastor. Thanks goes to Rev. Ray Wardlaw for ministering to the church during the interim.
Here are the churches we are aware of who had people involved in the three Work & Witness project dates for the Sudanese church buildings: Crossroads, Hope Community, Kingman, Las Vegas, East Valley, Phoenix First, Prescott First, Restoration, Sun City, Tempe and Turning Leaf Community. Thank you for sending volunteers and finances. There were more churches and volunteers but we didn't make a note of them. Please let us know so we can say thanks. And thanks to Rev. Josh Jorgensen and the District NMI Council for their outstanding support!
~Remember Judi Ferguson as she continues to recuperate following 3 surgeries and an extended hospital stay.
~Pastor Javier Tamez remains in the hospital battling Covid-19. In addition, his mother passed away last week.
~Pastor Ira Brown and Paula have Covid and so far have mild symptoms. ~Others with Covid.
~Dr. Dan Copp, former Arizona DS, is dealing with cancer.
~Cottonwood Verde Valley Church is in the pastoral search process and would appreciate our prayer support.
Open For Business
Pinerock Camp and Retreat Center is open and ready to assist you with your camp, retreat, spiritual renewal weekend, non-profit or marketplace executive planning and strategizing events, and much more. The food is amazing and the staff is friendly and accommodating in their hospitable approach to hosting your group. Sanitizing and social distancing protocols make events possible now and in 2021. Camp Executive Director, Rev. Rich Stoffan, and staff recently hosted a group of 200 successfully, plus numerous smaller groups. Don't hesitate to book your event. For more information, contact Trish Stoffan, Guest Relations Manager, at 928-445-8357, email@example.com or www.camppinerock.org.
In the crazy season we are experiencing with the pandemic, racial and political unrest, the Doxology is frequently on my mind and lips:
Praise God, from Whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him, all creatures here below;
Praise Him above, ye heav'nly host;
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
Join me in expressing thanks for God's presence and provision as we celebrate the Advent season.
Subscribe to the district email newsletter here: https://arizonadistrict.org
Week 50 (11/29-12/05) Bible Reading Plan
Join us here on day 344.
Or start will bookmark one in the church lobby!
Bookmarks 1-12 are
in the church foyer!
Before you read God’s Word today, seek His help with these 5 prayers:
1. God, give me wisdom, knowledge, and understanding. 2. God, let any knowledge I gain serve to help me love You and others more, and not puff me up. 3. God, help me see something new about You I've never seen before. 4. God, correct any lies I believe about You or anything I misunderstand. 5. God, direct my steps according to Your Word.
Click the blue Scripture and it will take you to that chapter!