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Church Revitalisation Network

2020 Church Revitalisation Network

For the last few decades, there has been a growing realisation that existing churches, even those that were recently planted, are not faring well. Many church leaders currently lack the training necessary to build sustained growth, health, and spiritual vitality.

The Church Revitalisation Network seeks to respond to the decline of existing churches by training church leaders in the spiritual leadership and skills they need to revitalise their churches for long-term sustainability. Its vision is to equip spiritually mature and intellectually well-grounded evangelical church leaders to:

  • Improve the spiritual health of the church through worship, building trust in God as obedient disciples
  • Improve relationships within the church and with unbelievers through face-to-face relationships and better integration of new members
  • Improve the quality of leadership within the church through team building
  • Improve the effectiveness of the church by identifying the mission, vision, and strategic plan
  • Improve the contextualisation of the church through historical, geographical and cultural study of the church’s community

Participants in the Church Revitalisation Network will receive specialised training at the Annual Meeting and throughout the year, as well as helpful resources and opportunities to be mentored.
 

NETWORK LEADER


David Brown has been involved in church planting in France since 1976 and has planted three churches (two in Nancy and one in the Paris suburbs). At present he is “replanting” a church in central Paris (Église Protestante Évangélique de Paris-Cardinet). For many years he was involved with GBU (Groupes Bibliques Universitaires), the French student movement affiliated with IFES, first as General Secretary, and then as chair of the board. He also chairs the Evangelism Commission of the French “National Council of Evangelicals” and teaches church planting and revitalization at the Geneva Bible Institute. He is married to Mary, and they have four adult children and a growing number of grandchildren.

 

NETWORK SPEAKERS


Øyvind Åsland is General Secretary (CEO) of Norwegian Lutheran Mission. Last year the organization celebrated its 125th anniversary. During the last few years he has led some major changes: prioritizing resources towards new areas of mission (scaling down in traditional areas in order to reach the least reached people groups) and starting church planting in Norway as the church situation in Norway has changed. Øyvind has also served as a missionary in Kenya. He is married to Reidun and they have three children.

 


Paul Coulter lives in Lisburn, Northern Ireland, with his Malaysian wife, Gar-Ling, and their two children.  Having begun his working life in medicine, he moved into pastoral ministry across cultures among Belfast’s Chinese community and then within his own culture in Glenabbey, a large church outside the city.  He completed doctoral studies in church and mission and taught practical theology and missiology for eight years in Belfast Bible College.  Since April 2019 he has been Head of Ministry Operations for Living Leadership, training, supporting, and resourcing disciple-making leaders in the Church across the UK and Ireland.  He is also a member of Council of Evangelical Alliance UK, director of Sophron, a network of apologists and apologetics trainers based in Northern Ireland, and author of several articles on BeThinking.org.  He has written several articles for BeThinking.org and speaks and writes regularly on the Christian mind and contemporary culture.

 


Rick Hill works for the Presbyterian Church in Ireland in the area of discipleship development, majoring on the delivery of disciple-making training and the development of discipleship resources. Prior to this, Rick comes from a background in youth ministry with both Scripture Union and in a local church. He now serves as an Elder in Carnmoney Church while also being involved in a fresh church plant from that church into the city centre of Belfast. Rick lives near Belfast in Northern Ireland with his wife Sarah and 2 young sons, and in his spare time he enjoys running.

 


Jay Mosser has served in pastoral roles for nearly 40 years – about 20 years in various assistant pastor capacities and the rest as senior pastor. Through those years he has served in three churches ranging from small (less than 50) to large (about 1,000). Along the way he has worked with children, teens, worship ministry, pastoral care, and preaching and leadership. Jay has an M.Div from Western (Conservative Baptist) Seminary and a D.Min from Borgan University in Oregon, where his doctoral thesis was titled “How a Pastor’s Theology of Shepherding Affects the Health & Growth of a Church.” He is married to Kathy and has three daughters and three grandchildren. In his spare time, he loves to read, hike, travel, watch sports, and spend time with his family.

 


Adrian Reynolds serves as Associate National Director for the FIEC with particular responsibility for training, including developing leaders. Following a career as a senior manager in the pharmaceutical industry, he served as pastor of Yateley Baptist Church and then as a Director of The Proclamation Trust. Adrian is the author of twelve books, including And Then He Knew Her: A Biblical View of SexTeaching Numbers: From Text to Message, and Progress: Lifelong Growth for Christian Workers. He is a visiting lecturer at a number of colleges and writes for Ligonier in the USA. Adrian serves on an international mission board and chairs two UK Christian organisations: Evangelicals Now (a newspaper) and Discipleship Tech (which owns the PrayerMate app). He is married to Celia and they have three daughters, two of whom are married.

 

Derek Webster is an author, teacher, and the lead pastor at Grace Pointe church, a multi-campus church based in Naperville, Illinois. With nearly 30 years in full-time ministry, Derek and his family have planted several churches internationally and Derek has coached hundreds more on cultural engagement, church planting, and change management. His first book, Unlocking the Soul of a City, brings much of this expertise to bear by helping leaders know and reach the cities globally. His next book will release later this year. Today, along with pastoring Grace Pointe and completing his Ph.D. at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, Derek continues to teach, speak and consult globally on leadership, culture, and mission. He and his wife have raised three boys and are the proud grandparents of two grandchildren.

 

NETWORK PROGRAMME

Day 1

For first-time participants:

The Reason for this Network: An Introduction to Revitalisation

David Brown

Why is church revitalisation necessary? Why is it so difficult? What is the difference between revival and revitalisation? This session will present some of the barriers to revitalisation, as well as statistics from the USA and Europe. Attendees will learn specific steps that we as leaders can take to encourage the revitalisation of our churches.

 

Session for returning participants is to be announced

 

The Power of the Next Step: Building Vision in a Stagnant Church

Jay Mosser

Most churches begin with a vision for something – reaching a community or a nation, helping families, or sending missionaries. But what happens when the initial vision fades, when goals are not reached, and disillusionment sets in? How does a pastor re-kindle the vision and turn a stagnant church around?


Day 2

Refreshing Your Leadership in God’s Grace: Christ’s Invitation to Christian Leaders

Paul Coulter

“Come to me, all who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).  Those words of Jesus are well known, but if we're honest, our leadership seldom feels restful.  We slip into patterns of drivenness, workaholism, and control when our Lord calls us to an easy yoke.  We run dry when Christ promises fullness.  If you're a leader at any level in any context and this sounds at all familiar, this session is for you.  We'll explore wisdom from our experiences and from the greatest leader ever.  Above all, we'll refocus on God's wonderful grace.

 

Building the Church by Making Disciples

Rick Hill
This session will consider how the development of discipleship is a key contributor in the area of Church Revitalisation. In order to enable a church to reach wider, it is necessary to lead people deeper. Through this talk we will consider some key shifts that can be made to help develop a discipleship culture in the heart of your church.


Day 3

How Can the Arts Contribute to Church Revitalisation?

David Brown

A common problem for a church needing revitalisation is that it has lost contact with its environment – it is out of touch with the culture of our times and the culture of its location. How do we engage our neighbors and communicate in a way that they will understand? How do we help passive or skeptical nonbelievers to consider the gospel? The use of the Arts can encourage church members to reach out to unbelievers and to do it in a way that connects with them.

 

Trade Talks:  Lessons I Have Learnt from My Experience of Church Revitalisation

Oyvind Asland, Adrian Reynolds, other speakers TBA

We learn by doing, and this includes learning from the mistakes we make. An old adage states that “practice makes perfect”. The speakers will share their practical experience – both what has worked and what hasn’t worked – in order to encourage participates and help them to avoid common errors. After listening to and dialoguing with the speakers, the rest of the session will consist of work in peer groups in order to work out how these insights could be helpful in each participant’s situation.


Day 4

For pastors & church leaders:

Case Studies

David Brown, Øyvind Asland, other speakers TBA
Different case studies will be offered in order to bring together what we have learnt in the week. Participants come from various parts of Europe, each sub region having its own background, and from various ecclesiastical traditions (historic denominations, older free churches, more recent church plants looking for a new impetus). We obviously cannot cater for every permutation, but we shall attempt to provide meaningful case studies for each participant.

 

For denominational leaders:

Turning the Titanic: Moving Churches or Organizations through Cultural Change

Derek Webster

Turning around a church or organization begins with establishing the organizational culture. As someone who has helped countless large and small organizations manage change, this workshop will provide you the tools to understand where, when, and how cultural change can be initiated and sustained.

 

Where Do We Go from Here? Writing an Action Plan for the Next 12 Months

David Brown

This session will begin with a review of everything has been covered earlier in the network. Participants will have the opportunity not only to reflect on what they have learned, but also to generate an action plan adapted to their specific situation. Returning participants will also reflect on the action plans that were generated at the previous Forum. By sharing these plans with each other, participants will be able to make them as practical and achievable as possible, and will leave the Forum with a set of practical steps that will enable the training and resources they have gained to bear fruit beyond the Forum context.

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