God is certainly moving powerfully among our churches worldwide in this decade. Healthy relationships have led to deepened unity and clearer focus on God and his mission.

The Evangelists Service Team (EST) is comprised of 18 brothers selected by the evangelists in their regions of the world. Click here to see the selection process and qualifications. Click here to see the names of all Service Team members. The EST meets face-to-face twice per year and on conference calls many more times. Pray over this update:

2012 World Discipleship Summit and ILC: Mike Taliaferro, chair

8 Conferences 4 Days 1 City

The 2012 World Discipleship Summit (WDS) in San Antonio is moving along ahead of schedule. All the hotels, halls, and venues are booked. We are looking forward to our four huge services in the 18,000 seat AT&T Center. Programs are shaping up, and the website is now up and running. We have already seen roughly 400 register for the WDS, with more registrants signing up every day. Early Bird Registration ends on May 31. We are excited that the conference is just 14 months away. Please be praying for all the arrangements! www.icocconference.org.

Healthy Region Subcommittee: John Louis & Mike Fontenot, chair

In February 2011 when the Evangelist Service Team met, we took stock of the receptivity to the presentation of “Best Practices” was received by all the Delegates in Miami in 2010. The response from the Delegates was unanimous as they agreed on the need to be part of healthy regions and to put into practice the recommended suggestions. (Click here to see all the documents and decisions from the 2010 Delegates Meeting.)

One of these suggestions was the healthy use of key indicators or statistics in certain aspects of our church. Our subcommittee was asked to make a presentation about the proper use of statistics to the larger group that was also present at that time, namely the elders and the teachers group. We recommended that all key leaders be responsible for the gathering of such key indicators and to submit to Disciples Today annually for updating the Church Directory.

We cautioned that it is imperative that we learn valuable lessons from past mistakes due to an over-dependence on stats, such as how the inappropriate use of stats induced unhealthy shame and guilt. We also cautioned that we should not overreact and allow the pendulum to swing to a disregard of healthy numerical indicators altogether. A lack of monitoring different kinds of growth in our churches in a number of ways will only be a roadblock to our regions becoming healthy. Click here for the 2010 ILC presentations “Best Practices of Inspiration and Accountability.”

20/20 Vision Subcommittee: John Causey, chair

The 20/20 Vision Subcommittee, was formulated by the Evangelists Service Team, to shape a vision of what God can do during the next decade among us. During the last eight months our committee formulated a plan to build a 20/20 vision for ICOC cooperating churches by accumulating the visions of the churches in all regions of the globe. The committee developed and distributed a 20/20 template to cooperating churches to utilize in formulating and drafting their individual Church, Geographical Regions, and Continental 20/20 plans. In conjunction with these plans, we encouraged each Geographical Region to produce a 20/20 vision video. The Video’s purpose will be to introduce their Regions, and share their exciting plans with all ICOC member Churches. The committee is requesting each video be 8-10 minutes in length. The Geographic Regional video’s are being posted online at Disciples Today 2020 Vision page. The committee also decided, we would not be posting any written documents containing 20/20 Regional plans.

At the 2010 Delegates meeting, John Causey presented both the 20/20 plan, and template for a vote of acceptance and implementation by ICOC member churches. The Delegates unanimously agreed to the adoption of the 20/20 vision resolution. Since the conference churches around the world have been busy casting and formulating their local 20/20 plans. Our committee has been providing advice to HOPE worldwide to develop it’s 20/20 vision in it’s partnership with all ICOC member churches. We also suggest that 20/20 plans be formulated for the following groups worldwide: Singles, Campus, Women, Elders, and Teachers. The 2020 Vision videos from around the world are available on Disciples Today.

We are asking each Region to send their 2020 Vision to Disciples Today at: content@dtoday.net

Leadership Development Subcommittee: Doug Arthur, chair

We are very excited about a ground-breaking effort that has begun. Together with the Elders and the Teachers Service Teams of the ICOC, we are in the preliminary stages of formulating a curriculum for the training of our leaders around the world.

Currently there are a number of programs around the world that are utilized by various families of churches. After several very constructive conversations among the three service teams, it was unanimously agreed that we should join forces and develop a curriculum that would not only prepare our leaders for service but also unite our fellowship in training.

The spirit of cooperation was exhilarating and the progress is inspiring as we strive together to prepare God’s people for works of service. Please pray that God will bless our efforts in the coming months as we work to bring to life the vision that we share.

Global Missions Subcommittee: Pedro Garcia, chair

The purpose of the International Missions Subcommittee is to assess and evaluate how effective we are being on a global scale, as a family of churches at building multiplying ministries to seek and save the lost. As a result of our discussions we have redefined our mission scope and goals.

As stated in 1 Corinthians 3:5-7 some plant and some water but God makes our ministries grow. We have identified that we need to do a much better job watering our smaller churches so that their faith can grow which will better equip them for works of service (Ephesians 4:11-13).

We have identified three stages of maturity for our churches, they are:

  • church plantings
  • churches receiving watering
  • sending churches

As part of this plan Chris Ogbannaya is working on a financial plan that includes strategies and tools that give smaller churches the ability and goal to be financially independent. This model includes large and small churches giving support to mission plantings. This plan has been working in Africa despite its impoverished conditions. Our goal is that this mentality would be widespread among the churches.

We are also working with the Elders Service Team to develop a program to train shepherds and future elders in all churches. All of these plans were presented to the Elders, Evangelists and Teachers committees in February. To assist us in this endeavor Rusty Taylor is updating a financial survey of all of our family of churches. We are making an appeal to all of our churches for continued devotion and support to geographic missions this is crucial if we are going to continue our 20/20 vision plans of advancing the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Evangelists Service Team

Bruce Williams, Chair — US / Canada
Africa — Kris Ogbonnaya, Steve Mukenya
Asia / Pacific — Dinesh George, John Louis, Steve Chin
Canada / US — Doug Arthur, John Causey, John Porter, Mike Fontenot, Mike Taliaferro, Scott Green
Eurasia — Alexey Donskoy, Andy Fleming, Shawn Wooten
Mexico & Central America — Javier Amaya, Pedro Garcia
South America — John Reus