A few months ago, we unveiled our new church planting room next door to our office. This room has all the best and latest church planting resources, books, CD's and materials out there. There is also a flat screen TV & Skype camera for long-distance web conferencing around the world. (and yes, there is coffee too).
Lee, Mass. Church Plant!
New Life Community Church, led by Pastor Jeff Black in Pittsfield, Mass is starting a new church!
After waiting for some time for a church planter to be called to the area, Pastor Jeff decided that they shouldn't wait any longer, and start something themselves.
Currently in their ninth week of meeting in an old Episcopal church in the nearby community, the church plant has an average of 60+ people attending. New families show up nearly every week to see what this new church is all about! The Gospel has moved into this new community, and we thank God for Pastor Jeff and his heart for the lost!
Led by Pastor Brad Guenther, eight years ago Immanuel Church launched in December of 2004. Last year, the church moved to a new facility with more room, and has quickly started to utilize the additional space; growing from 50 people in attendance, to averaging around 125 in their new location.
God has blessed, and the church is involved in a number of new ministries. Recently they have joined a cooperative effort to build a home for a disabled veteran. The gentleman lives very close to the church, and the story will likely be covered by local news channels.
The church is hoping God receives lots of glory from the work of His servants at Immanuel.
The church has also for many years been an unofficial chaplain to the HVCC Valley Cats, but only recently received recognition to move forward in a more official role as chaplain to the college sports team. During Sunday game days and other sporting events ,the church will support the players with personal prayer, holding services for them, and ministering to them in the name of Jesus.
Pastor Brad and the church are showing God's love in a big way to their community.
Cleve Persinger & Eric Murrell, founders of MediaSalt.com, along with Andy Burns, pro videographer; spent countless hours organizing and preparing for this all out creative church facelift.
The trip deeply impacted the churches, but also the creative missionaries -- many of whom spent 12+ hour days working late into the night.
Dannielle (mission team member) - "Tried to write a post about Creative Missions but kept crying. This has been incredible. I'd give my life to this."
An estimated $75,000+ worth of labor, time & materials were invested into our churches & church plants for this intensive missions trip. These guys made an awesome impact on our area, and we are so grateful for their servant hearts & service to our churches!
On June 16th, our Pastors & their Wives were invited to an evening out on us; to connect with other ministry families, reconnect with their spouse, and have a little fun in the process.
Fifty six people were in attendance, and our Pastors & Wives had a tremendous time connecting with others who understand the struggles of ministry life. Marriages, relationships, and churches were strengthened because of this event!
The 2010 Northeast Church Planting Conference was a complete success!
Church Planters, pastors and leaders traveled in from Canada, Florida, & Wisconsin and many other places to converge in Schenectady for our 2nd Annual Church Planting Conference! By God' s grace, approximately 60 indivuals received training in Church Planting, and we pray that God reaps a mighty harvest through this event.
Trainings offered were:
Church Planting Essentials
- How to start a new church and be successful!
Growing a New Church
- Identify and beat the growth barriers!
"Counting the Cost", and various other seminars aimed at propelling you towards your church planting goal!
- The 'Count the Cost' process enables you to project with a high degree of certainty exactly what it will take to get your new church from concept to reality.
VBS, Mission Teams &
Summer time is always the season for mission teams and outreach events in Upstate New York/Western Mass. The relatively short summer and fall prompts Northeasterners to leave their homes and get outside as often as possible; making it a prime connectional season for our churches and church plants.
Record Vacation Bible School attendance, unique servant evangelism and strategic community outreach opportunities characterized our summer events; with God receiving the glory. It was a great year!
2010 Pastors Retreat!
Late June was a brief period of refreshment & revitalization for those Pastors, Staff and their wives who attended the 2 day retreat.
Pastor Danny Sinquefield along with his wife Rhonda from Bartlett, TN spoke, and many enjoyed and learned from his insights into the world of vocational ministry.
Many comments were made afterwards that the time away and light schedule were helpful and much appreciated. Also, many connections and relationships were strengthened as our leaders interacted with others who often face similiar challenges on a regular basis.
2009 Baptisms & Missions Giving!
Local HBA churches baptized 127 people, and gave $132,000 to the Cooperative program in 2009. Praise God!
Church Plant vs. Zoning Board
Two HBA church plants are currently battling the local zoning authorities in an attempt to obtain more strategic buildings to reach their communites.
Church Planter Brad Jones in South Glens Falls is trying to secure a permanent meeting place for his church plant, Hearland Community Church.
Currently meeting in his town's local community center, Brad says that leasing the facility will provide numerous advantages over their current meeting place; including providing a permanent presence, increased credibility in the community, more classroom space and seating for 100.
As followers of Christ, we are charged to "go and make disciples". We desire to give our churches and pastors the best tools available to reach and disciple people in the most effective way possible. The most effective pastors and leaders are those who are continually growing and learning.
Out of that desire, we have begun to offer leadership training and development seminars at our group meetings. Our first session dealt with handing "Crucial Conversations", and looking at things that we can do to address difficult
issues at hand, while also not losing relationships in the process. The session was very helpful with lots of interaction and many positive comments at the conclusion. We look forward to our next development session as we learn from one another and grow together in Christ!
HBA's Church Strengthening Team Presents:
... We've got more great events coming. Check back here for updates on future trainings, and pastors and wives events.