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October  2016
Vol 16, Issue 10

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The Quickest Way to Stay Informed

 STORYLINE: Burbank EFC Celebrates 75 Years
Emmanuel Church (EFC) in Burbank, CA, recently celebrated 75 years of ministry to that community.  All during September the church looked back at God's faithfulness and the church's legacy in worship, discipleship and outreach, and ahead to God's ongoing desire for the church.
Dave Page Is Transitioning
DavePage
Dave Page who has served EFCA West Church Planters so well for nine years will be transitioning to serving as one of the senior level pastors at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, CA on November 1, 2016.  Dave's main duties will include  coaching and mentoring campus pastors from 12 locations in Orange County as well as 4 international campuses. 

"I have  thoroughly  enjoyed working for EFCA West for the  last nine years as the Director of Church Planting.  I'm blessed to have worked with some incredible church planters and lead pastors from our EFCA West churches.  I have appreciated working with Steve Highfill and the EFCA West team.  I  will greatly miss the EFCA West family but look forward to serving God by planting churches through Saddleback Church.  Keep planting for the Harvest is coming!"

As the EFCA West Team considers next steps, Pastor Tim Jacobs has graciously agreed to stand in the gap to serve and support our EFCA West church planters. Tim is an experienced church planter with EFCA West and served as interim during Dave Page's recent sabbatical.
Hanging Out With Kevin Kompelien
EFCA West is excited to host a gathering for EFCA pastors and church leaders with EFCA President, Kevin Kompelien on  Monday, October 17, 2016 from  9:30-11:30 am. The gathering will include a time for question and answer.  Lunch is provided following the time with Kevin.  North Coast Church in Vista, California is providing space ahead of this year's  Sticky Teams Conference.  You do not have to be registered for the conference to join us for this gathering.  Both the gathering and our lunch together are free.
EFCA History, Theology and Polity Seminar
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Once again Greg Strand, EFCA  Director of Biblical Theology and Credentialing, will be teaching the EFCA History, Theology and Polity Seminar at Talbot Seminary  in La Mirada, CA . The seminar begins on Friday, October 28, at 7:30 pm and concludes on Saturday, October 29, at 5 pm.  This seminar is helpful for those who want to understand EFCA better and is required for those pursuing credentialing with EFCA.  Click here for all the details.  The seminar is FREE.  The registration deadline is Monday, October 17.
New Credentialing Preparation Group Starting in Orange County
A new EFCA West Gateway group is starting in Orange County this November. The goal of Gateway is  increased theological understanding and improved skills in communicating our beliefs. It follows the EFCA Statement of Faith, and is intended to help pastors and other EFCA church leaders grow in their understanding of God's Word. Intended primarily for those interested in pursuing a formal ministry credential with the EFCA, Gateway is a helpful tool for writing the licensing paper and preparing for the licensing council.

The group will be led by  Jared Burke, Associate Pastor at Christ Community Church in Laguna Hills.  If you are interested in the group, email Jared at  pastorjared@ccclh.org or Brian Farone at brian.farone@efca.org

You can find more information about credentialing in the EFCA here.
Let the Lens of Eternity Sharpen Your Focus on the Now
EFCA Now offers both proven practices and alternative perspectives for Christian faith and ministry from leaders in the Evangelical Free Church of America. In the August edition under Theology and Culture,  Brian Farone, Director of Biblical Theology and Credentialing for EFCA West, posted an article that reminds us how  Revelation 22 speaks to our daily lives.  " Few passages in Scripture present a more compelling, winsome picture of the future God has promised to believers. In this passage, we see a picture of forever that addresses our deepest desires."  Read Let the Lens of Eternity Sharpen Your Focus on the Now.
Something to Talk About:  The Bobble-head Phenomenon
This month Bob Osborne muses on a phenomenon within church leadership meetings.  "A team or group is asked for input regarding an issue or topic by a strong leader... The leader provides his/her ideas, inputs or recommendations first, then other members of the team or group tend to nod in agreement; they do not routinely offer their own perspectives, opinions, or ideas about the suggestion. They look like a collection of bobbleheads."  Read The Bobble-head Phenomenon, this month's Something to Talk About.
Why Tim Keller Wrote a Prequel to "'The Reason for God"
Tim Keller
Matt Smethurst recently interviewed Tim Keller about his new book, Making Sense of God for The Gospel Coalition website.  " Christianity makes more 'emotional, cultural, and rational' sense of our lived experience than any alternative worldview, Keller has long insisted. In  The Reason for God , he made the rational case. In this volume, he tackles the other two."  You can read the interview here.
Seven Common Mistakes Search Committees Make
In a recent blog Trevin Wax writes, "In my experience, search committees are usually made up of hard-working, godly laypeople trying to do the best they can to serve their church. But even mature, sincere Christians can make mistakes when they are working on a task they've never done before.  Here are seven common mistakes search committees make (and I'm thinking here especially of pastoral search committees)." Read Seven Common Mistakes Search Committees Make.
The Five-Minute Guide to Choosing Where to Send Your Church's Short-Term Teams
farmer harvest
Shane Bennett still thinks short-term teams can be an important part of a church's strategy, but the trips can easily be a waste of time and money.
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The trick then is doing the 
right short terms. 
This Five-Minute Guide will help you help your church choose or develop smart ones that accomplish God's purposes." In this edition of  Mission CatalystShane shares five questions that help churches clarify the why, where and how.  Read The Five-Minute Guide to Choosing Where to Send Your Church's Short-Term Teams and discuss with your leadership.
Question mark man
Chuck Lawless highlights the ease with which we can shift from dependence on God for our ministry to ministering out of our own giftedness or power.   Eight Signs You May Be Doing Ministry in Your Own Power is an insightful read as we consider the source of our church activities.
Face to Face with Racism
James Emory White shared a YouTube video on his Church & Culture site that consisted of a social experiment in Lithuania.  " Racism is very, very real to those on its receiving end . The dilemma is how distant it can 'feel' to those who are not on its receiving end and, thus, not confronted as vigorously as it should be. 
This was laid bare in a social experiment where a man (who spoke English) asked strangers in Lithuania to translate a Facebook message he received from Lithuanian to English.  At the start of each encounter, the man says he has been in the country for two weeks and wants each Lithuanian to translate a stranger's message he cannot understand.  Handing the Lithuanians his tablet they eagerly begin reading the post."  And then...
Addressing Mental Health Issues in the Church
"One in five people in your church will suffer from mental illness in their lifetime.  With so many individuals impacted, church leaders need basic knowledge to handle these issues effectively...and  to offer support to individuals struggling in the church."  Read Sarah Rainer's article Seven Tips to Address Mental Health Issues in the Church to gain helpful insights for leaders who will minister to those suffering from mental health issues.
Four Reasons to Welcome Smartphone Use in the Worship Service
Cell phone
Jonathan Howe points out some good results that can come from congregants having and using their smartphones in worship.  Jonathan's closing to both pastor and worshipper is: " Pastor, when you see someone on his/her phone during worship, it's not always a bad thing. Worshipper, if you're on your phone during a worship service, make sure what you are doing is related to what's going on in the service."  You can read Jonathan's article here.
Something to Think About
"Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." -- Thomas A. Edison
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