Everywhere the river flows, it brings life
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June 2017

A monthly publication of
IMPORTANT INFORMATION
What you need to know
Dennis Jeffery, Superintendent 
  • Pastors and Delegates register today for TRC's Leadership Summit July 14-15 in Denver, Colorado.
  • Have you read Dr. Preston Sprinkle's People to Be Loved ? He is speaking at the Leadership Summit on Sexual Wholeness as vital to Discipleship.
  • Reserve your spot for TRC's upcoming Israel Trip, February 13, 2018.
See you at Leadership Summit.
We are so excited about this year's TRC's Leadership Summit. It begins at 1pm on Friday, July 14th and concludes at 3pm on Saturday, July 15th. We will be hosting the event on the beautiful campus of Colorado Christian University in Lakewood, Colorado. 

Meals
The following meals are included with your registration:
Friday's Dinner
Saturday's Breakfast
Saturday's Lunch
All other meals will be own your own.

Schedule
Friday, July 14, 2017
11:00 AM   Leadership Summit Check-In Begins
12:00 PM   Lunch on your own
1:00 PM     Leadership Summit
5:15 PM     Dinner together
7:00 PM     Evening Worship & Ordination Service
8:30 PM     Free Time

Saturday, July 15, 2017
8:00 AM    Breakfast together
9:00 AM    Worship & Devotional
9:30 AM    Annual Conference Session
12:30 PM   Lunch together
1:00 PM    Superintendent Search Discussion
1:45 PM    Prayer with District Leaders
2:30 PM    Communion
3:00 PM    Closing Blessing and Dismissal

Accommodations
Colorado Christian University is offering on-campus housing to TRC Leadership Summit attendees who need overnight accommodations. Each apartment has two bedrooms (with two twin beds in each room), one bathroom, and a full kitchen. The cost is $117/night per apartment. If you would like to share an apartment, please indicate that on your registration form. Accommodations are on a first come first serve basis and will fill up fast, so register today.
SCHOLARSHIPS AVAILABLE
To apply for a Leadership Summit Scholarship, please email the Conference Administrator with your request. Scholarships are limited and will be awarded on a first come first serve basis. 
NEXT YEAR IN JERUSALEM
Pastor Dave McGarrah
February 13-22, 2018
An exciting trip to Israel is being planned for all who are interested in traveling to the land that is closest to God's heart. This is a special trip for the pastors, leaders, and spouses of The River Conference. CLICK HERE and it will take you to the web site where you can get all the details, register, and make your deposit to secure your place on this bucket list trip. This is a spectacular value. Similar trips to Israel can cost over $4,000 per person. DON'T MISS OUT ON THIS WONDERFUL OPPORTUNITY.

Special Offer
The River Conference is offering the following discounts i f you register and put a $300 deposit down:
Deadline   
   Per Person Discount
Leadership Summit (July 15th)   
   $400
August 31, 2017   
   $300
November 1, 2017   
   $100
The $300 deposit will hold your seat and you can cover the balance over the next number of months. I, along with Superintendent Jeffery, are looking forward to traveling with you.
 
As the Jewish people say, "Next year in Jerusalem!"
CHURCH PLANTING REPORT
Building Healthy Churches that Plant Healthy Churches
By Ted Haggard
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In the last two columns on church planting within the Free Methodist Church, we've highlighted four of the six points emphasized by Bishop Matt Thomas at the church planters' meeting in Indianapolis. In this article, we'll cover the final two. In review, the first four were:
 
  1. Our efforts need to be Christ-centered and Spirit-led.
  2. Our efforts need to be fruitful and effective.
  3. Our efforts need to be theologically congruent.
  4. We need to be accountable to the appropriate authorities and accountable for those we serve.
The Bishop's fifth point exhorts church planters to make what they plant and build transferrable and reproducible, so that it can multiply. No doubt, God uses each of our unique characteristics and personality traits to build his work. People do not simply respond to ideas and beliefs, but to people. So when planting a church, we must trust that God will use us as people-our stage of life, our looks, our personality traits, our family dynamics, and other characteristics associated with us--in building his kingdom. But we must also be cognizant of the fact that we are building an institution that will outlast us. We are building a family of believers, a building of the Lord, a body.
 
In 1985, when I was 28 years old, my wife and I planted New Life Church in Colorado Springs, Colorado. We served that church family faithfully for 22 years and during that time, enjoyed 22 years of consecutive double-digit growth. The result was a 14,000 member congregation meeting in a prominent campus in north Colorado Springs. Then, after experiencing a personal failure, I resigned from my position in that church, repented, submitted, and went through four years of restoration before planting St. James Church, which I now serve.
 
After my scandal, the church I had pastored experienced only a 10% decline in attendance the first year. Afterward, there was a greater decline when the new church leadership decided to change some of the fundamentals of the church. Even so, today there are still 7,000 people who worship there on Sunday mornings. My point is that the church was not built on my personality or teaching method. I was always aware that Jesus is the builder of the church and that we're working for him and his cause-not for ourselves.
 
The reason New Life Church is still strong and vibrant today is that its foundation was transferable to a totally different culture. And it was also reproducible. Staff members from New Life, all of them notably successful, have planted many churches around the country. Why? Because the culture and methodologies were reproducible. Various Christian leaders can take those basic ideas and successfully build healthy churches. This concept leads to the Bishops final point:
 
Our efforts must be sustainable. I've been intentional that every church I've ever planted or sponsored not be dependent on any source of income other than the tithes and offerings of those who worshipped in that church. I think in planting our churches, we need to start with a team of connected believers and funds, but after six to twelve months, make the church self-sustaining.
 
So how do we accomplish these tasks? On Thursday, July 13th, We'll have a church planters discussion in Denver at the River Conference annual gathering. Any of you wanting to discuss building a healthy church which will produce additional healthy churches are invited to join with us. 
Ethan's Baptism
Sharon Porter, Caldwell, ID

This is Ethan, the 8 year old boy we had the privilege of baptizing yesterday afternoon.  Because of his sensory issues due to autism, he asked if he could be baptized by pouring (still quite a stretch for him) in his own back yard.  This little guy loves Jesus with all his heart and kept insisting, "This is the best day of my whole life!"  We were so blessed to be a part of it.  

Blessings, Sharon
VIOLENT AGREEMENT
May 29, 2017  by  Carole Lévy

How often do we fiercely fight with our dear ones to defend a  point of view that ends up being not that far from the point of view of the other?
That's what is called being in violent agreement.

Being in violent agreement might seem like a less dysfunctional mode of communication than violent disagreement.

But what a waste to be in alignment with our partner or colleagues, and still feel on guard.

If we can minimize our bursts of violent agreement and instead nurture the delicious surprise of discovering common ground, I'm sure that we can liberate a lot of brain power for developing inner strength and better communication.

For example, by practicing kind disagreement. Another indispensable skill to be a leader in the XXI century.

Reflection: How do you express your disagreement with others? Do you value and honor common ground?
IMMIGRANT RESOURCES

Four Free Methodist Churches are now operating immigration legal clinics. At least one other is in the process of getting certified. While it is not getting any easier for an undocumented immigrant to gain legal status in the United States, it is certainly more important to do so, and many are desperate. As a result, our immigration legal clinics are keeping busy - helping "the stranger" - and building relationships to grow the kingdom.
 
Some of you minister to immigrants and may find the information below helpful.  
IMMIGRANT RESOURCES

Four Free Methodist Churches are now operating immigration legal clinics. At least one other is in the process of getting certified. While it is not getting any easier for an undocumented immigrant to gain legal status in the United States, it is certainly more important to do so, and many are desperate. As a result, our immigration legal clinics are keeping busy - helping "the stranger" - and building relationships to grow the kingdom.
 
Some of you minister to immigrants and may find the information below helpful.  
COMING EVENTS - TRAINING OPPORTUNITIES - INFORMATION
TRC Upcoming of Events
4-Jul-2017           Independence Day
5-Jul-2017           Ministerial Appointment Committee Conference Call
13-Jul-2017         MEG Retreat - CCU
14-Jul-2017         2017 LEADERSHIP SUMMIT at Colorado Christian University
1-Aug-2017         Ministerial Appointment Committee Conference Call
8-Aug-2017         MEG Ordination Team Conference Call
9-Aug-2017         Finance Team Conference Call
16-Aug-2017       Board of Directors Conference Call

Freedom Sunday Resources
Freedom Sunday is coming soon! Believe it or not, September 24 will be here before you know it, and we want you to be prepared. If you're looking for a little inspiration as you plan your service, check out these resources on our Freedom Sunday Website!
  • A sermon resource kit to help craft a Freedom Sunday sermon-everything from a sample sermon script to scriptures, stories, a call to action and PowerPoint slides
  • Sunday School materials and children's sermons
  • Small group discussion questions
  • Social media graphics and digital poster designs to promote Freedom Sunday in the coming months
Please use any or all of these free resources as you plan for and share about Freedom Sunday at your church!

Until All Are Free-Your friends at IJM
The 3rd National Prayer Summit

February 22-24, 2018 - Spring Arbor FMC


Theme: Prayer and Community Transformation

Registration for the 3rd National Prayer Summit opens October 1. Begin making plans now to come and bring a team from your church. Based on the overwhelming positive response to the first two summits, we are anticipating about 500 registrants!

Journey Church Build Update

We are so blessed to be a part of the growth of God's Kingdom. Journey Church, a TRC church in Colorado, is undertaking a building project.   Here is an update. Your prayers are appreciated.

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Apportionment Changes

The TRC Board of Directors approved a motion by the TRC Finance Team to raise the required apportionment percentage. Last year, TRC had the lowest apportionment in the denomination. That rate has been assessed by TRC's Board and Finance Team as fiscally unsustainable for a healthy conference. Beginning in January 2018 the apportionment will be 9%. Beginning in January 2019 it will be 10%. 10% is the average conference apportionment in FMC-USA.

The River Conference | 720.305.1529 | Email | theriverconference.org

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