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Pentecostals eye Berlin for outreach

Tue, 26 Nov 2002 - 12:58 PM CST

Every three years, Pentecostal leaders in Europe gather in a designated city to learn how to become better pastors. In the past, the triennial conference has been geared to encourage Pentecostal church personnel on the continent.

But Pentecostal Europe Fellowship leader Ingolf Ellssel, who is also president of the German Pentecostal Movement, believes it is time to look outward.

Ellssel notes that past European differences of customs, border crossings and even currency have been resolved. Likewise, he said, theological walls of discord, disassociation and denominational passport controls are in decline. Thus, the Europe Arise Conference, scheduled for June 5-9, 2003, in Berlin will be the first evangelistic conference of its kind designed to impact a city.

"Although the U.S. Assemblies of God has not been involved in the conference in the past, Ingolf Ellssel made an intentional gesture to include us," said U.S. Assemblies of God Europe Regional Director Greg Mundis. "We have accepted the invitation wholeheartedly." Ellssel addressed the U.S. A/G missionaries in Europe last year at a retreat in Spain. The missionaries have contributed $15,000 to help defray the costs of the conference.

Morning sessions will focus on equipping workers for evangelism. Neighborhood evangelistic outreaches will take place in the afternoon. The evening sessions will feature evangelistic services followed by youth concerts. German evangelist Reinhard Bonnke, whose international ministry Christ for All Nations is based in Frankfurt, will be guest speaker in the evening services.

"Our goal is that a great number of people will hear the gospel, receive Christ as their Savior and be integrated into local churches to be discipled," said Steve Walent, Central Europe area director for the U.S. Assemblies of God.

Berlin, a city of 4 million, has only half a dozen German Pentecostal churches. The U.S. Assemblies of God, which works in cooperation with the German Pentecostal Movement, has targeted three sections of the city for outreaches to be led by three new missionaries who are already learning the language and culture. John Butrin is planning to start an English-speaking international church; Chuck Kackley will start a German-speaking church in East Berlin; and Kirk Priest will begin a German-speaking Students for Christ outreach in East Berlin.

"We are already planning and scheduling many different MAPS, AIM and other student teams to come and minister, not just during the conference but throughout the summer to make sure these new ministries have a good foundation in this planting phase," Walent said.

"You can't plant a church in a weekend," Mundis said. In the past two years, the U.S. Fellowship has appointed 16 missionaries to Germany, including church planters, youth workers and children's outreach personnel. There are four dozen A/G missionaries in the nation of 83 million. "We believe God has something special in store for this spiritually neglected and needy part of the world," Walent said.

"Europe Arise is a wonderful opportunity to deepen cooperation among Pentecostals in Europe as well as make a difference in a city," said Mundis.


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Every three years, Pentecostal leaders in Europe gather in a designated city to learn how to become better pastors. In the past, the triennial conference has been geared to encourage Pentecostal church personnel on the continent.

But Pentecostal Europe Fellowship leader Ingolf Ellssel, who is also president of the German Pentecostal Movement, believes it is time to look outward.

Ellssel notes that past European differences of customs, border crossings and even currency have been resolved. Likewise, he said, theological walls of discord, disassociation and denominational passport controls are in decline. Thus, the Europe Arise Conference, scheduled for June 5-9, 2003, in Berlin will be the first evangelistic conference of its kind designed to impact a city.

"Although the U.S. Assemblies of God has not been involved in the conference in the past, Ingolf Ellssel made an intentional gesture to include us," said U.S. Assemblies of God Europe Regional Director Greg Mundis. "We have accepted the invitation wholeheartedly." Ellssel addressed the U.S. A/G missionaries in Europe last year at a retreat in Spain. The missionaries have contributed $15,000 to help defray the costs of the conference.

Morning sessions will focus on equipping workers for evangelism. Neighborhood evangelistic outreaches will take place in the afternoon. The evening sessions will feature evangelistic services followed by youth concerts. German evangelist Reinhard Bonnke, whose international ministry Christ for All Nations is based in Frankfurt, will be guest speaker in the evening services.

"Our goal is that a great number of people will hear the gospel, receive Christ as their Savior and be integrated into local churches to be discipled," said Steve Walent, Central Europe area director for the U.S. Assemblies of God.

Berlin, a city of 4 million, has only half a dozen German Pentecostal churches. The U.S. Assemblies of God, which works in cooperation with the German Pentecostal Movement, has targeted three sections of the city for outreaches to be led by three new missionaries who are already learning the language and culture. John Butrin is planning to start an English-speaking international church; Chuck Kackley will start a German-speaking church in East Berlin; and Kirk Priest will begin a German-speaking Students for Christ outreach in East Berlin.

"We are already planning and scheduling many different MAPS, AIM and other student teams to come and minister, not just during the conference but throughout the summer to make sure these new ministries have a good foundation in this planting phase," Walent said.

"You can't plant a church in a weekend," Mundis said. In the past two years, the U.S. Fellowship has appointed 16 missionaries to Germany, including church planters, youth workers and children's outreach personnel. There are four dozen A/G missionaries in the nation of 83 million. "We believe God has something special in store for this spiritually neglected and needy part of the world," Walent said.

"Europe Arise is a wonderful opportunity to deepen cooperation among Pentecostals in Europe as well as make a difference in a city," said Mundis.


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AGWM, COH and AG Churches in Africa Confront Ebola Crisis

Mon, 24 Nov 2014 - 4:24 PM CST

AG World Missions and Convoy of Hope are partnering to help feed and care for those affected by the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. Convoy of Hope is procuring emergency meals and medical supplies, and AGWM is funding the shipping and distribution of these critically needed items. Six shipping containers are already en route to Liberia, and plans for a total of 30 containers are underway.

AGWM and Convoy of Hope's partnership makes this relief effort both financially efficient and effective in touching the suffering. By partnering with AG churches in the affected areas, relief supplies are distributed to those who need it most, and people are connected with the gospel and a community of believers. Every dollar given will deliver 30 meals to people in Africa's hardest hit communities.

Since the beginning of the outbreak, the Assemblies of God in Liberia (AGL) is reaching out to the suffering with a gospel witness, prayer, and tangible assistance, such as food and household supplies. The Ebola crisis has had a negative impact on the nation's economy, leaving many without even the most basic necessities. 

Greg Beggs, AG World Missions regional director for Africa, says, "AG national churches in Liberia and Sierra Leone are valiantly coping with this horrendous health crisis. We need to unite our prayers with them for God's intervention."

In order to maximize its influence, the AGL has formed a partnership with the Christian Health Association of Liberia, which works hand in hand with the Liberia Ministry of Health as well as 1,600 churches nationwide.

In neighboring Sierra Leone, the Ebola epidemic began in the village of Koindu where an AG Bible school is located. Several deaths have been reported from the school and area churches. Despite steps to attempt containment, the epidemic has spread to every district in the nation. According to the World Health Organization, the densely populated national capital, Freetown, has been called "one of the worst affected cities in this outbreak."

The Sierra Leone Assemblies of God has received medical supplies (gloves, masks and hand sanitizer) from HealthCare Ministries, AGWM's medical outreach. Local churches distribute those supplies in remote regions where the disruption of services has created staggering shortages.

"Much of the success of the current relief efforts stems from the presence of strong AG churches in the area," says Jerry Ireland, director of Africa AG Care. "Apart from the network of Assemblies of God-affiliated churches, such efforts would be greatly hindered, if not impossible."

"During the Thanksgiving season is an especially appropriate time to express our gratitude for God's blessings with a meaningful and tangible offering that is effective in any amount," says Randy Hurst, AGWM Communications director. "Through this effective partnership between AGWM and Convoy of Hope, for every dollar 30 meals can reach desperate people in Africa. Even a child can give a dollar and know their gift delivered 30 meals."

To give, click here.

 


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