March 17th 2013

Dear All,
Greetings from Los Angeles! So many incredible events and miracles this week in the City of Angels Church: the Latin Women’s Day, the Graffiti Run Fundraiser for Missions and MERCY, the CAICC Basketball League, five disciples running in the LA Marathon to raise money for missions, the Las Vegas Mission Team’s “spying out the land” trip, and in the midst of these remarkable efforts, God blessed us this week with 13 additions – two restorations and 11 baptisms! Of all these marvels, perhaps the most exciting to Elena & me was the baptism of our dear friend Lisa Davis, the Principle of George Washington Elementary School in Compton – one of our South Central MERCY-focused schools!

Elena, Megan, Pam and Monica encourage
Lisa moments before her baptism!

The City of Angels Church Basketball League’s second weekend was equally encouraging as our initial week! Here are the results: the Bulls (South Central Region) came from behind again defeating the Heat (Central & East Regions) 57 – 55; the undermanned Celtics (South Region) overcame the powerful Lakers (AMS, North & Ventura Regions) 48 – 42; and the Knicks (Orange County and IE Regions) subdued the Thunder (West Region) 83 – 66!

All the players were encouraged that Cory was able
to secure professional referees for all the games!

The parity in the league is obvious as the only undefeated team is the Bulls! Our top three scorers are: Robbie Robinson (Knicks) – 24.5 points per game (ppg), Amar Panduranga (Celtics) – 23 ppg, and Chris Anderson (Bulls) – 21.5 ppg!

During practice, Amar and Clark – stars in the
league and good friends – joyfully inspire
their Celtic teammates!

Nick Bordieri – Director of MERCYworldwide: A few weeks ago, Jason McNeil approached me about a special opportunity to promote MERCYworldwide while also earning money for Special Missions by volunteering at an increasingly popular 5K race called the “Graffiti Run.” What makes this “race” so popular is all the colors! The runners (over 9,000 at this year’s event!) encounter “graffiti zones” throughout the race, where they are doused with colored chalk – red, orange, blue, green, yellow and purple… and the chalk is in fact edible!

A runner enters the “yellow graffiti zone!”

Chris Adams jumped on the idea and quickly began signing-up disciples in his region to volunteer. Then South Central and other regions followed suit and we ended up having 57 spirited, hard-working disciples (MERCY Ambassadors) volunteer to host the run! In total, the MERCY Ambassadors were paid $3,000 for their services and all have agreed to put this toward Special Missions! Also, since MERCYworldwide was the “Charity Organization of Choice,” we received many online donations and lots of free advertising on the Graffiti Run Webpage!

Our MERCY Ambassadors hard at work!

I am very proud of our MERCY Ambassadors, led by our MERCY Event Coordinator – Russ Preston. We started all the preparations for the event at 6:30AM, and “shined like stars” (Philippians 2:15) from beginning to end, serving in various capacities to help make this an enjoyable and problem-free event! Afterward, one of the Directors for the Graffiti Run commented on how joyful and spirited the MERCY Ambassadors were throughout the day, and stated “We’ve never worked with a group like this before!” At the end of the race, he approached us and asked whether we can help with similar events in other cities throughout the USA!

Some of the MERCY Ambassadors participated
in the Graffiti Run festivities!

All of us were tired after a long day of serving, but left with a smile remembering Jesus’ words, “It is more blessed to give than receive!”(Acts 20:35)

The grand finale!

Chris Chloupek: Greetings from the AMS Region! Jesus’ charge to the healed demoniac was, “Go home to your family and tell them HOW MUCH the Lord has done for you, and how He has had mercy on you.” (Mark 5:19) Our Lord has been doing so much in the AMS, as today, our neighbor Terry was baptized!

Sonja & I met Terry and his wife Debbie almost three years ago when we moved into our house. Eight months ago, his sister-in-law, Karen who lives in Terry’s back guest house, was baptized! One month ago, Debbie was baptized! I think of the Scripture in Acts 16:33-34, “At that hour of the night the jailer took them and washed their wounds; then immediately he and all his family were baptized… He was filled with joy because he had come to believe in God – he and his whole family.” We now have three disciples living across the street from us and one disciple next door to us!

God appointed the times and the exact place (across
the street from the Chloupeks) for Debbie, Terry
and Karen, so they could become disciples!

Also, Jonathan – who is a bankruptcy lawyer – was baptized today! He is of Armenian descent and brought his parents and sister (who is also a lawyer) along with two dentist friends and another attorney friend to witness his baptism!

The AMS Brothers are fired-up
after Jonathan’s baptism!

We are so proud of our brothers Joe Willis and Richard Lewis and our sister Nuria Guzman, who all ran in the LA Marathon to raise money for Special Missions Contribution! Joe raised over $2,000! Lastly, Danny Drew & Rebecca Bock are officially engaged to be married! Out of respect, Danny flew all the way to New York City to ask her parents for their blessing!

Nuria, Ashley, Richard and Joe prepare to run the
LA Marathon! Also running was Luke Speckman!

Truly, there’s no business like “soul business!” To God be the glory!

Patricia Velasco of the Latin Sector of the OC Region: Jeremiah 29:11 says, “‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'” We saw this Scripture come to life as many women from different counties of the Los Angeles Metro Area (Ventura, San Bernardino, Riverside and Los Angeles Counties) came to Orange County for the 2013 Spanish Women’s Day!

Sal & Patricia Velasco – the OC Latin Sector Leaders!

Mothers, sisters, sisters-in-law, neighbors, friends and co-workers came to be inspired by the heartfelt testimonies from Olimpia Argueta, Jessica Zepeda and Maria Pacheco! Theresa Broom delivered an incredible message! At the end of the event, all 101 that were in attendance felt refreshed and left inspired to share the good news about God’s “plans to prosper [us]!” This means that for the 350 sisters of the City of Angels Church, we had a collective attendance at our English & Spanish Women’s Days of 961! To top it off, at our Sunday Latin Sector Service, the Lord blessed us with an attendance of over double our membership!

Theresa Broom of the OC Region: God is moving powerfully to bring in the harvest from this year’s English OC/IE Regions Women’s Day,as three more women were added to our number this week! First, Kerri-Sue Adams worked diligently to help Karla Limon, a sister that is dear to many of us, get restored today!

Then, just this last Thursday in the Fullerton Campus Ministry, God united siblings in Christ as Natalia – Gregory’s sister – was baptized! Natalia first came to visit us with Gregory, who was baptized in January! Amazingly, a couple weeks after her initial visit, she tagged along with a friend who was invited to Bible Talk. Little did she know that the Bible Talk was with disciples from her brother’s church! As she studied the Bible diligently with Courtney Parlour and the other Fullerton Campus Sisters, God “peeled-off the scales from her eyes” and Natalia became so grateful to find the truth! Now all she can talk about is making more disciples! Of special note, her other sister is set-up for a Bible Study this week!

Natalia sees the light and is baptized!

On Thursday, March 14th, the official 25th National “Pi (π) Day” (the date of “3.14” for 2013 corresponds to the mathematical number “pi” [3.14]), the UCI Sisters began with a fast to beg God for a miracle and ended with a feast to celebrate Hannah Wang’s baptism! Hannah, whose real name is Hanrui, was a former roommate of our sister Angela Lee, who made Jesus Lord on New Year’s Day this year! Angela is our fearless Chinese warrior for God! She invited Hannah to our Bring Your Neighbor Day Service and shared her faith with her for two hours straight! Immediately, Hannah expressed her fears of commitment. However, with much prayer, Bible studies, early morning quiet times, and late night talks, Hannah’s heart softened toward God’s love and she was baptized on Thursday night! Keep praying for our UCI Campus Women led powerfully by Nikki Williams!

Hannah’s first service was our
Bring Your Neighbor Day!

Victor Gonzalez: Greetings from the East Region! “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.” (Romans 8:28) It has been very encouraging watching how God is working in the lives of all the disciples here in the East Region! For starters, the good news came back that our newest brother Ace and his team won the State Championship this weekend making Mt. SAC Community College the best community college basketball team in the State of California!

Speaking of basketball, all the East Region disciples want to thank Cory Blackwell for setting-up the CAICC Basketball League! The Basketball League has brought such a unity and closeness that only spiritual competition can bring! The whole region looks forward to every Saturday to compete and have fellowship with all the other regions of the church!

The Heat (Central & East Regions) pray with the
Bulls (South Central Region) before the game
to have a “spiritual competition!”

Lastly, I have to lift-up an incredible sister whose story of hardship and perseverance is an upward calling for us all! Rosa Marie Alvarado was baptized just a month ago in the Campus Ministry. Although you may not be able to tell, Rosa has suffered from Bipolar 1 Disorder since she was a little girl. The slightest feelings of uneasiness quickly lead to anxiety attacks and seizures. Last year, things got so bad that she had to be taken out of her university studies and be placed in a mental hospital for over a month. Combine that with persecution she has undergone at home, from her dad locking her in her bedroom so she can’t come to church, to taking her phone so she can’t communicate with disciples, and you have an extremely difficult living situation to cope with on a daily basis.

Sadly, this morning, Rosa had an argument with her dad about coming to church that got so heated that she had a panic seizure just minutes before service started. Nonetheless, holding to her convictions about seeking first the Kingdom, she still made it to church today and gave a phenomenal heart-moving communion testimony! She handled herself and the Word of God with such poise and conviction that there was not a dry eye in the room! Rosa shared how grateful she was for the love of the sisters, because through this love she saw God’s love, which has given her so much peace in her life!

Kyle Bartholomew of the Central Region: Restored today was Johnny, a young single man who had once been very zealous for God, but began to live a double life and slowly fell asleep spiritually as he was lured into the darkness by Satan. After being lovingly confronted by the brothers, he responded with remorse and repentance, and now, we are excited to once again call him our brother! Pray for us as we strive to“baptize the nations” and gather those have been lost!

Cory Blackwell of the South Central Region: How do you describe the kind of joy only the Lord can give? Pure joy! The South Central Ministry is dynamically growing not only in number, but even more so in spirit!

Today, we had five house churches! Can you imagine that just two years ago we were nine people meeting in a kitchen? Another milestone occurred on Friday night, as Lisa Davis the Principle of Washington Elementary School was baptized! Nick & Denise Bordieri, Shepherds of the City of Angels Congregation and the South Central Region, met Lisa over two years ago during our Annual MERCY Toy Drive. Lisa has had many challenges over this time, but has really persevered to make Jesus Lord of her life. She is so fired-up to have a new family! Thanks go to Pam Boea, Monica Vasquez, Denise Bordieri and of course our fearless Women’s Ministry Leader – Megan Matthews!

My eyes are filled with an inexpressible joy, as on Sunday afternoon, 70 people witnessed the baptism of a teen named Shawantiva! She originally attended church in our former fellowship. Her sister DiEsha Carter placed membership several months ago and had been an incredible example to her “little sister!” Amazingly, at the baptism were 14 members of the ICOC, all of whom shared deeply from their hearts how happy they were that Shawantiva made the decision to be a baptized disciple! It was so impacting to watch all our Teen Women and DiEsha go into the pool and baptize Shawantiva!

After her baptism, Shawantiva is embraced by the
South Central Women Teens and her
now “double-sister” DiEsha!

I am crying uncontrollably as I am writing this good news report because of the miracles that our God is once again doing in my beloved South Central LA. I am so grateful for the City of Angels Church who embraced me and my family, and now is allowing me to once again be a small part of Jesus’ dream! And to God be all the glory!

Argo Arneson – the Inland Empire (IE) Region and overseeing Evangelist of Russia: “Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labor in vain.” (Psalm 127:1) God has been moving in the IE, as we were able to witness a miracle at each of our meetings this past week: Markesa was baptized at Midweek, Sara at Campus Devotional, and Nick at our powerful Sunday Service!

Sara, a student in Riverside Community College, was reached-out to by our sister Monique at a baby shower. However, Sara started to seek God by going to different churches after her best friend committed suicide, but couldn’t find the love and the direction that she needed. At her baptism, she shared how extremely grateful she was that Monique opened her mouth to share her faith with her. Her mom was so impacted by the baptism on Friday night that she invited the whole IE Region to her house for a huge party after the church service today! All the IE disciples danced and enjoyed a great feast!

Another RCC student Markesa began studying the Bible eight months ago, but wasn’t willing to give-up everything to make Jesus Lord, including her boyfriend Nick. She stopped studying and attempted to find the Kingdom elsewhere. Recently, she was invited to our Women’s Daywhere she was inspired to start studying once again with a completely changed heart! After realizing that being “sold-out” is the only way, she made her good confession at our Mid-Week Service where we celebrated with a huge party for the whole region!

With Markesa’s baptism, the RCC Campus Ministry
has grown from four to 10 in 2013!

Very inspiring is Markesa’s ex-boyfriend Nick’s story, who came out to our Campus Sunday Service one week ago! He was so impacted by the love he felt, the baptism he witnessed, and by our brother Cesar’s vibrant preaching that the very next day he began to study the Bible with the brothers! Today, only six days later, he made Jesus Lord and was baptized into Christ!

God himself has definitely been “building [His] house” here in the Inland Empire where we know our “labor has not been in vain” as we have witnessed 12 sold-out disciples hitting the waters of baptism in the past eight weeks! (1 Corinthians 15:58) And to our Father be always the glory!

In Moscow, Russia, there was a great brother Oleg restored to God’s family today! Oleg was baptized in our former fellowship at 1997, but fell away from God a few years later, because of sin in his life. For many years, he started several times to attend again our former fellowship looking for revival and trying to get restored, but he was greatly discouraged by their lack of love and commitment and astonished by the doctrinal changes he discovered. Oleg came to understood that if he wants to be restored to God, he has to find a true fellowship of real disciples of Christ. After attending just one time our Moscow Remnant Group Sunday Service, Oleg saw what he was looking for and made a strong decision to restore his relationship with God! Please pray for his wife Natasha who made decision to follow her husband’s example and began to study Bible with the sisters!

And now more news from around the world…

Jason Dimitry – Special Report from the Las Vegas Mission Team!This weekend, Sarah & I took the entire LV Mission Team to “spy out the land” of fabulous Las Vegas! Special thanks to our overseeing Evangelist and Women’s Ministry Leader Tim & Lianne Kernan, who came as well and absolutely poured their hearts out to prepare the Mission Team for its landing!

Las Vegas is a city of two million very lost souls!

We all came together at the Westin Resort located at the base of the beautiful Las Vegas Lake. This “mini-conference” was entitled, Oasis Not Mirage! The goal of this weekend was to unify the disciples, give vision for this dark city, and to search for jobs and apartments. Tim kicked-off the weekend on Thursday evening by preaching a stirring lesson which set the pace for our three day retreat. So on Friday morning, all the disciples were up early and dressed in “their best” to attend interviews and fill-out job applications. Excitingly, our prayers are being answered as already four of the disciples have secured job offers!

Sarah & I also landed an apartment only four blocks away from CSN – a community college of 44,000 students, and Jeff & Lucia Eitelbach of Portland found their apartment close to UNLV – a university of 28,000 students! The evening concluded with challenging charges from our intern David Jefferson and our administrator Emilio Bonilla! Saturday started out with a morning d-group, then it was off to “stomp the land” claiming it for the Lord at the Hoover Dam, at UNLV and at the Stratosphere! And OF COURSE no Vegas trip would be complete or righteous without a “cranking buffet,” which we thoroughly enjoyed at the Treasure Island Hotel and Resort!

Inspired after praying over the Hoover Dam, the Las
Vegas Mission Team enthusiastically
gives the “LV” hand sign!

After checking out the Bellagio Water Show and walking “The Strip,” the disciples left with heavy hearts, as they saw the level of degradation through the widespread public intoxication and prostitution solicitation! It became very apparent to us all that this great city is in dire need of the Kingdom of God!

The overwhelming message that I believe God wanted to get across to us is best summed up with an inspirational quote found on a monument at the Hoover Dam that described the sacrifice and commitment of the workers who built it, “They died to make the desert bloom.” After a weekend of inspirational preaching and discipling, I can say confidently that the hearts of the disciples are ready to go in the desert and die to themselves so that the Kingdom of God can BLOOM in Las Vegas. (John 12:24-26) Please, please pray for the soon-to-be Las Vegas International Christian Church, as our official send-off is April 14, 2013 at the City of Angels All Congregational Service, and our Inaugural Service will be – Lord willing – on May 19, 2013! And to God be the glory!

Maria Franklin of Chicago: “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.” (Ephesians 1:3) This week, our awesome God has blessed us with two additions through baptism! Encouragingly, both baptisms came through the efforts of the Columbia College Bible Talk which is dynamically led by Theo Jr. and our dear sister Ka’Sella! On Monday night, Courtney, a Musical Theatre major, was baptized! Then on Wednesday night at our Women’s Midweek Service, Enasha, majoring in Screen Writing and minoring in Directing, was welcomed into the “Kingdom of light” through her baptism!

On Sunday, Jay Shelbrack preached an incredible sermon entitled,Stand In Awe Of God where he challenged us to focus on God’s “awesomeness” in our daily quiet times! Among all the great things God has done for us, it is not difficult to see His power and love at work through our 24 additions for the year so far, thus setting us at a pace for 113 additions for the year!

This Saturday, we had our first tagging event of 2013! God, through the efforts of 41 sacrificial disciples braving the cold and snow, blessed us with $2,600! Amazingly, that’s not even counting the coinage yet! We are so grateful for our West Region Leaders Maiya, Nana, the Garcias and our dear Shepherd-in-training, Chris Wooden, who do all of the “leg work” to make “tagging” a possible fundraising option for our church here!

Coltin Rohn of Boston: “For God, who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ made His light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.’ But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.” (2 Corinthians 4:6-7) I bring you greetings from the “jars of clay” in Boston! We are honored to have our brother Eldrin Rojas, the Curacao Remnant Group Leader, visit for the next two weeks! Eldrin is a great friend of mine and it’s refreshing to have his fellowship here in Boston!

Eldrin addresses and inspires
the Boston Church!

This last week, God allowed us to raise $500 through the efforts of “tagging” which is donated toward our Special Missions Goal of $25,000! So in just two Saturdays, we have raised $740 through tagging! Also encouraging was our first “Chariot Ride” (Acts 8:26-39) with those who have been studying the Bible diligently, but were having trouble getting over their “bumps” and into the waters of baptism. The Chariot Ridebegan with eating incredible Indian food – “butter chicken” – prepared by my awesome wife Mandee! Then, we had a short charge onDiscipleship, The Kingdom, Jesus’ Church, and Baptism. After the sermon, some of the disciples (Preston Inkly, Brian Carr and Mercedes Bonilla) shared their costs of becoming disciples and how grateful they are to be in the light after giving-up everything!

The immediate fruit from that Chariot Ride is Eric McCourt! Eric was reached-out to over a month ago and has had an incredible journey! When we first met, we sat down and did a Bible study on the spot and immediately Eric was faced with life-changing decisions. Though he had low faith and needed the fruit of repentance in his life, the love of the disciples kept him coming around. Today, Eric shared Psalm 107:10-16 (a Scripture familiar to those with Chemical Recovery backgrounds), as God has helped him overcome many addictions in his life. Then, in front of a packed house of witnesses, Brian Carr and myself were able to plunge Eric into the refreshing saving waters of baptism, which truly sets us free from the sinful nature! (Colossians 2:11-15) To God be all the glory!

Like the Ethiopian Eunuch, Eric
rejoices after his Chariot Ride!

Raul Moreno of Sao Paulo: This week, Flavio was baptized! He is a student in FATEC University, and he is fired-up for Jesus Christ! This is very evident, as he has to travel two hours to come to church! Please keep praying for us as we are praying for you!

Jake Ramsier of Honolulu: Aloha from Oahu! The Honolulu disciples have seen six baptized in the last six weeks! Camille, Reina, Patrick, Tommy, and RJ were all added to the Campus Ministry, and Jesse joined our Singles! Jesse decided to live as a disciple after only four days of studying! Our Singles BT Leader, Paul, reached-out to him on their bus commute. Jesse had started praying the day before that God would give him an opportunity to learn about Him, so he immediately understood, “Today if you hear His voice, do not harden your heart!” (Hebrews 3:7-8)

I also am blessed to share some personal good news… The best of my life after my own baptism and my wedding day: Our daughter Kaia Lynn was born March 8th! I’m so grateful to God for her arriving safe and sound and for Jen being healthy as well! It so happens that this Sunday, as we continued our Book Of Luke Series, we studied Jesus’ baptism. Now, I feel I have a deeper understanding of that voice which spoke from heaven, “This is my [child], whom I love. With you I am well pleased!” (Luke 3:22)

Jake & Jen are in awe of God as they welcome
little Kaia Lynn to their family!

The voices who “praise His name in the Islands” are growing! Keep us in your prayers! (Isaiah 42:12)

Jacob Beas: “How PRICELESS is your unfailing love, O God! People take refuge in the shadow of your wings.” (Psalm 36:7) Greetings from the Mighty Eugene Church! What a PRICELESSweekend, as this Saturday the sisters hosted their Annual Women’s Day! Many came out to take part in the event, entitled PRICELESS, and were deeply impacted!

A huge thanks goes out to Amanda Miller from the Chicago ICC, who did a phenomenal job preaching the Word as our keynote speaker! I am so proud of my amazing wife for coordinating her first Women’s Day Event, and for all the women here who worked so hard to “pack the house,” as they had a nearly three-to-one ratio of disciples to visitors in attendance!

Also PRICELESS to us was having our very own Dustin Miller preach a powerful Sunday sermon entitled, A Fire In Your Heart! The Lord gave us a record attendance of 90 since my wife & I began leading the church in August! Service was definitely fiery from beginning to end!

The highlight of the weekend, however, came at the end of service as we concluded with the baptism of an incredible young woman, Shana! Shana had many family members out to witness the miracle and each of them were truly moved as she vulnerably shared her heart and her gratitude to God for choosing her! Shana originally came to church with her friend, Ryan Gordon, who became our brother just last month! We are in awe of how the Holy Spirit blows people into our lives who are searching for the truth and ready to change!

Our PRICELESS and newest Eugene sister – Shana!

Lola Lof of Kinshasa: Greetings from the Lord’s mighty prayer warriors in the Democratic Republic of Congo! The Kinshasa Church is determined to help Congolese disciple parents in the education of their children according to the Scriptures, as children are the true happiness of the family! (Psalms 127:3) This was the topic of our workshop. Micky did a great job in teaching and challenging the audience, as he was assisted by our awesome sister Marthe Mupala, who was the speaker for the women classes! It was wonderful!

Then on Sunday almost 370 attended the service, as Micky preached a powerful sermon entitled, Raising Awesome Kids! Of note, the waters of baptism were stirred again, as Julie was plunged into this refreshing water of hope! She is the fruit of neighborhood evangelism, because she lives in the same street with our awesome couple John & Chantal Itetsi. To God be all the glory!

Andrew Smellie: “This is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘In those days ten men from all languages and nations will take hold of one Jew by the hem of his robe and say, ‘Let us go with you, because we have heard that God is with you.'” (Zechariah 8:23) Greetings from New York City! This weekend has been one to remember in the Big Apple! It has been a privilege to host Ron Harding, my dear friend and fellow evangelist from our sister church in Washington DC, as our guest speaker for our first-ever Men’s Forum entitled, What’s Inside You?

In a religious world where a typical congregation is 69% women and 31% male, we had the opportunity to highlight the vibrant Men’s Ministry of the NYC Church! I was very proud of the brothers, as four of our House Church Leaders shared powerfully before Ron’s main message to demolish the argument that the world or our own humanistic thinking can lead us to know the truth about ourselves! Despite Satan’s previous attempts to discourage us by forcing us to move our location three times, God did not “fail or forsake” our efforts (1 Chronicles 28:20), as almost 70 men were in attendance as a snowstorm descended on the city!

From insurance salesmen to bankers, teachers to police officers, men responded to God’s Word and surrendered their perspectives, so they could accept the truth of God’s Word! Almost all of our visitors wanted to start studying the Bible and several got open during our Q&A Sessions about their needs! One of them was a NYC ICOC brother, who was so impacted that he decided to join us for service the following day! I believe Ron preached one of his best sermons, as he called the men to stop being childish and allow the standard of the Bible to enable each of them to become a “Superman” for the Lord!  After the fellowship of theForum, visitors immediately studied the Bible with disciples, as other disciples went out into the snowstorm to raise money for Missions! In a little over 1.5 hours, they raised $350 in a blizzard!

Andrew and Ron “partner” to successfully conduct
the NYC Church’s first Men’s Forum!

Sunday was no less inspiring, as God enabled us to encourage the souls of our dear friends, David & Barbara Root! “Barb,” as we affectionately call her, has been a dear “mother-in-the-faith” to me from my days as a young disciple at Cornell University. She “shepherded” our fruitful Cornell Ministry, as we made the 1.5 hour drive to Syracuse for Sunday Services, Midweeks and Devotionals from Ithaca, NY, despite Barb being a busy Professor at Ithaca College! For as long as I’ve known her, Barb has been committed to “discern what is best” (Philippians 1:9-11) in her spiritual walk, having first been introduced to the Crossroads Movement back in the early 1970’s before joining our SoldOut Movement!

I was first introduced to her gregarious husband, David, back in Syracuse after he joined our movement from the ICOC church in North Carolina, and I had the honor of walking Barb down the aisle to “give her away” to him in marriage almost two years ago! In order to better meet their needs, David & Barb have decided to place membership in our Staten Island Ministry where Mike & Pam O’Donnell serve as our Staten Island House Church Leaders and one of our Congregational Shepherding Couples!

The Roots and the O’Donnells!

The NYC Church is so encouraged “to see the evidence of the grace of God,” and this Sunday responded financially as we collected our highest-ever weekly contribution of $6,276 with a budget of $4,500! Please pray as God continues to bring in the harvest of souls, and for us to blow-out our Missions Contribution on April 7th!

Ron Harding of Washington DC: “For this reason I am sending to you Timothy, my son whom I love, who is faithful in the Lord. He will remind you of my way of life in Christ Jesus, which agrees with what I teach everywhere in every church.” (1 Corinthians 4:17) I was so encouraged and honored to be with my brothers and sisters in the New York City Church this weekend! When visiting other churches, it never ceases to take my breath away how 1 Corinthians 4:17 comes alive when you are a part of a worldwide movement, which teaches the same thing “everywhere in every church!” After visiting Santiago, Chile and New York City in the past month, I’m so encouraged by how Carlos & Lucy Mejia and Andrew & Patrique Smellie are imitating Kip & Elena and other great ministry couples to produce the same church“everywhere!” So whether I’m in NYC, Santiago or DC, it’s just like being in the City of Angels Church in Los Angeles!

On a personal level, I’m most encouraged by the commitment, the zeal and the deep convictions which the disciples of the Mighty DC Church have displayed in my absence! At our Congregational Missions Devotional Midweek Service, we hosted Nick Bordieri, our movement’s Director of MERCYworldwide. Also, we were inspired by the heart-moving restoration of Lou Vivas, who has his mother studying the Bible with my mother and the other mature women who so faithfully support our church! This restoration marks the 17th addition in the first 13 weeks of 2013!

Encouragingly, our incredible Campus Ministry gathered on Saturday morning for 6.5 hours of enthusiastic, bold and courageous tagging where God blessed our efforts with an incredible $1,485 for Special Missions, that’s $225 per hour! Beyond this effort of our young people, our “veteran” remnant disciples turned-in an additional $16,694 for missions! That makes a total of $42,594 given for our Missions Contribution that has been turned in almost a month early! We love you all!

Our 2013 Missions Contributions are being directed
toward planting Dallas, 
Denver and Las Vegas in
the USA, as well as our Crown of Thorns
Planting of Sydney, Australia!

Dearest Brothers and Sisters, This week has been very exciting as I have been contacted by remnant (“veteran”) disciples in Brazil, Guatemala and Haiti! All of these are either presently in the full-time ministry or have served the Lord in that capacity in the past. Pray for these “noble-hearted” disciples to join God’s SoldOut Movement in the next few weeks! Pray for them remembering the Lord’s words, “But if [they] return to me and obey my commands, then even if your exiled people are at the farthest horizon, I will gather them from there and bring them to the place I have chosen as a dwelling for my Name.” Of course, that “place” is God’s new movement! And to Him be all the glory, honor and praise! Amen!
Much love,