On Christian Unity (Library of Radical Christian Discipleship - Stone-Campbell Series Book 2)

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He also pointed out that the church is not yet willing to pay these costs.

The four Convening Tables also met during the CUG and discussed whether this new structure of the NCC is suitable for the tasks that the Convening Tables have undertaken in replacing commissions. The Governing Board had an opportunity to hear what was discussed during the CUG and reflected upon the mission and the stewardship of the institution. Along with Canadian colleagues Rev.

Gail Allan of the United Church, and Rev. Canon Dr. Scott Sharman of the Canadian Anglican Church, I shared what it means to be in full communion with one another and its challenges and promises. I anticipate that the report will be published in early The journey toward becoming a world communion as a global body continues. The evangelical and missional zeal of the Puerto Rican Disciples and other member churches in the Global South have expanded the global presence of the Disciples, and these newly established national churches are firmly rooted in their identity as Disciples of Christ—not as the Stone-Campbell tradition.

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As historical Disciples churches struggle with membership and finance challenges, those churches are vibrant and evangelical. I have contacted our current members about this change. With the exception of one member communion, most churches have welcomed this direction.

I also visited and contacted new potential member communions, and so far , the Disciples of Christ in Colombia and the United Church of the Philippines have expressed their intention to join the DECC. As a Korean American, I have fully endeavored to bring our ecumenical efforts together for peace in northeast Asia.

Japan is about to pass the amendment to the so-called Peace Constitution , which will allow Japan to engage fully in military actions and warfare. Taiwan is caught in a struggle between two global superpowers, the US and China. North Koreans are dying of hunger mostly because of economic sanctions imposed by the UN. Many traces of colonialism remain in Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and the Philippines.

Indigenous peoples in Taiwan and the Philippines are struggling to be heard and recognized And, as you can imagine, many issues require ecumenical responses in Northeast Asia. I believe this is time for the ecumenical community to act together to bring peace to this region. And my role is to point out the intersectionality of these regional issues—how they affect one another. Let me conclude my report by reminding us of our calling: Christ urges us to live life in unity not for ourselves but for the world that God so loved that God gave Her only begotten son! Congregational vitality and sustainability are, in part, the result of effective stewardship of capital and leadership resources.

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Our ministries recognize that a church is much more than a building or a once-a-week service. At its best, it is a manifestation of the divine at work in the world, of people living the teachings of Jesus Christ and, through service and celebration, connecting both with God and neighbors. For this reason, our services and programs are focused on helping congregations look beyond themselves and their own immediate, internal concerns to the larger world and a future vision of the role they may play in transforming their communities.

Disciples Church Extension Fund inspires and empowers congregations to create Holy Places where people connect with God, each other and their community.


The Future of the Restoration Movement

Disciples Church Extension Fund is the primary Christian Church Disciples of Christ ministry that provides congregations with building planning and capital funding services. Despite late year market volatility, was a year of generally positive financial trends for DCEF, including continued growth in the number of churches seeking loans for capital projects and purchases.

This was the second consecutive year of such growth in loan demand and the second highest advance total in the last ten years. After deferring routine maintenance and delaying facility improvements for nearly a decade of recession in the U. We anticipate this trend to continue.

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For this reason, DCEF will endeavor to significantly increase investor participation in so that we have the liquidity needed to fund the growing excitement of Disciples to reimagine and revitalize their Holy Places for mission and ministry. DCEF offers investment opportunities to Disciples congregations and individuals at competitive interest rates through our demand and term Notes.

Our investors benefit their Church by providing funds that allow us to make loans and provide capital services to Disciples ministries, and benefit themselves by earning good rates of return. October of kicked off a year of commemoration for Disciples Church Extension Fund and its predecessor organizations as we began celebrating our th year of service.

Even more amazing, at age , DCEF continues to evolve to better deliver its ministry. DCEF is partnering with the Arizona Region to honor this request, helping to ensure that dedicated Disciples can continue to benefit their communities even if their congregations cannot. The building evaluation for the former First Christian Church Glendale was conducted in September by Disciples Church Extension Fund, which is now providing on-going property management for the facility.

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The center also supports various local non-profits with meeting and office space, houses a much-needed Head Start Program run by Catholic Charities, and provides a Holy Place of worship to three congregations who nest there including Iglesia Hispana de Glendale, and Iglesia de Cristo Sion which has used the space for 20 years. DCEF is very grateful to participate in this exceptional example of a mission-driven investment in a community for the good of its people.

Last year was also one of recovery for many Disciples congregations. In , 15 congregations received immediate facilities assistance from a DCEF advisor through our Disaster Response Service after their buildings were damaged by natural disasters such as fire, flood, and hurricane. Off-shore, recovery continues in Puerto Rico following the devastation of Hurricane Maria in Representatives of other general ministries and Week of Compassion were also in attendance.

All met with the leadership of Iglesia Cristiana Discipulos de Cristo en Puerto Rico, toured the island, and visited many of the church facilities as their damage was being assessed. In the year since, a great deal of progress has been made but much is left to do. In addition to the preceding highlights, was a year of increased capital fundraising activity and increased loan participation among our ecumenical partners. We all bring unique gifts to finding solutions to the capital planning and funding challenges of creating Holy Places where connections to God, each other and community occur.

In these settings, congregational leaders explore creative ways to design and use our Holy Places for mission and transformational change.

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Three DCEF services in particular are effective in helping congregations answer the question of how best to utilize their assets to empower mission and ministry:. In addition, DCEF also offers services designed to help congregations with more specialized projects: Architectural Consultation is an advisory service provided by experienced church architects selected by DCEF, and Relocation Services assist congregations with relocating their ministry to a different venue.

Since its formation in , Hope Partnership has been dedicated to achieving its goal of empowering and equipping clergy and lay leaders so that their congregations can be strengthened and the lives of people inside the church and out in the community can be transformed. Our services engage congregations in conversations of informed discernment that most often result in empowered churches offering community-transforming ministries.

Whether by planting a new faith community or transforming an existing congregation, Disciples leaders are boldly guiding the Church to new possibilities for life-giving expressions of mission and ministry. Hope Partnership is called to walk alongside these courageous leaders by offering services and programming designed to train, nurture, and coach faith leaders.

Hope Partnership is also the general ministry home to New Church Ministry and transformational leadership programming.

Over the past six years, Hope Partnership has served more than 1, congregations in the US and Canada. Utilizing feedback loops, data-monitoring and customer evaluation surveys, we are constantly improving our services so that congregations can more effectively make bold decisions and step out in faith to meet the needs of the evolving, real world.

Congregations within the Christian Church Disciples of Christ have transformed their ministries and connected with their communities in new and innovative ways after engaging with Hope Partnership through these services:. This six-to-eight month process helps churches clarify their context, explore ministry options, and make an informed decision about their future missional direction.

Mission Pathways — For the congregation that wants to move forward and needs a plan. The Mission Pathways process shows congregations how to use the capital, relational, and spiritual assets they currently have to be a transformative force in their communities. During the approximately three-month, self-led process, church leaders identify current resources and create a road map for their future ministry plan.

Epiphany — For the congregation longing to become a transforming presence both inside and outside of their church walls. The Epiphany service is designed to help churches imagine, and then live into, a new vision for mission. Because the need for leader development crosses denominational lines, as with DCEF, Hope Partnership has established and continues to enhance service relationships with a number of ecumenical partners, who now represent a growing portion of our services portfolio. One innovation that developed in is a new ecumenical partners service offering called Mid-Level Judicatory, or The Partnership Option.

We provide the mid-level judicatory with infrastructure, training and administrative support for the delivery of our services to their congregations. Individuals from the mid-level judicatory offices are trained to work directly with their congregations as facilitators and coaches. It is anticipated that several of these congregations will then continue to work through elements of the Epiphany process engaging in coaching and additional services that support their plan implementation. There are multiple advantages to this new service offering for both the ecumenical partner and for Hope Partnership.

In addition, as of this writing, Hope Partnership President Gilberto Collazo reports that he is in serious conversation with two Disciples of Christ Regions for Mid-Level Judicatory consideration in Under the Vision, we have grown the Christian Church Disciples of Christ family by welcoming many new and affiliated faith communities into the fold. For this reason Terrell L. Though we plan to give each a celebratory send-off, their dedication to mission and service will be sorely missed.

Still, Disciples Church Extension Fund and Hope Partnership remain committed to delivering our ministries in close collaboration with each other and with our Disciples of Christ partners, supporters and friends for the benefit of congregations currently struggling with a variety of issues. Under this new collaboration, each church extension fund will contribute financial and operational support to train and coordinate the expanded ecumenical network of assessors and facilitators needed to deliver transformational services to member churches.

Continuing to grow in , our transformational and capital services will now be available to a wider ecumenical network of congregations than ever before. Living into our foundational calling as Disciples to let Christian unity be our polar star, Hope Partnership and DCEF are committed to collaborate with our ecumenical partners in this exciting and evolving way. Are Disciples less generous than we were 30 years ago? The decline in mainline churches—including ours—is well documented. In , Disciples reported , participating members. By , that number had declined to , So, are we giving less to the church than we were in ?

I think we can stop the hand wringing over the decline in our generosity! Every gift we receive and every investment entrusted to us represents the faith and witness of a faithful donor. We are grateful for their commitment and their examples. Gifts and investment deposits were strong again in Through tactical allocations across numerous non-correlated assets, we will continue to navigate through volatile periods and deliver long-term value.

The fund will actively invest in environmentally sustainable companies as well as those responding to an increasing global population. The Bostick Select Fund honors the ministry of Rev. Bostick served the church for over 40 years until her retirement. Our treasury services team now totals ten full-time and three part-time staff—seven with a CPA, MBA, or both, and seven with at least twelve years of service to the Foundation.

Ozzie was one of the early pioneers in the field of fundraising. He served as a consultant to founding Christian Church Foundation President James Reed for nearly 30 years and was essential in shaping the strategic direction and model of the Foundation. Orval taught us that listening for gifts is much more important than asking. We celebrate the continued faithfulness and generosity of Disciples. Thank you for your partnership in ministry. Lockwood, Suite , St. Louis, MO Website: www.