Church of God of Prophecy International Offices
COGOP|Connections
March 30, 2007

Global Awareness Disciples

Youth Group with a Heart for Missions
by Annette Taylor, Harvest Partners, annette@cogop.org

In Louisville, Kentucky, immediately following the Mission Encounter at the 2004 International General Assembly, I met an enthusiastic young lady by the name of Shelly Symonds, who was serving as the State Youth Director for Washington. It was evident at our first meeting that Shelly exuded a great passion for the mission network of our Church and that definitely caught my interest and attention.

Within a few short weeks following the 2004 Assembly, Shelly contacted me expressing interest in the Washington State Youth Group becoming involved in the Harvest Partners Ministry. Naturally, my antenna rose even more at such passion, conviction, and interest in missions, especially from young people. Therefore, our journey began.

In this article, I would like to spotlight the Global Awareness Disciples by sharing excerpts of Shelly’s testimonial about their endeavors through this mission ministry.

She recalls, “I had the privilege in 2004 to attend the International Assembly in Louisville, KY. It was my first time back to the Assembly in about 15 years, so I was determined to soak as much in as I possibly could. The theme for the Assembly was Vision Now,’ and throughout the week I petitioned God with this one request, ‘I need a fresh vision.’ I serve as State Youth Coordinator for Washington State and count it an honor to serve in this capacity. Because I enjoy youth ministry so much, I feel that I must keep my vision clear as I do not want to fill this position with my own passion or agenda, but with a Godly passion moving under the leading of the Holy Spirit.

It was on the airplane traveling home that God granted that petition for a fresh vision and from that came a new program we called, ‘Global Awareness Discipleship Program’ (GAD for short). Young people ranging from 18 to 20 years of age, from around the state, were given the opportunity to enroll in this 2-year program

We had three (3) main focuses in this program:
1. Servanthood – Many of these young people felt a desire to enter into the ministry, and we used this time to instill in them that a good leader is first a GREAT servant.
2. Knowledge – The members were sent two lessons a month via Email and were given small quizzes or assignments to reply back.
3. Missions – I felt it important to expand the definition of their world from what they see to something global.

We became Harvest Partners with Pakistan and sent them ministry support money each month. The commitment for GAD was for 2 years, with a ‘graduation trip’ to the General Assembly to help during the Mission Encounter. Though we started with 13 young people, we ended with eight (8)-yes, eight dedicated young people who found the motivation to endure this two years of service. We also had four (4) mentors who designed the lessons and were the accountability team for our members.

Eleven of us were able to attend the 2006 Assembly in Nashville, TN, and for these young members, it was the first time for all of them. To be able to watch them just soak in every bit of the Assembly was like watching kids opening Christmas presents. It was exciting, and of course, they were full of questions! My favorite question, ‘Why is everybody waving hankies?’

But, our favorite part of the Assembly was Mission Encounter day! We came with a servant’s heart. We helped set up and tear down all the booths representing the nations, served as runners, tour guides, photographers, decorators of booths, etc. It was a day that I know none of us will ever forget.

I believe the most exciting part of the Mission Encounter day was when we were able to present Brother Randy Howard a donation of over $9,000 for missions. It was such a joy to be able to give this money to Global Outreach knowing it was going to go and aid somewhere around the world in spreading the gospel.

I hope you found encouragement in reading about our GAD program, and if you would like more information, please contact me through e-mail at symonds91@comcast.net. I thank God for the vision He gave.”

In determining a lasting effect for the wonderful mission offering given by the Global Awareness Disciples during the Mission Encounter, it has been agreed upon by all parties that these funds will help sponsor building a Church of God of Prophecy in the nation of Mali, Africa. To God be ALL the glory!!! He has truly done great things through this Washington State Youth Group’s involvement with the Harvest Partners Ministry.

Church, please stand in prayer for Shelly as she continues seeking the heart of God for the Youth Ministry in Washington State. And, pray that the Holy Spirit would prompt others to follow such an example of servant leadership. God is indeed up to something through such mission endeavors!!! Let’s all get on board and be Spirit-Driven with fresh vision to fulfill His call.

LDI 2007 Intensive and Electives
April 17 – 21, 2007 in Cleveland Tennessee
by Larry Duncan, Leadership Development and Discipleship Ministries, cblfeedback@cogop.org

There’s still time to be a part of the 2007 Leadership Development Institute, coming April 17-21, 2007 to Cleveland, Tennessee. The institute will feature quality teaching, opportunities for worship and connecting with other ministers.

To view a list of the intensives and electives being offered this year, or to register online visit the LDI webpage by clicking
here and scrolling to the bottom of the page.

ICM 2007: Trees of Righteousness
Growing Tomorrow’s Leaders in Today’s Children’s Ministry
by Kathy Creasy, Internationaal Children’s Ministries, cgpkids@cogop.org

Perhaps you’ve heard that the forests of the world are diminishing. Each year an area of forest the size of England and Wales is being lost. These lost forests are home to more than half the world’s animal species and produce one-third of all living matter. Government, conservationists, and private enterprise are turningtheir attention to the crisis of the diminishing forest.

But there is a greater crisis before us as the Body of Christ and children’s ministers in particular. The forests of Christians who know and daily live out the truths of God’s Word are also diminishing. These diminishing forests have created a deficit in the Body of Christ of leaders, pastors, teachers, evangelists, and servants.

In Isaiah 61, a prophecy of Christ, God turns his attention to the diminishing forests-the poor, brokenhearted, captive, despairing. He promises that the anointing of the Lord’s Spirit upon us will allow us to bring salvation, healing, and hope. Through anointed ministry the diminishing forests will be reseeded and renewed. The saplings planted today will become trees of righteousness, planted by the Lord, displaying His glory.

You are the forester that God will use as he reseeds and renews the diminishing forests of the Body of Christ. The children are the saplings that must be planted in good soil, nurtured, and brought to maturity. They will become trees of righteousness, planted by the Lord, displaying His glory.

Come to the 2007 Institute to grow in your anointing and understanding, to be strengthened in relationships and be challenged in fulfilling God’s purposes. For more information visit children.cogop.org.

Heritage Ministries and Fields of the Wood
Site of Second General Assembly Featured on 2007 Coin
by Wayne Hall, Heritage Ministries Director, whall@cogop.org

A special thanks to everyone that joined the Heritage Ministries Association in 2006. Your support, both financially and prayerfully, is so much appreciated. You may also be assured of our prayers for you and the work of the Lord in your area of ministry. The 2007 membership cards and commemorative coins are currently being mailed as ordered. This year’s coin depicts the part of our history where the second General Assembly was convened, Union Grove near Cleveland Tennessee in January 1907. Your participation in joining Heritage Ministries Association with a donation of $10.00 annually is helping to “Preserve Our Heritage”.

A great day in the Lord is anticipated as hundreds and possibly more than a thousand gather to celebrate Easter on April 7, 2007 at Fields of the Wood. There will be gospel singing all day long resulting in a worshipful atmosphere in the Park. The entire afternoon will feather gospel sing groups including: The Coleman Looper Family, Royal Heirs, Victorious, 2X2 Quartette, and Faith Travelers. The day will climax with praise and worship to our risen Lord, directed by the McCaysville Church of God, a message by Pastor Chris Taylor, followed by the Easter Pageant soon after sunset. There will also be a Sunrise Service on Easter Sunday morning at 7:00 a.m. Want you join us for this tremendous EASTER CELEBRATION ’07 at Fields of the Wood.

UPDATE:

The Entrance Gate renovation is virtually completed, the flags of more than 100 nations line the “All Nations Cross”, a fresh face (paint) on many of the markers coincide with the freshness of Spring seen everywhere in God’s handiwork. A lot of work is being done to enhance the Park’s attractiveness for thousands of visitors this year. It is our prayer that through this ministry many souls will be reaped in our Lord’s Harvest.
Two New Churches Planted in North America
by Melva Pholner, North American Presbyter’s Office, mpohlner@cogop.org
We are praising God for two more new churches organized in North America.

Hobbs, NM…Bishop José Rivera, Overseer of Arizona, Nevada and New Mexico reports a new Spanish church organized in Hobbs, New Mexico January 1, 2007. The church is located at 412 E. Dunnam, Sebastian Morales is the pastor. This new congregation has 30 members.

Fort Meyers, FL…Bishop Elias Rodriguez, Overseer of the Southeast Spanish churches reports a new church organized in Fort Myers, Florida. This church was organized November 12, 2006 with eighteen members. Victor M. Zamora is the pastor of this congregation.

New Church in Hamlet, North Carolina
by Melva Pholner, North American Presbyter’s Office, mpohlner@cogop.org.

The church at Hamlet, NC recently purchased a beautiful building located at 300 Hendersonville Street. The building seats approximately 100 people, and was purchased with all of the furnishings. The church wqas also able to purchase two additional lots from the city of Hamlet. Members gave the interior a fresh coat of paint, cleaned everything like new and installed a sound system that was donated. They finished up their work with a beautiful signs and planted flowers.

The youth of the region passed out 250 flyers introducing the new church, what it had to offer the community and annoucning upcoming revival services. Elizabeth Smith is the Mission Leader and officially opened for service on Sunday morning, March 18, 2007 with 27 in attendance. The regional revival started that Sunday evening with 75 in attendance.

Spanish District Convention in Willard Ohio
by Melva Pholner, North American Presbyter’s Office, mpohlner@cogop.org.

News from Ohio-The first of March we were blessed to be in our Spanish District Convention which was held at our English church in Willard. We were blessed to have as our guests, the International World Language Director, Gabriel Vidal, his wife, Hanny, her mother and her cousin. The first night we were led in worship by the worship team of Willard. This team is very young but anointed. In addition to the vocals there was talented youth playing the drums, cymbals, keyboard, and bongos. Brother Vidal preached an outstanding message and there was a great response to the altar invitation.

On Saturday morning Hector Pendozo from Toledo led praise and worship which, again, was very anointed. Pastors Mauro A. Sosa, Juan Ozuna, Silvia Morla and our mission pastor, Francisco Camacho was given opportunity to share what the Lord is doing for them. Brother Parker delivered a message and instructions, how the Lord did bless. The Willard Spanish church furnished the meal for the lunch break. Thank you ladies for your wonderful hospitality.

Saturday afternoon was the highlight with Brother Vidal’s message that concluded with a march that included the Church Flag, followed with a replica of the Ark of the Covenant and then flags from various South American Countries. What a shouting and dancing time we had. We know of one lady receiving the Holy Spirit during this time. The Lord mightily blessed in this convention. Everyone left with their hearts and spirits renewed ready to go home and do more for the Lord.
Upcoming Events

April 2007

Alix, Alberta – Western Canada Center for Biblical Leadership Conference, April 23-27
Murphy, NC – Easter Program, April 7
Hoboken, NJ – Runnin’ the Race (Children’s Ministries) – Bilingual, April 7
Toronto, Ontario – East Canada Leadership Development Institute, April 30-May 4
Cleveland, TN – Leadership Development Institute, April 17-21
Memphis, TN – CM: Takin It to Heart (Children’s Ministries), April 21
Staverton, England – European Women’s Ministries Leadership Conference – April 11-12
Staverton, England – European Ladies Retreat – April 13-15

May 2007

Greeley, CO – Colorado Relational Ministry Conference, May 11-12
Des Moines, IA – Great Plains Ladies Retreat, May 4-6
Murphy, NC – Gospel Concert at Fields of the Wood, May 26
Providence, RI – CM: Takin It to Heart, May 5
Cleveland, TN – Institute of Children’s Ministry, May 23-26

For more information, contact: Shaun McKinley, Administrative Liaison to the General Overseer by e-mailing shaun@cogop.org.