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Greetings from Mexico City, São Paulo and San Francisco! Five weeks ago on February 9-12th, Elena & I had the privilege to participate in the 2017 Latin American Missions Conference in Mexico City whose exciting theme was EL REINO (THE KINGDOM)! 340 were in attendance with the highlight for me being the compelling Parable of the Sower Play performed by the incredible Mexico City Teen Ministry! The following week, the Spirit took us to São Paulo for the 2017 Brazil Missions Conference where 304 gathered to hear incredible sermons on the theme – REDENCAO (REDEMPTION)! 52 of these sold-out disciples traveled 2,000 miles (3,220 km) all the way from Santiago de Chile to Brazil’s largest city of 22 million! During this monumental event, I was in awe of God at the remarkable talent in the Campus Ministry, particularly the 35 students at the University of São Paulo (USP) – the number one academically ranked campus in all of Central and South America! Then last weekend in San Francisco, Elena preached at their spectacularWomen’s Day, where 200 attended, and then on Sunday, I had the honor to preach for this glorious congregation!
The Mexico City Teens brought down the house
with their performances in the Parable of
the Sower Play and the Flag Ceremony!
Alfredo Anuch – the Santiago de Chile Evangelist –
inspired the 52 Chilean Disciples behind him to
travel 2,000 miles (3,220 km) to participate
in the 2017 BMC!
After signing individual copies of her book ELEVATE
all around the world, Dr. Elena Garcia McKean was
greatly humbled that ELEVATE was the theme
for the San Francisco and LA Women’s
Days where hundreds attended!
RD Baker – Lead Evangelist of Dubai: Greetings from the Middle East! What a faith-building “Year of the Impossible” that God has given to us so far in 2017! Thanks to the incredible direction and structure that Kip & Elena provided during their mid-January visit, our young team has responded in a dramatic way! With 3 cranking Bible Talks (22 at tonight’s gathering!), a new hotel location for all worship services, April & I being supported full-time by Chicago, and the addition of the talented R.J. Castro from the City of Angels Church in January, God has provided us an abundance of fruit!
Evangeline was the first woman baptism
in the Dubai ICC!
After our most recent service, we simultaneously baptized a married Filipino couple, Andrew & Mitz Torcelino, in the Persian Gulf! They were met while the disciples were out sharing their faith for February’s International Day where we had a record 63 in attendance! Andrew & Mitz’s adorable daughter Belle and Mitz’s parents were also there to witness their rebirth – our first married couple baptism!
God blessed the International Day of the Dubai
Church with a record attendance of 63!
Coming all the way from Chennai, India,
Raja Rajan was the dynamic guest
speaker for the International Day!
Andrew & Mitz Torcelino first visited the Dubai
Church on International Day and were
baptized less than a month later!
After baptizing the Torcelinoes, later that night, we baptized Betty Bearnod! She lives in Abu Dhabi and must travel by bus 2 hours each way to our services! This “no excuse attitude” has inspired and called the Dubai Family higher!
Betty became the tenth baptism of the Dubai
Church on the 76th day of 2017!
Betty (center) was lovingly greeted by her fellow
triplets – Andrew & Mitz – who were
baptized earlier in the day!
In addition to Friday’s triplets, God has added this year by conversion: Evangeline, Chandra, Robie and Gladys – bringing us to 10 baptized disciples in the 76 days of 2017 – almost weekly baptisms! Amazingly, our remaining original 6 mission team members (3 left with visa challenges) have now grown into 23 sold-out disciples in less than 6 months since our Inaugural Service!
What do Middle East Churches do for fun?
Desert Safaris together!
Please keep us in your prayers as we take Jesus up on His offer, “The fields are RIPE for the harvest!” (John 4:35)
Kyle Bartholomew – Lead Evangelist of Manila: Mabuhay! (Live long!) The fire has been burning bright here in the Philippines, as the disciples are more zealous than ever before!
While perched on Calles Sky Walk, Kyle &
Joan Bartholomew dreamed together
about taking the Metro Manila ICC
to new heights!
Indeed though Satan has attacked us, we are persevering through Christ because of the many souls that continue to be saved! Three recent additions have given us tremendous joy! The first, Iya – a charismatic sophomore student from the University of the Philippines – was baptized by the North Region Campus Sisters! Iya continues to prove how grateful she is for her salvation, as she has brought visitors to church every single week since she was baptized!
Inspired by her salvation, Iya – a UP Student – has
brought visitors to every church service
since her baptism!
Lorenz was restored to God and His church yesterday through the help of the brothers in the Warrior Nation Campus Ministry – RTU! In true repentance, Lorenz joined the campus brothers in their Bible studies every single day while going through his restoration studies, and therefore helped our new brother Rafael get baptized on the same day that he was restored!
Jude and Rafael were baptized after the Worship
Service! Lorenz (right) helped baptize Rafael
(second to the right) on the same day
that he was restored!
Lastly, our brother JP and his family were recently victims of a fire in their neighborhood that burned everything they had. Throughout this trying time, Stella – JP’s mom – experienced the love of disciples through their constant visits, donations and prayers. She came to church, studied the Bible with the West Region Married Sisters, and was baptized! There was not a dry eye in church as she and her son JP echoed what Paul said in 2 Corinthians 6:10, that despite their hardships, they are “always rejoicing; poor, yet making many rich; having nothing, and yet possessing everything.”
Through the hardships imposed by Stella’s house
burning down, God guided Stella – JP’s Mom – to
be willing to take up her cross daily
and be baptized!
Also of special encouragement to the church, we held our first ever Regional Sunday Worship Services last week in the cities of Manila, Quezon City, and Makati! With 215 members, we had a combined total attendance of 405 – breaking our previous record of 306!
One of the reasons that the Metro Manila Church
is multiplying is that they have broken
up into three fruitful regions!
The 2017 Global Leadership Conference (GLC) for the first time will be celebrated outside the United States signifying that the SoldOut Movement is truly a worldwide family! This historic event will be on August 3-6, 2017 at the Makati Shangri La Hotel in the heart of Metro Manila, Philippines! We are centering all the lessons on the Book of Revelation. The inspirational theme for the 2017 GLC is VICTORIOUS from Revelation 15:2-4, “Those who had been VICTORIOUS over the beast… held harps given them by God and sang the song of Moses the servant of God and the song of the Lamb: ‘Great and marvelous are your deeds, Lord God Almighty… All nations will come and worship before you!'”
VICTORIOUS is the thrilling theme
for the 2017 GLC!
During this epic occasion, Saturday, August 5th will be devoted for every MERCY Ambassador to serve in some of the poorest communities of Metro Manila! On Sunday Lord willing, highlights will include the Fifth Commencement of the International College of Christian Ministries and the Spirit sending out three Mission Teams: Miami/Ft. Lauderdale (Florida), Cebu (Philippines), and Hong Kong (China) – the Twelfth (and last) Crown of Thorns City!
The Cebu Mission Team (above) will be feeding the
thirsty and hungry people of Cebu
with the Word of God!
Our Prayer Goals are for 250 Filipino Disciples and 600 International Disciples to participate in the 2017 GLC as this will allow us to financially break-even! The cost for registration will be $225 for those outside the Philippines and $40 for Filipino Disciples. To register go to https://glcvictorious.eventbrite.com.
The Philippines is composed of 7,107 islands!
Manila is located in the North on Luzon
Island and Cebu is located in the
central region on Cebu Island!
We are encouraging every Church Leader Couple, every Shepherding Couple and every LA Region Leader Couple to stay at the Shangri La Hotel as we have agreed in our contract to have at least 400 room nights. The cost of a room (which includes an incredible breakfast) is $110/night plus tax.
The entire 2017 GLC will be hosted at the
magnificent Makati Shangri La Hotel!
There are many considerably less expensive hotels in the area that others may select online. If you choose to do so, strive to find an option that is in or close to Makati as the traffic in Metro Manila is considered by some to be the worst in the world! To register at the Makati Shangri La Hotel go to http://www.shangri-la.com/reservations/booking/en/index.aspx?hid=SLM&group_code=INT310717&check_in=20170731&check_out=20170809.
The population of the 17 provinces
of Metro Manila (above) when
added to the 5 outer
provinces is almost
A unique highlight of the GLC’s is the Kingdom’s Got Talent Show! This year is the fifth such occasion! If you are interested in performing, please message the Director of KGT5 – Princeton George – ASAP on Facebook or via email at email@example.com!
Princeton George is directing KGT5!
Please be making your plans to participate in the 2017 GLC as this is a once-in-a-lifetime event!
Andrew Smellie – Lead Evangelist of Lagos: “Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.” (Proverbs 19:21) Greetings from the heart of Africa where “a great light has dawned!” (Isaiah 9:2) After several twists and turns, the Lord has brought the Smellie Family safely back from the USA to our incredible church family here in Nigeria on Wednesday, March 15th! Although our STR Visa process should only have taken approximately two weeks, it ended up taking almost two months, so that we were forced to stay in Washington DC while we waited! However, we now rejoice that through these high-level visas we have been approved for a 3 year clergy position that allows us to remain in Nigeria for the work of saving souls as well as to oversee the work on the African continent! God’s timing and purpose is perfect!
After waiting 2 months for their STR Visa, the
Smellie Family was welcomed back
home to Lagos!
Patrique & I want to take this opportunity to thank all of those who were so helpful and hospitable to us during this time! Of special note is the valiant Washington DC Church led by Richie & Elizabeth McDonnell! It warmed our hearts to return as African missionaries to encourage the church which we planted back in 2008! The DC Church’s love and support was evident as they playfully joked with us to place membership as we waited for our visas to arrive!
Richie & Elizabeth McDonnell and the entire DC
Church provided for the Smellie Family’s
needs during their wait for
their STR Visa!
Today in Lagos the church cheered not only for our return but for three incredible events: First, the appointment of Kate Awara as the new Campus Ministry Intern; the arrival of Paul & Bernice Ede – a former ICOC ministry couple from Nigeria’s capital city of Abuja – as they came to place membership in God’s new movement; and the baptism of Olatunde Oludahunsi, a single professional actor who proclaimed that Jesus is Lord! It was truly a day of miracles and rejoicing!
Paul & Bernice Ede attended the 2016 African
Missions Conference which ultimately
inspired them to join God’s
Tony Adamu (left) was on the original 1989 Lagos
Mission Team! He leads the Bible Talk at the
Dominos where he met Olatunde –
our new brother!
Please pray for us as we now prepare for our Lagos Enrichment Workshop from April 21-23, 2017 entitled, LIVING THE DREAM! Instead of having our African Missions Conference this year – which is a very costly event due to paying for the flights and accommodations for leaders throughout the African continent – we will be focusing on raising up workers to strengthen the Lagos Church! Another focus is gathering the remnant and to help us with this, Kip & Elena McKean will return to Lagos that weekend! Therefore, we will also be extending an open invitation to the leadership and membership of the Lagos ICOC to come and get their questions answered! It is going to be a time where Jesus’ standard of discipleship will be proclaimed boldly from the “Jerusalem” of Africa!
In mid-April, Kip & Elena will be visiting Nigeria to
encourage the Smellies and the Lagos Church
at the Lagos Enrichment Workshop!
As always, thank you for all your love, prayers and support! We are honored to serve the Lord through your financial sacrifice and the power unleashed through your daily prayers!
Seán Hurditt – Lead Evangelist of Birmingham (England): Greetings from the first church planting of the London Church in the UK! We had our Inaugural Service on February 19th! With just 8 sold-out disciples here in Birmingham and the support of Michael & Michele Williamson, we had 55 in attendance! On March 12th, we saw the miracle of our very first baptism – Josie! Josie is originally from Ghana and studies Audiology at Aston University! She was met by my fiancé Mary-Jane, and like Cornelius, Josie had a reverent fear of God that led her to respond with humility to the repentance to which God was calling her!
Seán & MJ – the Birmingham Church Leaders –
embraced their first baptism and
our new sister Josie!
Please pray for Birmingham as we start to build the church through the campus ministry! And to God be all the glory!
Sharmayne Viscichini – NYC’s Woman Region Leader-in-Training:God has been doing great things in New York City! Last Sunday, March 12th, we had our monthly All Congregational Sunday Service at the prestigious Marriott Marquis Times Square! We met on the 9th floor in the amazing Marquis Ballroom which has an entrance with a 40-story atrium overhead, and has access to the common area with a 180 degree view of Times Square! There is simply nothing like it! We had 263 in attendance, including our special guests, Dave & Jill Swann, their son Jordan, and their daughter Bella!
Jordan and Bella Swann moved the hearts
of the NYC Brothers and Sisters as
they shared for Communion!
It was a very special time for the New York City Church to meet them as, Lord willing, the Swanns will be moving here this summer to plant the New Jersey Region – giving us 5 regions! Our plan is for Dave to go full-time! We are super grateful for the continual sacrifice of the City of Angels Church as they simply keep giving and giving disciples to churches like NYC to forcefully advance the Kingdom around the world!
Dave & Jill Swann are moving their family to the
New York City Area, as they will plant and
lead the New Jersey Region!
Lastly, Aaron & I are very honored and humbled to be serving in Brooklyn as “Region Leaders-in-Training” under Luke & Brandyn Speckmen’s leadership! These past two weeks, God has added three incredible women to the Brooklyn Ministry through baptism: Elizabeth, Charnell and Yeisa!
Elizabeth (white towel) is one of three baptisms in
the Brooklyn Region – led by the Viscichinis
(right) – in the last two weeks!
Please continue to pray for us as the plan is for the Brooklyn Region, and us as their Region Leaders, to be officially sent out at our All Congregational Service on May 7th! After that service, we will be having our own weekly Sunday Worship Services in Brooklyn! We are family… to do the impossible!
Chenelle Patterson – Women’s Ministry Leader of Boston: “Pray for us that the message of the Lord may spread rapidly and be honored, just as it was with you.” (2 Thessalonians 3:1) Greetings from the “Athens of America!”
Bianca is one of 13 additions that God
has given to the Boston Church
in the last two weeks!
After our Winter Workshop, the Spirit led us to implement Jesus’ method of focusing on the few! We divided the congregation into house churches under the leadership of Sal & Jen DiFusco in the North, Frank Hines and Skyla Eastman in the South, and Peter Markarian & Jessica soon-to-be Markarian over the Downtown Campuses! From this single decision, we have seen an unprecedented multiplication of disciples! All year up to this time, additions have been a steady one or two a week, but last Sunday, God gave us a burst of 5 baptisms! Incredibly, the weekend before that, God blessed us with 6 baptisms as well as 2 restorations from the Mainline Church of Christ! All of this while breaking our attendance record with 127 on a non-push Sunday!
Sal DiFusco – the North Region Leader and a
Professor at Berklee College of Music –
baptized Fernando (red shirt) who is
one of his students!
Baptisms were from Boston University, Berklee College of Music, Bunker Hill Community College, single professionals, and the mother of one of our beloved brothers in the church!
Eddie – one of the most beloved brothers in the
church – led his mom Brenda to Christ!
God has been so gracious to us here in the “Cradle of Liberty” gathering from far beyond our borders! Of the 14 additions in the past 3 weeks, there have been disciples added to our number from Manchester, New Hampshire; Worcester; and Fall River! The sold-out disciples in these cities drive over an hour to come and worship with us! Pray for us to continue to reap the harvest and bear fruit that will last!
Cesar Limon – Lead Evangelist of Portland: Truly it has been a refreshing time in the church as the Lord has given us 13 additions in the first 13 weeks of 2017 – 2 restorations, 1 place membership and 10 baptisms! It was incredible to have 9 Portland Disciples attend the Latin American Missions Conference in February as we came back inspired by the Mexico City Teen Ministry to take our Teen Ministry to greater heights! Our creative Teen Ministry Leaders, Arro & Valeria, are in negotiations for our Teen Ministry to become clubs on all the 5 high schools where they have been holding discussions! These Bible Talks have been very fruitful as our Teen Ministry now numbers 10 disciples!
Johnny through a series of miracles was the tenth
teen to be baptized in Portland!
Inspired by Johnny’s baptism, the Portland Church
prayed for even greater miracles!
Also, God is moving in our Campus Ministry, as we are at 31 disciples on three different campuses with a plan to send out ministries to Lewis and Clark College, as well as to the University of Portland this year!
Though it was after midnight, the Portland Campus
Ministry was fired up to baptize Dennis!
We also had the opportunity to send out Chris Green, who has served tirelessly for ten years in Portland, to strengthen the Orlando Church as they send out the Miami Mission Team this summer!
Chris Green is moving to Orlando to join his
physical family in that great church!
Great news as well is that our brother Jorge Castillo is now dating Monique Carrasco, who we were able to hire on as our second full-time intern!
At the LAMC, Jorge made a sign in Spanish and
asked Monique, “Do you want to sit by
my side as my girlfriend?”
Despite the trials that we underwent when we first arrived, we have seen God prune us and now grow us in the past six months from 76 to 94 disciples! We are faithful that we will see God double the church this year! Pray for us as we are praying for you!
Michael Williamson – Lead Evangelist of London: Greetings from the United Kingdom where love is springing up everywhere!
Michael & Michele Williamson – the gallant European
World Sector Leaders – are on the famous London
Eye Ferris Wheel that gives a mesmerizing
view of all of London!
Between the 12th and 17th centuries, the custom of “hand fasting” became increasingly popular in England. The etymology behind hand fasting stems from the ancient British and Irish custom of shaking hands to solidify a partnership for life or “engagement!” Last month as Michele & I celebrated our 14th Wedding Anniversary, Kolbe Gray (who is part Irish) took his fair maiden Rebecca Rico and asked for her hand in marriage against the spectacular backdrop of the iconic Tower Bridge of London!
Congratulations to Kolbe Gray & Rebecca
Rico – the London East Region Leaders –
on their engagement! Lord willing, they
will be married July 23, 2017!
I’ve been so very proud of Kolbe & Rebecca, who valiantly lead our East Region! They were both fruitful the Sunday before their engagement with a five-talent single professional Haven, and Sam our first campus student at the prestigious Queen Mary University, who was met and studied with by Rebecca!
Sam cannot believe his eyes as to how glorious
and loving the East Region of
the London Church is!
God has been moving in all of our regions this year! In the North, God gathered an incredible remnant brother, who moved to be with the church from Manchester! Stewart Brown – who was originally baptized in 1987 and is a licensed football coach – gave up his job at the world famous Manchester United Football Club to be restored to God’s Kingdom!
Stewart Brown (second from left) gave up being the
Football Coach for Manchester United in order to
move to be a part of the mighty London Church!
We also baptized Natasha, a five-talent masters student studying Positive Psychology at Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge!
Natasha (center) has been given by God two moms
in the faith – Maria (left) and Michele!
Church history supports Oxford Brooke University as the birthplace for “Methodism,” and it was at this University that the West Region celebrated our first campus student, Steven, baptized in Oxford! The London Church is so inspired by Paul Busari (who leads our AMS) and Coral McNichols (a single mother with four kids) who have 8-10 guests attend their Oxford Bible Talk consistently!
Paul Busari is the fruitful leader of
the Oxford Bible Talk!
God has been moving in the South Region which has become a “Little Holland” as most of our Amsterdam Mission Team has moved there to train under Michael & Maria Hart, who will Lord willing plant the Amsterdam Church in November! Maria and the sisters were able to study with Rachel (Dutch born) who was just baptized and then added to the Amsterdam Team!
Though just baptized, Rachel (center) has
joined the Amsterdam Mission Team!
Lastly, please pray for my son Michael Adrian who consistently shares his faith with schoolteachers and friends. It brought me to tears seeing him as Team Captain leading his team undefeated to the Division Basketball Championship for seventh graders! Truly this is the “Year of the Impossible” and the “Year of VICTORY!”
Congratulations to Team Captain Michael Adrian
(center) on leading his team to the Seventh
Grade Division Basketball Championship!
Mark Garrido – Overseeing Evangelist of the Hawaiian Islands: Aloha from your sister congregations in Honolulu, Hilo and Kona! “Let them give glory to the Lord and proclaim His praise in the Islands!” (Isaiah 42:12) The beautiful Hawaiian Islands are proclaiming God’s praise as five people were added to God’s Kingdom this past month! On February 12th, we celebrated the Kona Inaugural Service! Excitingly with just 14 disciples, God gave to us an attendance of 90 people! Since the planting of Kona, Kona has had three baptisms, one wedding and finally secured a location for their worship service at a historic landmark – the Aloha Theatre!
The Spirit blessed the Kona Inaugural Service
with 90 in attendance!
Of note in Kona, Richie was reached out to about a year ago but never studied the Bible. Then God gave him a job at Target with Gretchen! Gretchen recognized him from over a year ago and invited him to Bible Talk! Richie not only came but brought his girlfriend along with their baby. The two of them started to study the Bible and realized that they were living a life together that was unpleasing to God. Richie & Miko were encouraged by the Scriptures presented by our dearest brother and sister Dave & Beth Kelly to live a life worthy of the calling! In obedience, Richie & Miko Albert were unified in marriage on March 7th and immediately after were baptized into God’s merciful Kingdom!
Dave & Beth Kelly discipled Richie & Miko to
be married and then to get baptized!
Eight days later on March 15th, 16 year old Joscelyn was baptized! She is the first teen baptism in the Kona International Christian Church!
Joscelyn is the first teen baptized in
the Kona Church!
In Honolulu, it has been incredible as on February 17th, Ebony was baptized after studying the Bible for about a month! Ebony is a University of Hawaii (UH) student and just arrived this semester. Ebony is currently living in the dorms at UH and was unsure if she would be able to stay in the dorms due to finances. She was looking for a job and after she made Jesus Lord of her life, God blessed Ebony with an incredible job offer which has allowed us to start a Women’s Bible Talk in her dorm!
Ebony’s conversion will allow the Honolulu ICC to
have a Women’s Bible Talk in her dorm at UH!
Last July, an incredible brother Kainalu – a fire/science student – was baptized in Hilo by Nate Carr! When Keri & I left Hilo to advance God’s Kingdom in Honolulu, we asked our Campus Leaders to join us and then asked Kainalu to fill the gap in Hilo. Kainalu stepped up and baptized his classmate Jacob on February 26th!
Guided by the discipling from Dennis (center),
Kainalu (right) baptized his classmate Jacob!
Please be praying for our Special Missions efforts to blow out this year’s calling and for the many who are close to being baptized! Mahalo!
Dustin Miller – Lead Evangelist of Denver: Greetings from the Rocky Mountains! It’s been 2 weeks since the majority of the Supplemental Mission Team from San Francisco (SF) arrived in Denver and God is already working powerfully in the church here!
Dustin & Amanda Miller – the new Denver Church
Leaders – were welcomed by the Sister of
Encouragement – Elizabeth Hess!
As soon as we landed, we were able to witness the miracle of marriage as Jeff & Casey Tuason were joined in holy matrimony that Saturday! The ceremony was incredible as our very own Shepherd Jason Bond officiated the wedding! It was amazing to have so many disciples visiting from other congregations including many disciples from the Los Angeles AMS Region!
Congratulations to Jeff & Casey Tuason!
This weekend was one for the books as we held our Third Annual Marriage Retreat in Mantiou Springs! We were honored to have Gary & Cyndee Ochs lead our retreat simply entitled, A Love Story. The theme comes from the 1950’s pop song entitled, The Book of Love. The Ochs have one of the best marriages that I have ever seen and everyone was delighted to hear their insights into keeping their marriage A Love Story!Gary related his life before becoming a disciple to the likes of the rich young ruler and Cyndee to the sinful woman. Amazingly, Gary & Cyndee were baptized in 1990 on the same day and in the same ocean only 400 miles apart! Gary was baptized in SF and Cyndee in LA! They shared that only in God’s incredible Kingdom could the rich young ruler and the sinful woman get married! Sunday was amazing as all 16 couples in the church renewed their vows with their spouses!
Though married 25 years ago on November 21st,
Gary & Cyndee Ochs are still living
out A Love Story!
Lastly, Sunday night was exceptionally remarkable as Kennedy a student at our Metropolitan State University (MSU) Campus was baptized into Christ! Kennedy was reached out to by our dear sister Ariel Schram who “just happened” to be the professor of one of Kennedy’s classes that semester! Ariel shared her faith with Kennedy, as she does with all her students! After months of wrestling with the truth, Kennedy made the decision to give up everything, make Jesus Lord of her life, and be baptized into Christ!
Kennedy was converted by Ariel Schram – her
Professor at the MSU!
Please keep us in your prayers as we are making forceful advancement on our campuses here with many who are close to making Jesus Lord!
Atop the Rocky Mountains, Dustin & Amanda have a
great vision for what God will do in Denver!
Micky Ngungu – Lead Evangelist of Kinshasa: Greetings from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)! Last week in Kinshasa, Sergine was baptized after more than six months of Bible study! Now, her husband Pitshou is studying the Bible because of the radical changes he has seen in his dear wife!
Micky & Lyly Ngungu – the beloved leaders
of the Kinshasa ICC!
In our sister church in the DRC – the Mbuji Mayi Church – 8 people were baptized last week: Alice, Cynthia, Anna, Sarah, Rosine, Pontient, Barthélémy and Chérubin! The Mbuji Mayi Church now has 38 sold-out members!
Eight were baptized last week in Mbuji Mayi,
Democratic Republic of Congo!
Boniface Bidilukinu (front) is the Mbuji Mayi Church
Leader whose membership is now
38… and multiplying!
Debs Rajan – Women’s Ministry Leader of Chennai: Greetings from the Tamilians! “And you have forgotten that word of encouragement that addresses you as sons: ‘My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline, and do not lose heart when He rebukes you, because the Lord disciplines those He loves, and He punishes everyone He accepts as a son.'” (Hebrews 12:5-6)
Sing – a beautician by profession – was one of 24
baptisms in the month of February in
the Chennai Church!
The month of January was a time of discipline for the Chennai Church as Satan sifted many souls that in turn fell away. As a church, Raja called us at the first of February to do a lot of searching of our hearts. There was fasting and a lot of sleepless nights. We took the Lord’s discipline and made radical changes in loving God and loving people. The Lord encouraged us in the month of February by letting us have daily additions! In 28 days, we had 24 baptisms and 4 restorations!
Snowy (second from the left) is a Master’s Student
in Commerce, and Ajith is in his final year of
Engineering! They were two of four that
were restored in Chennai during the
very fruitful month of February!
Manikam – a Physics student from Pachaiyappa’s
College – gets an extra splash!
Each of the 28 souls were special, but among them was Thomas & Shirly’s son Rhys and Prathap & Maheshwari’s daughter Priya!
Thomas along with his daughter
Rhea baptize Rhys!
Prathap & Maheshwari baptize their daughter
Priya, who has now become their
spiritual daughter in the Lord!
Also Khandaswamy & Sarita from our former fellowship were restored and they saw their daughter Sarika and son Ayush get baptized!
Khandaswamy & Sarita from our former fellowship
were restored and then baptized both their
daughter Sarika and son Ayush!
Of special note was Soumiya, who studied the Bible 6 years ago, but did not want to give up everything and left to Baharain in the Middle East to make considerably more money! Raja my husband kept sending her the sermons for all these years! In time, she was married but without the Lord like many she divorced. Soumiya was devastated that she did not obey God and came back to Chennai, studied the Bible again, and not only was baptized, but has decided to give up her lucrative job and join the New Delhi Mission Team! To God be all the glory!
Debs (second from left) and Yassa (right) baptized
Soumiya into the Kingdom of Light!
THE LATIN AMERICAN MISSIONS CONFERENCE REPORT
The 2017 Latin American Missions Conference (LAMC) began on Thursday morning, February 9th with the Church Builders Workshop! Cory Blackwell of Chicago preached the message A THRONE ESTABLISHED FOREVER! During this inspiring lesson, Cory shared about the Chicago Church’s amazing January where God blessed them with 13 additions and no fall aways! As well this zealous congregation of 168 disciples raised their weekly contribution pledge by over $1,000!
EL REINO (THE KINGDOM) was the moving
theme of the 2017 LAMC!
The Church Builders Workshop (CBW)!
At the CBW, Cory Blackwell shared that the Chicago
Church in January had 13 additions
and no fall aways!
Following, there were Men’s and Women’s Sessions led respectively by Carlos & Lucy Mejia! The theme of these sessions was A MOUNTAIN THAT WOULD FILL THE EARTH – What Will It Take To Plant Churches In Every Nation? For the men, the speakers included Jose Otero of Bogotá, Jared McGee of LA, Jason Dimitry of San Francisco, Rafael Jerez of Boston, Hector Gomez of Mexico City, and Raul Moreno of São Paulo!
Rafael Jerez of Boston gave a short charge
entitled, COMPETENT TO INSTRUCT
Hector Gomez convicted all in the Men’s Program
to PRAY FOR THE REMNANT!
The sisters in their session heard amazing messages from Daniela Otero, Lianne Kernan of LA, Sarah Dimitry, Melissa Jerez, Adriana Gomez, Lynda Moreno and Elena McKean!
Daniela Otero of Bogotá delivered an impassioned
plea to the sisters to be LIVING SACRIFICES!
In the afternoon, we boarded buses and headed to the Pyramids at Teotihuacán about 25 miles (40 km) northeast of Mexico City!
The fun-filled bus ride to the Teotihuacán Pyramids!
Four buses carried the 120 international LAMC
participants to the Pyramids and allowed us
to fellowship with awesome disciples
such as Fernando & Jackie
Chavez of Portland!
This was very interesting as these two pyramids – the Pyramid of the Sun and the Pyramid of the Moon – were built around 100 AD. The city of Teotihuacán at that time “was the largest city in the pre-Columbian Americas with a population estimated at 125,000… making it the sixth largest city in the world” according to Wikipedia! We climbed the larger of the two pyramids – the Pyramid of the Sun – where archeologists and later eye witness accounts reported human sacrifices at its peak! There, the 120 that made it to the top were led by Jared McGee in singing the beautiful song Dios Tu Pueblo Canta / Lord The People Praise You (in both Spanish and English) that glorified Jesus’ sacrifice for all human kind! We were told that the singing could be heard throughout what once was Teotihuacán City!
Following the ascent and descent from the Pyramid of the Sun, we once again boarded the buses and headed for a Mexican Restaurant! Most of us were quite thirsty and famished!
Friday evening, was the First General Session of the LAMC! Highlights of the evening included a stirring Opening Video, an International Prayer, GOOD NEWS FROM ALL AROUND THE KINGDOM, and the Reinstatement as Evangelist and Women’s Ministry Leader of Leonel & Cristina Torres!
Leonel & Cristina Torres were reinstated Evangelist
and Women’s Ministry Leader by the Mejias!
Then came the Special Presentations By The Mexico City Teen Ministry! This included the Parable of the Sower Play by the Teen Brothers and Kayla Torres as well as a lively Modern Dance by the Teen Sisters that included the Flag Ceremony by the Teen Brothers! What made the Parable of the Sower Play so powerful was that after the “Fourth Soil Teen” was baptized (Andrew Mejia), he then restored the fallen away “Third Soil Teen” (Carlitos Mejia), who then helped to restore the fallen away “Second Soil Teen” (Jaume Salvatella), who in turn baptized the “First Soil Teen” (Sebastian Negrin)!
The disciples (Santiago Gomez and Miguel Limon)
taught the “Fourth Soil” (Andrew Mejia) to be
baptized! He in turn restored the “Third Soil”
(Carlitos Mejia – lying on the ground) as
Jesus (Daniel Gomez) prayed and
interceded to the Father!
The stirring Flag Ceremony by the
Mexico City Teens!
To close out this amazing first night, Carlos Mejia enthusiastically preached the sermon, THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS NOT A MATTER OF TALK BUT OF POWER!
Carlos, Lucy and the entire Mexico City Church
hosted the very classy LAMC!
Saturday morning was MERCY T-Shirt Day! Tim Kernan – the City of Angels Church Evangelist – delivered in my opinion his best sermon yet which was entitled, THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS RIGHTEOUSNESS, PEACE AND JOY!
On MERCY Morning, all of the LAMC delegates wore
their green MERCY t-shirts giving us an
awe-inspiring sense of unity!
Dr. Tim Kernan preached on THE KINGDOM OF
GOD IS RIGHTEOUSNESS, PEACE AND JOY!
Then we broke up into three sessions on Lessons From The Sermon On The Mount! The sessions included: Zero to Five Years In The Kingdom, Five To Fifteen Years In The Kingdom, and Fifteen Plus Years In The Kingdom!
Coltin Rohn spoke on RIGHTEOUSNESS at
the Five To Fifteen Years In The
Following, we came back for another General Session! Most moving was the Kingdom Appointment by the Oteroes of Salvador & Martita De Luque to become the Bogotá (Colombia) Shepherding Couple!
Jose & Daniela Otero appointed their best friends
Salvador & Martita De Luque to be the
Bogotá Shepherding Couple!
Afterward, a remarkable presentation was given by Travis & Cecy Frazier – a Congregational Shepherding Couple in LA – on THE SHEPHERDS OF THE FLOCK! Then Nick & Denise Bordieri – the World Sector Leaders of MERCYWORLDWIDE – delivered a passionate plea about MERCY Projects Around The World.
Carlos & Lucy presented a special award to
Nick & Denise Bordieri – the Global
Directors of MERCY!
To close the afternoon, Raul Moreno and Carlos Mejia shared about the Crown Of Thorns Project For Latin America!
Carlos and Raul – the best of friends – are
spearheading the evangelization of
Central and South America!
That evening was the much anticipated Kingdom Banquet! And what a feast it was! To cap off the night, Raul delivered the 24 minute lesson appropriately titled, THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN IS LIKE A WEDDING BANQUET! Afterward, there was a fun-filled Kingdom Family Dance And Fellowship!
On Sunday, February 12th was the spectacular Congregational Worship Service! The singing was phenomenal as the almost 90 Americans in attendance were “getting the hang” of the Spanish songs! Following was the Kingdom Appointments of Anthony & Alejandra Rodriguez, the Monterrey Mission Team Leaders! As well the Rodriguezes vulnerably shared for Communion and Jared & Rachel McGee vivaciously preached for Contribution!
For Communion, Jared & Rachel McGee shared how
just three years ago the Mexico City Church
was 12 disciples and is now 150!
The Morning Session continued with the lesson, THE SECRETS OF THE KINGDOM which was a textual study of Jesus’ seven parables in Matthew 13 on the Kingdom!
Kip McKean preached on THE SECRETS
OF THE KINGDOM!
340 participated in the Sunday Worship Service!
As the service was coming to a close, we celebrated two that were baptized into Christ – one college student and one teen!
Miguel Limon hugged Enrique who is the
22nd Mexico City Teen!
Following the glorious baptisms came the Send Off of the Monterrey (Mexico) Mission Team led by Anthony & Alejandra Rodriguez! To call upon the Spirit to carry the team to Monterrey, we fell to our knees in prayer!
Prayer by all the LAMC delegates allowed the Spirit
to send out the Monterrey (Mexico) Mission Team!
Anthony & Alejandra Rodriguez (right) were
appointed Evangelist and Women’s Ministry
Leader earlier in the service, and then were
sent off as the Monterrey Mission
Late that night, one of Lucy Mejia’s impossible prayers was answered! Graciela – her Mom – was baptized into Christ!
After attending the entire LAMC, Graciela –
Lucy’s Mom – was baptized late
Though not officially a part of the weekend’s festivities, on Sunday evening almost the entire LAMC participants came back together to celebrate the magnificent wedding of Miguel Limon & Myrna Lopez – the dynamic Mexico City Teen Ministry Leaders!
Congratulations to Mr. & Mrs. Miguel & Myrna
Limon – the remarkable Mexico City
THE BRAZIL MISSION CONFERENCE REPORT
After the terrific LAMC, Elena & I traveled to beautiful São Paulo for the much anticipated Brazil Missions Conference (BMC)!
The exciting theme for the 2017 BMC was
Since at the end of the BMC the Rio de Janeiro
Mission Team would be sent off, the logo for
the BMC was creatively modeled after the
colossal Christ the Redeemer Statue that
overlooks the gorgeous city of Rio!
Since Michael & Sharon Kirchner and Elena & I were the only American delegates, Raul & Lynda Moreno “took us under their wings” to negotiate the extremely packed São Paulo Subway System to get around this densely populated city of 22 million lost souls!
Michael & Sharon Kirchner of LA are given a SoldOut
Movement Welcome with the song in Portuguese
of We Love You With The Love Of The Lord!
Raul & Lynda Moreno graciously led the only
Americans at the BMC – the Kirchners and
McKeans – to the Speakers Dinner
through the rush hour crowd
on the São Paulo Subway!
On Thursday evening, February 16th, the Speakers Dinner was held at a local Churrascaria – a delicious Brazilian Steakhouse! Since only Raul & Lynda Moreno were able to attend the LAMC from São Paulo, and only three – Alfredo & Alejandra Anuch and Dr. Ana Flores – came to the LAMC from Chile, it was incredible for Elena & I to be immersed in almost an entirely new group of equally fired up Disciple Leaders on another continent!
The Speakers Dinner was held at a local Brazilian
Steakhouse called a Churrascaria! Following
mouthwatering steaks and a delicious
dessert, there was even
The Brazil Missions Conference (BMC) officially began on Friday morning with the Congregational Workshop! We were given an incredible Welcome by the heroic remnant couple, Renato & Maria José Tria!
The valiant remnant disciples – Renato &
Maria José Tria – gave a rousing
Welcome to the Congregational
Following incredible singing, Raul Moreno delivered a sermon of sermons entitled, THE HOPE OF REDEMPTION!
Sermons during the BMC were delivered in
Portuguese, Spanish and English!
Raul is a master of all three!
Raul & Lynda’s precious children Bella
and Felipe with Avó Elena!
Afterward, we were privileged to hear inspirational charges on THE REDEMPTION OF: ZACCHAEUS by Michael Kirchner; THE THIEF ON THE CROSS by Adam Zepeda; THE SYROPHOENICIAN WOMAN by Maria José Tria, THE WOMAN AT THE WELL by Alejandra Anuch; THE LEPER WHO RETURNED by Alfredo Anuch; and THE BLIND MAN FROM BIRTH by Jose Andres Vargas!
After coming to Brazil as a missionary from America,
Adam Zepeda – Raul’s son in the faith – now also
is fluent in Portuguese, Spanish and English!
Alejandra Anuch eloquently shared about
THE WOMAN AT THE WELL!
Jose Andres Vargas of Santiago spoke in
Spanish on THE BLIND MAN
To end the Congregational Workshop, Renato Tria spoke in Portuguese on THE REDEMPTION OF SINS!
Renato Tria moved our hearts in his lesson
entitled, THE REDEMPTION OF SINS!
So encouraging at the BMC was to meet young
Christians such as Benjamin Teng Lin who is
fluent in not only Portuguese and English,
but through his parent’s influence,
in Taiwanese and Mandarin!
Elena fellowshipped with Juliane (left) – a recent
convert in Rio who speaks seven languages –
and Carol – an USP Student who is
majoring in Opera!
Friday evening, Raul & Lynda Moreno – the Central and South America World Sector Leaders and São Paulo Church Leaders – gave a joyful Welcome to all the BMC delegates!
Raul & Lynda graciously welcomed all to the
Second Brazil Missions Conference!
Following the Welcome in a surprise, the UNIFESP
Drum School electrified the crowd!
Then came a powerful Video over-viewing the SoldOut Movement Churches of Central and South America! Following was the presentation of the GOOD NEWS AROUND THE WORLD! Elena & I announced at that time that we were changing the name of the conference from the Brazil Missions Conference to the South American Missions Conference! We will rotate the hosting of this amazing unifying event between the two Crown of Thorns Cities of São Paulo and Santiago de Chile! All the disciples – especially the 52 from Santiago – were so encouraged!
Kip & Elena shared GOOD NEWS FROM AROUND
THE WORLD in English as Danilo
translated into Portuguese!
Then came the beautiful Cultural Dance Performances all performed by disciples!
The spectacular Cultural Dances brought
the crowd to their feet!
After the dances, Caio Costa – the Rio Mission Team Leader – was appointed an Evangelist in the Kingdom of God! He is the first of our many Brazilian Converts in the new Movement to be appointed an Evangelist!
Caio Costa was appointed the first Brazilian-born
Evangelist! Raul calls him in Portuguese the
“Bible with Legs” (Walking Bible)! Caio’s
brilliance is reflected in turning down a
full scholarship to Moscow State
University for a PhD in Physics
to pursue ministry!
After a lengthy fellowship break and then great singing, Michael Kirchner of LA delivered his first Missions Conference sermon entitled, ETERNAL REDEMPTION! As he passionately preached on the cross, he wept over the sacrifice that Jesus made for him, causing us all to do the same! It was absolutely unforgettable!
Michael Kirchner delivered his lesson on ETERNAL
REDEMPTION with tears over the
sacrifice of Christ!
The BMC crowd responded with an enthusiastic
Saturday morning was the Men’s Program from 9:00AM – 11:30AM. Caio gave his first Missions Conference sermon, THE PRICE OF REDEMPTION!
Caio preached his first Missions Conference Sermon
on THE PRICE OF REDEMPTION!
Then we heard tremendous admonitions by Vini Rodrigues – an USP Student, Manuel Palma – a Santiago Intern, Tulio Amaral – another USP Student, Nicolas Estay – a Santiago Single, and Augusto Rodrigues – Vini’s Dad! Indeed, the Rodriguezes are a remarkable family! Vini reminds me of the zealous Phinehas of Numbers 25, and his father delivered a passionate charge on REDEEMED MARRIAGES! Augusto gave a tremendous analogy as he held up a single rose where he compared our wives to the beautiful flower and the thorns on the stem to challenges in marriage that a husband’s spiritual leadership can overcome! Following these messages were powerful d-groups!
Vini, Manuel, Tulio, Nicolas and Augusto gave short
charges during the Men’s Workshop!
Kip’s nickname for Vini after his lesson was
“Phinehas” from Numbers 25!
Augusto – Vini’s Dad – preached on
comparing our wives
In the afternoon from 2:00PM – 4:30PM was the Women’s Program! The speech THE PRICE OF REDEMPTION was given by Elena, and after a break, short charges were delivered by Pilar Vargas of Santiago, Bia Hida – an USP Student, Carol Bataglin – a December graduate of USP, Dr. Ana Flores – a Single Physician from Santiago, and Sharon Kirchner of LA! As with the men, the sisters likewise had life-changing d-groups!
Bia – an USP Student and the Women South Region
Leader – translated for Elena!
The Speakers for the Women’s Program – Sharon,
Bia, Pilar, Elena, Lynda, Ana and Carol!
Saturday evening, we gathered for our Second General Session, which was MERCY Night where every participant wore their green MERCY t-shirts!
Alfredo Anuch gave the sermon of the hour in Spanish, REDEMPTION FOR HIS PEOPLE!
Alfredo has become one of the most
powerful Evangelists in
Then following, in keeping with the Brazilian flare for fun, there was a Masquerade Pure Dance!
The Masquerade Pure Dance!
Olimpia & her new boyfriend Gabriel – an USP
Student – who most affectionately
Sunday morning was the grand finale beginning with the Kingdom Appointments of the recently married Danilo & Carol Bataglin!
Crying tears of joy, Raul & Lynda appointed as
Evangelist and Women’s Ministry Leader their
dear son and daughter in the faith –
Danilo & Carol Bataglin!
In turn, they shared for Communion and the Kirchners did a wonderful job sharing about the sacrifice of the American Churches for both São Paulo and Santiago in their Contribution Lesson!
Michael & Sharon shared about the incredible
sacrifice of the American Churches for their
Missions Contributions that help to
support both São Paulo
Then came a very creative Redemption Skit by the São Paulo Disciples to the music of Worn by Tenth Avenue North! The chorus of the song is so powerful: Let me see redemption win, Let me know the struggle ends, That you can mend a heart that’s frail and torn! REDEMPTION is what all of us at the BMC were reminded of!
The moving Redemption Skit!
The Sunday sermon was THE DAY OF REDEMPTION and was focused on calling everyone at the conference to a decision!
Raul translated Kip’s sermon
THE DAY OF REDEMPTION!
Then came 3 phenomenal restorations and 4 extraordinary baptisms!
Vania, Valdeci and Robert were gently
restored to the Lord!
Bia (center) in her upbeat way shared about
Vania’s (green) repentance!
Humberto gives his good confession to be baptized
as his wife Vania (left) joyfully looks on!
After these incredible additions, perhaps the highlight of the entire weekend was the exciting Send Off of the Rio de Janeiro Mission Team!
Raul & Lynda introduced the Rio de
Janeiro Mission Team!
The closing song of the BMC was Canção Da Festa (The Feast Song), which in gist is a Jewish type feast song as in the Feast of the Tabernacles! As is our custom in all SoldOut Movement Churches for the last song in a service, we bridged the aisles! Yet instead of swaying back and forth, many of the zealots in the São Paulo Church were so excited from all the miracles that they had witnessed that day, that they were jumping up and down… like a rock concert! King David would have been inspired, as these Spirit-filled disciples were “dancing before the Lord with all [their] might!” (2 Samuel 6:14) And to God be all the glory!
The spiritual “Rock Concert” closing song,
Canção Da Festa (The Feast Song)!
SAN FRANCISCO WOMEN’S DAY REPORT
Elena shared that the 2017 Women’s Day in San Francisco (SF) was one of the best she had ever participated in! The stunning venue was on the 14th floor of the Emeryville Hilton Garden Inn overseeing the breath-taking view of the entire San Francisco Bay including the Bay Bridge and the Golden Gate Bridge! Encouragingly, for Elena, the theme for this momentous event was the title of her recent book – ELEVATE! Sarah Dimitry – the SF Women’s Ministry Leader – inspired the 75 zealous sisters in the congregation to have an attendance of exactly 200!
The San Francisco Women’s Day theme was
ELEVATE! This was inspired by Elena’s
book fully entitled, ELEVATE – Jesus’
Global Revolution For Women!
Sarah gave a heartfelt Welcome calling the all the women “to stretch their wings to soar to new heights!” Then the Shepherdess in the congregation, Cyndee Ochs, gave a moving Prayer! Following, all enjoyed a delicious buffet breakfast!
Sarah Dimitry and Cyndee Ochs gave the
Welcome and Opening Prayer
After the breakfast came the stirring Video Presentation on ELEVATE!Then came the moving Testimonials by Ashley Sarkodie – ELEVATE YOUR HOPE, Lidia Barrios – ELEVATE YOUR TRUST, and Julie Clark – ELEVATE YOUR WORTH! This was Julie’s first full day in San Francisco after moving all the way from Denver the day before! Nonetheless, she blew out her charge!
The heartfelt Testimonials were delivered by
Julie Clark, Lidia Barrios and
A packed house listened attentively to
Ashley sharing her life!
After a brief intermission, Elena delivered the keynote address – ELEVATE! For those that have known Elena through the years, we have heard many inspirational lessons! For me, this was her very best one… yet! Her points were simply: 1) Jesus Elevates Your Heart and 2) Jesus Elevates Your Soul! She shared very vulnerably about her sins and shortcomings yet inspired us all by how much she trusted God in the most difficult times of her life including when she was diagnosed with bone cancer. Praise God, He answered Elena’s prayers and healed her so that she can continue to pursue Jesus’ dream of the evangelization of the nations in this generation!
Elena delivered her best lesson… yet!
Elena’s guest to the Women’s Day was Tiffany
(left) – Elena’s dear daughter-in-law!
Then came a time of joy and laughter during the Raffle! Every woman that was at the Women’s Day was asked to fill out a response card. All 200 cards were collected and put into a “treasure chest!” Then Sheila Turner drew out one card, read the name, and then Katie Jystad presented the overjoyed woman with an incredible basket! There were so many cheers for the winners of each of the three extravagant baskets of food and cosmetics!
Sheila and Katie energized the crowd by raffling
the fantastic gift baskets!
Following the gift baskets, we witnessed two amazing college baptisms: Zemaye – a student at San Francisco State and Mikayla – a student at San Jose State!
Zemaye came out of the water relishing in
the joy of her salvation!
Finally, everyone in the audience rose to their feet and clapped as loud as they could as Lauren Ona closed the day with the song Rise Up!
Lauren Ona did such a terrific job in singing the
closing song Rise Up, that she has been asked
to sing it again at the 2017 GLC in Manila!
Lauren’s grandmother really appreciated Elena
signing her book!
Maritza Dicicco (burgundy dress by the young girl)
is pictured with her 12 personal visitors
to the Women’s Day!
The next day, we had a tremendous Worship Service as the entire San Francisco Church came together! Jeremiah & Julie Clark along with their children were given a very warm welcome as they will lead the East Bay Region!
Jeremiah & Julie Clark were not only warmly
welcomed into the San Francisco Family,
but were honored to preside
I was honored to preach and delivered the message – ARE YOU READY? The Sunday Service was also very special as the San Francisco Church sent out the Silicon Valley House Church! Located in Silicon Valley is the prestigious Stanford University! Excitingly, Steve Gao of Los Angeles was recently accepted to the Master’s Program at Stanford! Subsequently, the San Francisco Church will initiate the Stanford Campus Ministry upon Steve’s arrival in the Fall!
The Silicon Valley House Church Mission Team!
Congratulations to Steve Gao who will attend
Stanford University in the Fall!
And so that week God added seven to the San Francisco Family – 3 baptisms, 2 restorations and 2 place memberships! So as of March 19th… God has blessed the San Francisco Church with 11 additions! With just 5 more, they will smash their record growth for one month… and this coming Sunday is Harvest Sunday! And to God be all the glory!FAMILY NEWS
Phoenix: Greetings from the “Valley of the Son!” Our precious brother and sister, Juan Carlos & Bianca Preciado, were married in Christ Sunday, February 18th of this year! Preciado means “precious” in Spanish, and they have definitely won the hearts of the family here in Phoenix! God moved powerfully as they were “living in sin” together when Juan Carlos began studying the Bible. During the studies, their compromising living situation was challenged to not even have a “hint of any kind of impurity” or “sexual immorality.” (Ephesians 5:3) Dan & Laura Barrett graciously offered their home to Bianca and her six-year-old daughter Naveah so both Juan Carlos & Bianca could repent, be pure, and continue to study the Bible to become disciples! Juan Carlos was baptized into Christ on Wednesday, February 1st and he joyfully baptized Bianca that Saturday, February 5th!
Congratulations to Juan Carlos & Bianca Preciado!
God blessed them with a great deal for a honeymoon in Paris, and they were warmly welcomed and enormously encouraged by our sister church there!Chennai: Johnny & Leno after much prayer and fasting were excited to adopt Joanna Johnson into their family!
As God adopted each disciple into His family, so
Johnny & Leno have adopted baby Joanna!
Franklin & Meena, who are awesome Bible Talk Leaders, were blessed by God with a baby girl, Olivia Esther Franklin!
Welcome “little Olivia” to God’s worldwide family!
Rajani & Divya are now happily married in the Lord!
Congratulations to the newlyweds – Rajani & Divya!
Manila: John & Aira were dating in the world, and before getting baptized they decided to surrender their relationship to God as they put Him first in their lives! He asked her to be his girlfriend again after getting baptized, and on Aira’s 21st birthday, John asked Aira to be his wife with the help and discipling of the Singles Ministry!
Congratulations John & Aira!
San Diego: Glenn Cruz & Rahab Cedeño were happily engaged! Glen was the first baptism in the San Diego Church just over six years ago! He is in the process of relocating from the OC Region of the City of Angels Church to marry his best friend back in San Diego where he began his journey as a disciple!
After their engagement, Glen & Rahab released
a balloon of promises!
San Francisco: It is our pleasure to introduce to you our newest married couple – Mr. & Mrs. Aaron & Sheila Turner! They are the dearest of friends and partners in the Gospel to Sarah & Jason Dimitry, who have trained them to powerfully lead the San Jose Region!
Congratulations to Aaron & Sheila Turner – the
San Jose Region Leaders!
Los Angeles – Orange County Region: Austin Bolin came back to the fellowship to visit his Dad & Mom (Steve & Kim Bolin) late last year and brought his girlfriend along to church. With the help of Coltin & Mandee, Steve & Kim, and Steve Stancil and Nancy Joseph, Austin was restored and Bri was baptized! Praise God that on February 25th the two were joined together in holy matrimony!
Tony Untalan married Austin & Bri in a
beautiful wedding on the beach!
Los Angeles/San Diego: Two incredible prayer warriors for the Lord who have always been in love with the example of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ were watching the Chronicles of Narnia! Ryan & Nikki Williams were moved by the example of Aslan, who just like Jesus, sacrificed himself for someone else! So on February 16th they knew exactly what they were going to name their new baby boy, Aslan Judah Williams! After A.J. was born, to be able get more time together as a family (Ryan works in San Diego) and to help build the San Diego Church, the Williams Clan moved down and officially placed membership in San Diego on March 4th! We terribly miss these guys already and are trying to fill the huge gap they left behind, but we are so glad they are only an hour and a half away!
Please meet baby Aslan Judah Williams!
LOCAL LA NEWS
Lianne Kernan – Women’s Ministry Leader of the City of Angels Church (CAICC): Greetings from sunny California and the CAICC Women’s Days! It has been an uplifting month here as we decided to have the theme of our Women’s Days to be ELEVATE, inspired by Elena’s incredible book!
The 469 LA Sisters handed out so many invites
that God blessed them with a collective
attendance of 1,378!
Elena’s book has such a powerful message: Jesus elevates the status of women through His love and forgiveness of our former way of life, so that we can, in turn, help other women to reach even greater heights! Heartfelt thanks go to Evan Bartholomew, Mike Purdy, Megan Mathews and Jacque Economo and all of our incredible and supportive brothers for providing the inspirational video, amazing pictures, careful and detailed event coordinating, graphic design, audio/visual support, and ushering!
The South Region Ushers cannot wait
to read ELEVATE!
A very special thanks to Sarah Dimitry and Courtney Parlour for coming all the way from San Francisco and Seattle respectively to speak in several of our regions, as well as to Elena who spoke at our fantastic West Region Women’s Day!
In front of the “Red Carpet Backdrop” at the West
Region Women’s Day are Karen Maciel (second
from right) – the Co-Editor of the Good News
Email – with her dear friends Shamika,
Khadasia and Frida!
Amazingly, for 469 sisters, we had a collective attendance of 1,378! So God blessed our prayers by elevating our boldness to bring an amazing 909 visitors!
Not only did Lianne (center) excellently oversee all
12 CAICC Women’s Days, but she spoke in the
Southland and AMS Regions! Here Lianne is
surrounded by the dynamic AMS Leaders –
Burgandie, Nathalie, Kristin, Leyda,
Heather and Jackie!
Now that our three weekends of Women’s Days are over, we turn our attention to the many Bible studies that are now taking place all over LA! Please be praying for us as we elevate the hearts and minds of women who are yearning to have a relationship with God!EDITORIAL
Throwing Out The Net On The Internet
Jesus taught in Matthew 13:47 that the “Kingdom of Heaven is like a net that was let down into the lake and caught all kinds of fish!” As of April 2016, Internet Live Stats’ Daily Survey reported “3,342,118,000 internet users worldwide and growing…” This is approximately half of the entire population of the world! Granted, not all of these individuals own a computer, but they have access to one. In fact, over 2.16 billion people own an internet-capable smart phone! If indeed we are to evangelize the nations in this generation, we must have a strong presence on the internet – the invisible continent!
In 2012, Bryan Ong – an ICOC Disciple – contacted
Kip on Facebook asking when Dubai would be
targeted and planted… In 2016, his prayers
were answered! And in the first 10 weeks
of 2017, God has blessed the Dubai ICC
with the 10 baptisms seen above!
After anointing Jesus with very expensive perfume just a few days before His crucifixion, Mary of Bethany was criticized particularly by Judas. Jesus rebuked Judas and said, “She has done a beautiful thing to me… She did what she could. She poured perfume on my body beforehand to prepare for my burial. I tell you the truth, wherever this Gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told in memory of her.” Implied in Jesus’ compliment “she did what she could” is that she did ALL she could!
Like Mary of Bethany who did ALL she could, so we
too should do all we can to spread the Word
through Social Media!
When the Holy Spirit carried Elena & me to Portland in 2003, I sensed that if we could get Christ’s message out on the internet, then confused remnant disciples could be pulled together by embracing the same Biblical convictions that converted them. At this point, I asked Jeremy Ciaramella to be the first CyberEvangelist and to build our website entitled UpSideDown21 meaning that we would “turn the world upside down” in the 21st Century! (Acts 17:6 RSV) Then in 2006, Ron Harding with his tremendous computer knowledge moved to Portland and joined what many were calling the “Portland Movement” as well as the “SoldOut Movement!”
The first three CyberEvangelists of the SoldOut
Movement: Jeremy Ciaramella, Rob
Onekea and Ron Harding!
To my surprise, many in the Mainline Church of Christ began to watch us online as well! Of special note is Alexis Turgeau – a Mainline Church of Christ Preacher in Port-au-Prince, Haiti! In 2013, he wrote to me on Facebook asking if he could join the SoldOut Movement! I tested his sincerity when I told him that to do so he needed to come for the Global Leadership Conference (GLC) in August in Los Angeles! Though he was from the poorest country on earth, Alexis “did what he could” and came! He studied the Bible throughout the GLC with our French-speaking Evangelists: Blaise Feumba, Tim Kernan and Amadou Sountoura! Alexis came to the conclusion that though he understood baptism was for the remission of sins when he was baptized, he did not understand that one had to be a disciple at baptism! (Matthew 28:19-20; John 4:1-2) The day after the GLC, Alexis was baptized as a disciple of Jesus! A few days later, Alexis returned to Haiti with Blaise! They preached the true message of salvation and world evangelization! Since that time 3½ years ago, 17 Mainline Church of Christ Preachers have been baptized as disciples, who in turn preached to their Mainline congregations! Today in Haiti, God’s SoldOut Movement numbers over 300 disciples in seven churches!
Alexis Turgeau – a Mainline Church of Christ
Preacher – was baptized as a disciple the
day after the 2013 GLC by
Tim and Blaise!
Also through Facebook, Benedict Atason – a Mainline Church of Christ Preacher in Nigeria – contacted me desiring to join the Movement. Andrew Smellie, Blaise, and I studied the Scriptures with Benedict in Abidjan, Ivory Coast at the First African Missions Conference in June 2015! Benedict came to believe “new found” Biblical convictions on: 1) Discipling is a command of God (Matthew 28:19-20); 2) Central Leadership is commanded by God (Numbers 27:15-18) and congregational autonomy is sin (1 Corinthians 4:15-17); and 3) God commands the evangelization of the nations in this generation! (1 Timothy 2:3-4) With these Biblical convictions, Benedict joined the movement! His decision changed our pillar church plans from Johannesburg to Lagos! And in Lagos, his son Goodhope – also a Mainline Church of Christ Preacher – joined the movement and formed the Lagos Remnant Group! Then in June 2016, Andrew & Patrique Smellie and the other 9 on the Lagos Mission Team from LA were joined by the 8 member Lagos Remnant Group! At their Inaugural Service, God gave them 135 in attendance! In their first six months, God blessed them with 51 baptisms, 5 restorations, and 4 place memberships from the ICOC!
Benedict Atason – a Mainline Church of Christ
Preacher – was welcomed into the SoldOut
Movement at the 2015 African Missions
Conference by Jacques Groenewald,
Joel Parlour and Andrew Smellie!
Another incredible surprise is how many people “google” to find a church to attend! Fascinatingly, Carlos Mejia reports that 20% of their visitors each Sunday come from the internet! Michael Williamson reports that around 30% of their Sunday visitors in London first learn of the church online! In fact, key London Leaders such as Victor Komo and Kolbe Gray found our church on the internet, as well as the twins Shreena and Leighanne Turner!
3.3 billion people are internet users worldwide and
growing! This is approximately half of the entire
population of the world! It is imperative that
the SoldOut Movement evangelizes
the invisible continent!
Interestingly, in February 2013, Anthony & Alejandra Rodriguez were married in Venezuela. They traveled to Santiago De Chile for their two week honeymoon. On the last week of their honeymoon, they responded to an internet invitation to church. Carlos Mejia immediately called them back! Anthony & Alejandra then came to church, started studying the Bible, and were called to stay in Santiago since there was no discipling church in Venezuela! They stayed and they were baptized! Later, the Rodríguezes moved to help strengthen the Mexico City Church. As of February 2017, at the Latin American Missions Conference, Anthony & Alejandra were appointed Evangelist and Women’s Ministry Leader! That same day the Spirit sent them out as the Monterrey Mission Team Leaders!
Anthony & Alejandra Rodriguez invited themselves
to church through the internet and now lead the
Monterrey International Christian Church!
To attack the gates of Hell, we must aggressively share good news from each and all of our churches on the internet! If you are not on Facebook, Instagram or Snapchat – or active on these Social Media sites – please join our efforts to use Social Media to further God’s Kingdom! (Some should not be on the internet because they cannot withstand the dark temptations that lurk within. That said, this is not true of most of us!)
Our dear sister Rebecca Rico has figured out
that when you have good news – and we all
do because we are disciples – then you
need to post it on Facebook!
Please take even small sections of this Good News Email and post them on your timeline! Post and “like” as well the good news from other churches! Dubai, Manila, Moscow, São Paulo and San Diego Disciples excel in this! When you post good news, “tag” not only your “friends” but in particular leaders in other churches as they in turn can pass it on to many others! If the over 5,000 disciples in God’s Movement like Mary of Bethany “did ALL we could,” then I believe that we will witness the same impact as the First Century Church of whom it was said, “These men who have turned the world upside down have come here also!” (Acts 17:6 RSV) And to God be all the glory!
We are family… to do the impossible,