Rev. Dr. José Carlos Pezini (Outreach) - June 2014 Update
In this update I would like to tell you a little more about a part of my ministry that is growing and expanding beyond anything I could have asked or dreamed of. It is the ministry of mentoring.
Since returning to Brazil, I have been mentoring pastors through weekly Skype conversations. The number of those wanting to be mentored has outgrown my capacity to give them the kind of time they need. So I have begun training others to be mentors, and in early May I invited those mentors plus pastors whom they and I are mentoring to a three-day retreat in Curitiba.
Thirty pastors participated. The Rev. Mario, the Rev. Casso and I led the sessions. My wife and my sister did all the cooking in order to keep our costs down. In private conversations and written testimonies of the participants it is very clear that they have been impacted by the mentoring they have received. I have included a testimony of one of the participants at the end of this update.
My perception is that, more than a single event, the ministry we are calling “SARA” has become a movement as we have grown from one mentor to seven in less than two years. By combining practices of spiritual formation with teaching on leadership development, we are helping refresh and restore pastors in their church-planting ministries.
We praise God for raising up more and more mentors in Brazil, and we thank you for your support in making this ministry possible.
Testimony of a Participant in the May “SARA” Retreat
For me, church planting has always been a challenge. I was sent by my church to pastor a congregation in Curitiba in 2005, but when I arrived, I saw that the challenge was to start a new church. I experienced great difficulties, not knowing where to begin, where to look for help, etc. I had various frustrations that almost led me to give up pastoral ministry. But the Lord was faithful to me on this journey and provided special people to hold me up and help me in many different ways, offering consolation, hope, and general direction. But I still did not have specific help in the area of church planting.
Finally, I got to know you, Pezini, and began a mentoring process in the form of specific feedback in church planting. This journey has helped me define my calling, developing a process of planting that enables a church to become established and self-sustainable. Specifically, my last extended encounter (May 2014), was of supreme importance to me in my ministry, since I was given tools that helped me know I was on the right path. I have been inspired to live a life based more on listening to God in prayer. I have come to understand that we must do things with the Lord and not for him [in our own strength].
I believe that God has raised you, Pezini, with your staff and supporters, to fulfill God’s mission which is to lift up the pure and simple gospel to all people, through church planting. And I rejoice to be a part of this movement of God on this earth.
Amount needed in 2014
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