Wednesday, July 03, 2013

New EFCA Mission and Vision

Over the last few days the Evangelical Free Church of America unveiled a new mission and vision statement. The mission statement was minimally tweaked (transformational for healthy) and the vision is something new.

The EFCA exists to glorify God by multiplying transformational churches among all people. 
We are praying that God would grant us one million disciplemakers impacting one hundred million people with the gospel along with one hundred million people with the gospel along with one hundred Acts 19 locations globally where the gospel is transforming whole cities and regions rather than simply a neighborhood. 
What little I've heard about the Acts 19 strategy involves an effort of ReachGlobal (the global missions arm) to saturate key global cities with a focused infusion of people and resources for the sake of generating city-wide movements that trigger kingdom expansion in entire regions. It will be interesting to see where this all leads in the days and years to come.


Jim said...

Scott- I am an EFCA pastor in Ocala, FL and I just attended one of the national conversations begun by the EFCA leadership team regarding their new vision. A couple of things stood out:

1. This is a vision too big not to be accomplished by prayer and the movement of the Holy Spirit.
2. Disciplemaking is a focus that goes beyond our movement as EFree churches. We will need to hold "Bride over brand" in order to accomplish this.
3. Even though the numbers are big, it does not let the individual off the hook--who are the 100 people you will impact with the gospel in your lifetime?
4. The biggest disconnect seemed to be the specification of 100 Acts 19 cities. Are these global or US cities? Some felt that the emphasis on cities leaves the rural/small city churches out of it. The vision statement itself is actually two parts: 1. 1 million Disciplemakers; 2.100 Acts 19 cities. Some concern was expressed over the fact that the vision statement may get divided into two separate visions over time.

Thanks for reposting this. I was excited about the sense of urgency, unity & direction that was present at the meeting.

Jim Folk, Christ Community Church- Ocala, FL

Scott Sterner said...

Thanks for the comments Jim. I think the biggest challenge with the bride over brand issue is what's the standard for a "partner" and how do you accurately measure when you've reached success... especially when the wider you throw your nets the harder it will be to accurately measure?

That's a good point over the cities issue. I think the strategy is if you reach urban centers, you will ultimately change the region. (i.e. what happened in Ephesus spread to the entire region).

Glad to hear about the enthusiasm that was generated over the discussion. Urgency, unity, and direction is a valuable fruit to see emerge from this discussion.

Tim said...

I'm glad I found this blog and info as my Pastor and I have been invited to a national conversation locally.

Do you know what prompted the change in our mission statement - healthy to tranformational? I wonder if a certain sermon led the charge.

Do you know of any transformational city in the world right now? Did it become tranformational by people setting out to make it that way? Or how did it happen?

As I read Acts 19, I don't think Paul's vision or mission or goals or methods were different from the other cities he went to. I just think God blessed because He wanted to. Sometimes Paul's methods led to him being arrested and more... sometimes it affected the whole city.

It seems that our focus should not be on changing cities, but on having disciplemakers. Maybe something like - we want to see every EFCA church (or even every evangelical church if we want to choose Bride over Brand) be full of real disciplemaking believers.

I don't know if that makes sense, but I'd love to hear any comments and suggestions you have.

Thanks for putting your thoughts down on the internet.