Looking at a New Kind of Church Multiplication
For the last few years, RCA Church Multiplication and RCA Global Mission have been reporting on new cooperative efforts to help start churches outside of the US and Canada. While there are great and inspiring stories of the work being done, the church is left to discern how this is consistent with the historic RCA mission policy of starting indigenous churches that become self-sustaining rather than branch offices of the RCA. While there have been various reports and explanations, there still seems to be confusion across the denomination about just what this means.
That’s why the Reformed Church Center is hosting a conversation around the question “Is the RCA Planting International Churches, and What Does that Mean?” on Thursday, December 8, from 11:00 am to 12:30 pm Eastern Time via Zoom. Staff from Global Missions and Church Multiplication along with local pastors and a commissioned missionary, will explain the plan and ask questions about it, followed by a time for everyone present to join in the discussion.
|Luis Ruiz is an ordained minister and RCA Global Mission Supervisor in North America, Latin America, and the Caribbean. Additionally, he serves as the International Missions Executive for the Classis de las Naciones. Luis attended Western Theological Seminary and graduated from Fuller Theological Seminary with an MA in Intercultural and Global Leadership.|
|Aleta Shepler served as an RCA missionary in Venezuela from 1989 to 1999 and continues to be a commissioned missionary. She currently serves on the Church Multiplication Committee and coordinates Church Multiplication for the Synod of the Mid-Atlantics. She is on a mission to help Christians find their fresh expression of church.|
|Chad M. Farrand is a pastor with the RCA who serves as Classis Executive for Classis de las Naciones and Assc. Director of Church Multiplication for the RCA. A DMin candidate in Missiology and Global Christianity at NBTS, Chad and his wife live in Orlando, Florida.|
|Liz Estes in an RCA minister and the twenty-third pastor of Readington Reformed Church in Hunterdon County, NJ. Her MA in Philosophy is from Catholic University and her MDiv is from Union Theological Seminary in NYC. Now she is a candidate for a DMin degree in Prophetic Urban Ministry at NBTS. Liz serves as moderator of the RCA’s Commission on Theology.|
|Dale Assink has been an RCA Minister of the Word and Sacrament for forty years. He is committed to family and cultivating healthy leaders and churches. Dale pastored local RCA churches for nineteen years, and for the last twenty-two years has worked for the Regional Synod of the Heartland as a coach, a consultant, and a visionary leader with a focus on church multiplication. Dale and his wife Dawn together have four children and eleven grandchildren.|