INDIANAPOLIS – Senior Associate Director Steve Clouse began the Church Development Team report by presenting a video about the Fruitful Congregation Journey (FCJ), a growth program for congregations. Building new generations within current churches is the adjustment we need to make. FCJ is bringing new life to churches. Not only welcoming people to churches but also bringing the church to the community.

Associate Director Ed Fenstermacher introduced a new Fruitful Congregations Journey program for churches with under 50 people in worship attendance, that is coming this fall.

Bishop Mike Coyner emphasized the importance of FCJ in helping congregations reach out to their communities. Church Development is now working with un-churched and de-churched people. New Hispanic congregations are being launched across the state. There are 23 Hispanic pastors now studying seminary curriculum online. Riverside UMC in New Albany and The Branches UMC in Plainfield were featured for their new growth in younger adults.

Coyner said the more choices we can provide, the more we will grow as a church.

Associate Director Sharon Washington says she said “yes” with God doing a new thing in Indiana. We are just getting started. God is asking us to move deeper into the waters by establishing 30 new faith communities in Indiana by 2020 with the “exceed” campaign.

Church Development announced “exceed” to raise $1.5 million to assist in reaching new people. The ultimate mission is to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

Coyner said we are in the new church-start moment. Church Development helps tell us where the hot spots are. One dream is to start 100 new worship services, or other form of community, during the next year.

There are 25 new faith communities that have been created during the past 15 years. Each one of these “new starts” is bringing vitality to a new locations.

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