We have some big news. Please take a moment to read. (Or watch the video here)
For the last year or so, we have been aware that we were entering new seasons. As we continued to pray and listen to God, we felt that something needed to change, and that we would hear about it in the Fall of this year. In October, while I was in Mexico, the Lord spoke to me and said, “The assignment has shifted.” I knew exactly what that meant: it is time for my focus to move to missions, commissions, and writing.
This church, our fourth, has been part of our larger and longer assignment. We have focused much energy and attention on the job of pastoring, though we have continued to do other things. This church serves a vital role in preparing believers to do the work of ministry. Because of the foundation laid here, we have been able to do what God asked us to do in other nations. Now it is time to shift our focus to the other things and allow the next generation we have raised to take the lead in the local church.
Our first service at FCF Tucson was on February 22, 2004. On Sunday, February 24th, 2019, we will celebrate 15 years as a congregation. On that day we will officially transfer the Lead Pastor mantle to Pastors John and Valarie Smith. They have served us in a supportive role since 2001 and are more than ready for this new step. The church will go from glory to glory.
PLEASE NOTE: I AM NOT RETIRING, nor do I need to “re-fire.”
Judy will testify, I have plenty of fire left. There is more in my heart than there are hours in the day. Judy and I will continue to be part of FCF Tucson, staying on as Founding Pastors, and will have a role in the ongoing life of the church, preaching as schedule permits and teaching classes. (I also will provide the occasional free barbecue) In addition, we will be shifting our focus to our larger assignment:
- The Mission to train pastors and leaders will continue. God’s mission for us for thirty years has been to move Christians “From the Pew to the Harvest.” Our Bible training program, Faith Ministry Training Institute, is the engine pulling that train.
- The Bible school in Hermosillo, Sonora will continue and eventually stand on its own legs. That will mean considerable effort there for at least another 2 years. In addition, we will make visits to other locations where FMTI materials are already in use.
- We will continue to make FMTI available to churches and pastors here and abroad. We provide materials, train teachers, and teach seminars. Our Bible School on a stick is a powerful tool.
- The Commission to “Contend for the Supernatural” will move beyond our four walls. My friend Eric Sonera said recently, “The thing I like about you is you have a regular move of the Spirit but you’re not weird.” That is an excellent mission statement. I believe we can help pastors and churches to do church supernaturally without being weird.
- The Lord said, “Write!” I have been writing for years, but the pace needs to pick up. New books and new curriculum for the Bible school will be coming soon.
So here’s your part:
- If you would like me to visit your church, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
or call 520-792-FCFT
- If you have an interest in our training materials or know someone who might, contact email@example.com, or call 520-792-FCFT for more information.
- Follow the blog site: www.pastorvirgil.com
- Check in at the Facebook page
- Visit the Bookstore at fcftucson.org.
- If you need a great place to sow into training pastors and leaders, this is good soil. I can show you fruit. All offerings should go to Pastorvirgil c/o FCF Tucson, 3141 W Ironwood Hill Dr., Tucson, AZ. 85745. Online at http://www.fcftucson.org
- Above all, we need your prayers in this time of transition. Change is exciting, but it’s also a little nerve-wracking.
Thank you for your friendship and support. I believe the best is yet to come for all of us as we get positioned for this next wave.
Pastor Virgil L. Stokes www.pastorvirgil.com Office: 520-792-3238