“From the pew to the harvest.” Matthew 9:36-38
September 30, 2019
Judy and I are so grateful for you and what you enable us to do. Here’s just a taste of what happened in September.
FMTI Level II: Off and running in Hermosillo
With the climax of the current Level I classes coming in April oof 2020, we decided to answer all the requests from grads and former students to begin teaching the upper level courses. Scheduling is always a challenge, as we deal with a whole different set of holidays and local traditions, as well as logistical challenges unique to the location. In Hermosillo, transportation can be an issue. In addition, finding a feasible way to make copies if we need them is a challenge. For these classes, we needed to schedule all the classes together rather than string them out over two months. I decided to use Saturday morning to do 4 hours of instruction. Saturday morning, however, is problematic for this population, as it is a work day for many.
I felt that we should start the 2nd Level with our course on “Planning for Success.” We began on Friday evening, and the turnout was overwhelming. I planned for 40 and we had in excess of 70, with 11 churches represented, including 10 pastors. The hunger for the Word and the desire to hone skills were tangible. Saturday morning we had 56 students, even though several missed because of work. Most of them stayed the course, though the weather was not cooperating. Temperatures reached 105 degrees with humidity at 85%. It was warm! In addition, the extra numbers and the lack of a reliable printing source presented challenges. But, thanks to help from team members Eduardo and Rossy Andrade, and from Pastors Teodoro Belmonte and Alberto Flores,we managed to scramble through.
I believe this is the beginning of aa new phase in our work in Hermosillo. The grads from the first Level classes will be the faculty for the future for the foundational level. We will plan to be available for direction and encouragement, but we have trained some wonderful teachers who will carry that part of the work forward. As you think of it, pray for me to have the mind of God concerning how to first teach the second level, and then to pass on the responsibility to others to do so in the future.
Level 1 Moving Forward:
September 12 and 13. We taught the first session of “Money, Ordinances , and Music.” Joyce Hughes taught on the desire of God to bless His people. I followed up by exposing some of the beliefs and attitudes that prevent God’s people from prospering, then finished up with an overview of the simple plan of God for provision: Tithes, offerings, and alms. The looks on the faces tolkd me we bumped into some sacred cous, but it seemed to break through by the end of day 2. I had lots of good feedback from those who saw finances in a new light. In October we will teach on water baptism and the Lord’s Table. It will again be new territory for some. Pray that hearts are ready.
Why We do This:
There are lots of fine Bible study programs available. We don’t claim to be the measure of what Bible instruction should be. I do, however, feel a personal obligation to communicate the message that set me free to those who haven’t had the opportunity to hear it. Sometimes we are so
immersed in our Christian-Word of Faith bubble, we don’t realize how blessed we are. When I went to Rhema Bible Training Center in 1980, I had only been Sprit-filled few months, and had never been par to fo a Full Gospel church. I still remember the wonder of hearing these truths for the first time. It changed my life forever.
The First Level of Faith Ministry Training Institute is aimed first at equipping people with the fundamentals of the Christian faith: The inspiration of the Scripture, the Deity of Jesus Christ, salvation by grace through faith, the Trinity, eternal judgment. In addition, it includes the things that make us unique as Word and Spirit people: Faith, finances, healing, the Holy Sprit and His gifts, worship in the Spirit, the authority of the believer, and our identity in Christ. The idea is simple: Know what you believe and why you believe it. The Second and Third Levels expand or dig deeper into the subjects touched on in the first Level, and focus on specific areas of ministry or skills necessary for leadership responsibility. We move people toward success in their calling: Obedience with excellence.
But someone who does not know, and then does something wrong, will be punished only lightly. When someone has been given much, much will be required in return; and when someone has been entrusted with much, even more will be required. Luke 12:48 NLT
I have been given much. How about you?
In addition, we had a fruitful breakfast for pastors (9 ministries), and ministered in 3 wonderful local churches. So as you can see, I could go on. Instead, I will extend mercy and just thank you for making it possible for us to do this stuff. To keep abreast of what’s happening, check us out at www.pastorvirgil.com.
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Please stop by www.pastorvirgil.com to keep up to speed what I am writing at the moment. I also have a Facebook page for the ministry. Search on Facebook for @contendforthesupernatural or go to Pastorvirgil.com. If you want to be a big help, hit SHARE while you’re there.
- October 6. Living Faith Christian Center. Tucson, AZ
- October 17-18. Hermosillo Money, Ordinances, and Music class continues.
- October 27 AM. Afton NY. Higher Ground Christian Church
- October 27 5 PM. Oneonta NY. Community Gospel Church
- October 29. 7 PM. Johnstown NY. Believers Family Church.
- November 2, 9AM. Glenville NY. Man Alive Men’s Gathering, Believers Church @ Glenville
- November 3. Glenville NY. Believers Church @ Glenville
- November 8-9. Southern AZ Pastors and Leaders Gathering. Living Faith Christian Center. Tucson
- November 14-15. Hermosillo Money, Ordinances, and Music class concludes.
- November 19-22. FCF Int’l Rep meeting in Tulsa.
- November 26-December 4. Peru. Bible School graduation. Pastors training, church anniversary celebration
Now Scheduling for 2020: Contact me to schedule something at your place. Email virgil or call 520-792-3238.
Thank you for your prayers and contributions. You make it possible for us to continue. You are touching many lives with this wonderful message.
Pray for Judy and I as we seek to follow the leading of God. This is an interesting season of life, and God is doing wonderful things in the earth: Right place, right time, all the time.
Financial support can be sent to Faith Christian Fellowship of Tucson or given online at www.fcftucson.org. (Make checks payable to FCFT, you can designate for missions or pastorvirgil and it will get where it needs to go. Thanks again.
Yours in His service,
Virgil and Judy Stokes