Dear Colleagues and Champions of the Gospel,
As Rick Warren recently wrote, “I know how difficult church planting can be.” This was true thirty-three years ago when he and Kay planted Saddleback, and it was true twelve years ago when my wife, Linda, and I planted the Mosaic Church of Central Arkansas in Little Rock.
Adding to the degree of difficulty in our case, however, was a calling from God to plant a multi-ethnic and economically diverse church reflective of the community we sought to serve. Interestingly, as of 2010, the demographic population of Little Rock was 48% White, 42% Black, 7% Hispanic, and 3% Asian and others.
Talk about a challenge!
I can assure you: there were not any conferences, networks, or proven resources at the time otherwise able to assist us with the God-sized task of leading diverse people to walk, work, and worship together as one; and that, in a city infamously associated with the Civil Rights Movement. At the time, we needed personal encouragement and ministry development. More often than not, however, we felt alone and isolated in an Evangelical establishment geared toward planting homogeneous churches and asking of its planters, “Who’s your target audience?”
Thankfully, times are changing.
Yes, today pastors and church planters are increasingly aware of changing demographics, and taking steps to build healthy multi-ethnic churches. Denominations, networks, and conferences, too, are showing increased interest. Together we are doing so in order to present a more credible witness of God’s love for all people in the wonderfully diverse communities we serve. And the good news is this: we no longer have to pursue this calling alone, or in the absence of learning from those who’ve gone before.
In just two months, the Mosaix Global Network will gather one of the most ethnically and denominationally diverse, gender-inclusive line-up of authors and speakers ever assembled at an Evangelical conference focused on church planting, growth and development, in the United States. In fact more than 60 thought-leading pioneers will be to meet and interact with you, including:
- Dr. John Perkins (Legendary Founder of Christian Community Developers Association)
- Choco DeJesus (Pastor of New Life Covenant Church in Chicago, IL) • Jim Wallis (President and Founder of Sojourners)
- Efrem Smith (Superintendent (PSWC), Evangelical Covenant Church)
- Heather Larson (Executive Pastor of Willow Creek Community Church)
- Dr. Alejandro Mandes (Dir., Hispanic Ministries, Evangelical Free Church of America)
- Eugene Cho (Founding Pastor of Quest Church, Seattle, WA)
- Dudley Rutherford (Senior Pastor at Shepherd of the Hills Church, Los Angeles, CA)
- Dr. Soong-Chan Rah (Professor, North Park Theological Seminary)
- Dr. David Anderson (Founding Pastor of Bridgeway Community Church, Columbia, MD)
- Dr. Paul Louis Metzger (Professor, Multnomah Biblical Seminary/Multnomah University)
- Leonce Crump (Founding Pastor of Renovation Church, Atlanta, GA; Acts 29)
- Josh and Noemi Chavez (Founding Pastors of 7th Street Church, Long Beach, CA)
- Derwin Gray (Founding Pastor of Transformation Church, Ft. Mill, SC)
- Naeem Fazal (Founding Pastor of Mosaic Church, Charlotte, NC)
- Dr. Christena Cleveland (Social Psychologist, St.Catherine's University, St. Paul, MN)
In assembling this amazing line-up, Mosaix continues to drive the national conversation as we have for nearly ten years. And it remains our mission to cast vision, connect like-minded leaders, conference and coach, all in an effort to encourage and to equip pastors and church planters, just like you, for future ministry in a an increasingly diverse society. I hope you will make plans now to attend.
Given this is only the 2nd National Conference on the Multi-ethnic Church ever to be held in the United States, I can promise you this: you’ll be glad you did!