Apostles Network Development Mission (AND-Mission)
“There is a place in the economics of society that must take on a spiritual dimension. It is the way it was meant to be, for us to leverage our communities out of poverty.”
Christianity Empowering the Poor
Here’s the thing discovered with the poor. Whether it was Muslims or Christians, the poor have been socialized to believe that this was what God destined for their lives. And when they can understand that, no, that’s not what God intended and that’s why He sent his Son, that you can have fullness of life now. When they get that, that’s when they’re really empowered.”
“How do I best love my neighbor? In this rapidly integrating world, how do I best love my neighbor so that everybody has the ability to have what I have? It doesn’t mean by giving it away. It means by allowing them to succeed.”
We have found a great and common hunger for Christ in men and women here in Uganda. Billions of people are unsure of their relationship with God simply because they lack information. We must help them to understand that Christianity is not just a philosophy of life, not just a code of ethics, not just a standard of performance. Christianity is a personal relationship with the living, all powerful Creator God through faith in His only begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.
Every person in the world has a heart. Every heart has a place within that wants only to love and be loved. We have to connect with that place of love in our own heart and in the hearts of all around us. We have to take a moment now to open to the heart connection we share with all people through love.
AND-Mission is a Capacity Building program for Church leadership and is designed to equip Pastors and others in the leadership of the church ministry work, with skills in Key Ministry Development, Leadership, Governance, Management and Community Development programming areas. The program is designed to address key Institutional/Program management, administration and governance needs of both the church/institution and individuals. The target group includes Pastors/priests, Program managers, Administrators, Church workers, Church ministry leaders, Church Policy makers & Policy implementers.
This Capacity Building Training has several inter-related training units. Each training unit has its own training module. The modules can be used by Pastors, church leaders and program managers as a basis for their individual as well as institutional advancement in the areas of church building, governance, management, programming, human resource and non-human resource management. The entire module is designed to suit different leadership, governance and management groups with different targets and therefore becomes a very useful asset to those who possess it.
The overall aim is to create Purpose-driven churches which are led by purpose-driven leaders. I believe purpose-driven leaders balance God’s purposes – not only in their own lives – but also within the churches they lead. The church today needs leaders who are both spiritual and social entrepreneurs.
A few years ago we have been approached by Pastors and other Church leaders on several occasions asking me to speak to their congregations and to help them to develop viable development plans and proposals for their church and family developments. After some research and a lot of conversations and consultations, the Apostles Network Development Mission (AND-Mission) program for training Church Pastors is born. We’re not trying to replace the academic aspects of a theology or seminary education, but we believe that church-based training, mentoring, and ministry experience are essential components of preparation for pastoral ministry.
The purpose of the AND-Mission Capacity building for pastors is to provide focused training, opportunity for growth in service, and cultivation of godly character-all within the context and care of our local church. Over the past couple years we’ve regularly received inquiries from pastors interested in joining a locally managed pastoral training program of this kind. These conversations have always encouraged us.
As earlier mentioned, seminary/college training is valuable in many ways. But seminaries aren’t enough. When it comes to training pastors, the local church is essential. If we simply outsource pastoral training to the seminaries and colleges, pastors won’t be trained as they should.
In area of Ministry work, we empower Church Leaders with knowledge and Biblically proven strategies. In the area of self improvement, we empower Church leaders with training, person-to-person support, and simple, time-proven tools that help you to succeed by being the quality leader that the church needs. In the area of Church Building we empower Church leaders by providing the keys to Church Management Development Systems and Church Strategic Planning.
We provide meaningful ministry experience. We expose pastors from the local church to experienced and long serving pastors from the globe. Serving under the oversight of experienced pastors builds wisdom, sharpens gifts, grows faith, and prepares men for greater responsibility.
Too many men enter their first pastorate with little or no experience. Imagine planning to preach 48 Sundays a year if you’ve only preached five sermons in your life. Imagine leading a church with all its various ministries when you’ve never been the primary leader of anything. We provide meaningful ways of regular service in which gifts, calling, and character can be observed, tested, and developed. We provide opportunities for meaningful ministry within your church.
The Purpose for AND-Mission
Apostles Network Development Mission has the role to meet the Christian Leadership needs (spiritual and social- economic) so that people may in totality understand God’s plan for an eternal life.
Our Vision: “A Christ-centered Church equipped for transforming mission among people”
Our Goal: A Church that is an effective facilitator of spiritual and socio- economic development processes for God’s People
UVRC’s Statement of Faith
Our Mission: To implement non-formal theological and social-economic training to the untrained pastors and church leaders and harmonizing Christian development approaches.
Paul found himself in a difficult situation one day. He had been so faithful in serving the Lord. He had given his life to share the Good News of the gospel. His heart was passionate to see people come to a faith in his risen Lord. But here he was, in prison. Paul could have said, “It’s not fair” We might say, he had reason to complain. He could have blamed God for his difficult situation. He could have been overcome by negative thoughts and feelings because of his circumstances, but we see Paul making a choice. He chose to focus on the good things, the blessings in his life. We read about this choice in the book of Philippians.
Even though he was in prison he made a choice to think about things that are honorable, right, pure, lovely, of good repute, what is excellent, and worthy of praise (Phil. 4. 8-9) and encourages his readers to do the same.
Paul made a choice to see the good that could come out of his imprisonment. He saw how his fellow Christians were encouraged to speak the word of God without fear, how the gospel was being shared in the prison, how his fellow Christians responded with kindness and we know how this also led to the writing of the book of Philippians in the Bible that has been so precious to Christians over the centuries.
Paul could rise above the negative circumstances because he chose to focus on the Lord. He chose to rejoice in all that the Lord offered him – his presence (vs. 5), peace when he gave his anxieties to the Lord (vs.6), contentment in all circumstances (vs.11 &12), strength to do all things (vs.13), and have all his needs met (vs. 19)
As Christians, we too have a choice like Paul did. Difficult circumstances can so easily cause us to focus on negative thoughts which create negative feelings and also actions. This sets in motion a negative cycle that only leads to unhappiness, darkness and despair. In the same way, as we choose to focus on the blessings and the resources we have in the Lord, as Paul did, feelings of peace and rejoicing in the Lord will follow. It is all about how each chose to think about a difficult situation.
As Christians we choose to rejoice in the Lord as outlined in Philippians and dwell on the positive thoughts. These positive thoughts will produce positive feelings and also lead to actions that will bless and encourage others.
Philippians 2:13 tells us that God is work within us and helps us to want to do what He wants and then empowers us to do it. This means thinking positive thoughts. You may have God in your life, but not the Director of your life
Some people grow up with a sense of worthlessness. Again and again some other people tell them they would never accomplish anything in life. They are told they are losers and that anything they did try was sure to end in failure. With these words ringing in their ears they grow up looking for someone who would love them and see them as persons of worth. This leads them into relationships that are disappointing to them, ending in pain and devastation with yet another proof that they are worthless and unlovable.
The Bible speaks of words of life and death in Prov.18:21 where it says,” Death and life are in the power of the tongue,” As we hear words of affirmation and encouragement they are words of life to us while words of criticism and belittling are words of death.
If we look in the Scriptures we see that God never meant it to be this way. He speaks words of life into the heart of every person. We read in Genesis that when God completed the creation of the world he made man in his likeness or image. This likeness gave man and later also the woman he made the capacity to think, to make decisions, to know right from wrong, to be creative and to have the ability to communicate and have a personal relationship. Not only did God put this potential in the heart of man and woman he also gave them an assignment to use these abilities. They were told to rule over the things he had created and give to each a name. Herein lays the potential to organize, care, and to be in charge.
This is what God had in mind when he created us. He created us in his image so that we could think, make choices, use our creativity, build relationships, faithfully work at the tasks in our hand and be persons of influence in the lives of others.
But that’s not all. This was only the beginning. In Psalms 139 he says we are “fearfully and wonderfully made” and describes the creation of each person with words like “knit together” and “woven together” and “ordaining our days” all of which require a plan by a great creator. God had a plan for each of our lives and put together each person with abilities, personality and potential.
But the greatest evidence of our worth is that he loved us so much that he sent his son to die for us when we were sinners and totally unlovable. We were worth it to him. But there’s more to that as well. When we believe that Jesus died for us and we accept his forgiveness we become his child. A son and daughter of the King of Kings. As we live in that relationship with him we begin to reflect his godly character and we produce the fruit of the Spirit named in Galatians 5:22-23 as: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. The beauty of this fruit in our lives makes each of us a person of impact and influence.
No matter what “words of death” others have spoken about us God’s view of us rises above those words and he speaks “words of life” into our hearts everyday. He says, “I created you in my image, I gave you abilities to rule, organize, manage your area of life, I gave you a creativity that if followed will bring you joy, I made you to be a companion or friend to someone, to be a person of influence, you are precious to me, I loved you so much that I gave my son to die for you and now I want you to be my representative to share this love with others on earth.”
At UVRC, we believe that God made us persons of worth. He decided when he planned our lives what abilities he would give to each one of us. We all have varying amounts of ability to organize, lead, create or influence but we have the choice as to what we want to do with that which God has entrusted to us. We believe that God also gives us opportunities where we can use these abilities. The fruitfulness depends on how we care for, cultivate and use each of these abilities which in turn results in the fruitfulness of influencing the lives of the people God has placed in our world whether they be children, spouses, employees, friends or neighbors. We are special to God and he wants to use us to speak “words of life” into the lives of those around us.
- Apostles Network Development Mission (AND-Mission) (v2o40rc.wordpress.com)
- Apostles Network Development Mission (and-mission) Program (v2040rc.wordpress.com)
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