Article By: Bishop Mike Ainsworth
Cornerstone Conference IPHC
In a recent IPHC event in Oklahoma, our Executive Council and other IPHC leaders were challenged through a timely message by Christine Cain who called on us to look to the Lord and prepare ourselves for what He wants to do through us in the future.
“Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.” Isaiah 43:19
Christine’s message was both a challenge and an inspiration. “God has not called us to what is Next, which is often only a younger version of the old and familiar, God is calling us to himself and the opportunity for Him to do something new in our lives. She defined the new as something unexpected, beyond our ability and undeniably His work in our lives.
Is it possible that this passage in Isaiah has special meaning for Cornerstone today?
Over the last five months, our newly elected Conference Executive Council has been at work to evaluate our Conference Ministries and to explore how we can serve our ministers and congregations in ways that focus on the new things that God wants to do in our ministers and congregations.
We prayerfully focused on questions such as:
What needs exist among our ministers and how can Cornerstone Conference better support them and their families?
What needs exist among our congregations and how can we strengthen and support our churches in their efforts to reach their communities with the good news of Jesus Christ?
In what ways can our Superintendent, Evangelism, Discipleship, and Hispanic Ministries best inspire, equip, and support our pastors and local congregations?
As a result, the Executive Council has restructured our Conference Ministries with a fresh focus on serving and empowering the local church.
Our initial priorities include the following:
1. Our Executive Council will work together with the Superintendent to regularly connect with each of our ministers to provide opportunities for prayer and encouragement.
2. Our Superintendent, Evangelism, Discipleship, and Hispanic Ministries will synchronize efforts that provide opportunities to resource, inspire, equip, and support local church ministry.
a. Our Superintendent Ministries will continue to serve our local churches and ministers in the areas of ministerial credentialing, clergy care, leadership development, and local church administrative and congregational support. b. Our Evangelism Ministries will provide local churches with strategies and models for church multiplication, development, and community outreach. c. Our Discipleship Ministries will provide local churches with strategies and models for kids, students, and small group discipleship ministries. d. Our Hispanic Ministries will provide our Hispanic churches and ministers strategies and models to enrich and strengthen the fulfillment of the Great Commission among the Spanish speaking community.
3. Our Conference ministries will work together to advance our efforts in recruiting and equipping the next generation of ministers.
4. Our Conference will enhance our ministerial credentialing program through an online application process with a broader scope of online and in person courses through our School of Ministry to include practical training in various areas of local church ministry.
5. Our Conference will connect our ministers and their teams with opportunities for mentoring, coaching, and peer learning communities in multiple areas including worship, students, kids, small groups, connections, prayer, and pastoral ministry.
Our vision and purpose in restructuring our Conference ministries is so the Conference can better serve our ministers and congregations. Cornerstone Conference exists to empower the Local Church in its efforts to fulfill the Great Commission.
Your Superintendent, Executive Council and Executive Staff are available to answer questions you may have and especially to discuss ways we can better serve you. We look forward to sharing more exciting details with you over the coming weeks.
Cornerstone Conference IPHC