By Carl Stagner
Earlier this year, Church of God Ministries was invited by Lilly Endowment to apply for a grant to extend the fruitful ministry of CARE—Clergy Advocacy and Resource Effort. The week of Thanksgiving brought with it news that a $500,000 grant has been awarded to carry on the program until at least 2021. No longer an initiative, the program known as CARE has been so well received by the Church of God movement that the goal is to sustain the work indefinitely. CARE 2.0 will bring with it continued engagement of pastors and congregational boards in pastoral retirement assistance and educational debt relief that have become synonymous with the program since it began in early 2016. Continue reading
Posted in All Church of God, Church of God Ministries, Give Life
Tagged assistance, Award, CARE, Church of God Ministries, Clergy Advocacy Resource Effort, debt, educational debt, finance, financial, funds, grant, grants, Joe Cookston, Joseph Cookston, Lilly Endowment, retirement, Ryan Harter, Servant Solutions, stewardship, students, Thanksgiving, update
Joe Cookston (far left) prays at the commissioning of the plant.
By Carl Stagner
Joe Cookston has worn a variety of hats in the Church of God in his lifetime of ministry. Currently he’s most well-known across the Movement for his leadership of CARE—the Clergy Advocacy and Resource Effort. But he’s also served faithfully in a number of important areas, including the local church. One role may not be as familiar to many in the Movement, and that is the position he holds as nonresident board member for the Church of God Hungary. In August and September, Joe and his wife Merry visited Hungary, a place that has become quite familiar and beloved by the ministry duo. Joe and Merry have since returned from the encouraging experience, blessed to report on the opportunities God is opening up in the Eastern European nation. Continue reading
Posted in All Church of God
Tagged 3W, 3WLN, assessment, board, CARE, Church of God Hungary, church planter, church planters, Commissioning, de-churched, Eastern Europe, Europe and the Middle East, Europe-Middle East region, Fairfax Community Church, First Church of God, global, Greg Weins, Healthy Growing Churches, HGC, Houston, Hungary, Joe Cookston, mentoring, Michigan, missions, Parkgate, research, Rod Stafford, society, St. Joseph, strategy, Texas, Three Worlds, travel, unchurched
The fellowship at First Church on Tuesday was sweet.
By Carl Stagner
The first day of the Church of God Regional Convention in Columbus, Ohio, is now history, and the second day is now underway. Nearly five hundred people have enjoyed the numerous teaching sessions, electives, and meetings, as well as the incredible hospitality of First Church of God. Under the leadership of the praise team at First Church, convention-goers have experienced the presence of God in powerful ways—and neither the event, nor the Spirit’s active role, is over yet. As Day Two of the Regional Convention continues, many are still reflecting on the blessings of Day One. Continue reading
Posted in All Church of God, Church of God Convention
Tagged Ben Hardman, CARE, Church of God Convention, Columbus, fellowship, First Church of God, Gravity Leadership, hospitality, Jim Lyon, Joe Cookston, Kimberly Majeski, Life Columbus, LifeColumbus, OH, Ohio, regional convention, regionals, Spirit, Timothy Clarke, worship
Photo: Cross-cultural footwashing in Bangladesh.
By Carl Stagner
If you’ve ever been on a mission trip, you know it’s a mistake to think you’re going to another country only to teach and bless someone else. More often than not, you end up learning more than you could offer. Instead of leaving feeling impressed by all the good you did, you feel humbled by the good people you met. When a group from Church at the Crossing in Indianapolis, Indiana; First Church of God in Marion, South Dakota; and Church of God Ministries in Anderson, Indiana, came together for a missions trip to Bangladesh this year, the teachers once again became the learners. Continue reading
Posted in All Church of God, CHOG TraffickLight, Global Strategy
Tagged Asia and the Pacific, Asia-Pacific, Bangladesh, baptism, Barefoot Pastors Training, CARE, Carla Zerkle, Caroline Armstrong, Church at the Crossing, Church of God Ministries, cross-cultural, Don Armstrong, First Church of God, footwashing, Hindu, IN, Indiana, Indianapolis, international, Islam, Joe Cookston, John Zerkle, Joseph Cookston, Lalmonirhat, Marion, mission trips, missions, multicultural, Muslim, Nikki Bauerle, SD, Shelly Clasen, South Dakota, travel