Cell Church Ministry, SIM Kenya, PO Box 60875-002000, NBI Mob. 0725023276 e-mail: [email protected] fey.holtu[email protected] [email protected] [email protected] Cell Network Meeting 19th March ‘14 Present: Bishop Saul Barasa – (Western) Rev. Phyllis Kimeli – (GOA) Pst. Myles - (Taita) Pst. Barasa Juma (Guest) Fey Holtum (CellKenya) Apologies: Rev. John Ikutcha (Nairobi) Rev. Titus Rotich – (North Rift) Pst. Stanley Nyalala – (Coast) Pst. Eric (Maua/Meru) Pst. David Juma (CellKenya) Colin Holtum (CellKenya) Bishop Felix (Kisumu) Biblical Reflection: (Bishop Saul Barasa) – 1 Samuel -Choosing the new king for the new phase. God chooses the unlikely; prepares the way through good and seemingly bad incidents; gives an inheritance; enables sustainability to build His Kingdom. Opening remarks: (Colin) Follow up of cell is crucial including the support of regional network leaders. They need strengthening & to be given appreciation for what is happening and what will be accomplished. When the Network is established firmly it will mean that it will become Kenyan. The development of the Network is progressing but is still fragile, especially so when Pastors move from churches Colin’s view of the role of network leader : 1 They should discover HOW to progress the Network in the Kenyan context. 2 Ex. 18 (the Jethro principle) talks about necessity for a multiplicity of leaders working within their capabilities. This should guide us. 3 1 Tim 4. The role of the Network leader is equivalent to an elder and they should coordinate a network of church leaders who, in turn, mentor cell leaders . 4 They should cast vision locally. 5 They should mentor Cell church leaders 6 Train Cell Churches in new concepts. 7 Model what it is to be a leader based on Cell values. Regional reports: Western – Saul Barasa, Juma Barasa, (Felistas/ Jared) Cell churches at Malava had received 2 trainings. The cells were effective and 2 more to be added ie there were now 6. As a result church membership has grown and cell leaders were ‘vibrant’. Ebenezer, Kakamega had also received 2 trainings. Cells have continued since Jared’s move to town. More cells has started and a church was planted though cells. Sawa Sawa had received training and the church reported growth through cell. Khayega; Things had improved since initial training, but CT2 training needed quickly. Bukhaywa Two trainings given, but request further training. Sister Felistas has moved to work with university in Mumias where she mentors there & looks for a further openings for Cell. Her work in Mt Elgon continues in 2 churches. Tweli requests training. Busia had 1 training & Bungoma 2; Overview: Cell church is working & productive. Sister Felistas believes she will get it working in universities. More follow up and reports are needed. Sometimes difficult to monitor who has been trained who not. Resource materials wanted. Finance difficult for trainees at courses. Ongoing training needed. With some churches we do not know number of cells. Increase in membership is common after beginning cells. Maintaining quality is difficult especially if pastor relocates. North Rift (Elgeo Maraquet) - Rev. Titus The church at Tambach has experienced growth and now has 5 cells and is proposing a new church plant. The atmosphere in church is different now; more caring, deeper commitment and sense of unity. Testimonies of change given from people. Bishop in Iten is seriously supporting cell and selling vision to other churches. They want further training (May/June internally) Plans to Link with institutions in Tambach. Teacher Training College CU, Boys School, and linking with Scripture Union in Prison. Training given to Bishop Teresia’s church Kitale but not picked for a while, now they were requesting further training. Challenges; Some incidents of cells being operated in lack of context. Inconsistency amongst cell members, some reverting to old methods. Maua/Meru/Embu – Pstr Eric The AOG church in Maua now has 11 cells and reports changed lives in cell and community. Cells are taking responsibility for outreach and service They are bonding in the fellowship not experienced before, communication has improved and neighbours are being loved. Every Monday a leader’s forum meets using the Cell Experience Book as a resource for training; There has been numerical growth The cells are provoking one another to better behaviour. One cell raised Ksh132,000 (£920) for the children’s church building. The ‘52 Cell Outlines’ are used and found to be very practical. One cell decided to clean up the town and the council supported them, providing bins etc. Cell helps to identify talents and use them. Pastor Karura of Deleiverance Church is keen to begin cell training once he has finished Theological college Pst. Sid also wants cell. Meru/Embu Pastors were given Vision trained but have been set back temporarily by some difficult circumstances in the area. Challenges: Training needs to be reinforced, more outreach should happen to the community and reaching other churches is a need. Glory Outreach Assmbly.- Revd Phyllis GOA has taken Cell to 5 Regions, and Cell is written into the GOA 2018 Vision for introduction across their 130 churches. Cell was introduced to Kinangop orphanages. They started with 52 Outlines and contextualised it. Juma writes outlines for Kahawa church to follow sermons & is mentoring leaders. Kahawa had Cell Celebration Service with cell banners displayed around the church, giving a sense of belonging. They eat together with different cells providing the food. At a recent large GOA Youth Conference Rev Phyllis taught on Cell values and the young people were rewarded whenever staff saw values in action. Phyllis’s Umoja cell helped support a mother who had a baby with club foot. Cells takes responsibility for church cleaning, visiting, organising keshas and developing and maintaining buildings. There is increased intimacy in groups, visiting and caring from the cells and an increase in discipleship. GOA now has a Quality/performance contract for paid staff which increases their commitment to follow through on things. Wendani Church was born out of Cell and held a Sports Evangelism event where 7 were “born again” The church has grown ‘seriously’ through cell. Challenges: Vision changes with relocation and new Pastors, so some churches are weaker than they were previously in cell; The Nairobi traffic jams sometimes means late/no attendance of cell members. Relocation of members also causes fluctuation in attendance numbers. All Saints Cathedral - Revd John Unfortunately Revd. John was unable to attend as he had fallen off a ladder, so a card was sent from group. The Cathedral has received a lot of leader training and two sessions of supervision training. Senior Cathedral Staff have also been trained. All Saints had 4 weeks of Cell testimonies in their services. Over70 potential leaders were trained, but some were resistant to change so Rev John took those who wanted to go cell way through 52 Outlines, mentoring along the way with resulting transformation. 1,000 Cell outlines have now been ordered to use in the other groups Cathedral Canon has consistently expressed major support. Coast – Pst. Stanley Shanzu continues with cell but there are struggles The church in Mtwapa has one cell, and Kikambala also has one cell The team trained CT1 (2 sessions) & CT2 at Ulindi Baptist in Kisumu Dogo. They were very enthusiastic, attended well and intend to implement. Follow-up will be important. Challenges: A fresh training is planned for the whole church, not just the leaders, at Shanzu, to enable better understanding of Cell Nyali Baptist has lost two pastors and is involved in a major building project, however, strong groups still meet where they follow teaching from the sermons. Biggest emphasis on Bible Study. Need increased focus on outreach and multiplication. Voi/Taita – Pst. Myles, who is relatively new to cell, is co-ordinating work in the area and hopefully will develop into the network leader for this new region. He reported: After training last year in Voi, as yet no groups had formed in town. Vision had been given to many pastors but pick up was poor. Pastors seem to want quick fix things. There is also a history of division & suspicion between churches. Werugha, a rural community in the Taita Hills had Vision CT1, and CT2 last year and recently CT1 again. The numbers attending has grown each time. Those who have completed the course have now received certificates. Because of new delegates there are still more want to complete the parts they have missed and receive certificates. Cell groups have already begun. Wundanyi Pastors’ Fellowship. Myles and David rescheduled a meeting with these pastors, and initially there was reluctance to listen to Vision. After gently presenting the possibilities of Cell they became eager to pursue further training once understanding began to dawn, particularly when they saw it could ease the Pastor’s load. They will require early follow up to enable further training to occur. Challenges: Poor commitment to new things from some churches. Too many programmes tried but not pursued. (Over-busyness) Priority need for senior leaders to grasp the vision if training is to be successful and they will need good follow up and mentoring. Best way to contact an area is through the chairman. Sharing stories of good practise really helps. (Do we want a separate booklet?) Experience is gained through practise. Responses to reports Prayer, + more prayer needed Champions needed Senior Pastor really needs to understand cell vision and avoid too many programmes Passion needed from the Vision carrier. Teams to take someone from a place where it has worked well. Networks need to relate more closely Good working relationships need developing with regional Overseers/Bishops Frequent follow–up needed by Network leaders and CellKenya team Need to continue to share stories across the networks Prayer + more prayer needed Colin shared an experience he had up-country when he questioned how you got the bananas from the tree when the fruit looks so heavy and the plant was difficult to access with a ladder? He was told, ”You cut the tree down and take the fruit. A new plant will grow in its place.” Sometimes you need to cut some things away to get good fruit. Role of Network Leader A discussion was held to clarify following ideas emerged: Connects churches. Mobilises trainers Follows-up contacts Opens new contacts Reports to central team Plans training (5 year plan) Develops strategies for growth Is a ‘Team Player’ Mentors Leaders the job description of the network co-ordinator and the Mentors Churches Plans Costs Sustains the Vision through: Prayer Empowerment Training local leadership Creating passion for the vision Maximising resources. Enabling sustainability by creating fund generation amongst practitioners through celebrations and donations from cells. The possibility of having CellKenya membership subscriptions was also discussed. ACTION from Consultation Effective communication: 1 Central to communicate monthly 2 Regions to respond Website to be planned containing news and resources (Central by year end) Plan Cell Celebrations and inform Central of dates (Regions) Document role of Network leader (Central by end April- see this document as framework) Quarterly reports and Prayer Requests (Regions to send to Central at end of March, June, September, and December) Produce quarterly Prayer Calendar with events, regional needs, praises, etc. (Central to produce using information from Quarterly Reports. Issued in April, July, October, and January. Commencing July ’14) The meeting closed with reflection and prayer led by Rev. Phyllis and it was agreed we must continue annual meetings of the Network Co-ordinators. Many of us continued fellowship the following day as we attended the Kileleshwa Covenant Community Church’s ‘Tandaza Connect’ 3 day Cell Conference.
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