On Thursday night, our Church had the awesome privilege of commissioning four wonderful families to take the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the ends of the earth. The missionaries we were able to send out that night were Mark and Amy Coffey as missionaries to South Africa, Josh and Elizabeth Ewing as missionaries to Chile, Chris and Kathy Fies as missionaries with Voice in the Village, and Jonathan and Heather Marks as missionaries to Japan. It is truly a blessing that we are able to send missionaries out of our church to every continent of the world. But we, as a church, take the responsibility of sending our missionaries very seriously. We don’t just want to send out anyone and everyone. We want to be certain that the families we send out are qualified, committed, and the absolute best they can be. Pastor Gardner explained the importance of the commissioning service and what we expect from our missionaries:
Each missionary took a minute to once again explain to the church the ministry that felt that God had directed them to. Then, each missionary was asked a series of questions publicly and they responded as a means of public confirmation that God was directing their paths. It was a beautiful time together. As representatives of our church Pastors Warren Frick and Robert Canfield participated. As a representative of the World Evangelism Committee John Pearson helped and then as a Deacon in Training Ben John Johnson served. These men were publicly asked to verify that the church trusted in these families and chose top send them out. Then the church takes time to gather around every couple and lay hands on them in prayer. We ask God to bless them and use them. We know that God is the only one that can use them. We recognize as do they that we are nothing and can do nothing but ask the great God of heaven to intervene on their behalf.
We do not know why God has chosen to bless us with so many good families that come through our church to go to the field but we do love, acknowledge and praise Him for it. We are seeing young men raised up out of our church but God has brought others to our church. No one can go through our church unless they have been under our ministry and training for 2 years. They can come but will not be full fledged missionaries out of Vision until this 2 years is up. That is to discourage people from coming to be with us that do not have our heart and vision for the world as a church.
We are so thankful for these families, as well as all the families we support and send out. Please be in prayer for them as we begin is amazing adventure of serving God across the world together!