July 2016 Meeting in St. Louis
We invited several young prospective teachers to be a part of the meeting in St. Louis. The Teachers Service Team wanted to get the perspective of Millennials.
• Daniel Burke – Charleston, SC
• TJ Parisi – New York
• Bobby Ritter – St. Louis
• Matt Fisk – Virginia Beach
• Katie Fisk – Virginia Beach
• Talia Laing – Raleigh, NC
The Teachers Service Team, an explanation
We want to train more teachers. We want to be a service team that not only looks at difficult passages but also meets needs in the ministry. We want to teach our teachers how to develop more teachers. We want to build relationships globally with the teaching ministry and share resources with one another. We want to establish Ministry Training Academies in every region of our movement. We want to help those who have the gift of teaching to use it in a great way for God
James 3:1 reads, “Not many of you should be teachers, my brothers and sisters, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly.” We recognize that the teaching ministry is not for everyone. Teaching is a gift. Jesus was a rabbi, Paul spoke of himself as a teacher. The teaching role is a great role in the church, but it’s not not for everyone. There is a stricter, greater judgment. Criticism comes your way. James gives a stern warning to be careful when you teach. Speech has the ability to bless and the potential to encourage and build up. There is also the potential for false teaching.
In our context today with social media, what you say is out there forever and judgment goes on and on.
Teachers have influence in our churches. Our own Douglas J probably has traveled to more churches in our movement of churches than anyone else. And he has traveled as a teacher. Teaching opens door for us to share with people. There is a respect that is given to teachers, therefore, we have a great responsibility.
We want to create an atmosphere of admiration for one another in the teaching ministry and encourage one another to use our gifts to the utmost for God. There is no competition within this service team. We want the best for each other.
We encourage you to think about what you can do as a teacher. What you can teach? Then, get about doing that. Write a blog, teach a small group, develop a course for the church.
Some good news
• Dave Pocta – the MTAs in Africa are on a six-year cycle. They conduct two programs per year, and are just coming into their first graduates. They are working on a college credit accreditation program in South Africa. Many of the church leaders have to have some kind of formal training in Africa, so these courses help to meet that requirement.
• Ed Anton – we’ve put our 70th person into the full time ministry out of Commonwealth Academy. Many of them are middle-aged secular folks who decided to re-evaluate their lives and serve in a full time way.
• Joey Harris – The North River church started the Atlanta School of Ministry in conjunction with AIM. Many young leaders in their 20s are attending. Columbia South Carolina started a Columbia School of Ministry. They’ve had 3 sessions for their staff. They are inviting teachers from other parts of the Southeast to attend.
• Steve K – in NY we have a ministry training program for college students. It’s a three-year program. The students do two courses at the Hope camp with students from the ACR. Teachers are Ed Anton, Dr. Deb Anton, Dr. Steve Kinnard, Dr. Gabe Santos ,Brett Miller, and others. If a student joins the program at beginning of their sophomore year, they can graduate the MTA the same time as they graduate college.
• Joey Harris reported for Courtney Bailey — the Damien Jean Baptiste Caribbean School of Ministry is now in the second year of classes. They have two campuses, the Eastern and the Western Caribbean. The entire ministry staff, plus many members, elders, and deacons are involved. The classes are held in Trinidad and Jamaica. Courtney is a full time lawyer with young children, and he helps out with church. Then, he directs the school of ministry, and if that’s not enough, he’s a PhD student in biblical studies.
Discussion on Women Using their Gifts for God
We want to continue to explore the most effective ways women can use their gifts in the church. Also, how can we as a TST help to facilitate women using their gifts? We want to promote Biblical literacy for women and help women continue to increase their love for the Bible. We know that women need to have their voices heard. We all agree that men and women are equal in God’s sight. However their roles are not interchangeable. The boundaries set by God are intended to enhance us.
The goal is to decide what we agree upon and what we will practice across all our churches.
Monday, July 4 2017 – Day 2 Teachers Service Team
We discussed possible topics to be studied in the future:
• Teachers Directory which focuses on people who are teachers, up and coming teachers, programs in existence, and developing online resources for people to use.
• How to reach the younger generation.
• The tithe, offering, and stewardship. Ed and Andy are interested in this.
• Our church as a movement. An Evaluation. Steve Staten – renaissance thinking and things we need to look at within our movement of churches, different topics that need to be addressed.
• Imputed or imparted righteousness – Ed is interested in this.
• How to reach people who are miles away from any church.
• How to discuss political matters spiritually.
• Homosexuality. Expanding Guy Hammond’s work for campuses and teens.
• Marriage Divorce Remarriage Paper (MDR) presented by Valdur Koha
We’ve been looking at the following categories in this paper:
1 What does the Bible teach/not teach, and where are we not sure of what the Bible is teaching? We should be unified as much as possible on this and have a shared hermeneutic.
2 Counseling: what advice do we give? In specific situations, there is room for differences. It is impossible to say that everybody gets the same counseling. The paper ought to help guide the counseling sessions.
3 Where do we exert church discipline? Ideally we are united on this.
4 Church discipline should hold from church to church.
• Church Discipline paper presented by Steve Staten
◦ Since 2003 there have been some prominent church discipline malfunctions throughout our churches. There are some recurring dynamics. Most of the problems have occurred because of carelessness. We need to realize that one bad misfire can effect a whole colony of churches and now the whole world. We are creating templates of how to handle these situations. Many people who mishandled things have commented, “I wish I had had these templates before.”
◦ The idea of “tell it to the church” should be based on proximity and influence, namely, the person’s sphere of influence. We don’t want to bring members’ sins before our visitors. And, we don’t need to discipline our former members. If they have left our fellowship, they are no longer members. We are working on a road map for helping people to come back from being disfellowshipped.
• Three other important notes:
◦ Gordon Ferguson resigned from being an active member of the service team. He will be a team member emeritus.
◦ Steve Kinnard stepped down from chairing the group. His term was up.
◦ Ed Anton will be the new chair.
• Personal note from Dr. Kinnard:
I want to express my respect for all of you who serve and have served on the Teachers Service Team. It’s been a joy to chair this team for the past several years. You guys are easy to work with. We laugh, have fun, and get work done.
Some of you pay your own way to get to our meetings. You take time away from your secular jobs to be on the team. All of you volunteer your time to work on the team. You use your gifts of scholarship and teaching to benefit our churches. You spend time writing and rewriting papers, and your name doesn’t appear on the final copy. Your sacrifice often goes unnoticed by our larger fellowship, but I’ve noticed and greatly appreciate the work you are doing. More importantly, God has noticed.
I believe we’ve done good work in the years that I’ve been with you. And, I believe that we will continue to do good in the years to come.
Teachers Service Team Subcommittees
• Teacher Development. Valdur Koha, chair
◦ Steve Kinnard, Joey Harris, Rolan Monje
• Congregational Teaching. Ed Anton, chair
◦ Fred Faller, Douglas Jacoby, Joey Harris
• Technology. Arturo Elizarraras, chair
◦ Joey Harris
• Accreditation/RMSMT: Glenn Giles, chair
◦ Steve Kinnard
• Disputable Matters and Hermeneutics: Steve Staten, chair
◦ Douglas Jacoby, Joey Harris, Kay McKean, Steve Kinnard
• Women’s Teaching Ministry. Kay McKean, Deb Anton, co-chair
◦ Suzette Lewis
• International Teachers Seminar: Douglas Jacoby, chair
◦ Steve Kinnard
• Divorce and Remarriage, a re-examination. Valdur Koha, chair
◦ Steve Kinnard, Suzette Lewis, Courtney Bailey, Joey Harris
• Church Discipline: Steve Staten, chair
◦ Deb Anton, Glenn Giles
• Women’s Role
◦ Deb Anton, Suzette Lewis, Kay McKean, Steve Kinnard, Courtney Bailey, Joey Harris
• Teacher’s Corner
◦ Tammy Fleming
Members of the Teachers Service Team:
Ed Anton, chair, Virginia Beach
Dr. Deb Anton, Virginia Beach
Kay McKean, Northern Virginia
Steve Brown, Buenos Aries
Steve Staten, Chicago
Dr. Douglas Jacoby, Atlanta
Joey Harris, Augusta
Andy Fleming, Kiev
Tammy Fleming, Kiev
Dr. Glenn Giles, Denver
Fred Faller, Boston
Valdur Koha, Boston
Courtney Bailey, Kingston
Arturo Elizarraras, Mexico City
Suzette Lewis, Toronto
Dr. Rolan Monje, Manila
Dave Pocta, San Antonio
Dr. Steve Kinnard, New York