Holston Evangelism Announcement

You may remember hearing from the stage of Annual Conference that the Conference Witness team would challenge us to celebrate 3000 baptisms on Pentecost Sunday (May 23, 2010) in Holston Conference.  The Witness Team would like to take this opportunity to “brief” you, our Conference leaders, on the plan, invite you to ask questions, share comments, and help publicize as we continue refining and developing this time for an exciting and potentially Conference-transforming Spring in Holston Conference.  Info coming soon in the Call, Call 2 and a save the date(s) letter to each pastor under appointment in Holston.

In the book Prophetic Evangelist, Harry Denman called the 50 days between Easter and Pentecost the “50 Golden Days of Evangelism”.  He also wrote a letter in which he called on every pastor not only to observe Pentecost, but to lay the groundwork for experiencing Pentecost.  That is what we are praying for in Holston in 2010.  Here is an outline:

* Feb 19-20  Holston Evangelism Conference

This event will be held at Cokesbury Center in Knoxville, TN. We welcome the Rev. Rudy Rasmus and Bishop James Swanson to lead us through this inspirational and motivating event.  We will celebrate the past year’s theme and covenant to “Offer Them Christ” and to invite Holston to the next steps toward Pentecost 2010.  Friday: Optional Mission Outreach (“Grace bags” to Knoxville Homeless) 3-5; Registration 5-7; Session I begins 7pm.  Bishop Swanson will conclude the conference by 3pm on Saturday.

* 40 Days of Prayer and Preparation — beginning on Feb 23rd, we will encourage every congregation to pray, fast and ask God for a burden for the lost. Churches may organize specific prayer groups, teaching or preaching about prayer and fasting, or other creative Holston ways of preparation.  The Witness Team will provide a 40 Day Prayer Guide which will be daily devotions written by lay and clergy members of our Conference.  (District Superintendents – if you haven’t already, there may still be space for you to add a day’s devotional writing…) At this time we are working on the best delivery of these guides, but at the least we will be emailing copies to local church pastors and designated leaders for copying and distribution. The Witness Team is asking that every Pastor and Lay member who has a blog to add the daily devotional to your church and personal blogs.

*  50 Golden Days of Evangelismfrom Easter to Pentecost 2010, each congregation will be asked to intentionally concentrate on evangelism in their community. Again, the Conference Witness Team will supply a guide (“50 Days of Evangelism”) with concrete, specific suggestions for individuals and groups within churches to start conversations, build relationships, and offer Christ in your community.  Some congregations may plan for a Pentecost celebration with dinner on the grounds where river baptisms and all other forms of baptism recognized by The UMC may take place.

*** 1 Great Day of Pentecost *** — baptisms, renewals and lives transformed for and by Jesus Christ

40 Days of Preparation + 50 Days of Evangelism = A 90 Day Investment in 3000 lives. Sound unlikely? Unbelievable? Too much?  In our 904 churches, this would be an AVERAGE of 3.1 baptisms per worshipping community.  What do we have to lose?  Suppose we ONLY baptize 1000???  Help the Witness Team make this Spring of Pentecost preparation a reality for Holston.  No single group, ministry team or leader can do this.  We believe that God is in this… and we ask for your support, feedback and most importantly for your prayers.

With Bold, Passionate, Risk-taking love —              The Holston Conference Witness Team

Contact Ronnie Collins         ronnie24317@yahoo.com or (276) 728-2434

or Amy Rollins Probst     pastor@broadwayumc.net

or (865) 202-3019             with feedback or suggestions.

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