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Vision of “Schools of Ministry”


“And Christ gave gifts to men – he made some to be apostles, some to be
prophets, some to go and tell the Good News, and some to have the work
of caring for and teaching God’s people.  Christ gave those gifts
to prepare God’s holy people for the work of serving.  He gave those
gifts to make the body of Christ stronger.  This work must continue
until we are all joined together in the same faith and in the same knowledge
about the Son of God.  We must become like a mature person – we must
grow until we become like Christ and have all his perfection.  Then
we will no longer be babies.  We will not be tossed about like a ship
that the waves carry one way and then another.  We will not be influenced
by every new teaching we hear from men who are trying to fool us.
Those men make plans and try any kind of trick to fool people into following
the wrong path.  No!  We will speak the truth with love.
We will grow up in every way to be like Christ, who is the head.
The whole body depends on Christ.  And all the parts of the body are
joined and held together.  Each part of the body does its own work.
And this make the whole body grow and be strong with love.”  (Ephesians
4:11-16; especially vv. 12 and 15,16)

In this portion of Scripture we see an important word, “work”.
Our faith is completed by works.  When each part of the body is working
properly, the whole body grows and is upbuilt in love.

“Since you are eager for manifestations of the Spirit, strive to excel
in building up the church.”  (when each part is working properly)
(I Corinthians 14:12)

See also I Corinthians 12:4-11; 12:27-31; Romans 12:4-8.  These
passages tell about each type of gift given to the church by God, and what
each person should be doing.  To build up God’s Church, we can establish
practical training groups for each and every gifting.  Just as there
were schools for prophets (II Kings 2:3,5,7,6:1) and they were subject
to one another (I Corinthians 14:32), there should be schools for all the
giftings.  How good it is when those with common giftings meet together
to learn, share, and then use their gifts in the body!  No one should
be a lone ranger – there should be team ministry “two by two” (Mark 6:7)
at least.  There’s protection and encouragement in this.

Evangelism Outreach is a good example of a School of Ministry – it’s like a little school for
those with the gift of evangelism, and serves as a good model of thorough
training and application for the other gifts’ Schools.  Each little
“school” is a single part of the bigger picture, “Schools of Ministry”.

The Schools of Ministry will be different from typical elective classes.
These electives are primarily for head knowledge; the Schools of Ministry
classes will all be applied training.  The following Schools compliment
the 27 known Gifts of the Spirit:

     I    Receiving the Baptism of the Holy Spirit
     II   Discerning God's gifting and will for you
     III  Healing and Deliverance
     IV   Evangelism
     V    Teaching
     VI   Methodical Bible Study (learning to use your Bible)
     VII  Prophecy
     VIII Caring (Stephen's Ministry)
     IX   Counseling
     X    Altar Workers (support those who go to the altar)
     XI   Spiritual Warfare/Praying
     XII  Discipline (Navigators-based men's and women's groups)

Thorough training will take place for each area, fulfilling certain requirements,
then upon completion, participants will be recognized, commissioned and
given a group certificate, continuing to work together as a team.
Their area of ministry and availability will be made known to the congregation
regularly.  The various teams will meet together regularly to continue
to share, encourage, and pray for their area of ministry.

When newcomers want to join a team in ministry, their total spiritual
experience should be verified, their spiritual gifts confirmed, and they
should be brought in as a trainee, and welcomed and nurtured by a “buddy”
on the team. With requirements being met, the trainee will then be commissioned
and given a group certificate, and continue to work with the team.

The Schools of Ministry should follow a two or three-year cycle using
trainers both from within and outside the local fellowship as needed.

Respectfully Submitted,

Sallie Stewart