By Daniel D’Oleo
Close to 65 people gathered for 2 full days to brainstorm about the future of the Church of the Brethren in Spain under the theme “Un Lider Para las Naciones” (a leader for the nations) The idea of this gathering was in the making since the last Mission Alive conference where leaders from Spain first heard about becoming a global Church of the Brethren.
Leaders and members talked about vision casting, strategy planning, unity, and team building. “It is important that the Church of the Brethren in Spain establishes a strategy plan with a unified vision that paves the road for the next five years,” indicated Pastor Santos.
After several group activities and conversation, the group concluded that:
a. The church in Spain must be a Christ-centered church: The life of Christ and his gospel is paramount for our faith and the gospel we preach. We must seek to glorify His name in everything we do. Also, we need to be intentional about loving God and loving people, while keeping our eyes on Jesus and his word.
b. The church in Spain must embrace a missional church model: The Great Commission is our mandate and we will continue sharing the transforming gospel of Christ to unbelievers. “We must be intentional in reaching people for Christ and making disciples not only in Spain but in all Europe,” Santos said.
c. The church in Spain must be theologically sound: Our congregations must have a knowledge of Brethren theology and the practices and beliefs of our denomination. Our leaders must have a profound knowledge of scripture and theology in general.
d. The church in Spain must be united: The unity in vision, goals, strategy, program, and fellowship is key for the success of our present and future goals. We must be intentional in our gatherings as we promote more spiritual maturity and collaboration among our congregations.
The proposed vision statement for our strategy plan: Our vision is to be a Christ-centered missional church that is united, makes disciples, and loves God and others.
The event concluded with worship, with the sermon on Joshua 1:8 encouraging the congregation to be strong and courageous in practicing all the commands as laid out in scripture. The success of our gospel is not to create a new one, but to be faithful, brave, and courageous with the one that has been entrusted to us to preach.
-- Daniel D'Oleo pastors Iglesia Cristiana Renacer Church of the Brethren in Roanoke, Va.