That’s how I began each day in our Gulf Province Pastor’s Leadership Conference. 28 men representing 8 languages (English, Pidgin, Kamea, Orokolo, Mekeo, Hamdai, Baimuru, and Akoye) attended the conference from April 22-26, 2013. Matt Allen spent lots of hours flying the previous (and following) days as he brought these men from their villages. Our Bible school wives spent hours and hours preparing the food for these men. And 12 men prepared lessons and devotions to stir the hearts of the attendees.
Pastor Rodney Tom of Rock Baptist Church in Port Moresby was the guest speaker. Host Pastor James Naudi joined missionaries Matt Allen, Jason Ottosen, Wil Muldoon, Andrew Schellenberger, and myself teaching the sessions. Leadership, Local Church, Sermon Preparation & Delivery, Song Leading, Pastoral Ministry, and Theology topics were covered. Vision for reaching our province and PNG was cast and caught. Hearts were stirred, tears were shed, bonds were made. It was good.
But the highlight of each day was the two-hour closing session: Questions and Answers. We do it a bit differently; the men pose the questions (or ministry dilemmas), and then everyone can join in on the comments. It’s not just the missionaries with the solutions. Some of our men have gained precious experience in pastoral ministries, and their answers can be profound at times. Not many of our Western pastors have to deal with issues of men having multiple wives at the same time–but our men do. It is both interesting and exciting to see the national believers work out their issues from the word of God. This group is very Bible-centered in their approach, and we were blessed to be engaged with them in the word. Through the lessons and interaction, places many of us may never visit were enriched by the Conference.
Thank you to everyone who prays for the TTMK team. Pray for our national pastors and Bible school students as these men take what they’ve learned back to their people. May the word of the Lord be multiplied, may Christ be magnified, and may precious PNG souls see that Jesus is Who they really need!
More photos at the team website!