PRMI has served Christians from many different denominations, in most cases through individual people and churches.
But we have also connected at the denominational level. Hear stories of how this has been happening in 2019.
PRMI’s Continued Presence at the ECO National Gathering
What is ECO? From the ECO Website: “ECO is not an acronym. It reinforces our passion for strengthening the ecosystems of local churches. We believe that the Church is a living organism that needs life-giving resources to help it grow, thrive, and multiply. ECO is committed to cultivating a healthy, diverse, resource-rich ecosystem where pastors and congregations can flourish. The full name of the denomination is ECO: A Covenant Order of Evangelical Presbyterians “
PRMI’s presence at the ECO National Gathering in Colorado Springs, CO (January 2019) was one of seed-planting and mixing in the ‘leaven’ of cooperation with the Holy Spirit, as Jesus describes in these parables:
31 He put another parable before them, saying, “The kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his field. 32 It is the smallest of all seeds, but when it has grown it is larger than all the garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches.”
33 He told them another parable. “The kingdom of heaven is like leaven that a woman took and hid in three measures of flour, till it was all leavened.”Matthew 13:31-33
“It’s very exciting to be part of this new movement of God where values and denominational culture are being shaped,” said Rev. Susan Finck, PRMI’s liaison to ECO.
A workshop on Growing the Church
Susan, along with ECO pastors Keith Hill (St. Giles, Richmond VA) and Steve Thayer (Calvary, Enfield, CT) introduced the Growing The Church material and the work of PRMI to more than 62 of the 900+ attendees in an hour-long breakout session in the main sanctuary.
Steve and Keith wove together stories from their churches with the content, and Susan led participants into ‘trying out’ listening prayer in twos and debriefing as they shared one area where they longed to see the Holy Spirit move in their congregations.
Steve shared how the Lord prompted him to deviate from the planned order of service on a Sunday, and how the Holy Spirit led the entire church into a kairos moment.
As the slide went up for the ‘intercessory prayer’ dynamic, he said: “we had a small group praying faithfully since last summer for a fresh outpouring of God’s Holy Spirit.”
“Wow,” I (Susan) thought to myself : “If only half the people here are stirred by this, and nudged to begin praying that way, I wonder how many churches will be ignited in the Holy Spirit as a result of what’s happening here this morning?”
Chris Walker (PRMI staff and also an ECO pastor) and Lisa Madison (Living Hope Community, Old Greenwich, CT) staffed PRMI’s booth and made multiple connections as they hosted informal conversations.
“This year, the sense I got was that PRMI is becoming an integral part of the architecture of this new movement, with the picture of the denomination being a ‘tent of meeting’ and PRMI serving as one of the ‘poles’ holding up this tent”, said Susan. “We offer love, connection, hands-on prayer and presence. We are ‘in place’ for future outpourings of the Holy Spirit in individual congregations and at denominational venues.”
As the sanctuary resounded with praise and declaration, concluding the conference with ‘In Christ Alone,’ almost every hand was raised and many were weeping.
The zealousness for God’s glory and the thirst for Him are apparent and growing within ECO, and PRMI stands ready to serve, equip and deploy.
PRMI Also has a Presence at Fellowship Community Annual Gathering
The Fellowship Community (formerly known as the Fellowship of Presbyterians) National Gathering had an attendance of about 200 people.
PRMI provided leadership at one of the six workshop session choices offered twice as part of the conference.
Susan Finck shares,
“I had 19 people at the first session and 21 at the second hour and fifteen minute session. The atmosphere was intimate and sweet. People were thirsty and ready to jump in with the listening prayer exercise. It was really more of a “here’s who we are and here is our approach to ministry… ” I asked them to write down an area of their church where they long to see God’s Holy Spirit move, and gave them a minute to find a partner and share this.
I talked briefly about the Dance of Cooperation and highlighted Listening and Discernment. Really, I just created the context, then invited them to listen and pray/test guidance with their partner. Amazing how the Spirit gives specific guidance for folks and they feel ‘seen’ by the Lord.
Out of that prayer time we modeled de-briefing, and they had great things to share and really interesting questions.”
NOTE: Want to know what where ECO and The Fellowship Community came from? See explanations at https://www.eco-pres.org/who-we-are/our-story/ and http://www.fellowship.community/about/.
Good stuff. Glad ECO is open to this. Well done, Susan.