by Tony Lynn
PLYMOUTH, MI – Last month during two warm and sunny October days in Alpharetta, Georgia, approximately 275 field personnel of the Send Network of the North American Mission Board (NAMB) gathered with eager anticipation to hear about the changes and the refined focus that the President of the Send Network, Vance Pitman would share. Six from Michigan were part of the mission force: Tony Lynn, Wayne Parker, Ken Nether, Matt Thompson, Barry Martin, and Dan Carty.
Pitman introduced one word to the most often heard and repeated phrase within the mission organization. Mission personnel in the past often said, “Planting churches everywhere for everyone.” Pitman added one word to remind all of us that congregations are the leading force in the mission, so from now on the mission force will say, “Churches planting churches everywhere for everyone.”
Pitman took the time to display and explain five new guiding values. Pitman said during his presentation, “As a family of churches planting churches everywhere for everyone, we want to be clear about the values that drive our decisions. These values impact everything we do.” Here are those five Send Network values:
Seek first the kingdom
Engage your city (community)
During one of the sessions, Pitman introduced five men as members of the Send Network executive team who will serve alongside him with specific tasks assigned to each man. Pitman spoke of the respect he had for each man regarding their personal lives and ministry service. In turn, it was obvious that each man had responded affirmatively to Pitman’s invitation to serve the Send Network because they believe in the mission and are confident in Pitman’s vision and leadership. The members of the executive team are:
Vance Pitman, President of the Send Network
Travis Ogle, Executive Vice President
Felix Cabrera, Vice President of Send Network Español
Matt Carter, Vice President of Mobilization
Michael Crawford, Vice President of Strategies & Development
Bryan Loritts, Vice President of Regions
The field personnel were touched by the humility of each vice president who accepted an important role in the Send Network while simultaneously continuing in his personal, vibrant ministry. Today’s Send Network mission personnel are continually impressed and inspired by those who actively practice ministry while offering administrative and visionary leadership in larger mission collaborations. The two day event marked a renewed focus on the urgency and sacrifice it is going to take to see churches planting churches everywhere for everyone.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dr. Tony L. Lynn is the State Director of Missions for the Baptist State Convention of Michigan. Before coming on staff at the BSCM, Tony served as lead pastor for more than six years at Crosspoint Church in Monroe, Michigan. He and his wife, Jamie, also served with the International Mission Board in Africa and in Europe.