March 7, 2024

Celebrating God’s Faithfulness


During and after our national gathering in Greenville, I received about  a dozen comments along the lines of, “It seems like we have turned a corner in ECO!” Indeed, there were stories and moments during the event that felt incredibly encouraging. One highlight for me was hearing from Steven Perry, a church planter from Detroit, who shared his journey and reasons for wanting to join ECO. I was grateful for the welcoming environment both nationally and locally that attracted him to us. You can watch Steven’s inspiring story here.

There were numerous other instances where we witnessed the tangible impact of Flourish Institute of Theology, our ordination process, church planting efforts, and our transformation initiatives. These stories added depth to the information I shared during my address at the Synod Business Meeting. As this newsletter reaches a broader audience than those present at the meeting, I want to highlight some key statistics:

  • Flourish Institute of Theology has experienced significant growth, with a 42% increase in courses taken from Fall 2023 to Spring 2024.
  • Our ordination process currently has 98 candidates, with 18 individuals having completed the process since its inception just three years ago.
  • Over 150 individuals have completed or are in the process of CLP 1.
  • We currently have 25 active church plants, with an additional 24 individuals actively being assessed for planting or developing their church plant plans. Furthermore, 80 individuals have passed the initial church plant screening and received approval to proceed to the next stage of the process, totaling 129 individuals in various stages of planting.
  • Additionally, we successfully raised a total of $508,687 in our Accelerate matching campaign. I am grateful to all who contributed to this campaign and am excited about how we can utilize these funds to further develop these vital areas.

During our national gathering in 2020, I shared a passage from 2 Kings 4, where a widow in financial distress sought help from Elisha. Despite having only a flask of oil, Elisha instructed her to gather pots from her neighbors, and miraculously, the oil multiplied to fill all the pots, stopping only when there were no more vessels to fill. The message resonates as a reminder that we must prepare ourselves for the work that God intends to do in and through us. This feels particularly relevant now as we reflect on the Lord’s past and ongoing work within our community. As leaders, churches, and a denomination, we must position ourselves to receive what the Lord has in store for us. I look forward to continuing to experience God’s faithfulness in the future along with each of you and your congregations! 

In Christ,


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