New Leaders, February, 2002
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Johnson Journal
Dear Friends,
The transition to Venezuelan leadership continues.  This week the pastoral team met with a TEAM missionary couple, our friends the Muhas, to see how our church, the CCB, can help them establish another church in the needy city of Caracas.  Angel Chirinos, the new pastoral coordinator, did a great job leading the meeting, asking questions and making firm statements about where we might be able to lend a hand and where we will not be able to help.  There is so much going on in the CCB.  We've just started three new cell groups, and are incorporating two new members to the pastoral team.  So we don't want to spread ourselves too thin.  At the same time, it is the vision of the CCB to multiply and establish other churches, so we do want very much to be part of this new church plant.  
Ramón Díaz did a great job teaching our first half-day membership seminar on Saturday.  This is something new we're incorporating to make sure everyone who becomes a member understands our view of the church, it's responsibility to members and the members´ responsibility to the church.  But with all the time spent preparing the seminar, he didn't prepare as well as usual for the sermon.  So I found him in tears this morning. I assured him that I'd been in similar circumstances, and that while the Lord prefers us to be well prepared, He can use us even when we aren't well prepared.  We prayed and committed the message to the Lord, asking his help, and the Lord responded.   Ramón preached a good sermon.
Our annual church meeting will be next Sunday, when we affirm new members, new pastors and make some important decisions about the future.  One of the most important things to do is affirm the financial commitment of the congregation to pay for the church, a full time pastor and part time administrator, among other things.  Thanks for all your prayers for us, and please don't stop!