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Archive for the ‘Mission’ Category

2 Prayers for the Mission Field

By: Jock Ficken

Read the prayer. Take the quiz. Distribute to a group of your friends. Compare your answers The Prayer Dr. Robert Newton, former missionary to the Philippines, former district president and PLI Board member, explained that when they were missionaries in the Philippines they would kneel down, hold hands and pray the essence of these two … Continue reading

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An Incredible Story from Ethiopia

By: Jock Ficken

And an Incredible Opportunity Last week I shared some recent discoveries. And, I asked you to watch for this week’s announcement and invitation to help! The Christian Church in Africa is booming! The center of global Christianity continues to march across northern Africa. Remember the eunuch of Ethiopia and Phillip? Earlier this month, we presented … Continue reading

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Outsourcing the Mission of God

By: Jock Ficken

Outsourcing. Lots of churches do it. PLI does it. We outsource certain functions to people or companies with greater expertise or specialization that can do a specific task in a better and usually more cost effective way. Bookkeeping, payroll, maintenance, branding, custodial services, printing, etc. Here’s an alarming reality: Most churches—most Christians—have outsourced the mission of God! … Continue reading

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3 Immigrants Who Made a Difference in my Life and a Book to Make Sense of It

By: Jock Ficken

I grew up on a farm in Nebraska. It was “the good life”…according to the state motto. While I learned that God was omnipresent in my years of confirmation instruction, I was quite sure God headquartered there, too. And, I was certain that for the most part, how I viewed the world was how God viewed … Continue reading

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Introducing Multipli

By: Gail Ficken

PLI family, you are the first to know! As the President/Founder, I am pleased to announce the start of Multipli, a companion organization of PLI. In PLI’s 20 year history, it has trained 3,000 leaders–mostly pastors and their spouses–in the United States and around the globe. Thanks be to God that PLI has never been … Continue reading

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4 Lepers Find New Places

By: Jock Ficken

Here are 3 different leadership postures: Our church is fine. We just need to get back to normal. We’ll be fine.  Culture has permanently changed. We need to get members to volunteer to be disciples sent into the mission field.  Culture has permanently changed. Recruiting volunteers to be disciples is a failed plan! I need … Continue reading

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A Picture of Urban Ministry

By: Jock Ficken

Dan Czaplewski continues the conversation from last week about urban ministry, systemic racism, activity in the city, etc.  Tell me about bringing Ben Piering on your staff as community minister and director of youth. Ben is great. He had just joined us when the riots occurred here in Milwaukee in 2016. The next morning he … Continue reading

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Mike Newman: The 1918 Flu Pandemic, Today’s COVID-19 and the Future of the Church

By: Jock Ficken

A few weeks ago I sat down with Michael Newman. Mike currently serves as president of the LCMS Texas District. He’s the author of the excellent book Gospel DNA: Five Markers of a Flourishing Church. We each served wonderful Chicagoland congregations an hour apart some years ago. Mike, church leaders are trying to gain some … Continue reading

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8 Things You and Your Congregational Leaders could Learn from the Church in Ethiopia

By: Jock Ficken

Last month, PLI took its board and some of its friends to learn from the Church in Ethiopia and to observe PLI’s training, expertly designed and developed by Dr. Scott and Lori Rische, PLI’s international directors. (Similar to PLI’s Leadership Essentials in the U.S.). It’s estimated that there are 25 million evangelical Christians in Ethiopia. … Continue reading

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Welcome to 2020!

By: Gail & Jock Ficken

Allow us a simple word of thanks. You show up to lead almost every day in your congregation.  Easy or not Experiencing joys or not Trends up and to the right or not We’d simply like to say thanks. You’ve read our vision of what an emerging vibrant church might look like in 2030 over … Continue reading

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