More than simply encouraging pastors and church leaders to gain new perspectives in growing their ministries at an upcoming conference, Pastor Benny Perez of The Church at South Las Vegas says he would like to see "fresh encounters with Jesus" and a "renewal from the Holy Spirit" in the Christian community.
"We are living in times of unprecedented opportunities, accompanied by equally unprecedented challenges," said Perez in a letter. "We need wisdom and strategies to navigate the modern complexities of planting and growing churches. But more than that, we need renewal from the Holy Spirit and fresh encounters with Jesus so we do not grow weary and lose heart."
Perez says that recent statistics indicate that about 1,500 pastors leave their ministry each month due to moral failure, spiritual burnout or strife in their churches, while over 3,500 congregations close their doors each year in the United States alone. In response, he is hosting the 'Built to Last' conference Nov. 5-7.
"Day sessions will focus on the time-tested, biblical principles of successful leaders and churches. Night sessions will be focused on renewing our spirits through worship, ministry and God's word. We are not after hype or the latest ministry trends – but rather building leaders and churches that can overcome every setback, obstacle and hardship that may come," said Perez.
Aside from featuring Perez and his wife, Wendy, who is a co-lead pastor, the three-day event includes speakers Casey Treat, Stovall Weems, Tommy Barnett, and Gini Smith, who have extensive experience in building church ministries.
In addition, both Perez and his wife will facilitate 'app sessions' where each plan to speak on separate topics such as the real and the raw issues that lead pastors face, including church finances, staff and team challenges, and topics relevant to lead pastor wives. Other sessions will include how to work with children, youth ministries, how to implement creative communication, and community outreach methods within the church.
The Church at South Las Vegas, that began at the Perez' home in 2003 with merely 28 in attendance, just celebrated its 10th anniversary . Now, their congregation boasts over 3,000 members.
For more information on Built to Last conference, visit www.thechurchconference.com