Seventy-four percent of large churches offer their budding future leaders or pastors-in-training an internship or residency, a new national study finds.
Sponsored by Southeastern University and overseen and authored by the Leadership Network's Director of Research Warren Bird, Ph.D., the study examined the leader training process of over 300 churches. The findings are detailed in a report titled Leaders in Training: Internships and Residencies Help Churches Shape Future Leaders.
Significant findings include the fact that churches demonstrate a high level of confidence in the success of their programs, and the most important measure of that success is the maturity of the intern. Most churches offer multiple programs and specialties and the number of intern and resident programs has recently seen a brisk increase, the study finds. more >>
Singapore's City Harvest Church pastor Kong Hee has praised Pastor David Yonggi Cho and Grace Kim Sunghae of Yoido Full Gospel Church, the largest Pentecostal Church in the world, as being "one of the most amazing couples in the history of Christendom."
Kong also said that Cho, who founded Yoido in 1958 and saw it grow into a congregation of 830,000 members, has accomplished "things of biblical proportions very few could imagine possible."
The CHC pastor explained in a detailed post on Facebook some of the history behind South Korea's Yoido, noting that Cho, who is now its pastor emeritus, also founded several other Christian institutions, including Church Growth International, Elim Welfare Town, Hansei University, the International Theological Institute, and the Kookmin Daily newspaper. more >>
Hangzhou's Chongyi Church, the largest government-sanctioned church in China, has asked Christians to pray for the Rev. Gu Yuese to keep his faith in jail as he faces government persecution for protesting against the removal of church crosses.
China Christian Daily translated Chongyi's press release over the weekend that included a prayer list.
The press release "asks its congregation particularly to pray for pastor Gu Yuese: beg the Lord to help Rev. Gu keeping his faith in adversity, standing firmly in the trials of the cross." more >>
To help further craft their vision for criminal justice reform, Bishop T.D. Jakes and a Dallas County judge visited the Dallas County Jail last Wednesday to meet with inmates who say they want a second chance at life.
Going before a parole board, the inmates told Jakes and Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins their stories, which included background on their childhoods, families, and addictions, as well as their plans for how to stay out of jail, their support systems and even their fears, hopes and dreams.
Among those stories was one 35-year-old inmate's concern that his criminal record will "scare off" employers and landlords, and his hopes to overcome the negative labels of "junkie" and "crackhead" that he has endured. Another inmate, a 50-year-old woman, is ashamed to allow her sons to visit her after being imprisoned more than eight times. Her latest conviction involved the sale of crystal meth. She hopes to see more programs in place that help ex-offenders stay on the straight-and-narrow after they get out of jail. more >>
Pastor Gu "Joseph" Yuese of Hangzhou's Chongyi Church, the largest government-sanctioned church in China, has reportedly been sent to jail for protesting forced removal of church crosses.
China Aid reported on Thursday that Gu was taken into custody and placed under "residential surveillance in a designated location," while family members claim that the pastor's wife has also been taken into police custody.
The arrests happened 10 days after authorities in the Zhejiang province forcefully removed the pastor from his position, allegedly for his choice to speak out against the ongoing government crackdown against Christians in the country. more >>
City Harvest Church Pastor Kong Hee has praised the major growth of Christian megachurches in South Korea, noting that the key to such continued success is prayer.
"One of the greatest revivals in the last 100 years was, and still is, in Korea. Just imagine — at one time, six of the 10 largest churches in the world can be found in the city of Seoul. Until today, Yoido Full Gospel Church remains the largest congregation in the world with 830,000 members," Kong said on his Facebook page.
"They have been consistently baptizing 1,000 new converts every month! If you ask any Korean church what is the key to their success, the answer is unanimous — PRAYER!" he added. more >>