The subject of discipleship took center stage on the first day of the Exponential West conference hosted at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., where 2,000 church planting leaders onsite were treated on Tuesday to the first 10 of 27 speakers planned for the 3-day event.
Saddleback's own Pastor Rick Warren led a mid-day session on the topic of making disciples, along with pastors Robert Coleman and Ray Chang. Other speakers on Tuesday included Jim Putman, Derwin Gray, Obed Martinez, Shawn Mitchell, Alan Hirsch, Debra Hirsch, and Larry Osborne.
Warren said that although not always practiced among Christian leaders, being a servant such as the example Jesus Christ set is the key to making good disciples. He pointed out that the term "servant leader" is an unnecessary one. more >>
Saddleback Church, which has 10 campuses across Southern California, is undertaking for the very first time in its 33-year history the launch of campuses outside of the United States in an effort to "finish the Great Commission," according to founding Pastor Rick Warren. Warren and his megachurch will see fruits of their years-long work with the "12 Cities PEACE Plan" come to bear this month with the launch of three global campuses, one each in Hong Kong, Berlin and Buenos Aires.
Saddleback Hong Kong is the first global congregation prepared for launch, and will officially open its doors this Sunday, Oct. 6. The following two Sundays will see Saddleback Berlin (Oct. 13) and Buenos Aires (Oct 20) follow suit. Eventually, over the next few years, these Saddleback church plants will be followed by sister congregations in Accra, Amman, Bangalore, Johannesburg, London, Manila, Mexico City, Moscow, and Tokyo.
"The ultimate goal is to finish the Great Commission by planting a body of Jesus (church), a Bible (portion of God's word) and a believer in the last unengaged people groups on Earth," Warren explained in a press release shared with The Christian Post. "Jesus said one day in heaven there will be people from every tribe and nation worshipping around God's throne. I intend to use all my influence in rallying the Global Church to do what Jesus commanded us 2000 years ago!" more >>
A growing movement of Christian leaders committed to accelerating the multiplication of healthy, reproducing churches is offering 10 hours of almost continuous programming on discipleship via a live webcast from the upcoming Exponential West Conference hosted by Rick Warren's Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., Oct. 8-10.
Exponential leaders say they are fueled by a goal to see as many church leaders, small groups, church planting launch teams, individuals and even full churches participating in the discipleship conversation as possible.
The three-day conference beginning today (Oct. 8) will focus on discipleship, specifically five key shifts Christian leaders can make to become better at making and releasing disciples. The event features 27 national and regional leaders in 10 main sessions. The live webcast, available for free to anyone who registers, will include 10-plus hours of nearly continuous programming, organizers said. more >>
Pastor Rick Warren and his wife, Kay, said in their first interview with the media since their son's suicide more than five months ago that they knew all along that the day would come when they would become spokespeople for mental illness.
The Warrens told CNN's Piers Morgan during a taped broadcast of his show that aired Tuesday evening that they kept their son's lifelong struggles with mental disease out of the public eye for the sake of his dignity.
In response to Morgan's question about whether he should have done more as "Rick Warren, America's pastor" about the issue of mental health before their son, Matthew, took his life, Warren replied, "We've always known since Matthew has lived his entire life with mental illness that one day we would be spokespeople for mental illness. Kay and I have known this for years and years. more >>
California megachurch Pastor Rick Warren was in Rwanda this week and encouraged residents of the Central-East African country "to be a nation of purpose, dignity and hope," as he met with local leaders helping to advance his PEACE Plan and Purpose Driven Church initiatives.
A website titled "PEACE in Rwanda," linked to Warren's The Peace Plan website, shared several images and updates regarding the Saddleback Church pastor's travels around the country that started on Tuesday, Aug. 27.
In addition to a rally held in Kayonza District that saw hundreds turn out, Pastor Warren joined more than 200 local ministry leaders in Musanze in the northern province to teach them "how to build a healthy church to change the community it serves," according to the Rwanda PEACE Team's updates. That region reportedly also saw 2,000-plus residents turn out for a separate community rally. more >>
Pastor Rick Warren, author of the best-selling book, The Purpose Driven Life and founder of Saddleback Church, sent out a message of thanks to his Facebook and Twitter followers who've alerted the social media outlets to remove imposters soliciting money from people who think they're following the real Rick Warren.
Warren announced Tuesday that "179 of over 200 FAKE Rick Warren Facebook pages created by scammers to make money on my son's death have now been shut down. We're still working on the rest. Thanks to you friends for reporting them and thanks for 'LIKING' this real page. I appreciate you so much for your help. God bless you."
The message received more than 13,500 "Likes" on Facebook and 166 retweets and 142 favorites on Twitter. more >>