"Keep Us Speechless"
Synod delegates hear stories of transformation
“Lord, please do something that will just keep us speechless.”
Carmen Means said that prayer as she and her husband, Silas, were feeling a call to new ministry in south Minneapolis, Minnesota. They began inviting people to gather once a month for fellowship and worship. Just a few short years later, their church, The Movement, has grown to more than 400 people, more than 80 percent of whom were either unchurched or had previously left the church.
Means’s prayer is also being answered in the RCA through Transformed & Transforming, synod delegates heard on Saturday night at a special plenary celebration, “Making All Things New: Celebrating God’s Transforming Work in the RCA.”
“This is the first time we are bringing a Transformed & Transforming report to synod,” general secretary Tom De Vries said. “Tonight we are talking about what [the ministry plan] looks like, and where are we seeing God at work in our congregations.
“We’re in a time of guarded hope. We’re at the very beginning of a journey together. I am hoping God will help us experience breakthrough together—and that the transformation we are experiencing is going to continue to grow, and empower us to go out and be a blessing.”
Besides Means’s story, delegates also heard stories of congregational transformation from Scott Treadway, lead pastor at Rancho Community Church in Temecula, California, and Paul Lee, ministry leader at New Hope Reformed Church in Yonkers, New York. The congregations of Bethany Reformed Church in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, and Vanguard Street Ministry in Miami, Florida, were also featured in special Transformed & Transforming videos.
In addition, delegates heard from each of the RCA’s initiative leaders as they explained their roles in the denomination and how their work fits into the ministry goals of Transformed & Transforming.
“When you have a heart that’s bigger than just your worship, and you really see the bigger picture of what God wants to do in your city, what we really needed was Transformed & Transforming,” said Means. “It’s not just an RCA thing. It’s a kingdom movement that’s bursting throughout the RCA.
“We’re so grateful to be a part of the RCA—we’re grateful for the love and support. And bigger than that, we’re grateful to be connected to a vision that’s bigger than us…truly a kingdom vision that only God can do. “