Lay Leaders Training Effective in Local Churches
Story by Abdiel S. Hernandez
The Lay Training Biblical Institute program (Seminario Adventista Laico), sponsored by Andrews University (Mich.), recently brought a clear and fresh vision to the intellectual and spiritual preparation of the lay people of the New Jersey Conference (NJC). This training program was effective in doctrine, discipleship, evangelization, growth and service, and provided tools to empower the lay leaders to develop powerful leadership in their local churches, says organizers.
In 2018 NJC had a graduation of more than 140 students—including a teenager—and shared beautiful experiences with one another.
In 2019 the emphasis of the program was on small groups. From the beginning of the course, NJC challenged each lay person to be involved in or lead a small group in their community. Through the learning of the theological and historical foundations for the GPS (Grupos Pequeños Saludables) Christian ethics, strategies to reach the middle and upper classes, sermon preparation, principles of hermeneutics and biblical and theological implications of the sanctuary in the book of Hebrews, they motivated their laity to become an epic army involved in spreading the gospel and announcing the imminent return of Jesus.
Two local Protestant church pastors also attended all of the meetings and graduated December 7, 2019. In the urgency of our message, it is the Holy Spirit who provides all Christians with the power and strength to fulfill the slogan of Jesus’ last commission to be his witnesses (Acts 1:8) at home, at work, in our communities, in our country and even in the most forgotten places on earth. May the Lord bless every man and woman who hears and responds to God’s calling to become messengers of the Good News.