Posted on: June 26, 2023

Last month, TIMES12 led a one-day conference in Baltimore, MD for about 50 church planters, pastors, and leaders. Conference participants traveled in from their cities, towns, and communities across Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland, DC, and Virginia.

The conference, “Reaching a Skeptical World: Building an Outward-Facing Church that is Equipped for Evangelism,” featured speakers from Australia and from TIMES12 churches who taught and trained on sharing the good news of Jesus.

Greg St Cyr, of Bay Area Community Church in Annapolis, MD, opened the morning with a challenge to “have the courage to say the ‘J’ word.” Based on Acts 4:19-20, where Peter and John stated that they could not stop speaking about Jesus, Greg’s charge was to live a life that cannot stop speaking about Christ.

Adam Muhtaseb, of Redemption City Church in Baltimore, MD, outlined how to effectively preach in a way that points people to Christ. His seven encouragements were to preach the word of Christ, to preach the Christ of the word, to preach to who you want to come, to preach the gospel into culture, to preach the hard stuff, to preach from weakness, and to preach with relevant applications.

Wes White, of Mission Point Church in Williamsburg, VA, trained attendees on specific ways to share the gospel, starting with Oikos Mapping– a method of identifying people in our spheres of influence for whom we can be praying to have opportunities to share Christ. He equipped attendees to share their personal testimonies in 15 seconds and had them draw how to share the gospel using the Three Circles illustration.

Finally, Sam Chan, of City Bible Forum in Australia and author of “How to Talk About Jesus (Without Being That Guy),” gave an inspiring challenge via video to practice effective evangelism with our neighbors by intentionally living in relationship with them.

In addition to the messages by conference speakers, TIMES12 planters and pastors shared inspiring stories about men and women who have recently come to faith in Jesus through the witness of their church members who share the gospel relationally in their everyday life.

The conference was a great encouragement to those in attendance, including church leader Aaron Rosa. “Many times evangelists find themselves alone among the lost,” he said. “The TIMES12 conference was a wonderful opportunity to meet people with the same heart for others, to build relationships and trade techniques, but most importantly to hear the stories of how God is moving among the lost in our communities.”

Stephen Tewell, a leader preparing to plant a church with TIMES12 noted, “I often hear in conferences how I can grow my church numerically, but it was encouraging to hear about how we can be effective in reaching our communities spiritually.”

Conference participants were inspired and equipped in evangelism personally and they received transferrable training they can use to mobilize their churches to reach their friends and neighbors.

TIMES12 is so grateful to be able to offer events like this to encourage church planters, pastors, and leaders. It is through the generosity of our financial partners that conferences and other kingdom-advancing initiatives are possible. Thank you for your investment in planting gospel-centered churches that reach a lost world for the glory of God!

Wes White teaching using the Three Circles illustration

Enjoying lunch

Greg St Cyr challenging everyone to talk about Jesus

TIMES12 church planter, Jorge Solorzano (middle)
in fellowship with other attendees