Winter 20-21 Newsletter

Gathering Together
Growing Disciples
Producing for the Kingdom

We are in a tough season of ministry. Seems every time I speak with one of you lately, you are either preparing for, going to, or returning from a funeral. Hope you are getting the rest you need to remain healthy as you minister to the grieving. When the Church Development Team was praying and planning G2P, I doubt they ever considered a funeral as one of the “gathering together” places of the church. What an awesome responsibility you each carry.

Jesus’ ministry and messages are very counterintuitive to the world’s measuring stick. After observing the impact of Covid on Sunday attendance (major gathering for most), I continue to ponder if our focus and priorities need to transition and change. Some of you have done an excellent job of embracing technology to gather and share the Good News on modern media outlets. Viewership has far outpaced attendance drops for most depending on local church attitude, infrastructure, and capability. “Will attendance return when the pandemic is over?” is the underlying question for many pastors. Hopefully, the remainder of this article will encourage you to reflect, redirect, and be reinspired.

Plan a time to pull away from the ministry and rest (Mark 6:31, Exodus 33:14). The pace most of you are functioning makes it difficult to hear the small ques of the Lord. Most likely many need to pull away by yourself; a trip with your spouse may be long overdue and/or hang time with a friend or two needs to be considered. Get away! When you return, take time to review and reflect on the focus and priorities of your ministry calling.

The future will be impacted by the choices you make today. Why do we gather? How are you growing believers? In your mind, is growing a numerical value based around attendance and giving? What resources might be redirected for small group discipleship to become a priority?

Let me reassure you. You are making a major impact on many lives. The roots and branches of Jesus Christ extend deep and far. God’s reach is greater today than ever before. People are ripe for hearing the message of hope! How will you inspire others to join in producing for the Kingdom? How will you equip the saints for the work ahead?

Let us not forget, in the beginning the cowboy church did incredible work in reaching hands for the Lord through outreach and fellowships. Sunday worship attendance was a biproduct of producing for the Kingdom. When we return to the ministry of gathering to grow so we can make hands to produce, we will be reinspired! Gather, Grow, Produce may complement your efforts. You can learn more about Gather, Grow, Produce (G2P) at Americanfcc.org.

Learning Opportunities

Felt sidelined the past several months? Feeling like you’re on high center? Why not encourage your church to attend one of our AFCC Clinics or maybe our upcoming Youth Leader Conference designed especially for those in your church that work with teens and preteens? Watch our website for upcoming events.

AFCC Timothy Project 2021 Flyer
Cedar Creek CC Clinic 2021

Camp Update

We know there’s been a whole lot of uncertainty this past year, but we want to reassure you that we are already working on Cowboy Camps in Texas, Oklahoma and Alabama for this summer.

If you’re wondering why you should consider camp, the Effective Camp Research Project shows lasting change for campers in these areas: increased self-confidence, more frequent devotional practices, increased church attendance, more faith conversations and practices in their homes, and an increased belief that faith matters. “The theological depth of camp lies not in doctrine but rather in connecting young people to Christian community, fostering increased devotional practices, promoting faith conversations, and providing experience-based evidence that faith is relevant in everyday life”.

Watch our website for camp registration details. Dates are found below.

Looking Ahead

03-06-21 Clinic, CC of Brenham, Brenham TX

03-27-21 Timothy Project, Parker County CC, Aledo TX

04-11-21 Clinic, Cedar Creek CC, Childersburg AL

06-14-21 to 06-18-21 Oklahoma Teen Camp, Camp WOW

06-21-21 to 06-24-21 Alabama Preteen Camp, Camp Sumatanga

06-25-21 to 06-29-21 Alabama Teen Camp, Camp Sumatanga

06-26-21 to 06-29-21 Texas Preteen Camp, Big Country Baptist Assembly

06-30-21 to 07-04-21 Texas Teen Camp, Big Country Baptist Assembly

07-24-21 to 07-28-21 Oklahoma Preteen Camp, Camp WOW

10-01-21 Board Meeting, Bar None CC, Tatum TX

10-01-21 to 10-3-21 Annual Gathering, Bar None CC, Tatum TX

2021 Leadership and Staff

OFFICERS

President – Reggie Underwood, Cowboy Church of Ellis County, Waxahachie, Texas

Vice President – Chase Pope, Wood County Cowboy Church, Quitman, Texas

Secretary – Dale Lee, Cowboy Church of Orange County, Orange, Texas

BOARD

Matt Canoles, Cedar Creek Cowboy Church, Sylacauga, Alabama

Nathan Duncan, Thousand Hills Cowboy Church, Ethridge Tennessee

Wendel Elliott, Big Bend Cowboy Church, Alpine, Texas

Josh Morris, Cross Creek Cowboy Church, Zachary, Louisiana

Bret Shafer, Kaufman County Cowboy Church, Kaufman, Texas

Daniel Thiebaud, Brushy Top Cowboy Church, Eldorado, Texas

Marion Turner, Cowboy Bunkhouse Ministries, Clayton, New Mexico

Stacy Wylie, Bar None Cowboy Church, Tatum, Texas

STAFF

Executive Director – Todd Mitchell
Provides direction to staff in strategic planning and praying. Supports and mentors bunch ministry leaders, pastors and staff by listening, encouraging, and providing resources to fulfil the ministry of the Church. Works with the Board of Directors.

Assistant Director – Jeff Bishop
Maintains financial oversight, casts a vision for the organization, troubleshoots problems, oversees camps and assists churches with administrative questions and direction.

Ministry Assistant – Pat Gauss
Manages customer service, financial data entry, banking, mail and assists staff and churches with all aspects of AFCC.

Field Staff – Danny Brey
Supports new churches and new affiliates and helps with schools, pastor processings, and outreach.

Field Staff – Homer Dickey
Oversees Annual Gathering Teams, Arena Ministry Teams and coordinates with Media Quest. Assists staff and churches throughout the year with all aspects of AFCC.

Field Staff – Phillip Gilliland
Resources and helps develop churches in southeast US. Provides mentoring, training, connections, and communication to churches in his area through personal visits and local church visits.

Field Staff – Todd Hervey
Helps churches with process development including Gather, Grow, Produce.

Field Staff – Jimmy Holleman
Oversees mentoring and training opportunities though clinics and pastor processings.

Field Staff – Connie Sanford
Provides administrative assistance to staff and teams. Is taking the lead in providing a connection with pastors’ wives through relational mentoring, training, and support.

Thank you for your generous support. We strive to be a useful tool for your ministry.

Your AFCC Staff