Ethiopia Full Gospel Believers Church, all-round Capacity building Project
|Ethiopia Full Gospel Holistic capacity building|
Ethiopian Full Gospel Believers Church is almost 50 years old in the battle of winning souls to the kingdom Of God. The church is the only indigenous Pentecostal church in the country, inspired by the power of the Holy Spirit. Pursuant to the aggressive evangelistic work initiated by the Holy Spirit, the church grew so fast covering the whole nation and proved existence at every corner of the country propagating the Good news.
Until then, the church passed through fierce persecution, though not consumed because of the grace of the Lord that sustained the church. The persecution, however, didn’t allow the church to adequately think over strategic institutional growth. The fast growth of the church caused by the Holy Spirit out stepped the capacity and preparedness of the systems in the denomination to shoulder the growth. This time it deemed necessary to think twice and strategically seek solution to reposition the church building her institutional capacity and systems to go hand in hand with the fast growth.
The church identified the need of establishing capacity building and fund raising advisory council composed of 15 highly educated and experienced members. The council has been established and members were discussing, developing guidelines and finally come up with All-round capacity building vision of the church that includes, mission work, leadership & ministers’ professional and spiritual capacity building and infrastructures enhancement.
In the project concept the gaps and potentials of the church was clearly spelt out to lay ground for the proposed solutions. The need to ensure Spiritual oneness in the denomination (leaders, ministers and members) was taken as a priority one along with leadership effectiveness followed by infrastructure enhancement. The church is aggressively working on the Spiritual oneness at her capacity with in house resources. The infrastructure enhancement is meant for two purposes.
1. To solve the current inconvenience of the office to use modern technologies and
2. To generate income that will be ploughed back to support the mission work.
All round capacity building project of the church has three years life cycle (2015-2017). The estimated cost of the all-round capacity building project is near to 389 million birr/19450,000 USD. The expectation is that 60% of the expense of the project will be raised from members of the church, and the rest 40 % from individuals and church affiliated organizations who support the church and the kingdom cause.
Ethiopia Full Gospel Believers Church is an indigenous Pentecostal Church which is flourishing all over Ethiopia by the Grace of God. Currently it is one of the major denominations in Ethiopia. In its structure it composes General assembly, council o of ketenas, governance board, 33 Zonal offices, 2143 local churches and more than 7000 church fellowships. General assembly is the supreme authority in the church structure. The church has more than 4.5 million baptized members.
The church is reaching the neighboring countries, Djibouti, Somalia, and Beirut by the Gospel of Lord Jesus Christ. Currently, vast evangelistic activities are being executed through the structures of the church (Head quarter, Zones, Sub Zones and local churches).
To make its ministries more strategic and expand its territory, the denomination, conducted systematic survey and prepared its strategic plan. The three clear objectives in the strategic plan were stated as follows.
1. Propagating the gospel by the power of the Holy Spirit.
2. Disciple the born again believers.
3. Serving the whole person.
In the strategic plan, the goals were set to build the all-round capacity of the organization and increase its members from three million to six million. Many efforts are being executed to fulfill this Goal.
3. The Challenges:-
3.1. Lack of trained and experienced leaders.
Holistic and accelerated church growth requires spiritual leaders who are empowered by the Holy Spirit, committed, spiritually equipped and matured. Owing to the hard time of persecution, the church had hard time to strategically prepare her leaders and it hasn’t reached to its expectation with regards to the development and maturity of its leaders. Therefore developing vibrant and effective leaders is one of the major challenges facing the church.
3.2. Inadequate trained ministers:-
Ministers of the Gospel who are equipped with the necessary spiritual knowledge and experience are highly needed hand in hand with the fast growth of the church. Though, the ministers of the church are interested to continue education and learn more, there are inadequate theological colleges/ seminary prepared by the church that could accommodate the need and deliver Pentecostal doctrine based Spiritual education. As a result, many of the ministers in the church are learning at different Bible schools, colleges and seminaries of various denominations that don’t support the Pentecostal doctrine of the church. On the other hand most of the ministers in the rural area couldn’t get access to bible colleges. Therefore, equipping and training ministers is a burning issue for the church.
3.3. Inadequate efforts in making new converts disciples:-
Even though the number of believers is increasing beyond what was planned in the strategic plan, efforts of making new converts disciples is not being effectively done. There is a fear that this condition may in the long run deplete the values of the church, cooling down the Holy Spirit fire. Changing this trend should be done with sense of urgency.
3.4. Effects of past conflict in the church:-
It is our fresh memory that the church passed through painful conflict that divided the church into two for a decade. Whereas, the church didn’t fully recovered from the effects of the conflict though the spiritual and institutional unity is rebuilt. Therefore, focusing on strengthening spiritual oneness for kingdom glory is an issue of urgency in the church.
3.5 Lack of adequate and equipped work environment:-
The head office of the church is found in an old private residential house bought from an individual, which was built during the emperor Hailesilasie regime. The management, the mission department and development sector of the church are working together in this narrow premise in a crowded manner. It is impossible to utilize the latest technologies in the current condition of the office. It is difficult to organize skilled employees, leaders and management of the church who are required as per the strategic plan in a manner wherein they can use modern technology. This kind of inadequate work place for the church that is growing fast, shall eventually affect its institutional quality and values.
3.6. Burden of unpaid debt:-
A recent audit of the accounts of the church shows that there is an outstanding debt of 2.1 million birr (two point one million birr) related to plot land purchased (seminary premise) which was not settled. The church couldn’t fully settle this debt pursuant to the strategy designed for settlement of it. Currently, this is creating financial burden affecting the output and values of the church.
4.1. Relative Peace
This time, the Church has relatively peaceful time after the institutional and spiritual unification of the church. Bright light of peace and unity is shining after the church held many discussions by making unity in the Spirit as her major agenda. The desire for seeking one another and working together is so high.
4.2. Existence of Members who are ignited by the power of the Holy Spirit:-
The Church has more than 4.5 million members. The members of this church were known for their diligence in prayer, love, unity and revival in the Power of the Holy Ghost and preaching the Gospel wherever they are. This fire is not totally depleted. Quite good number of members still maintains the fire. Moreover, the hearts of leaders is motivated for change. This is very encouraging.
4.3. Establishment of capacity building and fund raising Advisory Council:-
The advisory council of knowledgeable persons was established to support church leaders as a body of the church and its vision is building the capacity of the church and raise funds to alleviate the problem of capacity and finance in the church. The members are diligent, committed with high skill and experience.
4.4 Three Plots of land owned by the church which can be developed:-
4.4.1 The place where the head quarter of the church is located can be developed as an office and income generating schemes. An engineering plan is as follows
• Name of the project: Headquarter of the Ethiopian Full Gospel Believers Church (Aware).
• Number of floors allowed for the building: B+G+4= 6 floors
• The area which can be covered by the building = 70% (2,180), 1526 m2
• Budget required for the project: 92,000,000 Birr /4,600,000USD
4.4.2 The plot of land where the theological seminary is located /kotobe/can be developed as Training Center and other income generating schemes.
• Name of the project; Ethiopian Full Gospel Believers Church complex building (Kotebe area).
• The area which can be covered by building =2,500 M2
• The number of floors allowed to be built B+G+4 = 6 floors
• The area which will be covered by the building 70 %(2,500), 1750 M2
• The budget required for the contraction work =105,000,000 Birr/5, 250, 000 USD
4.4.3 The plot of land which is found at Ayat is planned for theological seminary with research Center
• Name of the project: Ethiopian Full Gospel Believers Church Seminary (Ayat Village).
• The area which can be covered by building = 3,000 M2
• The number of floors allowed to be built B+G+4 = 6 floors
• The area which will be covered by the building 70 % (3,000), 2,100 M2
• The budget required for the contraction work =126,000,000 Birr /6,300,000USD
- Total cost of the three projects is estimated to 323,000,000 Birr /16,150,000USD
- cost of leaders, ministers capacity building; mission and discipleship making= 66, 000000/
5. How can the church solve the above mentioned all- round- problems and expand ministry by utilizing Potentials?
It is so crucial to get concrete answer to this question. The strategies stated below, try to seek answer to the question.
5.1. Effective and saturated prayer for ensuring the continuation of this vast and great evangelistic work and increase church capacity at various levels (Headquarter, Zone, local churches)
5.2. Strengthening the activities of the Capacity Building and Fundraising Advisory Council
The above strategies will be practical focusing on
• Church Members’ contribution
• Individuals and church affiliated organizations who have tender hearts to support the work of God with their resources.
It is necessary to execute the following major activities to make member’s contribution effective
A. Establishing fundraising office.
B. Establishing taskforces in the church at ketena/regional level offices and establishing fundraising committee at every local church.
Individual and church affiliated organization’s contribution can be made effective through clear and transparent communications and vision sharing. The communications can be in writings, face to face discussions…etc. Intensive vision sharing and capacity building for the volunteers, will be done by the fund raising office.
It is considered viable to give participation opportunity for members living outside the country through the establishment of subcommittee to coordinate their prayer and financial contributions.
6. Expected outcome of the project
6.1. The headquarter, the seminary and the training center of the church will serve the constituencies with satisfaction fulfilling modern technological demands,
6.2. Leaders and ministers with adequate capacity and experience for the ministry will be assigned at each level of the church
6.3. Additional income will be generated for the church which will be ploughed back to the mission work.
6.4. Promotion of the Church
Works of promoting the church at all level shall be done in a greater manner. In relation with this, the church shall have its own web-page which shall be used to execute image building activities. And, identification and utilization of relevant modern technology shall be implemented.
6.5. The church will be free from any debt and focus on mission activities.