ICDM EMPOWERS LEADERS
Preach the Word Conference, Haiti
ICDM EMPOWERS LEADERS
By Rosemond Pierre, ICDM Field Coordinator
What we planned
The date had been set a year in advance. Field leaders had met numerous times to prepare for Haiti’s third Preach the Word conference.
Rev. Bill Love, pastor of Calvary Chapel in Leesburg FL, would teach as he had done twice before. We would look for 30 to 50 participants, faithful people who have proved themselves capable to teach others.
Pastor Demanoy (North-West State) and Pastor Sterling (North State) issued the invitation to their leaders and registered thirty participants eager to hear the teaching from Bill Love.
Then came an email from Bill Love. He had to cancel his plans to visit Haiti and did not foresee a rescheduling of this trip.
“I am sorry to disappoint you,” he wrote. “You did a great job translating the updated material and I would be glad to print 50 copies, place them in binders and deliver them to you somehow, if you would consider teaching the material yourself.”
What would we tell the participants? Could we postpone or cancel the conference? Could we really consider teaching the material ourselves?
After talking with Pastor Yvan, I was encouraged. He did not tell us what to do, but underscored that Pastor Bill was not able to come due to his current situation.
“We have to organize the Preach the Word conference anyway,” I said without ambiguity.
Pastor Bill and Yvan had stated explicitly, “I am training you so that you can train others.” We knew the time would come for us to organize and teach the conference on our own, but we did not expect it so soon.
I thought of ICDM’s mission to Educate, Equip and Empower, which Yvan repeats all the time. It is the reason ICDM exists. ICDM has been training us so that we will be equipped to reproduce and teach what we have learned.
I thought of Jesus and his disciples. When the time neared for Jesus to leave the earth, he said to them, “The original plan was not for me to stay with you on this earth forever. I am going to leave you.” They were stupefied! Calmly, he explained that his leaving would be for their benefit. “I will send you someone who will lead you into all truth. When I leave you, you will be enabled to experience ministry on your own.”
Pastor Bill could not come. Pastor Yvan could not come. However, Pastor Bill would send us copies of the teaching material. We would go on with the conference. Pastor Sterling and I would be the main trainers.
Participants arrived and the conference began that afternoon with an introduction to Inductive Bible Study. The feedback was positive. They understood the Why and the How of IBS.
The next day, we continued with the basics and covered all of the theory. The following day was a day of practice. It was wonderful to see the participants observing, interpreting, and applying the scriptures – what it says, what it means, how it applies to me.
Participants formed five groups. Each group studied together, and then each participant preached his expository sermon from the assigned book. Rosemond and Pastor Sterling preached first. We wanted to give them examples to follow and build confidence that they could do it too.
The participants preached in sets of three. After each set we criticized the shape, the content, and the presentation of their sermons. Sometimes we had to remind students to stay within the context of the scripture. They got it. They embraced the objectives and returned home with a desire to begin, or to continue preaching expository sermons.
Before the participants left, they filled out evaluation sheets on the conference. Ninety percent declared it a positive experience.
Pastor Guerrier* wrote: “For years I have been a preacher, but I preached mainly other types of sermons….Through this conference, I have come to realize how deep and effective expository sermons can be for my audience. I have decided to put my whole self into this. I am going to preach expository sermons and commit myself to train other people in that way. In a couple of days, I am meeting with some leaders who have asked me to train them how to preach. I am going to use this material. Thank you so much, Pastor Rosemond.”
Another commented: “The seminar was well planned and the teachers made a lot of illustrations. They gave us the theory first, then we made much practice. We liked the food and appreciated the lodging. …I would like to follow this same type of conference whenever it will be organized.”
This experience remains in my spirit as one of the best in my whole ministry!
I am expecting those who participated to go to their respective areas and start sharing what they have learned. Most of all, I want them to be committed to preaching as Jesus did – preaching the Bible simply – what it says, what it means, and how it applies to me.
Thanks so much to Rev. Bill Love and the Leesburg Calvary Church for providing the teaching materials, and for the encouragement to begin teaching it ourselves.
Thanks to Rev. Yvan Pierre, ICDM executive director, for allowing us to show our competence and leadership.
Thanks to Rev. Sterling and Rev. Demanoy, who stepped up to the task and helped to strengthen ICDM’s ministry of educating, equipping and empowering the people of Haiti.