Members Excited About Ministry
by Sara Withers

There aren’t too many things more exciting than seeing church members excited about sharing their ministries. Perhaps an even happier sight is seeing church members excited about learning how to get involved in ministry. Both of these exciting scenes took place at this year’s MinistryFest South.

The 2nd annual MinistryFest South, piloting in 2011 after having been successfully started in northern Oregon as MinistryFest North, was held for the first time in Medford, Oregon. MinistryFest provides a wonderful opportunity for churches from all over southern Oregon to come together and share with each other their ministries and outreach. Church members go home with great ideas on how to start new ministries in their home churches and communities.

This year, the Rogue Valley Adventist Academy (RVAA) hosted the event on March 17th. Starting on Sabbath afternoon the school’s gym was open with approximately fifteen booths where many members displayed their ministries and were ready to share with any passerby the excitement and success of their ministry. These ministries were of all sorts: musical groups, men’s and women’s ministries, motorcycle ministry, radio ministry, chainsaw ministry and much more. One booth, however, was a little different than the rest. Instead of displaying their ministry on a table, the Valley View Seventh-day Adventist Church’s Vacation Bible School team presented on the gym’s stage. This thriving ministry brought their entire set from last year’s Nazareth theme to display. Church members dressed up as Roman soldiers and Jewish men and women and roamed the scene. They shared with onlookers how to put on a Vacation Bible School in their own communities.

As people wandered the booths in the gym, there were also ministries being presented in more detail in classrooms. These presentations, called InfoBlitzes, were thirty-minute explanations of how to start a specific ministry in your own church. One notable ministry shared in an Info Blitz was called “A Vegetarian Tasting Affair.” Many people came to hear how members of the Shady Point Church have successfully incorporated our church's health message into fun fellowship and fancy dining.

After the afternoon's information-sharing time the Valley View Pathfinders served a wonderful haystack dinner in the Valley View Church fellowship hall just down the road from RVAA. Following the dinner was a concert featuring a variety of musical groups and individuals. The concert was not only a spiritual blessing but also provided an opportunity for southern Oregon churches to hear musicians who have a passion for bringing their music to churches around the area.

The passion for ministry is alive in southern Oregon, and members went away from MinistryFest South inspired and empowered to labor on for our Lord.