Gospel Ministry Training

Gospel Ministry Training

I am on a gospel ministry training journey. I was born in 1981 and raised in East Texas. I started my journey with my family going to a church. When I was eight, the sudden death of my 14-year-old brother rocked our family. Not knowing how to grieve, our family drifted apart from the inside while putting on a false pretense that we were normal, devoted, and moving forward in our family walk. Of course, as children, my sisters and I didn’t understand much of what was going on behind the scenes. We did not see our parents drifting apart until they actually separated. This separation came when I was 13. Up until this moment, my life had been very structured with church and school. I was at the top of my class and a good kid.

I moved in with my father who left the church, moved, and remarried. The structure of my life was gone. Because I had always been a trustworthy good kid, my father had no problem giving me whatever freedom I requested. My relationship with my mother was horrible and my father, with his new wife, gave me freedom and lost touch with much of what was going on with me. At the time I had no complaints about this new freedom. However, we moved to a small town just up the road from where I had grown up to this point. I was hated by many because of my “other” small town roots. I found those who accepted me were the rebels. Skipping class, smoking, drugs, lying, and stealing became me. It all seemed to happen overnight.

I will not include to this testimony all the details of the remainder of what my life has been up until now. It is shameful and detestable. I have spent the last 20 years lost in addictions. It is plural because there have been many. I have spent the last 20 years in and out of trouble with the law, in and out of rehabilitation centers that focus primarily on cognitive intervention. Everything that was taught in each of these programs was sound, intelligent, textbook instruction to changing the way you look at your life. There is something though that no person, book, or system can teach…..How to WANT the change that is needed!

May I mention that throughout these years, I did work, learned a few trades and earned a license as a Plumber. I also met my wife Amie and we started our family. Not all times are hopeless while in addiction. I feel it would be unfair to my wife and children and the progress I’ve made working with my hands if the only picture I painted for you, the reader, was a rotten image of my entire adult life. No, not all was bad, but I have always been confused and I have always been lost.

My wife and I took a plunge in our marriage about four years ago. God was not #1 in our household and we did not fight fairly at all. This unresolved conflict in my marriage led me way deep in addiction to hard drugs again. It is very humbling to talk about. I was a failure in every regard and I had given up. Depression consumed me and all I knew was to attempt to drown it out with more and more substance. This lifestyle also brought me to a prison cell where I found my Bible. I fell in love with it and I thank God for calling me to it. I read and read and read and then read some more. I have a hard time expressing in words how wonderful I feel it is to have a copy of the Word of God available to me. Oh, how lost I was for so long! How though? I always had this book on my shelf! But by the grace of our Father, he has opened up a whole new world for me. I have a new life now in Christ! I am Born Again and while I constantly find myself asking God’s forgiveness, the heavyweights of sin that used to so easily trip me have been stripped off and I have become a Slave of Christ rather than a Slave to Sin.

With this new man I am attempting to become, I find that I am consumed with questions. I am in awe and wonder of God, His Word, and how He is using me. What theology is sound? What is my calling? WHAT NOW??? I know there is a purpose and now I am seeking gospel ministry training. I feel in my soul that my testimony of wandering, sin, and rebellion will be valuable in God’s church. This is my mission! To get training and to help in my congregation in any way that I can to bring others to the Good News of Christ.

Christian Leaders Institute is crucial to me now because it offers everything that I need to take the next step in my gospel ministry training journey and provides it on a platform that works perfectly with my schedule and the demands in my life. Thank you so much for this gospel ministry training opportunity!

Learn about local ecuministry ordinations at Christian Leaders Alliance.

Worship Leader Training

Worship Leader Training

My name is Erin Burkhardt and I am receiving worship leader training at Christian Leaders Institute. I am from North Carolina in the United States of America. I currently serve as a Worship Leader and Music Director at Oasis Bethany Church. My father is a pastor and I started my journey in the Faith at a young age. I was raised in a household where my father, mother, and siblings were all active in ministry at our local church, in our region, and in our church’s affiliations across the globe. For this, I am extremely blessed and eternally grateful.

I now serve alongside my family at Oasis Bethany Church where my father is the Senior Pastor and my younger brother and I lead the worship ministry. Occasionally, I travel to Kentucky and serve as a guest musician at 3Trees Church where my older brother serves as the Worship Pastor and the Production/Technology Director. I also play bass in the Christian band We Were Once. Our mission is to be a light in a dark place and to share the Love of Christ through our music and the way God has gifted us. We have had the opportunity to go on tour with the Extreme Tour and played with artists such as the Newsboys, Family Force Five, Tricia Brock, Disciple, Decyfer Down, Seventh Day Slumber, Emery, Norma Jean, Artifex Pereo, Sumerlin, and many more. We released our EP Piece by Piece and our first single has been on the Billboard top 20 for several months now. We are very excited about what God has done and is doing through this ministry.

Besides my faith, my two major passions in life have always been science and music. I obtained my Bachelor of Science in Biology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Using this degree, I taught high school science at Freedom Christian Academy for the last four years. I loved the opportunity to interact with my students every day. I taught them science and how to use science to defend their faith and strengthen their belief in God as opposed to letting misconceptions and false teachings draw them away from their faith. While at Freedom, I also had the opportunity to coach softball where I could connect with many girls on a much more personal level and speak into their lives. While I loved my time at Freedom, I knew that teaching was an intermediate phase of my life. So, towards the end of the 2016-2017 school-year, I chose not to renew my teaching contract despite being offered multiple raises and perks for staying on. I knew that God was calling me to move on, but I didn’t know where or how at the time.

I attended Bethel Worship Nights in Lexington, KY and in the breakout session the tour pastor spoke about planting a seed and going for it instead of letting fear keep you on the sidelines. He encouraged us to write down three seeds that we wanted to plant. My first seed was about going all-in in worship ministry and the second was about attending a school of worship. I had the chance to talk to Pastor Eric after the session and without knowing what I had written he felt that he needed to be bold with me and tell me that I should attend worship leader training and that environment could become the catalyst that launches me into my next season. This confirmed what I was already feeling in my spirit!

After that, I spent a lot of time researching worship schools and praying for my next step in this new adventure. This led me to Christian Leaders Institute. In my research, I found many opportunities for worship leader training. However, since I was coming from teaching at a private Christian school and taking the step to go back to school full time while continuing to serve at my local church, the funds for those programs were quite a stretch. A scholarship from Christian Leaders Institute would provide me with the Biblical foundation and worship leader training that I need while keeping me from going into debt. It also allows me to be able to stay at the church that God has placed me in and continue to serve here while I am becoming more equipped to do what God has called me to do. My hope is that I am able to get a solid Biblical foundation through CLI, while I am continuing to learn and grow in worship ministry. I plan to then take what I have learned at CLI and intern in a worship ministry where I can grow into the worship leader that God has called me to be.

As I make this journey, you can join with me in praying that God continues to make the path He wants me to take clear and that He opens the doors so that I can do all that He has called me to do.

Learn about ordained minister study programs at Christian Leaders Alliance.

Spiritual Dream Revelation

Spiritual Dream Revelation

My name is Shawn Villela and I have had a spiritual dream revelation. I currently live in Algonquin, Illinois. I am from a wonderful family of four with one older brother. I graduated Northern Illinois University in 2010 and was hired as a Youth Counselor at a Juvenile Justice Center later on that year. I always wanted to work with the youth. I am truly privileged and honored to be in a position to make an impact in these kids lives. Unfortunately, our countless attempts to change the youth’s life rarely work out. It was for this reason that I found myself at a crossroads a few years ago and wondered if this was the job for me.

My brother had told me it was a good idea to start writing down memorable moments in my life, so I did just that, but I took it a step further. Over the years, I began to compile over 200 pages of my life starting from 2011 to the present time. Little did I know that what was happening in those years was actually leading me to Jesus and my spiritual dream revelation. You see, I had always “believed” but it was never personal or applied to my life, and I didn’t read the Bible. Over those years of writing, I began to experience some of the greatest times of my life. It wasn’t that anything material was changing in my life, but rather, I was beginning to learn who I was in Jesus Christ and it shook my world. I finally gave my life to Him in March of 2014, and this was just the beginning of my spiritual dream revelation and journey. I saw that the race is there for us to endure, and slowly but surely I began to grow.

So, here I am, a man of God that is still finding his way. What led me to Christian Leaders Institute was part of that 4-year long process of writing and understanding my own life. While learning about myself, I began to try to let my family and friends know about how my life had changed, and as is the case for most people, it didn’t go over so well, except for one of my best friends. He began to apply some of the things that I had shared with him that the Lord taught me. Eventually, he was saved, and it wasn’t until a couple of months ago that he asked me to officiate his wedding. I was very honored for him to ask me to perform such an esteemed task. Surely, I couldn’t say no, so I said I would do it. I began looking up what I needed to do to officiate weddings and there were so many junk websites that had nothing to do with the unity and sanctity of Jesus in their wedding officiating “programs.” It wasn’t until I stumbled upon the wonderful CLI website that I found an opportunity to learn and enrich my faith even further–in a college type setting. This was just what I wanted! The fact that it was mostly free because of faithful Christians that donated their time and money was a huge plus. This was truly where I was meant to be, because I didn’t want to just get a “certificate,” I wanted to grow.

I knew the Lord wanted me to get more involved in ministry and I just never knew how. I was trying to lead the youth and my family and friends to the Lord, but it was always on the back burner of my life and it never had much direction. Now, CLI is an avenue the Lord opened up for me and by now I am starting to see how the Lord works in my life. I jumped at the opportunity, although I must admit I didn’t know it would be this much work! Joking aside, it was just what I asked for and needed. I feel like every day I am in the position that the Lord wants me to be. I find myself growing in the Lord alongside my fiance and I couldn’t be happier.

I ask for all of your prayers as I walk the narrow path with our Lord. I pray that I am able to grow in a way that best serves our community because that is where we all must begin our fight against the enemy. I don’t know what the Lord has in store for me, but I couldn’t be surer that He is the only one I want to follow, and I know, although times may get tough, in Him I have my strength.

Learn about minister ordination at Christian Leaders Alliance.

Traveling Evangelist

Traveling Evangelist

My name is Jessie Rines and I have a traveling evangelist call on my life. I have always lived in a small town in the state of Maine in the USA. I actually live only two miles from the home I grew up in. My parents still live there. I now live with my husband of almost 14 years and our three children. My husband and I are anxiously awaiting God’s next move in terms of children. We are in our final steps of being licensed to do foster care and adoption. Pray for us if you feel led.

My mother always shared the Lord with me from a young age. When I was 8 years old and at a Vacation Bible School, I went into a room with my pastor’s wife and asked her to help me get saved. I knew then that I needed God. I just didn’t realize at that young age, how badly I would need him. I got baptized that same year.

I went to a public school. I was kind of an outcast since I didn’t want to go to parties or do drugs. I kept to myself and stayed pure for Christ throughout high school. I remember one time, a few of my friends and I gathered around the flagpole in front of the school, locked hands and started praying. The principal came out and asked us to go into a classroom and shut the door because that is not what our school needed. I decided to graduate early, for multiple reasons and did graduate just two weeks after turning 17. I then went to a local community college. I was going for business management.

My husband and I met right before college. I worked at a chiropractor’s office, and he was a patient. We ended up going to the same college. We met and decided to get married. I stopped taking classes to become a wife, and became a mother rather quickly. Over the last years, our walk with God has had ups and downs. We have had many struggles and trials, including almost losing our son at 11 months old to a peanut allergy.

During our marriage, we had a family bluegrass band and enjoyed playing at the local bluegrass festivals. We are pretty musically inclined and really enjoy playing and singing. We stopped the band after our last show where I was in labor with our second child. Yes, you heard right, I was in labor and trying to play an upright bass on stage. It was truly quite a sight. Since then, we have wondered what God wants for us to do with our musical abilities. We have seen many families go from church to church playing gospel music and preaching. Our traveling evangelist hearts are tugged every time we see a family come.

We have been trying to conceive baby number four but so far that door is closed. We have been working on getting licensed for foster care for over a year and are almost done. We are praying God brings us the right children that will want to worship him and travel with us. Children are a blessing from God and we want to bless others with our music and teachings of the Bible. My husband is also thinking of taking classes from Christian Leaders Institue so he can preach at churches on our traveling evangelist journeys. Our 13-year-old son is also saying he would like to take classes and be a youth pastor so when we travel, he could teach the teens.

We have had many people come up to us from our church and say we should travel and minister to others. Our hearts are in it and we truly would love to do this for the Lord. The church sold us one of their buses and we are in the process of converting it into a camper. We are excited about these next few years to see what God does for us to be able to accomplish this dream.

I am excited to take more of the ministry training classes at CLI to broaden my knowledge of the Bible. I homeschool my children, so I am also hoping I have some things I can share with them as well. Thank you, CLI, for this opportunity to learn and become a church leader for free. It is such a great blessing.

Learn about ordained minister study programs at Christian Leaders Alliance.

Evangelist Heart

Evangelist Heart

Read below how Candice Thomas, having gone astray from the faith while searching for stardom, was brought back to the Lord and now with an evangelist heart seeks to bring revival fire to the church:

My name is Candice Thomas, and I live in the USA. As a little black girl growing up in a small town in Ohio, my world was comfortably compact. Our little Baptist church was within walking distance. I really liked singing in the choir and going to Sunday school. Our humble home was very similar to everyone else’s in our ethnically diverse neighborhood. We played in the streets together and attended integrated schools. As far as I knew, that was exactly how it was in neighborhoods everywhere else in the country. I was isolated and unaware of the racial turbulence that was raging during the late 50’s and 60’s.

After graduating high school, I was expected to immediately get a job to help support the needs of our family, but by the age of 19, I decided that I wanted more. I made the decision to quit my banking job and explore the challenges of city life. After much debate, my mother agreed to let me leave provided I moved in under the supervision of an elder sibling living in Detroit, Michigan. When I arrived there in the early 70’s I was shocked at the racial bickering and how generally angry people were there. There was such easy access to every vice. Temptation pulled me out of my church-girl naivety to experiment with all the sins I had been warned against by my mother.

The sinful excitement of Michigan played out quickly. So at 22, with big city life experience under my belt, I thought I was ready to handle even more. I had always loved to sing, so I fearlessly relocated to Hollywood. I enrolled in college drama classes and discovered I had some acting talents as well. When audition after audition failed to bring me stardom, I became discouraged. My new found freedom to sin and my lust for fame had not accomplished anything but make me feel more and more empty and depressed.

Late one night after an evening of bar hopping, I was sitting alone and dejected in my Hollywood apartment. Bored and unhappy, I began realizing just how empty my life actually had become. I turned on the television in search of a distraction. The 700 Club appeared on the screen and the host was talking about a subject I couldn’t recall anyone mentioning back home in Sunday School. He said Christ was coming back soon, asked if I was ready, then said, if my answer was “No”, I could invite Jesus into my life right then. I instantly recalled the faith and peace of my mother through all her struggles, bowed on my knees in front of the TV and repeated a prayer with him. I asked the God who gave my mother strength to take control of my life and I was changed.

The walk I began with God that night carried me through intense marital conflicts that led to a separation and relocation to Northern California. During a 12 year period of single parenting, God drew me close and sustained me by filling me with a passion for His Holy Word and the indwelling of His Holy Spirit. He taught me how to use my gifts to build up other hurting people, and in time He reconciled my marriage. He opened doors of ministry for me in my local church and in other churches in my community, all the while beginning to plant seeds of an evangelist heart in my spirit.

Right before I found CLI, He told me to pull back from church leadership. When I obeyed His voice and resigned, some questioned the rationale of my decision. I didn’t really understand it all myself. It appeared as if I was turning my back on my evangelist heart passion to minister His word of hope to the hurting. A couple days later, curious about the possibility of getting ordained, I began searching the web. That is when the Spirit led me to the Christian Leaders Institute website. It was as if every word spoken in each Connection class session was full of the Spirit’s holy power and anointing. When the Getting Started classes helped confirm His calling to be an evangelist, the events of the last 48 years of my life suddenly began to make perfect sense.

I am overcome with thanksgiving for God’s grace towards me. I give Him all the glory! Pursuing an online Divinity Degree through the CLI scholarship and pursuing ordination is a huge miracle for me. I lacked the financial resources to attend a traditional college and couldn’t leave my business. But now, as a bi-vocational student, I can get a great Biblical education online while still running my business. My husband is wholeheartedly supporting and encouraging me to press on to the high calling in Christ Jesus. He has opened doors for me in recent years, encouraging me to reach beyond racial and denominational barriers to take His message of spiritual healing and unity to His hurting church. My evangelist heart is bubbling over with excitement about what my future holds.

I ask for the prayers of CLI and their ministry teams as I obey His call as an evangelist, bringing revival fire to His body by promoting love for Him, love for one another, and a renewed passion to heal broken hearts and reach the unsaved. I look forward to joining the ranks of the esteemed graduates of CLI and the CLA community.

Learn about minister ordination at Christian Leaders Alliance.

Pastor Calling

Pastor Calling

I am eager to follow my pastor calling with classes at Christian Leaders Institute. I grew up in New Albany, IN, just across the Ohio River from Louisville, KY. My parents raised my four brothers and me in a Church of Christ. We attended the same denominationally affiliated high school and were third generation graduates – my grandad, my mom, and an aunt all are alumni. In addition to this, we attended a Bible camp during the summer that also has the Church of Christ affiliation. I kept myself busy with my studies and with the numerous extracurricular activities I was involved in; namely, sports, choir, and National Honor Society. Because of this, I hardly ever was in “big trouble” with my parents. I worked hard in many areas of my life, but never as hard on my spiritual life. I was baptized when I was 13, and do truly believe that God used that moment to bring me into the fold, despite not always looking like it. I definitively noticed a difference in how I behaved and how I treated others. However, I was just doing good because of what I knew to be right, I was not cultivating belief along with action, nor was I doing it out of love for God or others. I displayed works, but not faith.

After graduation, I went out on my own as a college athlete about two hours away from home at a general Baptist university. I did not have a license, so going home was out of the question and my parents did not visit often. This created an atmosphere of loneliness, almost as if I was in exile. My teammates always tried getting me to go to strip clubs, parties, and the like, despite my young age. I can thankfully say that not once did I ever violate my morals and party with them. I did, however, not have a firm foundation of faith on which to place my beliefs. My beliefs started to become more fluid, and with them, my actions. Almost as soon as I got to college I started viewing porn.

One night, early in my sophomore year of college, a girl I had become friends with during my freshmen year approached me and expressed her affections for me and desire to date me. I proceeded to “friend zone” her. Several months later I was in a traumatic car wreck on my way back to college. I should have died, but by God’s wondrous grace I am still here today. As soon as my car came to a stop I knew that I should have died. I knew that God was getting my attention. I knew that he wanted me to take my faith more seriously. Along with that, a few weeks later I also knew that I made a mistake in not dating that girl who had asked me out. Several months later we were dating, and have now been married for almost a year and a half. My wife was very influential in helping me mature and be the spiritual leader that I am supposed to be.

After my wreck, one of my older brothers sat me down and began to discuss with me the doctrines of grace. He had me open up to Romans 9. This new-found knowledge of God’s sovereignty and grace coupled with my near-death experience created a firm foundation of faith that I had never experienced before. That next summer I gave my first sermon at the congregation I was raised in, in front of many family and friends. At 19 years old, everyone was surprised at the evidence of my firm belief, my emphasis on God’s sovereignty and high standard of scripture. After the service, my grandad approached me and let me know that I may have a pastor calling. Before this, I had never really considered the idea of becoming a pastor.

The church my wife and I are members of has been incredibly instrumental in my pastor calling and in developing me as a teaching leader. My pastor has helped me learn how to prepare for sermons and the struggle of ministry. He even allowed me the opportunity to teach both in Sunday school and during our corporate worship. In addition, they have many ways in which we serve our community. Giving me the ability to live out my faith has been a blessing beyond compare.

Due to being married at a young age, I ended up dropping out of college during what would have been my junior year. Between working three jobs and trying to complete my coursework, I saw the potential of me being a negligent husband and so I took several priorities off my plate. Since I dropped out, I have had to start making student debt payments. The opportunity of obtaining a very cost-effective, quality education at Christian Leaders Institute to receive ministry training for my pastor calling is almost too good to be true. At the university I attended, I was accruing debt while not being taught sound doctrine. I know that with CLI, that is not something I will have to worry about.

I ask that you pray that I stay motivated. Taking classes again after having almost a year off makes the classes feel more daunting than they most likely are. In addition, I ask that you pray that while I pursue this endeavor, that I continue to be a good husband and spiritual leader for my wife. Grace and peace.

Learn about minister ordination at Christian Leaders Alliance.

Bible Teacher Dream

Bible Teacher Dream

I am Mike Whelan and I have a Bible teacher dream. I live in South Africa in the town of Tshwane (Old Pretoria). There are ministry opportunities for those who look to minister. Although people are a bit reserved and private, once the wall is breached, they are open to talk and discuss any subject as long as it is done in a respectful manner with tact.

At the age of 19, I was a lonely conscripted soldier waiting to be drafted for border service for the protection of his country. One day, a man walked into his life by the name of Jesus and said: “Follow Me.” In my loneliness, Jesus found me and assured me that He would walk with me from then onwards and never leave me. My time as a soldier went well, as after that I had a friend who walked with me, and said I was His friend. In my free time, I spent time in His Word, and I learned many things about Him. Fellowship was sweet.

My army time passed and I was out in the big, busy world of millions or so it felt, and loneliness struck again. Then at a youth camp, I met a very pretty girl who sat and spoke to me for many an hour. Little did we know that God had a great plan for the two of us as we prayed together, and shared our hearts, visions, and dreams. Our love grew stronger for each other and our love for God became evident to each other. After being good friends for just over five years, we finally realized that we would be able to serve God together as a couple.

I had qualified in the Electronic Hardware and Software engineering, and the two of us got married. Three years later, God blessed us with a beautiful little girl. Well, a little girl was a shock to me. She played with dolls and stole my heart when she walked out the first time to where I was working with a toolbox full of tools and thought my tools were lovely funny toys to spread all over the place.

Shortly after this, I changed my career to be a quality engineer. I completed my degree and found that I was happy helping people to do their tasks correctly the first time and save costs. At this time, my little budding designer and explorer started college. I found out how to use the money to gain an education for her at a financial cost, with lots of love and great rewards to see my daughter blossom into the person God has called her to be.

A few years back, I got involved in a Bible study group, and I was provided an opportunity to teach. Well, this is where I found my deep, down passion for my Bible teacher dream. I was fulfilled as I would dig into God’s word, seek the gold, diamonds, and gems, and share them with whoever would listen. The realization slowly has come, that this is really what I long to do. But, the fear arose that I might teach something wrong. I needed to get well equipped to find real gold, diamonds, and gems, to share them with others. That is what brought me to study at Christian Leaders Institute.

Through taking classes at CLI, I seek to gain depth of Scripture knowledge, the ability to hear God’s voice, a deeper love and obedience to Jesus His Son, the ability to hear the Spirit and learn how He is guiding me, and the gold, diamonds, and gems in His Word. There are gems in the materials of the classes. These gems I want to pass on to whoever is seeking wealth in the eternal and only God.

I feel called to be a Bible Teacher. This has been a passion that has been birthed in me by God. When I teach, I really sense God’s help and guidance if I have spent time with Him in preparing. When I left the army, I joined a church and they allowed me to be a Sunday School Teacher, and my Bible teacher dream was born there at that time. My Bible teacher dream is to start or be part of a church-based Bible school that provides Biblical understanding at no cost to the poor and all God-seekers. The challenges in my city for ministry are that people don’t believe that there is any life after death, so why do we need a God who will spoil our lifestyle?

I had the realization that without the guidance of the Holy Spirit, the redemptive work in my life in Christ, and the love of God in my life, would result in me feeling useless and hopeless, as being an introvert, I don’t mix easily with strange people. God enables me to reach out and speak to people, and when I have a gold nugget from the Word, I seem to gain more confidence in speaking.

Pastor Thinus Pretorius, also a CLI student, has granted me the opportunity to be a worship leader even before I have completed any formal CLI diploma. He has agreed to be my mentor and is a great encourager for me to stick to the course and see what God has planned for the church and me.

My wife has a great and close walk with the Lord, and my daughter is on fire for the Lord, as she sees God using her and caring for her in her life. Please pray that God will continue to provide and protect us as we as a family move forward. Also, that He will open up an area for us as a church to minister to and bring God’s Love, Acceptance, and Forgiveness.

Learn about minister ordination at Christian Leaders Alliance.

Christian Ministry Walk

Christian Ministry Walk

I am Jameelah R. Wright and I am on a Christian ministry walk. I am from the United States of America. Although I attended church as a child, and then sporadically throughout my teenage years, I did not begin to attend church regularly until after I graduated from college in 2003. My husband, who was then my boyfriend, grew up in a Christian household, and it was he who encouraged me to go to church. He invited me to attend with him, and so I did, and I have been in church ever since.

The church we regularly went to was Christ Church in Montclair, New Jersey, led by Pastor David Ireland. After one particular service, Pastor Ireland did an altar call, and my fiance and I walked to the altar together to accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior. After that service, we began to go to my fiance’s family church in Elizabeth, New Jersey. Mt. Calvary Church of God, a Pentecostal church, was built by my husband’s great-grandfather, James Leak. His great-uncle, Samuel McCrae Leak was the Bishop of Mt. Calvary. I became a member of Mt. Calvary Church of God by attending membership classes taught by Sister Cynthia Whitley. I taught Vacation Bible School. I was baptized at this church. I married my husband at this church. And my son, James, was christened at Mt. Calvary.

In 2012, for my son, I had to make a difficult decision. Although I loved Mt. Calvary very much, they did not have a children’s church program outside of Vacation Bible School, which only ran during the summer. As a mother, I wanted to ensure my son had proper education and training in the church. So, after returning to Christ Church (their Rockaway, New Jersey campus) for a few months, I found a comparable church much closer to home – The Life Christian Church in West Orange, New Jersey. The Life Christian Church had just moved into their new building, which was around the corner from my home. After attending for a while, I became a member of this church and taught in the children’s church for three years. I attended informative classes at this church. I read the books recommended by the pastor, Terry Smith. Inspired, I led a Bible Study group at my job for teachers during our lunch break on Fridays. The Bible Study group at my school ran for three years. I was very happy at The Life Christian Church.

At the same time that I was at The Life Christian Church, my husband and his parents (both ministers) were planting a church in West Orange called Cathedral Kingdom Living Church. One morning in December 2015, I felt God instructing me to leave The Life Christian Church and to join my husband and his parents at their church, so I did. With this church, I was able to participate in activities such as feeding the hungry in a nearby soup kitchen as well as giving Christmas gifts to children with incarcerated parents. At Cathedral Kingdom Living Church, I currently teach Sunday School for adults. When the pastor, Steven Deaver, asks me to deliver homilies, I am obedient.

I am interested in my Christian ministry walk to learn more about the Bible and Christian Ministry from Christian Leaders Institute. I feel it is necessary in order for me to be an asset to our growing church. I want to be more grounded in the Word of God so I can teach and speak about it confidently.

Learn about ordained minister study programs at Christian Leaders Alliance.

Music Ministry Journey

Music Ministry Journey

My name is Byron Green and I have been on a music ministry journey. I was born in Florence, Alabama. As a child, I began to play and write music. Music was my first calling. It came so naturally. My father’s best friend was road production manager for “Little Richard”. I got to meet and greet with him at 14 years old in a very personal setting backstage. The odd thing about it was that he simply took my hands in his, bowed his head, and prayed that one day my hands would play for the Lord. I didn’t know God then. I thought he was a crazy person.

Fast forward a few years to graduation and the career began. Unfortunately, with no godly roots, it led me down a path of destruction. From 2005-2016, I traveled many places around the Southeast, leading people to sin. One night after two DUI arrests, watching my marriage fall apart and in the process of losing everything, I fell to my knees. I finally came to the realization that I wasn’t able. Praise God! His grace is sufficient! I came to know the Lord in a very unlikely place [a bathroom floor]. Nobody gets alone with God on their knees and fakes it. I prayed for real for the first time. God worked a miracle that night on my music ministry journey. I had been trying to work on my own for 10 years. He broke the chains of alcohol addiction. It was instant. I was free.

In pure joy, I began to tell my Christian wife I had been saved. I was changed [try telling someone who has heard it all before]. Again, His grace is sufficient. By continued steps of faith, prayer and daily devotion to His word, in less than 7 days He repaired the relationships I had spent my whole life destroying. We began looking for a church. I was called to First Baptist Church in Lexington, Alabama for a tent revival. There, the pastor expressed they had been praying for an entire year for a worship leader. I agreed to help as an interim until one came. A month later, after various talks about my faith, and a unanimous vote by the congregation, Little Richard’s prophecy that I had completely forgotten came to pass. I was serving the Lord. I began to give my testimony locally and see God work in the hearts of people who were just like me. People were being freed and accepting Jesus! Powerful confirmations came that entire year. That was this past year. I began to read and teach small videos on Facebook live from passages in Acts. Several of the people who watched asked why I didn’t continue with further education because they saw potential in me.

Finally, a member of the worship team came forward and confirmed my calling externally as I had already been feeling the call internally. I feel my call to be a small group leader as well as a music minister so strongly. The problem with further education now on my music ministry journey is that I had lost everything in the battle with addiction. My wife and I still currently live with my parents as we work diligently to recover and reestablish ourselves financially. My favorite pleasure in reading the word is when the passage says something and then drops what I affectionately refer to as the “but God” bomb. He always makes a way! I thought I would never have this opportunity, “but God” provided me with Christian Leaders Institute. So I praise Him and thank Him for it! I want to effectively disciple believers in an easily reproducible way. By the time I finished the first course [a day and a half], I was equipped with that knowledge already! I can’t wait to finish the program and pray that God makes a way for our local church to set up a mentor center!

Learn about minister ordination at Christian Leaders Alliance.

Youth Minister Call

Youth Minister Call

My name is Ethan Most and I have a youth minister call in my life. I live in the United States and my wife and I just moved back to my hometown of Colorado Springs. To do ministry here is truly an adventure because you never really know what opinions or people you might encounter on a daily basis. I say this because I was heavily involved with a college ministry and children’s ministry in the two churches where I have spent most of my life.

I came to know the Lord as a youngster in my parent’s bedroom. Before this, I had heard all the stories and I wanted Jesus to come into my heart. I wanted Jesus to save me from my sin so I went to those who knew how to lead me to Jesus, my parents. I can remember every single second of that meeting as a young boy. I got up on my parent’s bed and I asked them how to ask Jesus into my life. They led me through a prayer and from then on I was changed. I knew the big picture and I had so much joy in my heart.

My ministry vision for my youth minister call is simple. I want to reach the children and youth of my church and my community for Christ and to disciple them in expanding the kingdom in their own communities. Our youth are lost because of the myriad of influences in their lives. I want to lead them to Christ and a life that has purpose and fulfillment. God has truly given me a heart for them and their craziness. One of the biggest influence on my life was my youth pastor and his patience for a pretty adventurous and troublesome lad. I want to carry that work on in my own life.

This class with Christian Leaders Institute has been very rewarding to me. I have been praying and asking God as to what I should do next in my life and He led me to my youth minister call. Starting this class has given me some tangible evidence that this is where God wants me and I will keep working hard for that purpose.

When I was in high school my youth pastor left for another ministry opportunity in Illinois. I was devastated, in some regards, because the man that had taken the time to mentor me and encourage me was leaving. However, in the years that followed, we had Godly man after Godly man step up and lead my youth group in growing in Jesus. I came to a realization that I wanted to be like those men who stepped up and trusted God for their leadership. In my youth minister call, I wanted God to use me like He used them and that has been reinforced by my college and children’s ministry experience.

In Colorado Springs, there is a mix of a heavy Christian influence and a very secular, worldly presence. We have Focus on the Family, New Life, Navigators and other very large organizations. On the other hand, Colorado has a seen moral decline from places like academia, government, media and most importantly the family. Colorado has become a melting pot of people because of marijuana and other social activities. This is dangerous to the influence on the lives of the youth but at the same time a great opportunity for the gospel to flourish through the youth.

The Bible helps me realize my sins and failures and shows me my strength in Christ. I could not have done any of the ministries in my life without Christ and the Bible to give me confidence and hope to share that with my community.

My church in Flagstaff gave me many opportunities to serve and helped train me for ministry. I served the local church through a myriad of opportunities, such as teaching Sunday school, being a college intern, being the Children’s Coordinator, and leading a young adult group.

My small family has given me the support that I need from them. The role of the family has been influential and incredible in helping me be accountable and humble in my walk with God. My family is important in my faith in God and helping me discern His purpose for me in life.

Christian Leaders Institute is an answer to prayer. I felt a youth minister call but did not know how to go about pursuing it. Through a conversation with my father-in-law, I was told about CLI. After looking into it, I realized that CLI fit exactly with attaining a debt free Christian ministry education. I am not the best student and, quite honestly, dreaded seminary. CLI has been a huge blessing in my life. Being able to get quality training for free has opened so many ministry outlets with coworkers, students, and friends. I am truly thankful that I will not have loan debt and can focus on my community, family, and work.

I ask the leaders of CLI to pray that as I get involved with my community and youth that I stay focused on what is important. That is showing men and women, young and old, that Christ brings salvation and that they can have a personal and purposeful relationship with Jesus. That is what I desire and that is what I pray for.

Learn about ordained minister study programs with Christian Leaders Alliance.

Ecuministry Ordination Journey

Ecuministry Ordination Journey

My name is Dr. Claudia Niemann. I am 60 years old. I have been on an ecuministry ordination journey. I am originally from Germany. My profession was a chemist and food scientist. I am married to Djamel from Algiers, where we also live now. We have been married for 17 years but do not have children.

My parents were pastors in a small town in former East Germany. That is where I grew up in close relationship with the Lord. I learned all about faith, trust, and serving. I had strong leaders in my parents, Arnold and Käthe Niemann. I learned how to walk with God, sing the praise music, and play the organ in the services.

My brother was a member of the first Christian praise band in former East Germany. We learned a lot about other churches traveling with this band in the country. We also had an evangelist coming every year to our church. His example played an important role in my later calling.

After my father’s retirement, my parents moved to West Berlin. I finished my studies in Master’s degree in chemistry and followed them in 1986. Here, I started my doctorate and earned the degree in the year 1990. After two years of a post-doctorate research position at Purdue University in West Lafayette, IN, I returned to Germany and pursued my academic career. This career stopped in 2005 when I was a research scientist with Nestlé in Lausanne, Switzerland.

In 2006, I was called by the Lord to be an evangelist and teacher on my ecuministry ordination journey. The calling was revealed in a vision that I am to be a traveling minister, like the evangelist who came to our church when I was a child.

While living at home, I had a daily Bible study and devotion time which brought me to a deeper understanding of the Word. The Bible spoke to me and guided me. Reading the Psalms and the Proverbs over a period of a year taught me an understanding of Praise, Repentance, Lament, and Divine Wisdom.

Back in Germany, on my ecuministry ordination journey, I started studies to become a preacher in 2007. I was an Elected Church Elder in the United Lutheran-Reformed Chuch of Berlin-Brandenburg from 2006 to 2015. I became also a member of the Protestant Faith Fellowship in Berlin, the Pentecostal American Church that emerged from the U.S.Army troops that were in Berlin from 1945 to 1995. Here, I learned all about Gospel music and sang in the Gospel choir led by Gospel singers from the U.S. who live in Berlin.

I earned my degree to be ordained as a Word Minister from a correspondence church school of the Evangelic Church in Mid-Germany in May 2012. This degree enabled me to lead services, distribute the Holy Communion, and preach in the churches of the Association of Evangelic Churches in Germany. I was ordained to be a pastor in community service in the local church of Gramzow, Uckermark.

I had to quit my service in 2015 because the church did not accept my engagement in a free internet ministry association (www.Pastor2go.de) to minister to people who were not a member in any officially recognized church. I continued to minister as a free-lance theologian, and in January 2016, I received the call to Algeria by the Lord.

In Algeria, the conditions for Christians are not easy. They are not persecuted officially. But unofficially, some Islamic elements in the authorities try to make Christian life difficult. They close churches and imprison people who possess more than one Bible in the Arab or Berber language. There is officially a “Freedom of Cults” but proselytism is forbidden.

As we moved to Algeria this year, I became a visiting member of the United Protestant Church of Algiers. The local pastor, however, would not ordain me as a preacher and allowed only for me to work as a member of the praise team. Together with Spirit-driven Christians from other regions of the country and two other foreigners, we have made a new conception for this team.
At this time, and through the new praise team, the Holy Spirit is doing a mighty work in this legalistic-oriented and fear-driven congregation to open up their hearts and minds for the joy and freedom of God’s children. Please pray for this church and its members, especially for the pastor.

I searched for courses in English for another member of the praise team who also wants to become a full-time minister. I was led to the Christian Leaders Institute website and I began the first class. He will begin the courses as soon as he is in his new apartment that he just found (it’s not so easy in Algiers).

CLI studies allow me to refresh my training and to learn new ideas and points of view. It’s important for me to stay vigilant yet flexible with regard to the different churches that I will visit in my new field of work in Algeria. Since I do not have the opportunity to earn money here at the moment, a CLI scholarship gives me the opportunity to follow up with the ministry training to strengthen my ministry. I am also starting up my evangelistic service on this ecuministry ordination journey. Then I can help others to join CLI.

Since my calling is to be a traveling minister as an evangelist and teacher, I am also thankful that there is the ecuministry ordination of the Christian Leaders Alliance. I feel that this is the right ordination for my calling. In an ecumenical and interdenominational environment, for me to serve Christ and mankind, wherever God leads me.

Home Church Planters

Home Church Planters

I am Joshua Hickman, and my wife and I feel called to be Home Church Planters. I live in Temple, Texas, USA. I’ve been serving Jesus passionately since October 1999. I was 16 years old and my mom made me go to something called a “Revival Service”. Little did anyone know that this annual event, at this small country church in Bastrop TX, would be totally rocked by the power of God in a radical way!

The night my mom forced me to go to church, I was sitting listening to this little southern country worship band singing about Jesus. The only thing I knew about Jesus, at this point, was that He had something to do with two holidays, and my mother had become obsessed with Him for the past six months. So, I’m sitting in the soft green chairs listening to this band sing songs and I began to really think about how empty I felt all the time. I became overwhelmingly lonely and depressed. Then the crazy preacher got up there and started talking about Jesus, and how God is good, and about the Holy Spirit.

The next thing I knew, I was pushing the nice people over who were sitting next to me, and I was crying, and running to the front of this church. I wasn’t the only one though. Twenty to thirty others were with me up there. As we began asking Jesus to forgive us, I suddenly was overwhelmed again, but this time with Joy! I didn’t feel lonely and bitter anymore. Life has been a crazy process since then, but it’s been fun, to say the least.

It was in this same church that I began to learn about life as this new person, and how the Father gave me unique gifts to fulfill a unique purpose in life. At different points in my life over the next 10 years, God would bring many men and women into my life to mentor me. Some would help me hone my musical abilities, some my relationships, and others, my character. The Senior Pastor, however, was the first to really see and then publicly confirm the call on my life as a Pastor. One Sunday morning, after sharing with the congregation a song I wrote, the Pastor ran up to me with tears and laid his hands on me. He began to declare things about me that he said were in the Father’s heart for me. Now, I can’t possibly remember everything exactly as it was said, but I will never forget that moment. The main idea was that I was being set apart in that moment to lead others around me into a closer relationship with our Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit!

Fast forward to 2017. I am now married with four BEAUTIFUL children and an AMAZING wife. We serve as the Senior Leaders of a small (but growing) network of home-based churches. Although my wife and I are currently the primary pastors of our church, we feel a call from God to actually travel and plant many churches! We are home church planters with an exciting ministry dream. What I love about the way we have been expressing the local church gathering is the fact that my children (all under the age of 8) are so excited every time we have a home group meeting. They are learning to be a part of the church by engaging with adults and other kids as we worship, pray, and discuss God’s Word.

I had been to a discipleship training school in 2008 and had awesome opportunities to do international missions work, but still felt the drawing by the Holy Spirit to deepen my knowledge and study. I  believe that formal ministry education can, and does, help boost confidence and understanding. I feel that the instructors in the Getting Started Class did a great job of, essentially, saying the same thing. I remember reading the story of Phillip and the Ethiopian many times, but one time it hit me like a ton of bricks. I realized that I have reached a point in my life that I need help understanding more of God’s word from more than just my own perspective. I have a few local mentors, who have all, at some point, encouraged me to look into seminary training. After searching for weeks online, I finally came across Christian Leaders Institute.

I’m so excited to continue to pursue higher education through CLI as we grow as home church planters, a family, and a church community. For us, CLI is already making an impact on everyone in our church! I’ve spread the word to the people my wife and I mentor so that they can eventually pursue additional training.

We would really appreciate prayer for our region, the Bell County area in Texas. As a church, we feel a call to restore the family aspect to the church of our area….regardless of denomination or race or gender. My family and I would appreciate prayer as we continue to work as volunteer home church planters for our new church plant, in an area that has largely never experienced home church, and for financial provision! Currently, I work full time for a Furniture Retailer in our area, and as a full-time volunteer with our new church plant.

Learn about ordained minister study programs at Christian Leaders Alliance.

Officiant Minister Ordination

Officiant Minister Ordination

My name is Roger Paligutan. I am deeply blessed with the task that God will give me as I am looking forward to receiving this Officiant Minister Ordination.

I am 54 years old, a registered nurse by profession. I am married to my beautiful wife, also a registered nurse, Jocelyn Aljibe-Paligutan for 25 years. I am blessed with three children, Ivan Roger (25), Rogelyn Paligutan (21), and Gerlyn Joy (15).

I was born in the Philippines. I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Commerce and in Nursing. A year after graduating in 1996, I migrated to the United States of America in 1997 through my mother’s petition. I was not saved yet when I came to the USA. I did not have any idea about having a “personal relationship” with Jesus Christ. All I knew was that I had so many gods. I used to worship graven images of various kinds and believed that going to heaven is through good works.

It was February 1998, when I was invited by a Filipino US Veteran to come with him to the church he attended on Sundays. On that first Sunday, I surrendered my life to Jesus and accepted Him as my Lord and Savior. That day I heard the verse Matthew 22:14, “For many are called, but few are chosen.” (KJV). I believed that day I was one of those called and chosen. My spiritual life had changed and my walk with our Lord Jesus Christ began.

My very first prayer to God was for the salvation of my wife who was left in the Philippines with our children. In just a couple of months of praying, I called my wife and was excited to tell her about salvation and being a born-again Christian. Lo and behold, my wife told me that she had already accepted Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior just a month before I shared my testimony with her.

For almost two decades of being with Christ, my daily walk with God through His Word has gradually changed my life spiritually. I feel the hunger for His Word every day. God has given me several pastors that guided me with the Bible. I was mentored by several of them and continue to study God’s Word and wait until God called me to serve Him.

My current pastor at the Assembly at Crawford, Pastor Daniel Esperanza, advised me to take a Bible course online to help equip me with the Word of God through an in-depth study of the Bible. With the guidance of the Holy Spirit, I ran into the website of Christian Leaders Institute (CLI), who offer Bible courses online for free. I read all the CLI courses and was amazed by their curriculum, and how it perfectly fits my needs.

I enrolled at CLI in the year of 2014. The courses I have completed equip me with knowledge about the Bible and being a Christian leader. Christian Leaders Institute provided me with the right training in every course I enrolled, and I will continue to pursue the advanced courses and training to be fully equipped with the knowledge about the Word of God. My officiant minister ordination is a step on this journey. Whatever God’s plan for me, He is making sure I am ready.

I am currently serving as a leader and member of the Pastoral Staff at the Assembly at Crawford under the leadership of our Head Pastor, Pastor Daniel Esperanza.

Learn about minister ordination at Christian Leaders Alliance.

Purpose Filled Women

Purpose Filled Women

I am a 32-year-old entrepreneur from London, Ontario and I am called to lead purpose filled women. I was raised in a Roman Catholic family, with strong morals and values instilled in me from a young age. However, I never felt I had a real relationship with the Lord. After going down my own path, I found myself empty, bankrupt and divorced when I was 27. I surrendered my life to the Lord in November of 2014. Since then he has delivered me in so many ways. I have been married to my wonderful husband, Curtis for two years and we look forward to a lifetime and eternity together. He is my best friend and my biggest source of encouragement. I have been completely transformed physically, mentally and emotionally by God’s work in my life over the last five years.

My ministry dream is to help women know God, love themselves, and find a holistic way of living that includes God, healthy eating, and fitness. I have a marketing and graphic design background and have my own small business. I also have my personal training certification. I am excited to begin my Women’s Ministry Certification with Christian Leaders Institute. I believe my calling is to help women who have past pains from relationships with men to bring healing through a real relationship with God. From this foundation, my dream is that these purpose filled women will also improve their health, nutrition, fitness and overall wellness.

This class has completely affirmed that I have heard God’s call to ministry. As I was reading through the material, I was able to relate to it and hope to help other’s apply it to their lives as I have applied it to my own.

I identify most with Pastor, as I have many experiences where people have come to me for advice, confided in me and sought support due to me sharing my painful past experiences. I feel this is part of God’s calling on my life. A key experience that prompted me to pursue ministry is the work that God has done to transform my exterior appearance (60 lb weight loss) after he transformed my interior (heart). This has encouraged me to examine my current career and if it is in line with the purpose God has for me.

Some unique challenges in my geographic area include people struggling with their relationships; whether it be with themselves, their spouse, their family, etc. God is missing in most family households and even Christians may not be walking with God. I feel with my skill set with technology that I will be able to reach most of the world with God’s message… thanks to the internet!

Reading my Bible daily is something that I have just recently implemented. I can open up my Bible and really feel God speaking to me through the story/verse/circumstance. I used to struggle with application and understanding, but as I grow in my relationship with God, I can really hear his voice when I prioritize the time to engage with him in prayer and reading.

I met with my pastor at Gateway Church here in London at the beginning of November 2017. I’d just finished up a course he taught on Spiritual Gifts. He encouraged me to take a Christian Life Coaching course through Lombardi as well as brought up Bible College as a suitable path for me once I explained my ministry dream to him.

My husband and in-laws have been extremely encouraging to me in following my ministry calling. They have watched me deepen my relationship with God, and have seen him transform me inside and out over the last four years.

I believe a scholarship at CLI will help me to deepen my faith, and to be a confidant to struggling women. My passion is to help women by introducing them to God and a relationship with him and also helping them discover their purpose. Then as purpose filled women for the Lord, helping them implement self-care exercise through nutrition and fitness. I strongly believe being certified through CLI will give me the confidence to accomplish all of my goals.

Please pray for all of the broken women out there, walking in victim mentality, to be drawn to my experiences and find validation and understanding in knowing God. I ask God to help me to bring out the best in them, coach them to point them in the right direction, discover their purpose and walk with Him through life and not in their own strength. All in His name and to His glory.

Learn about Ordained minister study programs at Christian Leaders Alliance.

Outdoorsman Chaplain

Outdoorsman Chaplain

My name is Ian Gould and I feel called to minister as an outdoorsman chaplain. I’m a bit wary and skeptical of things and scams on the internet, especially free offers. When I joined this course at Christian Leaders Institute, I was a bit skeptical. I’m not now. I can see the great benefits CLI provides in helping arm thousands of people from all backgrounds and cultures with the knowledge and confidence to help spread the word of God. I’m in Melbourne, Australia and was born into a Presbyterian family who for a number of reasons stopped going to church in my teens. I’m now in my 50’s and worship at an Anglican church.

My journey started a few years ago with seeing a movie about Martin Luther (“Luther”) which lead to reading some of his sermons (I especially like his sermon on Lent). More recently a book I was reading had a chapter on prayer that quoted from “The Message” Psalm 6 which struck a chord with me. I’d say this was my turning point. Like David, I spoke/prayed alone and out loud to God. Almost immediately things started to change for the better. It wasn’t just my attitude that changed. Good things happened. And then I started going to a local church.

Hunting is a predominantly masculine pursuit and men are under-represented in many churches. My dream is to be an outdoorsman chaplain. My dream is to help bring the word of God to men who hunt. Men who like the outdoors need God too.

I like to hunt and fish. I like to hunt my own food (sustainably and ethically and legally). To me being in the outdoors refreshes and renews my soul. Sleeping out in the bush and under the stars helps me appreciate the wonder and beauty of God’s works and to keep eternity in mind (in the city of Melbourne you can rarely ever see any stars). Hunting often requires many solitary hours, allowing for quiet reflection. Taking an animal’s life to eat, and respecting that life, reminds me of my own mortality. Saying grace over meat or fish I have killed has a deeper meaning for me than store-bought meat as I have seen the animal or fish it came from. I killed it. It died so I could eat.

I’ve contacted a number of denominations about reaching out to hunters and fishermen. In spite of shrinking congregations and fewer and fewer men, it’s clear to me they are not interested in reaching out to men (especially if they hunt). I have proposed that a part-time outdoorsman chaplain to hunting and shooting clubs and organizations would be a good way to begin to connect with these men. I’ve had rude responses. Hunting and shooting are not politically correct, and it seems to me the church leaders here are just not interested in anything not politically correct.

I think ordinary men are neglected by the church. Outreach programs to the poor and homeless are good, but in a welfare State like Australia, where single mothers on government benefits can afford to go to Thailand for a holiday (fact), how much extra material help is really needed?  Where is the spiritual help? Where is there any attempt to reach ordinary men? Aren’t they in equally great need of knowing Jesus? Can’t the church do both, i.e. walk and chew gum, at the same time?

In my view, the church needs all types of leaders from all backgrounds. There are pastors from all backgrounds and cultures it seems, EXCEPT outdoor-type men. Men like me need God too. In the early 19th Century, the Rev Dr. John Flynn (Flynn of the Outback) was widely admired and respected for his work in the Bush, his portrait is on our $20 banknote. As a kid, one of my pastors played VFL (professional) football. Others were veterans. I could relate to them. But now I see very few church leaders that I can relate too and even fewer leaders who even want to know ordinary men like me.

I’d like to show by example to other Australian men that it’s okay to hunt and fish and to be a Christian. Where are the “fishers of men”? (Matt 4:19).

Learn about minister ordination at Christian Leaders Alliance.