Class Session 1 | Class Session 2 | Class Session 3 | Round Tables | Panel Discussions

Class Session 1 (Friday @ 10:20am)

Spirit-Led, Frontier Focused
How do congregations remain engaged on the Kingdom frontier and avoid moving from mission to maintenance? Brandon will share some practices and processes at Impact Temple that are helpful in discerning the leading of the Spirit and interpreting Scripture so that the congregation will be actively engaged in God’s expanding Kingdom for years to come.
Brandon Baker | Pastor, Impact Temple | Temple, TX

Ministering to Spanish-speakers in US cities
What are important factors in establishing a successful Spanish-speaking ministry in US cities? This class will offer helpful tips to create a positive experience and avoid some common pitfalls.
Steve Austin | Director, Texas International Bible Institute | Abilene, TX

Empowering Individuals and Families in Crisis to Become Sustainable
Heather will take you on a real-life journey of CHRC’s organizational transformation, from food pantry to a multi-service organization that loves its neighbors by empowering them to meet their own needs. She will discuss how CHRC uses best-practice social work methods, such as person-centered approaches and motivational interviewing, to work with individuals and families who experience crisis to become sustainable. Heather is an advocate for using social work in a ministry environment to change lives and will share lessons learned and wisdom gleaned from the process.
Heather Pullen | Director of Case Management, Christian Hope Resource Center | San Antonio, TX

Erasing the Racial Lines that Bind
The Fifth Ward Church of Christ and the Memorial Church of Christ are Houston’s largest congregations inside the Beltway. For the most part, Fifth Ward is made up of African Americans and Memorial of Caucasians. Although these congregations share I-10, there was little interaction between them for years. Hear how over the past decade these two congregations have come to appreciate their differences and celebrate their unity in Jesus.
Gary Smith | Minister, Fifth Ward Church of Christ | Houston, TX
David Duncan | Minister, Memorial Church of Christ | Houston, TX

Summer in the City: Ideas for Youth and Children Summer Programs
The Impact Houston Youth Team will share details about their summer programs for youth and children including a summer reading program. What has worked, what has failed, and what they have learned along the way.
Impact Youth Team | Youth and Children’s Ministers, Impact Houston Church of Christ | Houston, TX

Faith Tested in Freedom
Kathy will discuss the CrossWalk Center’s journey in developing and implementing a holistic and discipleship-based social service program for individuals who have been imprisoned to reintegrate back into society.
Kathy Vosburg | Founding Executive Director/President, Crosswalk Center | Houston, TX

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Class Session 2 (Friday @ 2:00pm)

Removing the Wall between Your Church and its Latino Neighbors
This class will focus attention on principles and strategies that position a dominant-group church to effectively reach a rapidly growing and diverse Hispanic community for Christ.
Daniel Rodriguez | Professor of Religion and Hispanic Studies, Pepperdine University | Malibu, CA

Bridging the Socio-Economic Gap
Jesus was constantly concerned for the outcasts of society, and yet our interactions with the very same people oftentimes fall short. Is it possible there’s more to gain by feeding and clothing the poor than a short-lived good feeling or a check on our moral to-do list? Come see how a simple change in thinking can open our minds and lives to a greater wealth than we could ever find in this world.
John White | Youth Minister, West Side Church of Christ | Searcy, AR

Considerations When Working with At-Risk Families and Children in Ministry
In this presentation, participants will learn foundational knowledge about how trauma and poverty impact child development. Participants will think more about how to connect intentionally with families and how to implement specific strategies when working with children in a ministry setting. Time will be given at the end for participants to ask specific questions or brainstorm how to better serve children in their setting.
Lauren Friede | Director of Family Support, Small Steps Nurturing Center | Houston, TX
Lauren Repa | Director of Student Support, Small Steps Nurturing Center | Houston, TX

Social Work and the Church: A Model for Long-Term Help
Class will be a joint presentation with a Social Worker and Church Elder and will provide those looking to work in the field, or a church looking to hire a social worker, the necessary components to make a successful partnership.
Leslie Salinas | Program Director, Arms of Hope Houston Outreach Center | Houston, TX
Paul Woodward | Elder, Impact Houston Church of Christ | Houston, TX

From “Served” to “Serving”
Helping your youth learn the joy of serving. We will look at ways we can motivate our youth to not only receive blessings but also be a blessing to others.
Josef Bilnoski | Youth Minister, Impact Houston Church of Christ | Houston, TX

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Class Session 3 (Friday @ 4:20pm)

Why We Do What We Do – A Biblical Perspective
When you serve, you discover that often the most important things you have to offer are not things at all. You start to uncover the full range of resources at your disposal – your time, presence, attention – and recognize that the ability to give stems from a state of mind and heart, a place much deeper than the material. Inspired by the possibilities this opens up in every moment, you begin to discover humble opportunities to serve – everywhere.
Ikenna Lewis | Public Educator for Special Need Students & Minister, Central Church of Christ | Baytown, TX

A Bilingual Church: One Model of Hispanic Ministry in the US
Spanish is spoken by over 37 million people in the United States, many who live in urban areas. It is therefore urgent that our urban ministries preach the gospel in Spanish. This class will focus on the integral role of bilingual churches in this country and discuss some practical ways to plant or lead them.
Carlos Ingles | Bilingual Minister, Impact Houston Church of Christ | Houston, TX

Building Relationships Through Mentoring
Mentoring Programs have the ability to bring all types of people together, especially the young and old. In this class, we will discuss ways to implement a mentoring program in your community and the importance of 1-on-1 relationships between people who do not appear to have much in common. You will also get to hear from adults who are currently mentoring a child on why they choose to be a mentor and hear our perspective on why such a simple program can have a profound impact on all involved.
Tyler Lemmons | Mentoring Director, Impact Houston Church of Christ | Houston, TX

The Power of Summer Camp
It’s more important than ever to provide kids with outdoor experiences, especially those living in urban areas. In this session we’ll examine some statistics and benefits of getting kids connected to nature, the outdoors and the Creator through summer camps.
Drew Bowen | Program Director, Camp of the Hills | Marble Falls, TX
Michael Thames | Executive Director, Camp of the Hills | Marble Falls, TX

Effective Approaches to Apartment Ministry
Ron will share from his struggles and successes ministering in apartment settings through the Contact Mission Church with a focus on relationship-building.
Ron Babbit | Minister, Contact Mission Church | Tulsa, OK

Teaching That Sticks
One of many challenges in Urban Ministry is teaching a memorable Bible class to a diverse group of people. Like you, my classes are full of people from very different walks of life and it’s difficult to teach in a way that’s both relevant and memorable to everyone in the room. We will discuss practical ways to help students interact with Scripture more deeply for long-lasting impact.
Dennis Jaeger | Minister, Impact Houston Church of Christ | Houston, TX

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Round Table Discussions (Friday @ 3:30pm)

Homeless/Addiction Recovery Ministry
Hispanic Ministry
Food/Resource Ministry
Children’s Ministry
Urban Churches and Disaster Relief
Youth Ministry

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Panel Discussions (Saturday @ 9:00am)

Our Changing Cities: Urban and Suburban Church’s Adaptation to Gentrification
Many urban ministries are beginning to experience the influx of middle/upper class residents in their neighborhoods which, in turn, pushes the poor and marginalized further out. This panel of ministers will discuss how both “Urban” and “Suburban” churches are adapting to their newfound neighbors.
Panel Members:
Mike Avery | Youth Minister, Memorial Church of Christ | Houston, TX
Cruz Hernandez | Pulpit Minister, Hidden Valley Church of Christ | Houston, TX
Caroline Morales | Children’s Minister, Impact Houston Church of Christ | Houston, TX
Tim Sells | Minister, Impact Houston Church of Christ | Houston, TX
Leigh Ann Sharp | Involvement Minister, Bammel Church of Christ | Houston, TX
Dennis Jaeger | Minister, Impact Houston Church of Christ | Houston, TX

Utilizing Short-term Mission Efforts for Long-term Effect
Many urban ministries benefit from the short-term mission efforts of other churches and individuals. While many of our ministries would not exist without them, it is sometimes challenging to utilize those groups and individuals in a way that has a lasting effect on both the host ministry and visiting church/individual. This panel consists of ministers from urban ministries and visiting mission groups and will explore how to create long-term, positive effect on both entities.
Panel Members:
Brandon Baker | Pastor, Impact Temple | Temple, TX
Lluvia Delgado | Children’s Minister, Impact Houston Church of Christ | Houston, TX
Alfred Donald | Evangelist, Atlanta Inner-City Ministry | Atlanta, GA
Meredith Platt | Student Minister, West Houston Church of Christ | Houston, TX
Michael Thames | Executive Director, Camp of the Hills | Marble Falls, TX
Geremy Varner | Youth Minister, Impact Houston Church of Christ | Houston, TX

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