FIBC learns to evangelize without fear
Horizon Weekly | 11 March 2020
By Marigold Ignacio
February 22, 2020, was a day full of encouragement and reminders as Pastor Cesar Parra passionately urged all 60 participants who came from Filipino International Baptist Church (FIBC), the west, north, and south campuses, to pray earnestly with an evangelistic purpose, evangelize without fear and to trust that He who is in us is greater than he who is in this world (1 John 4:4). With the promise in Matthew 28:19–20, Jesus Christ said that He Himself will be our backup as we boldly declare the Gospel in Edmonton and to the ends of the world.
As noted, Pastor Parra claims we are good at training, but we lack in going. We are slow to initiate conversations and quick to stay quiet. He introduced us to D52 and Who’s Your One as simple but powerful tools to help Christians know how to proclaim the Gospel in their community. These tools will be valuable to FIBC as we pursue our Vision 2030: Spiritual Formation that Leads to Leadership Development and Multiplication of Satellite Churches.
In the next 12 years, we dream of having 20,000 Gospel conversations that will lead to the spiritual formation of 3,000 disciples and start 600 small groups/Intentional Discipleship Relationships (IDRS). These initiatives will result in the development of 300 leaders who will take our church where God wants us to go, and help start 30 reproducing satellite churches through our multisite church planting model. Though methods can be an important tool, may we not forget that our personal testimonies are the greatest way of presenting the Gospel.
The evangelism training lasted only three hours but it made a huge impact on our lives. The training emphasized that evangelism is God’s command (Matthew 28:19–20), it is God’s purpose (1 Timothy 2:4), that all need eternal life (John 3:7), and that it is an expression of our gratitude to God (1 Timothy 1:12–17). One couple who attended the training, Norman and Ricie Bello, were so convicted that as soon as the training ended, they visited their relative in the hospital and shared the Gospel with her. By God’s grace, that very same day she accepted Christ as her Lord and saviour. This is evangelism at work! To God be the glory!