For Denominational Regions

The Acts 16:5 Initiative

The Acts 16:5 Initiative is a three-year process that enables a denominational region (such as a presbytery, district or diocese) to lead its congregations to grow in transformational and missional momentum. Typically, 25% - 30% of the congregations in a regional area will participate. Representing all sizes and levels of vitality they are congregations whose leaders seek a greater fruitfulness in ministry. The Acts 16:5 Initiative combines intensive instruction with ongoing personal coaching and encouragement to pastors and congregational leaders.

The Vital Churches Institute partners with judicatory leadership in a teaching and coaching role that offers content, encouragement and counsel to those who want to see their congregations grow in vitality by God's grace.

With 25% to 30% of the congregations in the regional area participating, tremendous mutual encouragement among pastors and transformational leadership from regional leaders emerges.

Our conviction is that no structure or body is more strategically positioned to shape congregations for transformation than the judicatory or governing body. Such relationships can offer continuing encouragement and training that the individual congregation may or may not be able to acquire on its own.

The Acts 16:5 Initiative assists congregations in the design of specific transformational and missional ministries. Rather than offering a set "program," this initiative supports the design of ministry appropriate to a given congregation's inner life and its surrounding community. As a result, when the denominational area supports its congregations in this way, it helps to legitimize and validate to congregational members the efforts of their pastors and leaders to move their congregations into a fruitful future.

The principles of transformation and missional endeavor the Acts 16:5 Initiative offers to congregations are also applicable to the life of the denominational regional areas as an entity of fellowship and mission in its own right.

Working in ministry is as blessed and rewarding as it can be tough and disappointing. We want to be on your team as you live and work out God's call on your life. For more information about the Acts 16:5 Initiative for your congregation an/or for your denominational region, contact VCI at: or at 703.598.9536.

Success Stories - Denominational Regions

Mike Cole, Denominational Leader, Houston, TX

"The Acts 16:5 Initiative IS the fuse that ignited transformation within our presbytery!"

Betty Meadows, General Presbyter, Mid-Kentucky

"The Acts 16:5 Initiative has given the 20 participating congregations in Mid-Kentucky Presbytery hope FOR transformation, and transformation is not easy. It is a process that takes prayer, time, hope and courage. When the teams gather for each seminar, the energy in the room is palpable. Energy begets energy and hope abounds. It is exciting to see so many engaged in this transformative process that is lead by the risen Christ."

Debbie Rundlett, General Presbyter, Muskingum Valley, Ohio

"Stan and his team are all seasoned practioners who live what they teach. They know from experience that transformational ministry does not happen in calm and quiet. They have been through the Refiner's Fire and know the gift born of challenge. In short, they are people of faith and have been tried and found true."

Al Timm, Denominational Leader, Detroit, Michigan

"This is a great process for any church where committees turn into teams (see Stan's book on this). An Acts 16:5 group meets monthly to form an "action learning" team, using questions to help each other refine vision (no answers, only questions and reflection-What did we learn?). Acts 16:5 is about identifying a new mission. It is about praying for guidance and then following Christ's call."