Ecclesia Network

Rachel, Chris, Meg, Sam & Jeff at the 2016 Ecclesia National Gathering in Newark, DE

Ecclesia Network is a relational network that seek to equip, partner and multiply missional churches and movements. Ecclesia believes that the church is a catalyst for the kingdom, the network should be a catalyst for the church, so that it might be a catalyst for the kingdom.

Even before Oak Church was an idea or a calling, we benefited from a friendship with Ecclesia Network. A couple of years ago, while working with our sending church, the Gathering Church, a couple of us attended a National Gathering, where we were struck with how vividly this tribe was living into its calling as a “relational network of missional churches.” Every step of the way we’ve received prayer and encouragement, not to mention concrete resources, from folks in the network. As a non-denominational church, without much attachment to anyone outside of our immediate context, it felt and feels important to be invested in the lives and ministry of others participating in God’s mission in other places, that are both similar and quite different from Durham. We were drawn to how hopeful, thoughtful and humble this group is and were thrilled to be able to bring several of our leaders to Newark to officially join.

When I recount that time in Delaware to folks back home, two things inevitably pop up about our experience. First, is just how attentive to the Spirit people were. All of the programing, teaching, and workshops were wonderfully planned and executed, but there were several interruptions, moments that called for someone to share something unplanned or to circle up in prayer. Each of these times represented a powerful ability of fellow leaders to keenly listen, improvise, and trust that the Lord was in it.

Secondly, I share how inspiring it was for our group to see so many Spirit-gifted female leaders being empowered in our midst. It was a great blessing to see our very own women leaders walk away with such a sense of inspiration as they were able to observe and interact with women so confidently and humbly pursuing their vocations. We’re thrilled to be a part of this family, and anticipate many more seasons of fruitful collaboration and co-laboring for the sake of Christ’s Kingdom.