Renewed Vision for Outreach and Growth

Renewed Vision for Outreach and Growth

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When Mark Hodge and his wife, Charity, came to First Assembly of God in Humboldt, Tennessee (18 miles northwest of Jackson), as senior pastors, the church was financially sound but going through some transitional difficulties.

“First Assembly is a wonderful church,” Mark Hodge says, “but when we arrived, the people were very comfortable inside the church walls and they were grieving the loss of their previous pastor.”

In 2017, Hodge and his church leadership team began participating in the Acts 2 Journey cohort sessions, led by Alton Garrison, Assemblies of God assistant general superintendent, and director of the Acts 2 Journey Initiative.

“We (the congregation and I) are growing in implementation of what we are learning,” Hodge says, “and our leadership team has set forth a vision for growth.”

Hodge is sharing that vision with the congregation by utilizing the tools Garrison shares in his book, A Spirit-Empowered Church, and he is seeing the people gain insight as to how growth can happen in their hearts, the church, and their outreach to the community.

“Our congregation is experiencing the reality of true worship, not just participation in a song service,” Hodge says, “and how that kind of worship can reflect in your everyday life outside the walls of the church.”

In their weekly services, the congregation is reading aloud the core values they have identified as a church and are attempting to live out in their daily lives and in their ministry to the community.

Currently, 1,152 churches, including Humboldt First AG, have participated in the Acts 2 Journey. Thanks to AGTrust partners, 821 of those have received scholarships to assist them in the one-year journey to better health.

"Thank you, AGTrust partners,” Hodge expresses. “Our church could not have participated in the Acts 2 Journey without your generosity. We cannot articulate fully what the experience has meant to us at Humboldt First AG; this kind of change and growth could not have been achieved any other way."

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