Friends of PlantR,
I wanted to take a few moments to tell you about our upcoming Slave-Free City Summit. For me the idea of a Slave-Free City started out of my context as pastor. Theologically speaking, slavery is an all out assault on and complete contempt for the image of God in humanity. When the highest office of mankind, the image of God, is debased to something less than life, an active and tangible response from the Church is, at a very minimum, necessary. If we believe human life is dawned by the image of God, then we must, figure out how to respond to the violence of human slavery. We must be about restoring freedom and dignity to humanity. These ideas created in me a desire to see Austin, Texas, become the first Slave-Free City in the United States.
I believe this is only possible when we as the church are willing to humbly partner and collaborate with all the different sectors of society to make it as hard as possible for slavery to exist in our neighborhoods and cities. To be a person and community of faith who is for the city, to be a pastor who preaches ultimate freedom in and through Jesus Christ, to be a theologian who understands and knows the constant thread of justice and righteousness that runs deep throughout the pages of our scriptures and not actively respond to the issue of slavery in our city is at the very least inconsistent to who we claim be. I believe, in partnership with local non-profits, government organizations, law enforcement, local business, and education the church can help lead the way to seeing Austin, our city, the city we love, become a Slave-Free City!
One of the ways Allies is committed to seeing this dream become a reality is by hosting one of the, if not the most, unique Summits in the United States. Allies is attempting to do something very few have done, and even less have had success doing. The Summit is not a Christian conference, nor an education conference, nor a conference dedicated to social workers and law enforcement only, the Summit is a gathering of people from all sectors of society (just look at the speaker list), coming together under one roof to learn from each other what it will take to build a Slave-Free City. The Summit will address topics such as disruption of unjust systems, race, history, art, faith, immigration, transitional justice, tech, enterprise, business, and other issues that intersect with the problem of human trafficking right here in our back yard.
When: April 17th-18th
Where: For the City Center, 500 East Saint Johns Avenue, Austin, TX 78752
Who’s Presenting: HERE
Discount Rate: Through Sunday, the 22nd save 35% discount on all registrations. Simply enter the code 'springbreak' at checkout.
Take a moment and watch our promotion video:
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-Matthew Hansen is part of the PlantR network, a local pastor and church planter, and an elder at Church at East
A few weeks back you received a message from Ross Parsley giving you an update on PlantR. We believe that PlantR has an important role to play in helping every man, woman, and child in Greater Austin have the opportunity to know and follow Jesus.
This is a quick reminder that on Thursday, March 12th, from 12-1:30pm, at the Austin Baptist Association’s office, we are hosting a conversation on the future of PlantR. I am personally looking forward to talking with you about what is next for PlantR. We want to hear your ideas on how we can more effectively serve planters already in the area as well those who are on their way.
Our friends at Texas Baptists have generously offered to provide lunch for us! So, please RSVP Here by Friday, March 6th to help us with a headcount.
Between now and the 12th, be thinking, praying, and writing down some ways you believe that PlantR can become a more strategic resource to the church planting efforts in Greater Austin. I’m convinced that God will use us collectively to create an even healthier environment for church plants to thrive!
See you on March 12th!
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Director Of PlantR
Lead Pastor Point Community Church
February 13, 2015
PLANTR’S RECENT HISTORY
In June of 2014, Jonathan Dodson stepped down as the Director of PlantR. Both he and Brandon Hatmaker, along with Juan Sanchez later, relinquished their roles as Board members to pursue other interests and to make room for more leaders and new strategies. They are all still highly involved in serving our city and motivated to see church planting flourish in Austin. As a result, the Board asked me to assume the role of Interim Director, and charged me with coordinating discussions about the way PlantR might continue to be a strategic voice in our city, and increase our effectiveness in serving church planters in Austin.
INTRODUCING NICK SHOCK
It is my pleasure to announce the new Director of PlantR, Nick Shock of Point Community Church. Nick has been in Austin for seven years, was one of the founding pastors of Cityview Bible Church, planted Redemption City Church in South Austin, and then recently merged with another congregation to form Point Community. For the last two years he has been the South Austin missional hub leader for PlantR. He has a lot of experience and context for church planting, organizational health, and leadership. He is married to Jada and they have six beautiful kids. He loves spending time with his family, being in the outdoors, keeping up with the Longhorns, and encouraging men to lead well.
The PlantR board is currently being re-populated with like-minded church planters and pastors who will lead us into the next fruitful season of encouraging a Christ-centered and context sensitive movement of new works in Austin. We’ll also be renovating the website and social media channels to create even better ways of connecting and interacting with PlantR’s vision. In addition, we’ll be hosting a new MicroConference later this year. Watch for these announcements coming soon!
JOIN US FOR A CONVERSATION
God is doing a lot in our city and 2014 was a year of transition. Leaders are organizing in a new way and collaborating like never before. The influx of population is highlighting the need for more new works and strategies. Please join us for a conversation about what is on the horizon for PlantR and for church planting in Austin. We are connecting with other networks and organizations in order to be a resource for networking, training, and mentoring for all the planters who are making their way to Austin.
WHAT: Vision, values, and conversation with Nick Shock and Ross Parsley.
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WHEN: Thursday, March 12th, 12:00pm-1:30pm.
WHERE: Austin Baptist Association 3811 Harmon Ave. Austin, TX 78751
WHY: Because Jesus loves church planters in Austin!
HOW: Car, bicycle, boat, or long board. I hope to see you there!