News and Updates2021-05-03T13:29:51-05:00

Restructuring Updates

RESTRUCTURING UPDATES
A couple of days ago we communicated with you about our restructuring plan for Central Region. Our regional board has been meeting in Des Moines this week and we would like to share some important updates.

NEW REGIONAL BOARD
We have redrawn district boundaries for the State of Iowa which moves us to 5 districts in Central Region. This results in a reconfiguration of our board. Here are the new regional board members:

Bruce Pfadenhauer, Regional Director
Andy Hansen, Illinois/Wisconsin District Director
Jaccie Kenyon, NE Iowa/Minnesota District Director
Doug Harris, SE Iowa District Director
Randy Richards, South District
Chad Cummings, W Iowa District Director
Nicole Miller, At-Large Member
Ricardo Ponce, At-Large Member
Spencer Keroff, Global Missions Representative
Darrick Young, National Board Representative

NEW STAFF
We will be devoting the region’s ministry focus to the following three areas:

  • NOW Healthy Churches
  • NEXT Generation Leaders
  • NEW Church Plants

To be most effective in leading these areas, we believe it is critical to have key leaders who will be responsible for leading each of these initiatives:

NOW Healthy Churches- team led by Bruce Pfadenhauer, Regional Director
Bruce has led this area for the previous decade through our coaching network and our church health consultation weekends for local churches. Our coaching pathway is being reconstructed and church health materials are being rewritten for a launch this fall.

NEXT Generation Leaders- team led by Ben and Lola Carlson
Student Ministries has long been valued in our region which includes Kids Camp, Youth Camp, Breakaway, and Youth Leader Development. We are putting a new name on this focus and appointing a couple to lead this area of ministry. Ben Carlson is the senior pastor and Lola is the worship leader at our church in Lacon, IL. Prior to coming to Central Region, Ben led youth ministry for 12 years in Colorado. Lola was trained in worship ministry and together they make a great ministry team. Ben and Lola will continue serving in Lacon, IL and will officially begin serving as regional staff effective June 1, 2021. Kevin Starkey will work with them to ensure that a smooth transition takes place.

NEW Church Plants- team led by Kevin Starkey, Church Planting Director
Kevin has been wearing multiple hats for the past 18 months but it is time to allow him to focus on his primary target- church planters and church plants. Over the next few months Kevin will build his team, prepare our strategies, and train coaches for church planters.

May 2021

STRATEGIC PLANNING AND RESTRUCTURING

At my request, the Central Region Board engaged in a strategic planning process in November 2019. This was due to the approaching completion of our Destination 2020 strategic plan and my 10 years of service as regional director. We wanted to pursue the next decade of regional ministry with a blank slate to see how God would lead us. We planned to bring a team to Des Moines in May of 2020 that included our current board and staff as well as a good number of younger leaders in the region. That event was postponed until November of 2020 due to COVID-19. We had 31 attendees working together in a process of discovery with Pastor Michael Nortune of California leading the process.

Some obvious discoveries came out of the strategic planning and the results were reviewed by the regional director and the regional office staff. A restructuring plan was presented to the regional board on March 5, 2021.  It was unanimously approved and we are moving forward!  The top three focuses of ministry for the next decade will be:

  • NOW Healthy Churches
  • NEXT Generation Leaders
  • NEW Church Plants

We will devote our calendar and budget to these three focuses and we will move to staff a key person(s) to lead each of these strategic initiatives. We will let you know soon of these staffing decisions.

As a result of these developments, some of our finest leaders have transitioned as of April 30, 2021, at the end of their terms of service. We will acknowledge them here and will honor them publicly at The GATHERING in September 2021.

PAUL and VIVIAN CANFIELD, Ethnic Ministry Directors

Paul and Vivian were launched as Missionaries to Minneapolis, MN in 2008. They made many trips there to build relationships with ethnic leaders and churches. In 2011, we moved their assignment to Ethnic Ministries Directors where they have helped serve our ethnic pastors and churches in numerous ways. Paul and Vivian are esteemed and valued partners in Open Bible ministry and we will publicly honor them at The GATHERING this fall.

A Word from Paul and Vivian Canfield…

We express appreciation to the Central Region leadership for allowing us to serve as Ethnic Ministries Directors. We began serving in this ministry in 2008 after retiring. It has been a rich and fruitful experience. We love all of our Ethnic pastors and churches. The ministry included preaching, teaching, mentoring, coaching and giving seminars in both Spanish and English covering many topics.  May God continue to bless the Ethnic pastors and churches throughout the Central Region. You will forever be in our hearts and prayers. 

MIKE JOHNSON, District Director for East Iowa/Minnesota and regional board member

Mike has served on our regional leadership team with humility and integrity for 22 years. He has sacrificed much for the good of the leaders and churches he has served. He continues to be one of our most active coaches in the region. Mike and Nancy have also pastored in Mt. Pleasant, IA for 28 years.

A Word from Mike Johnson…

I want to express my appreciation for the honor of serving the churches and ministers of Central Region Open Bible East Iowa/Minnesota District. I have been so blessed to have served this district and on the regional board alongside such extraordinary leaders as Ken Groen and Bruce Pfadenhauer. I have the utmost respect for these men and have gleaned so much from their wisdom.  I have truly enjoyed the process of walking alongside many of our ministers and churches during critical times and transition periods. We have together as a district been blessed to serve the Kingdom for such a time as this! Please be faithful to follow Paul’s exhortation to the believers at Corinth, “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as you know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.”

NEW PASTOR

Pastor Peter (Cheyenne) Otis, Open Bible credentialed minister in California, has been chosen to be the Senior Pastor at Open Bible Church in Swea City, IA. Peter was raised in the Antioch, CA Open Bible Church and graduated from INSTE. They will relocate to Iowa later this month. Peter and Cheyenne have a son and daughter and another on the way! Welcome to OB Central!

HARVEST BIBLE COLLEGE GRADUATION

Sunday, May 23, 2021 at 4:00 pm
First Church of the Open Bible
2200 Beaver Ave. Des Moines, IA

SUMMER INTERN

Hope Church of Northwest Arkansas, Bentonville, AR, with Dr. Jim Brewer serving as Lead Pastor, is hosting Destiny Goble, a summer intern from Ozark Christian College. Destiny will be a senior this fall majoring in organizational leadership. Pastor Kevin St. Clair will serve as her supervisor.

Open Bible Churches’ THRIVE 2021 National Convention will be a virtual convention rather than an in-person gathering. Please read the news here.

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