4 words to describe a church planting residency

I was born and raised in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. I came to the U.S. in 2004 to pursue biblical education and had a desire to go back to the Dominican Republic after that. But the Lord in His plan and His wisdom kept me here all this time, and I had the privilege to pastor a Spanish-speaking church in the Chicagoland area — Joliet, Illinois — for seven years alongside my wife and four kids.

We came here to Gospel Hope Church in the Atlanta area for two reasons. We came with the intent to raise support to go back to the Dominican Republic since the Lord had given us a clear calling to go back there. But one of the things that really got our attention was the opportunity to be a part of the church planting residency that Pastor Ryan McCammack presented to us. He had a vision to spend some time investing in us through that residency. So we meet regularly — individually, with the other two residents and with our wives.

I just wanted to summarize my experience in four words.

1. Personal

The residency has been extremely personal. It has offered opportunities to dig into God’s word but also to look into your own heart and find ways the Lord is speaking to you and calling you to repent and grow.

2. Practical

If you compare the residency to seminary, of course the seminary offers academia. Residency has been extremely practical. We take notes and write down action steps of what the next thing is we want to do to improve and grow in different areas. As a couple, we’ve been able to study and grow together too. One of the things I love the most is when we get to meet together with our wives because we are both dreaming and growing together as a couple. The residency brings your wife alongside you in the process so you can grow and dream together.

3. Empowering

The Lord has used Gospel Hope to put practical tools in my hands to be able to do ministry efficiently. I feel empowered to do what God has given me to do.

4. Inspiring

I walk away every month not only inspired to put into practice what I’ve learned but also to do the same with others. That’s what we’re about — to make disciples.

The residency also has provided financial support for us as we get ready to move to the mission field in September. Being part of Send Network has also provided a way for us to receive some financial support as well as practical training.

DOWNLOAD >> Residency Quick-Start Guide: 10 steps to raising up missional leaders in your church.

Published May 5, 2021