GBCanada USA has re-branded as Assist and broadened its mandate to include church expansion across the USA, according to an email announcement sent Monday afternoon.
GBCanada USA has been the church-planting mission agency working in Canada for the last 20 years developing churches for the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches (FGBC). This change comes as Go2 Ministries – the FGBC’s former national ministry for church planting in the USA – has wound down its operations. The leadership of GBCanada feared that the movement might cease to exist in future years if new churches aren’t being started. With that motivation, they decided to broaden the mandate of GBCanada to include the USA.
Nathan Bryant, the executive director of GBCanada USA, spent seven months consulting with numerous pastors and leaders across the FGBC to develop a plan for a new organization to plant churches in the USA. In February 2017, the GBCanada USA board approved that proposal and decided to restructure the board, change the name, and broaden the mandate.
“We believe that churches and leaders expand a movement, not organizations. Organizations can help, catalyze, support and resource… they can assist. That is why we chose the name Assist,” said Bryant, who continues to lead the organization.
In March of 2017, a group of FGBC pastors and leaders approved the proposal and direction. By May of 2017, the new board was formed with Dennis Fay, Bartley Sawatsky, and Tim Farrant. The Canadian division of the ministry will continue to pursue church expansion in Canada under the name Assist Canada.
In June of 2017, the board approved three new project proposals, helped to secure a leader for a new Canadian project and also added an additional board member, Jeff Gill. Assist launches publicly in the month of July.
The four projects include:
Main Street Church
Main Street Church brings a relevant-Bible based and gospel focused church to the thriving community of Chelsea, Michigan. The team is in preparation for the public launch in September 2017.
Grace Fellowship Church
In January of 2017, Scott and Jennifer Avey were sent along with five other families to begin a gospel community in Brunswick, Maryland. Their first night of Bible study had a turnout of 40 people!
Three Creeks Church
Movement Church (Hilliard, Ohio) and Encounter Church (Dublin, Ohio) are partnering to send Three Creeks Church led by Joel and Morgan Trainer to Gahanna, Ohio with a launch date set for February 2018.
The multisite Renew Church continues to grow! Erik and Austen Jensen have joined the team to launch Renew’s fourth campus in Fall 2018 in Cambridge, Ontario just west of the Greater Toronto Area.
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