At the delegates’ luncheon at Celebrate06, John McIntosh (Simi Valley, CA) was elected Second Moderator-Elect of the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches (FGBC), which means he will be moderator of the FGBC for the year following Jim Brown. Tim Boal is moderator 2006-2006, Jim Brown will be 2007-2008, and McIntosh will be moderator 2008-2009.
Larry Humberd (Lehigh Valley, Bethlehem, PA) was elected to Fellowship Council from the east, Ron Smals (Mansfield, OH, Woodville) from the central region, and Phil Sparling (Auburn, CA)from the west.
John McIntosh has been the senior pastor of the Grace Brethren of Simi Valley, California, since 1983.
As senior and teaching pastor, John is committed to God’s Word and ministers by the motto, “the Bible, the whole Bible and nothing but the Bible.” A pastor for more than 30 years, John came to Grace Brethren from Mabton, Washington.
Earlier he had served in his hometown of Sunnyside, Washington. He was drawn to the increased opportunity for ministry in the Southern California area and wanted to experience the sufficiency of God’s grace in a fast-paced environment. He supervises a staff that touches the lives of hundreds of families in the community.
John received his Bachelors and Masters of Divinity degrees from Grace College and Grace Theological Seminary. Awarded the “Pastor of the Year” in 2004 by the National Association of Grace Brethren Ministers, John currently serves on the Board of Directors of Grace College and Seminary in Winona Lake, Indiana.
Throughout his ministry, John has also served on several district and national boards for the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches. John and his wife, Carolyn, were married in 1968 and have three married children and nine grandchildren. In his spare time he enjoys spending time with his family, golf, fly-fishing, and riding his Harley with friends.
Asked about his vision for the FGBC, McIntosh said, “The church of tomorrow stands or falls with the willingness of pastors and church leaders to train and mobilize their successors today. Church leadership has got to be willing to empower and release young men and women into productive ministry. When the power people in the church are driven by what they need to do to protect and expand their own influence, the church begins to die.”
What Does a Moderator Do?
Paul put it this way when he wrote to Timothy …”entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also” (II Timothy 2:2). Pastors must give priority attention to the leaders and influencers in his congregation. These are the faithful, available, and teachable folks. Effective training must be given to skills in service, teaching and evangelism. Equip ’09 will be a program that helps pastors and elders identify these people and constructively help train them to be the leaders in the church of tomorrow.”
The moderator of the FGBC serves in the long and significant tradition of men who play a key role in advancing the Grace Brethren movement. This tradition is of a leader who:
· Has a strong commitment to the Word.
· Models a passion for telling people about Jesus.
· Values relationships with fellow pastors and churches.
· Has a strong vision for the future of the Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches.
His reputation in the FGBC and vision for the FGBC serves as both a model and a motivation as we look to the future.
The Fellowship of Grace Brethren Churches is a volunteer association of local churches that join together to “to encourage and enable member churches in equipping and uniting the saints in fulfilling the Great Commission (FGBC Constitution).”
The FGBC values biblical relationships, mission and truth over structure. However, this association is a legal corporation with a board of directors called the “Fellowship Council.” The constitutional role is the FGBC moderator is to:
· Serve on the Fellowship Council for four years
· Chair the Fellowship Council in the third year of that term.
· Chair an annual meeting of delegates from member churches.
· Deliver a “moderator’s address” at the annual conference of the FGBC.
· Serve as the legal president of the corporation during his year as moderator.