As part of Vision 2030, staff around Los Angeles gather to build regional vision and synergy
There’s no place quite like Los Angeles, California. Flush with remarkable diversity, fraught with vast ethnic and class disparities, and fertile for movements of the Holy Spirit, the region tells a redemptive story of God. This month, Servant Partners staff from the Los Angeles region gathered to build one another up, share stories, and reflect on the work of God throughout the region.
“We’re not here to fix every injustice, but we are a part of God righting wrongs in this city in the here and now,” SP Lincoln Heights staff Thomas Irwin shared. “When local public health systems failed to reach our neighbourhoods with COVID-19 vaccines, the trusted presence our church had established enabled us to bridge the gap by hosting six vaccine clinics and times of healing prayer for neighbours. These clinics helped us fully engage our community’s practical and spiritual needs.”
Servant Partners Regional Gatherings are part of the Vision 2030 campaign, meant to build effectiveness at the regional level by encouraging staff and local leaders, and cultivating synergy to share in the collective fruit, challenges, and wisdom of their various local ministries. From these gatherings, Servant Partners hopes to see the formation of regional strategy and capacity for community-building and leadership-development.
"We’re not here to fix every injustice, but we are a part of God righting wrongs in this city in the here and now."
“We’re here for RISK: Restoration, Inspiration, Strength for the journey, and Connection,” SP Director of Diversity Kevin Blue explained at the outset of the gathering. He went on to describe three ways that Servant Partners is shaped by and shaping the story of the Los Angeles region: evangelism, multiethnicity, and just systems.
Los Angeles is the birthplace of movements of the Holy Spirit like the Azusa Street Revival, which launched the Pentecostal movement throughout the world. Servant Partners itself began in Los Angeles in 1993, and focuses on creating Jesus-centered spiritual communities. Many people have come to faith in Jesus through SP partner sites in Lincoln Heights (New Life Community Church) and East Los Angeles (Hope Community Church).
Home to 4 million people from more than 140 countries and speaking 224 languages, the city of Los Angeles is one of the most diverse places in the world. Servant Partners believes in diverse ministry teams reaching diverse neighborhoods. The SP partner site in South Los Angeles (The Church of the Redeemer) has been a beacon of God’s multiethnic Kingdom by living out ethnic and class reconciliation and justice.
Under its vast inequalities, the region also relegates many communities to suffer systematic and concentrated poverty. Servant Partners’ 8th Sign of a Transforming Community involves creating systems that work for marginalized neighbours. Servant Partners staff at LA sites, working in partnership and prayer with their neighbours and local organizations, have seen God close a neighbourhood oil drilling site, provide tax rebates to undocumented residents, make life-saving vaccinations accessible, provide millions of dollars for parks and trees, and bring police reform.
While the story of Los Angeles is special, the story of God is unique and beautiful in every place and region. As Servant Partners Regional Gatherings take place throughout this coming year, staff and local leaders can gather in their own regions to empower one another. You can support this effort by giving to our Vision 2030 campaign at www.servantpartners.org/vision2030.