Training for Multiethnic Church Planting Scheduled in February

NASHVILLE, Tenn. Jan. 26, 2015 /Discipleship Ministries/ – Training to help congregations learn how to become successful multiethnic places of worship and to help church planters establish new multiethnic churches will be provided at a special two-day program next month in Texas.

The Multiethnic Church Planting Training is designed for church planters, potential planters, conference leaders, and church leaders in transitioning neighborhoods. It will be hosted Feb. 25-26 in San Antonio by New Church Starts (Path 1), a division of Discipleship Ministries.

“There is a huge demographic shift in the United States with ethnic groups becoming a larger and larger part of our nation, and we’re seeing some churches become more multiethnic,” said Samuel Rodriguez, Director of Hispanic, Latino and Multiethnic New Church Starts at Discipleship Ministries. “We realized that we weren't providing any kind of training for United Methodist Churches in the area of multiethnic ministries.”

In addition to the training, the event is an opportunity for networking and focused conversation for anyone interested or involved in multiethnic church planting.

“This will be a great resource for United Methodist Churches that are looking at becoming more ethnically diverse as a viable strategy to involve more people in the church,” Rodriquez said.

A. Brian Leander, assistant director of the Long Island Center for Nonprofit Leadership at Adelphi University in Garden City, N.Y., will share his experiences preparing leaders for cross-cultural ministry. Leander previously served as Organizational Strategist with the Church Resource Ministries ReFocusing Team where he specialized in training, coaching and developing leaders for cross-cultural ministry.

Two possible church planting models will be discussed during workshops led by Dr. Mark DeYmaz, pastor and directional leader of Mosaic Church of Central Arkansas, based in Little Rock, and the eRev. Chip Freed, lead pastor at Garfield Memorial United Methodist Church, which has campuses in the Cleveland, Ohio, suburbs of Pepper Pike and South Euclid.

DeYmaz was called in 2001 to plant Mosaic Church. It is now a multisite church with campuses in Little Rock and Conway, Ark., Durham, N.C., and La Coruna, Spain, where individuals from some 30 nations now walk, work and worship God together as one.

A corporate chief executive officer prior to entering the ministry, Freed served other congregations and was a District Superintendent before going to lead Garfield, which is one of the most multiethnic, economically diverse churches in Ohio.

Registration for event at the Wyndham San Antonio Riverwalk hotel is $250 and includes lunch for both days. A special hotel rate is available until Feb. 1. For more informationor to register for the event, go to