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2013 Annie Armstrong Easter Offering
WESTERN REGION (NAMB)—A new home, new position, new ministry and new outlook came to Lorna Bius in the summer of 2012. But there was something oddly familiar about it all. Something in a childhood memory—forgotten for years—brought back the realization that Bius had seen this before.
“I’m discovering that sometimes people need to experience LoveLoud ministry for a while before they recognize it,” says Bius, 2013 North American Mission Board Week of Prayer missionary. “It was true in my life.”
Bius, the first LoveLoud catalyst appointed by the NAMB, moved from Nevada to Colorado to give leadership for the effort in the West Region for NAMB. LoveLoud is a movement of churches demonstrating God’s love by meeting significant human need while sharing Christ.
“I only realized a couple of years ago that I first witnessed LoveLoud when I was a child,” says Bius. “It started with my dad. When I was young, in early grade school, my dad took me with him on an errand. We drove into a neighborhood that I was unfamiliar with. He stopped in front of an old dilapidated house.” The memory of what happened next reawakened Bius’ understanding of LoveLoud.
“My dad went to the trunk and took out two grocery bags, one in each arm,” says Bius. “He went to the door—it only had steps, no porch. When he knocked an older woman answered. She pulled back the screen door and my dad disappeared inside. A few moments later he came back out without the bags. He never said a thing about what he did. He showed me. I had forgotten about that day until the memory came back to me a couple of years ago. I realize now that was the first time I saw LoveLoud in action.”
Now Bius hopes to multiply LoveLoud across the region. She will help discover churches that are already engaging in similar ministries, with the goal of replicated them contextually for other churches. Bius began networking almost immediately after her move.
“I’ve been able to follow up with people I met at the Send North America Conference and the Colorado convention annual meeting,” says Bius. The Send North America Conference is NAMB’s gathering for church planting and mobilization. “I’ve also connected with people whose churches have been featured in state newspapers. I tell them I saw them in the paper and am interested in how their strategies are working.
In addition to her new church family, Bius also has interaction with the Send North America: Denver team. Denver city coordinator Dave Howeth connected Bius with the group quickly. Denver is one of nine Send North America cities in the West region.
“Dave has been great,” says Bius. “I’m so thankful that he brought me on board and helped me get established. I’ve made some good initial connections. Being in Denver is great. Twitter has been helpful, and I’m engaged in informal field research.”
Bius isn’t the only newbie with the LoveLoud team. She was on a conference call recently with new LoveLoud team leader Jerry Daniel and the newest LoveLoud catalyst, Taylor Field.
“It was a brief conversation, but I’m excited about what Jerry and Taylor bring to LoveLoud,” says Bius. “Taylor will help church planters visualize a day-to-day strategy that not only connects with their communities, but will help them discover how they can transform their neighborhoods and reach into peoples’ lives.
“Taylor said one thing that resonated with me, and I will be using it everywhere I have the opportunity to speak. He said we need to, ‘Teach our people to be light, not lightning.’ We need to be there, not with just the quick strike, but for the long term. As Jerry and Al [Gilbert] say, we are called to be a faithful presence of ministry so we can tell people about Christ when they ask why we care.” Field is founding pastor of Graffiti Church in New York. Gilbert is NAMB’s interim vice president for evangelism.
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