Partner in the Antioch Initiative
Don Myers (M.S., M.A., M. Div. equivalency) is pictured here with his wife, Judy. He has served as the preacher of Elmore Church of Christ in Elmore, Alabama for the last three and one-half years, which brings his preaching experience to nearly forty years. He has been an assistant professor of the V. P. Black College of Biblical Studies since January 2003. Having recently been awarded Master of Divinity equivalency through Liberty University in Lynchburg, VA, he has been accepted into the Doctor of Ministry program in that same university on the educational track of Evangelism and Church Planting. Following the successful completion of two courses in which he is presently enrolled, he will have six additional courses and a thesis project in order to finish his degree. He plans to write his thesis on some approved topic relating to his partnership with fellow Christians in planting churches nationwide. He credits God through the encouragements of President Billy Hilyer, Dr. Scott Gleaves and Dr. Mari Johns in cooperation with his Elmore church elders as those who have provided the opportunity for him to pursue this degree.
Don works with a team of other Christians from around the country under the banner of The Antioch Initiative—modeled on Pauline methodology of mission. The slogan of this initiative is taking the nation back by taking Jesus to the nation. The initial aim of The Antioch Initiative is to plant germinal congregations in Northeastern, PA in four adjacent counties, which do not have congregations of the church of Christ—namely Bradford, Susquehanna, Sullivan and Wyoming Counties. The Antioch Initiative team aims at planting churches, which, in turn, will be mentored to plant other germinal churches from the first day of their inception and taught by design to be self-supporting, self-propagating, self-leading, and self-theologizing as a result of being grounded in the faith through the disciple-mentoring of messengers mighty in the Scriptures, sterling of character and committed to Pauline methods.
Those four neglected counties noted have a combined population of 145,000 people. The first of these congregations is to be launched on Sunday, October 19, 2014 in Bradford County, PA under the guidance of Arthur Barry (newly acquired evangelist). The congregation will be launched in conjunction with an October 19 – 26th gospel campaign directed by Clarence McDowell (former PA church-planter); Larry Krause (preacher, Kittanning, PA); and, Jimmy Davis (elder, Elmore, AL) and assisted by brothers and sisters of Northeastern PA and Southeastern NY. Although the congregation will be situated in Sayre, PA, the newly launched Valley Cities Church of Christ will seek the evangelization of the 14,500 residents of Sayre & Athens, PA & Waverly, NY as well as souls in twenty-nine towns and commonwealths within a thirty-mile radius. The tri-town area is called Valley Cities and serves as the hub of that region having the Guthrie Robert Packer Hospital as its major industry. For more on the history of The Antioch Initiative, visit aicoc.org.
The potential for economic growth of this region is based on the industries attendant to the natural resource potential of the Marcellus Slate moving Allan Morningstar (supervisor of one of those linked industries and former elder of the church) to comment, “This industry should insure the growth of this region for the next three generations.” Demand for housing has far outdistanced supply driving up housing costs by 200%. Drillers and other professionals are coming into Valley Cities from various parts of the U.S., including Texas, Arkansas and Oklahoma. One can imagine members of the churches of Christ being among them.
While the congregation in Valley Cities begins its early development in Sayre, PA, Don will be traveling to various brotherhood institutions recruiting evangelists for future church plants. Beyond the four church-plants in Northeastern, PA, his team plans to continue church planting through the remainder of their lives with continued mentoring of those who will carry on until the Lord returns. A part of their master plan is the recruiting of visionary elderships in various parts of the U.S. who might be inspired to multiple church-plant in other parts of our country. Without any thought of violating church autonomy, Don commented, “I can visualize annual meetings of elders, missionaries, preachers, teachers and engaged Christians gathering to pray thrilling in a growing community of spiritual warriors fresh from the trenches of spiritual warfare and engaging in the stories of God’s blessings in the various multiple church planting endeavors nationwide leading to the gaining of insights which hold promise to accelerate everyone’s effectiveness in the future!”
Don has been blessed to work with partners in the planting of a church in Xi’an, China and in the preliminaries of a church plant in Richmond, Jamaica over the last year. At every opportunity, he will seek to interface Faulkner students in these efforts praying that a spark will be ignited in their souls to pursue the study and employment of Pauline methodology in preaching God’s gospel of grace, making disciples who can disciple others and in planting germinal congregations.
Don puts his complete trust in Jesus Christ as the Son of God who offered himself for the sins of the world having received remission of sins as a repentant baptized believer in 1973.
The Power to be Good by Don Myers