Dr. Carl Williamson (professor of discipleship and church planting at Harding University) and Matt Carter talk about ministry during communal trauma. Carl was leading a church plant when Superstorm Sandy devastated his community. He shares insight from that community trauma that can help ministers serving now during the Coronavirus pandemic.
- Don’t underestimate the power and importance of prayer!
- A small church in the hand of God can do great things!
- Work in unity with other local people to bless the community. Crisis can bring Christians and non-Christians together in ways that benefit the kingdom.
- There should be a kingdom intentionality about what we do. All of us Christians participate in that work of the kingdom.
- Around 21:30 – Carl shares how he handled his own trauma while helping others with their trauma. This is powerful.
- Remind yourself that you need to be a good spouse and parent.
- Utilize your appropriate emotions or you’ll utilize inappropriate ones. Let yourself be sad for all of these losses.
- Use the resources God has given you for the sake of the kingdom. Ask what is the unique mission that God has given our congregation to make kingdom decisions about how we use the resources God has given us (whether little or much).
- 2 Corinthians 9.13 – when the church models kingdom giving, church members and even outsiders are moved to give and pray.
- As ministers, we are first responders, and like nurses, we are figuring out new ways to be first responders in this difficult situation.
Dr. Carl Williamson (M.Div. and D.Min. from HST) served as a church-planting missionary to New Jersey from 2004 to 2017. During that time he helped plant two churches. Carl teaches classes on Discipleship and works with team formation to encourage Church Planting and Evangelism. In the 2018-2019 school year Carl and his family served as the missionaries in residence at Harding University and he now serves as the Distinguished Andy T. Ritchie Chair for Discipleship and Church Planting at Harding University.
Dr. Matt Carter serves as Director of Admissions at HST. He spent many years in campus ministry before coming to the school. Matt’s current research focuses on the area of spiritual gifts and how churches can help Christians find their fit in the congregation. See the One Body Workshop website for more information.
Harding School of Theology, a graduate school of theology (seminary) in Memphis, TN, has been equipping ministers since 1958. Accredited by the Association of Theological Schools, and offering degree programs at the master’s and doctoral levels, HST equips Christian leaders to higher standards of ministry scholarship and challenges them to a deeper faith in God. Combining academic rigor and interpersonal connections, HST emphasizes student engagement in ministry as they study. HST is associated with Churches of Christ, is part of the Stone-Campbell Movement, and is part of Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas.