In fact, for Mark O. Wilson, pastor of Hayward Wesleyan Church in northern Wisconsin, his measure of success is how well his community serves the greater community. Mark, a pastor, author, and blogger, began ministry with 60 people in the church. 21 years later, in this town of 2,000, more than half go to his church.
Hear how God’s gift of self sacrifice has helped this congregation reach out and change their town.
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Mark O. Wilson is not only concerned with his faith community, but with the greater community. This is where he gives credit for the amazing growth his congregation has seen. Here are my notes from the interview:
It Starts with Prayer
Mark is not shy about crediting his congregation’s growth with an emphasis on personal and communal prayer. ‘Less email, more knee-mail’ – ‘Less Facebook, more Face-in-the-Book’ – are his quips that serve to remind church leaders of the importance of constant connection with God.
Growth = Sacrifice
The greatest growth Mark’s congregation has seen is in its multiplication – starting/reinvigorating 4 other congregations. He says it happens when the people make the sacrifice to leave the comfort of the big church for the unsteadiness of a smaller one.
Preach From Your Quiet Time
Preparing for Sunday means an entire week immersed in the upcoming text. Mark says you can’t preach what’s not in you, in what ways do you allow the text you’re to preach on to change your life?
About Mark O. Wilson
Mark O. Wilson has served as senior pastor of Hayward Wesleyan Church, a thriving, missional congregation in Wisconsin’s northwoods, for 21 years. He is the author of Filled Up, Poured Out: How God’s Spirit Can Revive Your Passion and Purpose, and his writings have appeared in many publications including Rev! and Leadership Journal. Mark’s passion is encouraging pastors – especially those who serve in rural settings, and he blogs at www.revitalizeyourchurch.blogspot.com. He and his wife, Cathy, have five children.
Sponsors I Mentioned
Are you headed to the Wild Goose festival? Thousands of campers are headed to the beautiful hills of North Carolina June 21-24. Wild Goose is a festival at the intersection of justice, spirituality, and art. Some of this year’s guests are Jim Wallis, Brian McLaren, and Shane Claiborne. ChurchNext is a proud sponsor – find out more at wildgoosefestival.org