Practicing our Serve

  And Jesus called them to him and said to them, “You know that those who are considered rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them.  But it shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever […]

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Review of Alan Johnson’s “Apostolic Function in 21st Century Missions”

Those who are interested in grappling with Christ’s command in Matthew 28:19 to make disciples of all ethne and how obedience to that command should look in the current, global realities of 21stcentury missions should take the time to read Alan Johnson’s “Apostolic Function in 21stCentury Missions”. Dr. Johnson is […]

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Transforming students into educators by the Holy Spirit

by Mike Peterson Where are our students today? Perhaps most of them are involved in ministry, but are they really educating (discipling) their disciples? Are we, as educators, adequately developing educators? Educators (leaders) must have a radical commitment to the discipleship process. Our role is to assist each student to […]

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The Value of Relationships

by Allen Martin, In my 30 year career as a missionary I have been blessed to have made a good number of friends along the way. As a child I was not very outgoing and did not really have a great number of friends. However, the friends that I made […]

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In memory of our friend and colleague, Mark Smith

In this month’s bulletin, we remember our friend and colleague, Mark Smith. On June 7th he was unexpectedly called away to the Lord’s presence. While we mourn his loss, and our hearts go out to his wife Sandra and their four children Rachelle, Naomi, Caleb, and Ashley, we celebrate the […]

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Advocates for education and training

Everyone has issues that they care about. There are many global issues – social, economic, political or environmental – that could be of concern. Some are more important than others. For some we may chose a side; for others we just stay silent. Yet, for some we may take a […]

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Missionary Formation

Missionary Formation , Jay Dickerson For the past several years the LAC leadership team has felt the need to improve the missionary formation for new workers approved to serve in the region. There was concern over the experience and education that the new workers possessed before their approval and the […]

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Make Disciple-makers… A Look at Teaching through Four Missionary Lenses

by Rod Boyd The ACLAME ministry began many years ago to help missionaries involved in teaching and training ministries. Several missionaries who we saw involved in such ministries told us that they were not educators.   It is true that the title educator can be intimidating and many feel that they […]

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The Harvest Demands Trained Workers

The Harvest Demands Trained Workers, by David Ellis “Then he said to his disciples, ‘The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest’.” (Matthew 9:37,38) As we begin a new year I am filled with excitement at what […]

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Added Value

The turning of the calendar from one year to the next, brings with it the opportunity to reflect on the past as well as cast vision and set goals for the future. As it is with any individual so it has been for ACLAME as an organization. The 10 missionary […]

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LAC/OARS Mentoring

LAC/OARS Mentoring by Don Cartledge, LAC mentoring coordinator & Jay Hostetler, director of Ministry Wave Coaching and Consulting for Ministry Leaders Long before the age of automobiles and superhighways, boats and rivers provided the main means of transportation. In choosing an analogy for the LAC mentoring program, rivers seem to […]

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Vitality of Pentecostalism in Latin America

by A. Max Rivera, D. Min. The assumption about Latin America that claims everyone is born into the Roman Catholic Church is no longer valid. The last 60 years have found the religious landscape reshaped in that part of the world. José Luis Pérez, a prominent lay leader of the Roman Catholic Church […]

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Arise Mighty Army: Pentecostal Discipleship

  The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines the word Arise-to get up or stand up: to get up from sleep or after lying down: to move upward. Is it possible that the mighty army of God is scattered amongst the pews of the churches around the LAC, arms crossed, ignoring the Great […]

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10 Tips to Teach Tech-Connected Ministry Students

10 Tips to Teach Tech-Connected Ministry Students by Jon Dahlager For the last 17 it has been an honor to invest in the next generation through ministry training in the Assemblies of God Bible Institute – now called Theological Seminary – in San José, Costa Rica. We have watched the […]

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Our Own Recalibration

by David Godzwa Life lends itself to a certain routine. Nature has its seasons: spring, summer, fall and winter. Communities come together at prescribed dates to celebrate, to worship, and to remember. Individuals search for balance and productivity through rituals and habits. When things function well, there’s benefit. For the […]

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Dusty Bibles Lead to Dirty Lives and Other Consequences

by Roberta Roberts Biblical Illiteracy In the June-July issue of Influence magazine, the sub-title of an article caught my attention, “Biblical illiteracy is epidemic. Are we reclaiming our responsibility to rightly divide the Word of God?” This reminded me of a recent conversation that I had with one of the […]

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Supernatural Discipleship

by Tara Kenyon As ministers, educators, and leaders, we frequently utilize the terms “mentoring” and “discipleship” somewhat interchangeably to describe the activity of sharing spiritual wisdom or information gleaned through study and experience. In secular contexts, mentoring describes the exchange of practical life information and situational wisdom. Mentoring may or […]

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2017 ACLAME Summit Report

  Thirty missionaries, representing 10 countries, gathered together at the Doubletree Airport Hotel in Orlando, Florida from May 10th through the 12th to celebrate the 2017 Association of Caribbean and Latin America Missionary Educators (ACLAME) Summit. This year’s theme was “Recalibrate” with the goal of reassessing the state of ministerial formation […]

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Starting from Scratch: Confessions of a Freshman Missionary

Starting from Scratch: Confessions of a Freshman Missionary By Jeremiah Campbell Have you ever started a ministry from scratch only to see it fall on its face? Have you ever invested your heart and soul into a ministry only to see it fizzle into nearly nothing? I am sure you […]

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Paradigm Shift in Teaching

Paradigm Shift in Teaching by Murriell McCulley Rethinking our Teaching Teaching was an important activity of life throughout the Bible. If one makes a study of teaching in the Bible they easily discover that teaching was for living—it was to help the people know how they were to live. When […]

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A Tribute to Jim Billings

On January 16, 2017, our valued friend and mentor, Jim Billings, stepped into eternity.  His death came unexpectedly of a fatal heart attack at age 70.  It was a devastating blow to those who loved him and had the privilege of working with him down through the years. Jim, along […]

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Passing on the Love of Learning

by Maria Morales Never in history has the need to pass on the love of learning been more important than now. We live in a postmodern world of technology where information is literally at our fingertips. Where our phones and tablets have replaced our books and even Bibles. I see […]

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Approved: 2 Timothy 2:15 and the Pastoral Epistles

By Rodney Boyd, “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.” —2 Tim. 2:15 (ESV)[1] Globalization with free trade has resulted in flooding the world market with goods that raise doubts about […]

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Training indigenous pastors from oral traditions

By Efrain Figueroa   Since the early days of modern missions, there has been a trend towards training national pastors who would be the leaders of the Assemblies of God in their home countries. The largest evangelical churches owe much of their global growth to the training of national pastors. […]

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Revival of Hunger for God’s Word

by Dave Ellis Then the king sent, and all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem were gathered to him. 2 And the king went up to the house of the Lord, and with him all the men of Judah and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem and the priests and the prophets, […]

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The Essential Role of Training in Missionary Work

  The Essential Role of Training in Missionary Work By Rod and Sherry Boyd So what does a missionary do anyway? Traditionally, the missionary has been portrayed as a white man donning Bermuda shorts and a pith helmet, wielding a machete to clear a path through the jungle, taking the […]

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What kind of a teacher am I? Am I relevant, spectacular, powerful?

By Dr. Judy Bartel de Graner Jesus Christ was baptized, was acclaimed by the Father, was full of the Holy Spirit. I love Luke’s gentle words as he paints the rest of the astounding story. That same Holy Spirit then led Jesus into the desert and for the next forty […]

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Timothy and Paul: A Case Study in Spiritual Formation and Mentoring

By Dr. Jon M. Dahlager The New Testament portrait of Timothy provides a positive case study of a young man who enjoyed a rich spiritual heritage and early ministry opportunities, pursuing a sincere faith and fulfilling his God-given ministry in his generation. The apostle Paul played a key mentoring role […]

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Renewing Community Values: An Immigrant Contribution to American Higher Education

Renewing Community Values: An Immigrant Contribution to American Higher Education By Joseph L. Castleberry, President, Northwest University An Excerpt from The New Pilgrims: How Immigrants are Renewing America’s Faith and Values (Worthy, 2015) Ilona Trofimovich does not look like an immigrant. With her fair skin, blonde hair, and perfect, Northwest-accented English […]

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Teaching Cross-Culturally

As a brand new and very green missionary, having only recently arrived in the country of my calling after the typical 18 months of deputation and year of language school, I was anxious to jump with both feet into the ministry that God had called me to. Then, my area […]

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Of Mosquito Bites, Our Modern Apostle Paul and the Need for Humility

by Paul Kazim Missionaries trained in US schools are generally Christian Modernists. It would be a mistake to assume that the national students we teach view life according to these tenets of modernism. This often produces frustration, both to the teacher and to the student. To understand the difference between […]

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Towards a more complete approach to ministerial training

In our work facilitating and promoting Christian education and ministerial training we tend to emphasize academic instruction above and beyond all other elements involved in the process. The purpose of this little essay is to argue that academic instruction is but one of three vitally important factors that must be […]

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Being Your Best in 2016

  by David Godzwa, ACLAME Chairperson We’re missionaries. That means we disciple; we model; we encourage, we persuade, and we counsel. As mentor, coach, teacher, or trainer, we expect the best from our students, ministry partners, and colleagues, but also from ourselves. To reach this objective, we’re aware that stagnation […]

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Personal Testimony and Identity Formation

  Rev 12:11 They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death. (NIV) In this edition of the ACLAME Journal, I want to extol the benefits of the lowly […]

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Ministry to Children At Risk in the Slums of LAC

    by Steve Puffpaff Introduction: The amount of children at risk is multiplying around the world for many reasons. Extreme Poverty is the greatest cause of creating children at risk. Rapid urbanization in the 20th century has been accompanied by the development of slums. Children and adolescents make up […]

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Ministry Specialization Programs: Furthering LAC’s Values and Initiatives

  by Miguel Morales Latin America Caribbean (LAC) is home for over half of the more than 2,000 Assemblies of God Bible Schools and Seminaries worldwide. This is a reflection and a direct result of the emphasis placed on ministerial training in the region. Pioneer missionaries recognized the priority of […]

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Upgrading My Teaching Ability Via CEUs

  Conferences, when done well, provide inspiration, information and personal improvement. Within the past three weeks I have attended two conferences that exceeded expectations in all three areas. The first was the Educators Summit in the Dominican Republic, which provided for 260+ (mostly) Dominicans, and the last was the American […]

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First Day of Class: Suggestions to maximize instructional efficacy

Wow, a new school year is poised to launch, and I find myself wondering what the first day of class will look like. Do I just walk in and say “hello” or do I attempt to be somewhat creative? If so, what should it look like? According to the new […]

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Ohhh…how I love Meee-tings!

“Ohhh…how I love Meee-tings!” (to the tune of “Oh, how I love Jesus”) By Mike Shields I have had the privilege of sitting through meetings with many of you.  From Mexico to Uruguay, Panama to Argentina, from Springfield to Costa Rica, I’ve gained a reputation as a real fan of […]

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Maintaining Good Health

  Maintaining Good Health By Rodney Boyd We just finished another itineration the end of June!  Only a missionary understands all the clearances that we must achieve before we’re allowed to return to our country of calling.  One of those clearances was being pronounced in “good health, able to serve […]

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ACLAME Summit 2015 Report

by David Godzwa, ACLAME Chairperson   Forty-three missionaries, representing 12 countries participated in the 2015 ACLAME Summit, which took place May 19th-21st, at the GalleryOne Hotel in Fort Lauderdale, FL. ACLAME (Association of Latin America and Caribbean Missionary Educators) exists to connect and encourage LAC missionaries as they disciple, teach, […]

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What is our focus?

by Rocky Grams What is our focus as missionary educators?  Is it merely survival?  Is it a “don’t rock the boat” goal of merely getting by, maintaining the status quo? Do we have a focus?   Does “Jack of all trades, master of none” apply to us?  Or in Spanish:  […]

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Advancing the work of the Bible School through technology

  by Stephen Wallace Technology. Whether you love or hate it, embrace it or simply tolerate it, we can all agree that technology has profoundly impacted our culture and society in ways never thought possible. Beyond the social impact in recent years, technology continues to expand into nearly ever area […]

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The Perfect Gift: Pig’s Head to Foot Washing

  by Dr. Michael Mills During my 17 years as a missionary to Ecuador, I planted many churches from the mainland to the Galapagos Islands. My first church plant, La Cruz del Valle, was in its initial stages when the time came to celebrate the first Pastor’s appreciation day. The […]

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How to improve your students writing

  by Jim Lowell How to Improve Your Students Writing Many students struggle with writing. They may be intimidated by writing and lack the confidence in what their abilities are. At Caribbean School of Theology (CST), we provide the fourth year (as does ISUM) of study for our Bible institutes […]

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Why I am registering now for the ACLAME Summit

  by David Godzwa Ok. Let’s get the obvious reason out of the way right off the bat. As a member of the Leadership Team, it’s important for me to support ACLAME sponsored events. What kind of a team player would I be if I didn’t, right? Still, my rush […]

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Successful Content Strategy

  by Judy Graner, Ph.D. “Pleeese, tell us another story.”  Their eyes widened in anticipation, sandwiches forgotten on their luncheon  plates. A couple of them searched for a kleenex to wipe away a tear.  The stories had touched their hearts.  These were not my nieces and nephews sitting around Aunt […]

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Mystery Country: 75 Years of Ministerial Education

  by Larry McNeill, D. Min. LAC Leadership Development Which country of Latin America/Caribbean is celebrating 75 years of theological education this year? Due to circumstances beyond their control, for 35 consecutive years, they labored through untold hardships as they continued to train pastors without any help or influence of […]

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Conquering the Dreaded Monografía: Ten ways teachers can help their students

by Jon Dahlager, D.Min. San José played host to ISUM Seminar III in the month of May 2014, and I got to teach the dreaded monografía—research paper writing—class during the whole month. We used SEC’s excellent new Guía de estilo de monografías y tesis (the Guía) as a text, and […]

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Assessment: A Key to Institutional Credibility

Article submitted by: Joseph Castleberry, Ed.D. President, Northwest University AGWM Educator, 1988-2008   No issue plays a larger role in the accrediting of academic institutions and programs than assessment.  Although schools employ many different approaches to assessment, all credible institutions take it very seriously, and no institution can ever hope […]

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The Vital Ministry of the “Facultad de Teología”

by Allen Martin, M.A., President of “Facultad de Teología”   “It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be […]

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Biblical Theology of the Collective Call of the Church

by Paul Kazim The idea that the church has a collective call is a natural response to missio dei. God has always had a mission and He has called the church to participate in the accomplishment of His purpose. That is, God calls the church as a body to fulfill […]

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Faith & Action – a vital tool for the Santiago Children’s Outreach Center

By Jim Mazurek Back in 1995, my wife Ester founded a children’s outreach clown ministry in Chile, known in Spanish as El Mundo del Amigo Invisible.  Since then, the ministry has grown in many ways, developing music, television, hot lunches, remedial education, rescue from trafficking, and foster care programs. Today […]

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Assemblies of God Hispanic Fellowship – Expanding Horizons for Ministerial Training

by Rod Boyd Last month the two Assemblies of God international organizations of Spanish-speaking countries – CELAD (northern 14 countries) and CADSA (southern 6 countries) – merged into the newly formed Assemblies of God Hispanic Fellowship.  Actually, the decision to unify CELAD and CADSA was made by the two organizations […]

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Teaching 20th Century Students in the 21st Century

by Jason & Roberta Roberts Technology has advanced so quickly in the last few decades that is overwhelming at times. Trying to keep computers running with the most current upgrades and keeping programs up-to-date as well seems like an endless battle; yet doing many daily activities like reading the Bible […]

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The Need to Read

by Bill Shrader In March of 2012, author David Toscana wrote an Op-Ed piece for the New York Times, entitled “The Country that Stopped Reading.” It is an insightful indictment against the state of education in Mexico and a plea to read books. Toscana states, “The proportion of the Mexican […]

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Introducing the verbal gifts of the Holy Spirit to the 21st Century

By Steven H Puffpaff Introduction The story of King Jehoshaphat going to battle with the Moabites, Ammonites, and Meunites is intriguing (2 Chron. 20:1-29). Jehoshaphat faces a huge army, which came to remove the nation of Israel from its land. The invaders expected to settle in the land. They brought their […]

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A Cause for Satisfaction

A Cause for Satisfaction by David Godzwa, Missionary to Mexico and ACLAME Chairperson I couldn’t help but smile as over 350 educators, missionaries and Mexicans alike, descended on Cancun for the “Cumbre Educativa 2013: Formación Ministerial Transgeneracional (Educational Summit 2013: Transgenerational Ministry Formation).” It took a coordinated international effort that […]

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ACLAME: “The Strategic Importance of Sound Doctrine”

By Richard Nicholson, Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean 2 Corinthians 10:4-6 (NIV): 4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. 5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against […]

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The awareness, prevention and possible intervention of Child Sexual Abuse

Gilbert and Virginia Contreras are AGWM missionaries to Argentina.  Their vision is to reach, equip, train and empower tomorrow´s church leaders to obey the Great Commission.  They equip the future generation of Argentine pastors and thus mobilize the national church to take seriously the command of Jesus of making disciples […]

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If I can do it anybody can!!

I told Roberto I had seen such a growth in him in the past four years. He was not the best student, obviously not much of a reader or scholar. But over time his grades improved. His self confidence grew. He learned how to organize. He said “ I have learned how to learn.”

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ACLAME and the Challenge of Majority World Missions

  ACLAME and the Challenge of Majority World Missions[1] by DeLonn Rance In 1968 David Kensinger, missionary to Costa Rica, challenged his North American colleagues arguing that to fully plant a New Testament church following the indigenous principles, the ultimate objective had to be to plant a national church which […]

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Five lessons I learned teaching ISUM

By Rod Boyd, Coordinator for SEC (Servicio de Educación Cristiana) for Spanish-speaking Latin America and Director of the Resource and Advisory Center in Panama. I just finished teaching the ISUM two-week intensive course on Principles of Administration to a group of 28 pastors and ministry leaders in Barquisimeto, Venezuela.  Most of […]

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Until we all attain to the Unity of the Faith

As a missionary who is also the director of a Bible Institute, from time to time I ask myself the question of whether or not I should be directing a national work.  Should I be the one doing this job or should I allow the nationals to assume these reins […]

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Teaching for Transferability

Teachers spend many hours planning lessons for the classroom. They make outlines, note main points and construct their lectures to be sure they “tell” the students all the important information assuming that the students will diligently take notes and learn the material. To determine if the students learn the material the teachers plan well written examinations. So what? After the exam what then? What becomes of the learning? Will the students remember the material? Should the students remember the material? What was the purpose for teaching? Whoever thinks about after the class—what then?

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Five words that should impact our training ministries

If you are like me, you love a good book. Not only that, you probably enjoy recommending good books to others. Let me do just that for you today. Tim Elmore has written an excellent work called “Artificial Maturity”, a book dedicated to assisting educational leaders in understanding the challenges […]

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Taking our students to Galilee

           My first opportunity to preach in big church came when I was seventeen years old. I sat with my pastor in his office shaking in an oversized sports coat while leafing through the message notes. My pastor looked at me with a father’s gaze and […]

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In Sync—2013 ACLAME Summit

AGWM Missionaries from the Latin America/ Caribbean region will be meeting together for the 2013 ACLAME Summit. The ACLAME Leadership Team invites you to attend! ACLAME, the Association of Caribbean and Latin American Missionary Educators, exists to connect and encourage LA/C missionaries as they disciple, teach, mentor and train others […]

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Theological Education for the Indigenous

I have been asked on numerous occasions how one goes about training and equipping Indian leaders to lead the church. I would like to address that topic in this article. Upon our arrival in Ecuador in early 1992 we were tasked with the challenge of beginning the Assemblies of God […]

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Pastors’ Kids in Latin America: An Investigation into the Advantages and Disadvantages of the PK Experience

Introduction Pastors’ Kids (PKs) are some of the most visible, talented, and criticized young people in the church. Specialized ministry for PKs can help them overcome some of the challenges of being raised in the church spotlight, but it must be built on an accurate understanding of how the young […]

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SEC publishes a new style guide for term papers for all our Spanish-language LAC training ministries

All who have read Jenkins’ The Next Christendom: The Coming of Global Christianity, know that the center of gravity of the Evangelical and Pentecostal world is no longer in the northern hemisphere, but has shifted to Latin America and Africa. This single fact is undoubtedly a huge (if not the […]

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What is a Theology of Childhood?

I would like to challenge my colleagues in Christian Education to help me ponder the question: “What is a Theology of Childhood?” This is undoubtedly the question that continued baffling the minds of the apostles after Jesus placed a child in their midst to resolve a theological argument they were […]

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The Debacle of Lot’s Daughters: Consequences of a Collapsed Worldview

A worldview is more than just seeing the world. It is the conceptual framework through which one views the world, no matter where the person who holds it has traveled or lived. When people do not have a coherent worldview, they compartmentalize their lives and separate their spiritual life from other elements of life. Even ministers of the Gospel can find themselves living one way at church and another way at home. A unified, coherent worldview ought to guide our thinking about all things.

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The Missional Church and transformational education

In this month’s post, we are pleased to have guest contributor Virginia Contreras, missionary to Argentina, share an article she has written for the “Commission on Student Ministries”. Though longer than the usual posts on the ACLAME blog, we encourage you to take a few extra minutes to read this […]

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“Live Dead”, “Global Initiative”, and ACLAME?

“Live Dead”? What does that mean? Global Initiative? UPG? What does the Arab World and East Africa have to do with ACLAME, or with me, an LAC missionary educator? Why would I, a Bible School teacher and professor of ISUM, want to look up these internet sites and study about teams going out to pioneer missions among those that have never heard of Jesus? Does God still call some to renounce their lives and go, no matter what the cost? In other words, to “Live Dead”? What does LAC have to do with missionaries that are willing to die for Jesus in lands where the church does not exist? What is my involvement with those who will go where “the conditions are harsh, fierce and lonely”?

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Teach Us To Pray

When students want to imitate the way you communicate with God and abide in His presence, it means they are being impacted by your relationship with God.

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The Shovel-Ready Kingdom

I just started teaching on the gifts of the Spirit. This week I walked my congregation through Romans 12:6-8, the gist of which could be summarized in the Nike slogan: “Just do it!” Someone commented the next day that what I really need for the congregation is a good cattle prod, but I seriously doubt that my church would tolerate that kind of motivation from its pastor.

But what will it take? The kingdom of God offers “shovel ready” opportunities for God’s people.

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Access for the Indigenous

What prevents indigenous learners from access to pastoral education? How can we bridge the gap so they can succeed?

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Ready for an Adventure!

You’ve been asked to teach a class in the Bible Institute. It may be enough additional stress to have you looking for a life-vest, ready to jump ship. Hang on. Take a deep breath. There’s help.

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Teamwork, Education and Missionaries

Do you remember that little chorus that we learned in Sunday school?
When we all pull together, together, together,
When we all pull together how happy we’ll be!
For your work is my work and our work is God’s work,
When we all pull together how happy we’ll be!

TEAMWORK, according to Merriam Webster, is “work done by several associates with each doing a part but all subordinating personal prominence to the efficiency of the whole.”

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Willingness to Evaluate Your Teaching

We as educators throughout LAC are constantly giving examinations. Yet, do we ever think about doing a self-examination of ourselves as teachers? As we begin this New Year, we need to stop, think, and evaluate our own teaching methods. There are some key questions we can ask ourselves. How am I doing in connecting with students? Where is my concentration in teaching? What is my ultimate goal in teaching? What methods am I using? Are there visible outcomes?

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The Gift That Keeps on Giving

The gift of teaching God’s Word and training laborers in the harvest is indeed a powerful one that reaches into every dimension of life, bringing change deeper than any government or social program alone can do.

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Centennial Celebration of the Brazilian Assemblies of God

June 18, 2011, was a historic day for the Brazilian Assemblies of God. It marked the 100 years of the establishment of the first AG church in the country, located in the city of Belem in the northern state of Pará. In 1909 two Swedish immigrants, Gunnar Vingren and Daniel […]

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Reflections of a First-Term Missionary

As missionaries, we must not lose sight of the responsibility we have in teaching, mentoring, discipling, training, and developing ministers. We must instruct, but we must also influence, encourage, and empower others.

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The Changing Face of Ministerial Education

“Change in Latin American higher education is not optional;
the choice is to innovate or perish.”

The administrative offices of the AG University in San Salvador are more crowded than usual today.

I am here for two days of meetings with Dr. DeLonn Rance, Director of Intercultural Doctoral Studies and Chair of the Global Missions Department at AGTS. Also present is Dr. Randy Walls, Director of the External Studies Program at AGTS and two professional education evaluators from the Association of Theological Schools (ATS), the body that accredits AGTS. University leaders present are: Fernando Vásquez, President; Bob Bueno, Chairman of the Board; Orlando Cámbara, Academic Dean; Oscar Durán, Dean of the Theology Department; and others.

Over 10 years in the making, we are on the verge of launching the first …

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Word and Spirit

Those who know me well are aware of the fact that I love photography. Many of my students have given me the nickname “El Paparazzi,” since I’m often found with one (or more) of my faithful Nikon cameras hanging from my neck. I love shooting candid, spontaneous images that in one way or another capture the essence of a special moment. For me, beyond its beauty and symmetry, this image expresses very well what ministerial training should be all about… leading people into a deeper knowledge of God and His word, and consequently into a closer walk with Him. Ministerial formation is not just about sharing information and developing skillsets, important as those things are. It’s ultimately about helping people strengthen their relationship with God, so they can help others do the same.

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Life Cycles in Ministerial Training

I received an email a few days ago from a pastor of a supporting church. He reported that he is retiring and that the district and church board have agreed that the church “has run its life cycle and will be closed.” It seems sad and makes it sound normal and inevitable. People have life cycles. Do churches and organizations face an inevitable future? What about Bible schools and other ministerial training programs?

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One might generally divide education or training into various components, such as (1) personal learning through reading, online courses, or extension education of other kinds; (2) education in a classic classroom context, such as in a Bible school, university, or community college; or (3) seminars, conferences, summits, forums, symposia, boot camps, intensives, workshops, or modules that are aimed at providing specific training for individuals who wish to improve their capacity in an area of expertise. This last method gives us tools to work with and to help us reach our life goals.

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Missions In A Globalized World

“We can’t do the task alone.” “We need to partner with servant leaders of the Two-thirds world.” “The Great Commission is not just for the American church.”
Despite the fact that we Americans are such gung-ho result producers and that God has used the sons and daughters of the American church quite effectively for over a century in so many parts of the world, the challenge is just too great for us to tackle by ourselves.

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KaBoom! Goes the Classroom: Should the Internet Get Rid of You?

A new wind is blow in’ and it’s coming to a Bible School near you: Class dismissed. Everybody go home and study on line or by correspondence. Classrooms and teachers are a relic of the past. If you think this is a figment of imagination, think again. According to many […]

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Inside the Revolution

How can we explain what is happening in the Middle East today?

According to a recent article in Christianity Today, Muslims and Christians were demonstrating together in Cairo’s Tahrir Square. The ouster of Egypt’s President Hosni Mubarak has sparked protests all across the Middle East and the Muslim world. Many questions remain unanswered, but one thing is sure that God is up to something!

I recently read the book by Joel C. Rosenberg, Inside the Revolution. (It has to be good because the radio host, Rush Limbaugh, gives his stamp of approval!) The sub-title is “How the followers of Jihad, Jefferson and Jesus are battling to dominate the Middle East and transform the world.”

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Let Them Finish What We Started

Working together, missionaries and national churches have established the indigenous church principle as the basic philosophy of the Assemblies of God in Latin America. This practice has served the church well and has produced new national churches, which, since their inception, have developed with the goal of becoming independent, in other words self-sustaining, self-governing, and self-propagating. The church owes much to the founders that began with a concept that rejected the permanent dependence and childhood of other missionary models. Nevertheless, the model has at least one defect. It does not include the goal of producing a self-theologizing church.

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Transforming Students into Educators by the Holy Spirit

Where are our students today? Perhaps most of them are involved in some kind of ministry, but are they really educating (discipling) their disciples? Are we, as educators, adequately developing educators? Educators (leaders) must have a radical commitment to the discipleship process. Our role is to assist each and every student to become the very best educator possible.

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The Challenge of Education: Do We Need More Educators or More Experts?

Teachers come in two flavors: educators and experts. The educator studies learning style and process. The Expert focuses on his subject to the exclusion of all else. The field of missionary education is replete with experts but nearly devoid of educators. This imbalance produces a corresponding misaligned emphasis among students taught by missionary educators, but it can be easily corrected.

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Bridge Building… 2010 ACLAME Summit Report

Fifty-one missionary educators, representing 13 countries and a host of Latin America/ Caribbean ministries, gathered September 8-10 for the 2010 ACLAME Summit at the Lakeview Conference Center out of Waxahachie, TX.

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ATAL Becomes Part of WAPTE

For the past two years, ATAL (Asociación Teológica de América Latina), known in English as the Latin America Theological Association, has been working with sister organizations around the world in the formation of a network of theological associations with the purpose of raising the recognition level of their efforts in the advancement of Pentecostal theology.

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Keeping The Balance

We have been working in Instituto Bíblico Nazareth in Chiapas, Mexico, for seven years. From the beginning we noticed several problem areas: low academic standards, a poor work ethic among the students, and finally, and most importantly, a great lacking in regards to knowledge of the Holy Spirit. The District Superintendent later confirmed our suspicion when he told us that only 8% of the ministers in the entire District were baptized in the Holy Spirit.

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Getting The Word Out About Christian Education

I have a confession to make…

Now that I have your attention, let me tell you what it is. During our itineration times, I often spend more time sharing about my wife’s ministry to inner city, needy children, than about my main ministerial focus which is advanced ministerial training.

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You’re Kidding, Lord!

When the Lord commissioned Moses at the burning bush to go to Egypt and set His people free, Moses´ reaction was, “You´re kidding, Lord! I´m not prepared for something like that!” Then the Lord asks a simple question, “What have you got in your hand?” (Exodus 4:2)

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Preparing For The Big Things God Has Prepared

I am in Buenos Aires as I write, here for a board meeting of Intituto Biblico Rio de la Plata…In this context I can’t help but reflect on three axioms that seem to emerge over and over again these days:

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