Thursday, October 28, 2010

New England Ministry Resources

This post will increase in information, so I'm going to make a permanent link to it in my sidebar. I hope it will help those of you considering and aspiring to mission in New England. Please keep in mind that while there may be such a thing as a "New England culture," there are also communal cultures that vary state to state, and village to village. Ministry in Burlington, Vermont (largest town in the state, the university town) will likely look different than ministry in Poultney, Vermont (small village, although Green Mountain College is there). Rural New Hampshire is different from Boston, Mass. Etc.

(Feel free to add resources/links in the comments.)

The six states that comprise New England are: Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont.

According to Gallup 2009 these six states are in the bottom ten religious states in the U.S. Only 2% of New Englanders attend evangelical churches.

Church Planting Organizations

NETS Institute for Church Planting
An interdenominational missions organization that mobilizes and equips seminary graduates to plant churches in New England and abroad through gospel proclamation. Residency programs and field programs.

Acts 29 Church Planting Network
Acts 29 currently has 5 churches in the 6 New England states. They need planters/pastors willing to increase that number.

ARC: Association of Related Churches
ARC is a network of church planters, church leaders, and churches in transition to provide support, guidance and resources to launch and grow life-giving churches. ARC currently has 5 churches in the 6 New England states.

North American Mission Board (of the Southern Baptist Convention)
NAMB has indicated a renewed interest in sending pastors to plant or revitalize/replant churches in New England. Here is one such story.

Networks and Internships

New England Center for Expository Preaching
Internship program that puts seminary students in host churches throughout New England to study expository preaching and be mentored by an established pastor. Interns provide pulpit supply for various churches each weekend. Seminary credit applicable in many cases. The NECEP hosts a conference every year as well.

Vision New England
Now the largest regional association in the country, Vision New England ministry initiatives serve more than 5,000 churches in 80 denominations. As the region's leading resource for pastors and churches, Vision New England is an interdependent network of individual Christians and local churches who are committed to reaching New England through intentional evangelism. Hosts seminars and intensives. See website for events.

The Gospel Alliance New England
The purpose of Gospel Alliance NE network of pastors and churches is to promote gospel renewal in New England area churches. Primary purpose is networking and cooperation. Holds an annual youth conference in the spring (The Calling) and an annual general conference in the fall (Lead).

YouthWorks organizes and conducts annual mission trips to Maine, Massachusetts, and Vermont that concentrate on service projects and assisting local churches.

Annual Conferences

LEAD Conference
Located in Auburn, Maine, this is an annual fall conference highlighting gospel-centrality and gospel mission in New England sponsored by the Gospel Alliance New England. Past speakers include Tim Chester, Jonathan Dodson, Bob Thune, and Bill Streger. 2011 speakers TBA. (Link goes to the Lead 2010 site.)

Acts 29 Regional Events
Acts 29 Northeast events are usually held at Terra Nova Church in Troy, New York.

New England Center for Expository Preaching Conference
Located in center New England and usually held in May, past speakers include Mark Dever, Derek Thomas, and Steve Lawson. 2011's speakers are Thabiti Anyabwile and Ligon Duncan.

NETS Annual Conference
Held in Vermont, next year's speaker is Mark Dever.

Reformation Conference (pdf)
Reformed Bible Church of Clarendon, Vermont hosts an annual Reformation Conference, typically the last weekend of October. Past speakers include D.A. Carson and Derek Thomas. This year's speaker is Phil Johnson. (First link is to 2010 conference info.)

Colleges and Seminaries

Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in South Hamilton, Massachusetts
New England Bible College in South Portland, Maine
Gordon College in Wenham, Massachusetts
Mid-America Baptist Theological Seminary in Schenectady, New York (not technically New England, but close)
Bangor Theological Seminary in Bangor, Maine
Harvard Divinity School in Cambridge, Massachusetts


Why New England? by New England Theological Seminary (article)

Why New England is the New American Missional Frontier
by Jared Wilson (blog post)
The Country Parson by Tim Keller (blog post, fantastic on call to rural ministry)
Edwards and the New England Theology by B.B. Warfield (article)
A History of New England Theology by George Boardman (book online)
A Genetic History of the New England Theology by Frank Foster (book online)
Church History of New England from 1620 to 1804 by Isaac Backus (book online)
Religious Affections by Jonathan Edwards (book online)


richard said...

Seminary: Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (South Hamilton, MA)

Conference: The Bolton Conference (in Bolton, MA)

BTW, the 2% figure of evangelicals makes New England more than twice as evangelized as neighbouring Quebec. Either way it's a needy region.

Jen said...

Young Life Greater Northeast Region (New England and Upstate New York)

Hoping that link works.

The regional director is a great guy and of the staff in New England who are still there from when I was there - stellar missionaries for the region who are passionate about the Gospel.

Zach said...

Richard beat me to the punch on the Gordon Conwell link.

Jamie Bickel said...

Wow. BTS and HDS? Yep, We need revival in New England!

Brett and Kristin said...

A couple of church planting networks worth checking out:

Restoration House Ministries -

New Thing Network (planting across the US, but with projects - especially Boston - in NE) -

Farming Family said...

@richard the Bolton Conference just happened and I missed it. Thanks for the link.

PastorMalix said...

Erik said...

Thanks for the plethora of resources Jared. I'll be sure to bookmark this. Being a former New Englander (Central Connecticut- birth to 20), it's good to see men like yourself doing authentic, Biblical ministry in a very difficult setting.