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Network Affiliated Churches

One of the great strengths of the Assemblies of God is that we are made up of self-governed churches (called General Council Churches). When a church is struggling or doesn’t meet the necessary requirements for General Council status, the General Council reclassifies them as Network (District) Affiliated Churches.

Almost half of the churches in the SoCal Network are Network Affiliated Churches. A Network Affiliated church is one governed by our SoCal Network, and is often times a church that has seen its history as greater than its present. Much of the time the pastor of an N.A. church is bi-vocational, or often the pastor’s spouse is employed full-time in a secular job. Because of these realities, pastoring a Network Affiliated Church has a unique set of challenges.

All the while, we know that the task, call and vision of every N.A. church and its pastor is to impact its community for Jesus. To help the pastors and congregations of our Network Affiliated churches to fulfill their God-given vision, we have created a Church Health Journey which includes: Church Health Bootcamp for those struggling with developing an effective team to carry out vision; Acts 2 Journey for those moving along in developing vision and team-based ministry; Celera for effective pastors who want to grow as leaders; and coaching for pastors at every level who need the encouragement and accountability that a coach provides.

It is our goal that every Network Affiliated Church has the support necessary to mature as a healthy church in order to both live out its God-given vision, and to do its part in living out the three purposes of this Network:

To Reach people for Jesus by proclaiming God’s Word in every community

To Inspire leaders by recruiting, training and launching them into ministry

To Empower the local church by helping them reach their God-given vision through the power of the Holy Spirit.

Rich Guerra is the Network Superintendent and oversees these Network Affiliated Churches.

First STEP Journey

The First STEP Journey begins with an assessment which is comprised of a one-page self-assessment tool followed by an in-depth self-assessment to be completed by the pastor and staff of the church. Next, is an on-site visit of the church during its main service by members of the Assessment Team. Finally, the Assessment Team meets to evaluate all the assessment pieces to determine whether this particular Network Affiliated Church should begin at “Team Development”or begin at “Empowered Leadership”.

The Assessment Team is made up of several ministers appointed by the Superintendent as well as Presbyters and Regional Leadership Team members. The assessment covers all parts of the life and health of the NA Church, including attendance, finances and percentage of the church involved in ministry.

Rather than assigning NA churches to the First STEP Journey, initial groups will be made up of churches whose pastors have made their interest known to the Superintendent’s office. Once the First STEP Journey has reached full capacity, the balance of our NA churches will be encouraged to participate.

For additional information, please contact Louise Lessel at llessel@socalnetwork.org.

Church Assessment Center

Assessment is a much neglected essential to effective ministry. Simply ask the pastor who was elected to the “wrong church” for affirmation of that truth. Had there been effective assessment, there would have been a better “match,” and as a result more effective ministry. Beyond “the match,” effective assessment helps each minister to recognize his or her gifts, talents, abilities and weaknesses.

Once you are armed with that kind of assessment, we can help that minster not only find the right place for ministry, but be able to staff complementary to that pastor’s strengths and weaknesses.

The SoCal Network AG uses several great tools for minister Assessment, including a two-day intensive Assessment Center, several online assessment tools and time-tested personality profiles including DISC and Meyers-Briggs.

To sign-up for an Assessment Center or for more information on assessment in the SoCal Network, please contact Louise Lessel at llessel@socalnetwork.org.

Coaching

There is a key difference between a coach and a mentor. A mentor is usually more experienced in the field of ministry than the one being mentored, and “pours into” that younger minister from his or her own life and experience. Everyone needs a mentor!

We believe that God has birthed a vision in every one of our pastors. It is the task of the coach to ask great questions that draw out that vision and then help the pastor to develop a strategy to attain that vision. Along the way, each step in the process is broken down into manageable action points. The coach then becomes the Pastor’s accountability partner to see that those action points are completed.

A coach can be older or younger than the one being coached. A coach doesn’t need to have experience in the particulars of the ministry role of the one being coached. The pastor of the smallest, most rural AG church could, if trained well, be a coach for the pastor of the largest church in the Assemblies of God.

Our Superintendent has set as a key goal for pastors of all our Network Affiliated Churches to have a certified coach at no cost to them. We have trained and certified a cadre of coaches ready to serve pastors of NA churches as well as any of our SoCal Network AG ministers that see the benefit in being coached.

For additional information, please contact Louise Lessel at llessel@socalnetwork.org.

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Name: Rich Guerra
Phone: (949) 252-8400
Fax: (949) 252-8435
Address: 17951 Cowan Irvine, CA 92614