Vine Church Lead Pastor Sándor Paull outlined the church’s accomplishments during 2012 as well as challenges and expectations for 2013 during Vision Night, Feb. 26.
With more than 500 members in attendance, Paull shared highlights of recent months including the network summer conference, the hiring of Mike Luczkiw as a staff pastor and Cody Dicks as a pastoral assistant as well as many instances of spiritual growth.
“Many were saved this year and many were baptized,” he said. “There were healings, displays of God’s power and lots of serving, faithful people. We have a lot to be thankful for.”
Paull added that Vine has continued to make strides toward becoming a more racially diverse church. According to data collected as part of the church’s annual survey last fall, Vine is 10 percent African-American, 8 percent Asian, 3 percent Hispanic and 75 percent Caucasian.“This is the most diverse we’ve ever been,” Paull said. “It is wonderful.”
Perhaps the biggest news of 2012 was the announcement of two church plants for 2013: Rock Hills Church in Bowling Green, Ky. under the direction of Steve Dame and Cedar Heights Church in State College, Penn. with Dan Digman as pastor. Paull said it is an exciting time for Vine.
“I can’t recall anything to cause as much joy and faith in me as the church plants,” he said.
He added that approximately 54 Vine members will be part of the planting teams, including 14 current small group leaders and a large number of people who serve in the youth and children’s programs.
“They understand of what it means to be part of a church plant and the cost, yet they are willing,” he said of those being called to be art of the new churches. “Now the rest of us need to step up. We need to put our hand to the plow and our energies into what He has asked us to do this year.”
Paull said those efforts will include members volunteering for new areas of service and financially supporting the Vine and the new plants during a special offering in May.
“It will take $200,000 to $250,000 for each plant,” Paull said, adding that the life of everyone involved—those going on church plants and those remaining in Carbondale—needs to be a life of discipleship and sacrifice. “We have to be about the work of Christ.”
He added that the church must continue to develop attendees into disciples, while appreciating what God is doing in the church.
“These are the days that history is being made. These are the good ol’ days,” he said. “We will look back and say these times were historic. It is amazing what God is doing.”