Windham Church of God
The WCOG is a church within the Church of God (Cleveland, TN) denomination.
Mission and Vision of the COG
At the 2004 General Assembly, a set of seven commitments was adopted which reflects the Church of God's core values in regard to fulfilling its mission and vision.
Commitments to Our Mission and Vision
We commit ourselves to making prayer the highest priority of the church demonstrated by:
- Every local church becoming a house of prayer for all nations.
- Emphasizing communication with God as the highest privilege and greatest responsibility of every member.
- Modeling by all church leadership of an active and effective prayer life.
- Uniting with other believers in corporate and intercessory prayer.
(Isa. 56:7; Mark 11:17; Rom. 8:26; 1 Cor. 14:14, 15; I Thess. 5:17; I Tim. 2:1-4, 8; James 5:14, 15)
2. PENTECOSTAL WORSHIP
We commit ourselves to gather regularly as the local expression of the Body of Christ to participate in Pentecostal worship that exalts God, engages the heart, mind and soul, and challenges to deeper commitment and discipleship. This commitment will be demonstrated by:
- Assisting local churches in planning and preparing for meaningful, anointed worship.
- Equipping pastors and other worship leaders to lead authentically expressed, spiritually alive worship.
- Modeling varying styles and forms of worship that glorify God and encouraging outreach and service.
- Emphasizing the importance of Biblical stewardship and the centrality of God’s Word as elements of worship.
(John 4:24; Psalm 29:2; Rom. 12:1; 1 Cor. 12:4-11; Isa. 58; Mat. 25:31-46)
3. WORLD EVANGELIZATION
We commit ourselves to intentionally reaching the unconverted, baptizing them in water, and leading them to unite with the church. This commitment will be demonstrated by:
- Viewing all the nations of the world as our mission field.
- Encouraging our local churches to adopt and intercede for an unreached people group. Resource materials will be provided by the World Missions Department.
- Asking all national churches of the Church of God international to adopt and implement measurable steps to evangelize and disciple unreached people groups inside and outside of their own regions (Matthew 28:18-20; Romans 15:19-24; Revelation 5:9).
- Encouraging every local church to increase a minimum of 10% per year through conversion growth.
- Cultivating a genuine passion for the lost that will compel members to personally communicate the gospel of Jesus and demonstrate His love to those outside the faith.
- Discipling new believers and passing on our faith to the next generation.
- Practicing life-style evangelism.
(Mat. 9:37-38; Mat. 28:19-20; Mark 16:15-18; Acts 1:8; Rom. 10:13-15)
4. CHURCH PLANTING
We commit ourselves to identifying, training and resourcing God-called church planters and to intentionally planting new life-giving churches. This commitment will be demonstrated by:
- Focusing designated resources of the local church, state/regional offices, and the international offices for planting new churches.
- Starting the number of church plants equal to a minimum of 3% of the total number of churches in a state/region/nation annually.
- Developing a certified training program in our Evangelism and Home Missions Department and educational institutions for church planters and home missions.
- Emphasizing the health and viability of new church plants as well as the number of churches planted.
- Affirming the different models of church planting for different situations.
- Recognizing church planting as an apostolic ministry for our day.
(Mat. 16:18; John 4:35; Acts 2:47; 14:23; Eph. 5:25-28)
5. LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT
We commit ourselves to identifying and developing individuals whom God has called and given leadership gifts and challenging them to become servant-leaders. We will demonstrate our commitment by:
- Creating an environment in which men and women with ministry gifts are developed to serve as servant-leaders.
- Equipping, empowering and releasing lay leaders to serve as ministry partners both inside and outside the local church.
- Providing relevant resources and training opportunities for both clergy and laity.
- Encouraging pastors to lead through vision, to communicate the vision to the congregation and to organize the body and each of its ministry groups so the vision can be realized.
(Mark 3:13-15; 2 Tim. 2:2; 2:15; 3:14-17; Eph. 4:11-13)
We commit ourselves to the challenge of being a church that genuinely cares for one another and for those who are lost, hurting and needy. We will demonstrate our commitment by:
- Building loving, caring relationships within families, between members, and within the communities we serve.
- Obeying the Care Commission of Christ in Matthew 25.
- Cultivating compassion and showing mercy to the unloved, the undesirable and the unreached of our society.
- Establishing in each local church some type of outreach ministry that demonstrates our genuine concern and love for the disadvantaged or oppressed.
(Psa. 86:15; Mat. 25; Luke 6:36; Acts 20:28)
We commit ourselves to the principle of interdependence, acknowledging our interconnectedness and dependence on all the members of the Body of Christ. We will demonstrate our commitment by:
- Reaching out to others in the Body of Christ for collaboration, resource sharing and learning opportunities.
- Encouraging local churches to build relationships with like-minded and like-hearted churches in their communities to work together to reach the lost.
- Involving clergy in the processes of mentoring, coaching and consulting on the local, state, regional, national and international levels to increase the level of trust and support among ministers.
- Engaging in dialogue and partnership with local, national and international organizations who seek to fulfill the Great Commission
- of Christ.
(Col. 2:19; 1 Cor. 12:14-31; Gal. 6:1-6)
At the 2014 International General Assembly, three more commitments were adopted:
That we commit ourselves to utilizing every available medium and means to effectively maintain open and perpetual communication with our constituency. This commitment will be demonstrated by:
- Understanding that communication is the process of exchanging information, imparting ideas, and sharing the message so it is understood by others.
- Exploring the best media choices available to enable the transforming message of Christ to all mankind and cultural contexts.
- Discovering new ways and means of efficient and effective electronic mediums to maintain continuous connection with our constituency.
- Empowering ministry resources available to the church for immediate response to the needs of the world and the mission engagement of the church.
- Employing every facet of communication to expand the global reach of Christ’s message, sustaining open exchange of ministry concepts, encouraging the strengthening and growth of local churches, enlisting and equipping the next generation of leaders, and fulfilling our mission and vision as a movement that is Christ-centered, people-oriented, and need-sensitive in all its ministry endeavors.
We commit ourselves to the Lord’s command to make disciples of all nations, to develop committed and faithful followers of Jesus Christ, and to be people of conviction identifiable by:
- Their commitment to know what they believe and who they are in Christ;
- Their competence through spiritual discipline, calling, and empowerment, and;
- Their character development, which will result in reproducing themselves, disciples making disciples.
This commitment will be demonstrated by:
- Understanding that discipleship must be intentional for all believers upon their acceptance of Jesus Christ as personal Savior. If we are to retain them, they must be taught and have someone who will disciple them.
- Asking every church to prioritize discipleship in every facet of their ministry. Everything that is planned and executed in the local church should be identified as part of the discipleship process for those who are involved. The local church must understand that the growth process is ever evolving and must provide a framework by which growth can happen.
- Providing resources and discipleship experiences that will assist pastors and church leaders in the discipleship process, understanding that models may vary, but the outcome will be committed Christ followers.
- Understanding that passing the faith to the next generation will require making disciples of all ages. Discipleship must begin at the earliest age and continue.
(Matthew 5:43-48; 22:37-38; 28:19-20; John 14:15, 21-23; 15:10; Acts 1:8; 2:1-11 , 41-47; Romans 12:1-2; 12:3-8; 1 Corinthians 12:4-11; Galatians 5:22-25; 1 Thessalonians 5:19-23; 2 John 6.)
We commit ourselves to education as a vital part of all phases of the Spirit-filled Christian life. Education is to be nurtured by the church: locally in rural areas, towns, and cities; regionally in counties, states, and geographical regions; internationally in every country with a Church of God presence; and globally on every continent of the world. We will demonstrate our commitment by:
- Developing and fostering means of self-education with access to educational resources.
- Recognizing local-church institutions which provide education in church and/or school formats.
- Affirming in public places those who minister in education.
- Sponsoring educational institutions of higher learning to equip laity, ministers, institutions, and ministries.
- Providing curriculum and materials which affirm the doctrines, practices, mission, vision, and commitments of the Church of God.