In April, 2013, 100 young leaders in the Wesleyan/Methodist movement in North America will walk together under the Spanish Oaks where the Wesley’s walked 277 years ago. These leaders will experience the power and presence of the Holy Spirit at the fifteenth Conference of the Order of the FLAME.
Started in 1996 by World Methodist Evangelism, the Order of the FLAME (Faithful Leaders As Mission Evangelists) is composed of more than 900 specially selected young pastors in ministry and spouses from the churches in the Wesleyan tradition in North America: African Methodist Episcopal, African Methodist Episcopal Zion, Christian Methodist Episcopal, Free Methodist, Church of the Nazarene, United Methodist and Wesleyan. These leaders will to be energized and encouraged to “do the work of an evangelist and carry out the ministry fully.”
A new generation of leaders, whose candles are lit by the flame of the Holy Spirit, are being raised up by World Methodist Evangelism.
ORDER OF THE FLAME: AFRICA—WEST
The Order of the Flame was expanded to the continent of Africa in Nigeria in 2005. The conference was held in Ibadan with 77 members of the Methodist family in Nigeria. These young leaders covenanted together to do the work of the evangelist. They were named, “The new generation of Hope."
ORDER OF THE FLAME: AFRICA—EAST
The Order of the Flame conference was held in the Methodist University of Kenya in Meru, Kenya. More than 100 young pastors came from the Methodist family in Kenya, Uganda, and Tanzania to the dynamic event under the leadership of Bishop Lawi Imathiu, Regional Secretary of Africa, and other leaders in World Methodist Evangelism.
ORDER OF THE FLAME: IRELAND
The Order of the Flame Conference was held in Northern Ireland in 2007 with thirty young pastors. A focus of the training was Faith-Sharing. It was hosted by Reverend Ken Robinson of the Methodist of Ireland.
An outstanding faculty of dynamic leaders serve on the faculty of the Order of the Flame including: Dr. Grace Imathiu, Dr. Jeff Spiller, Dr. Lyle Pointer, Bishop Darryl Starnes, Dra. Maimunah Natasha of Indonesia, Bishop Paulo Lockmann of Brazil, Bishop John Bryant, and Bishop Sunday Onuoha of Nigeria, Bishop Raul Garcia, Mexico, Dr. Maxie Dunnam, Dr. George Morris, Dr. Winston Worrell. The Wesley Commission Executives in Evangelism for Methodist/Wesleyan denominations in North America participate in the Flame conference.
One of the highlights of the Order of the Flame is the visit and message from John Wesley to the young pastors gathered under the same Oak trees where the Wesleys preached.
Many members of the Order of the FLAME testified about the encouragement they experienced in the small “Wesley Groups” held each day of the conference. Others spoke of the renewal and refreshment in the early morning Holy Communion in the Lovely Lane Chapel at beautiful Epworth by the Sea. Members of the Order spoke of their experiences:
Rebecca Mincieli, pastor of a growing dynamic Methodist Congregation in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, shares what the experience means to her: "As a new pastor, the Order of the FLAME event was instrumental in shaping my approach to evangelism, Christian spiritual formation, and leadership. In four years, the membership of our church increased over 25%, which I attribute to the practices and teachings I learned at the Order of the FLAME. In addition, the passion for Jesus Christ exhibited by the leaders at the Conference was sincere, enthusiastic and contagious."
Jim Cowart, pastor of a growing, dynamic new Methodist Congregation in Warner Robbins, Georgia, which is listed as one of the l00 fastest growing Protestant congregations in North America, testifies what this experience means to him: "The Order of the Flame was a turning point in my ministry. I was challenged in the way I preached and how I viewed the church. It helped personalize the Great Commission. Since the Flame, I’m very intentional about ‘Offering them Christ.’ We expect and see new commitments to Christ every week at Harvest Church. I used to be surprised if someone did make a commitment to Christ, now I’m surprised if they don’t."
Roderick Belin, pastor of a growing, dynamic, new Methodist congregation in Nashville, Tennessee tells what this experience meant to him: "The Order of the FLAME Conference was a gift from God. As such, it came at just the right time in my life and ministry. The conference was informational, inspirational and transformational. The anointing of the Holy Spirit was so heavy that my heart was completely open to receive God’s messages. The ministry God called me to has been reinvigorated. I did not leave on a spiritual high, inspired without knowing what to do next. I was given information and tools to execute these missions in my own ministry."
Many testify of their experience at the Order of the Flame:
• I came discouraged and I am leaving with a renewed faith.
• Thank you for renewal and reminding me as a spouse that we are valued and are called to ministry as Christians.
• We see the wide door that is open to us for effective ministry and we are going through the wide door in the name of Jesus.
• I will always preach for response.
• We will teach our people “Faith-Sharing.”
• Praise the Lord! We are part of a worldwide family.
• The Order of the FLAME is making a change in the world. I am sticking with Jesus!
• We will serve our world parish as long as life endures. We have seen the wide door and we are going through it.
• We will keep the covenant to do the work of an evangelist and carry out the ministry fully.
The conference recalled Wesley’s desire, “Give me 100 preachers, who fear nothing but sin and desire nothing but God, and I care not a straw whether they be clergy or lay, such alone will shake the gates of hell and set up the kingdom of heaven upon earth.” Order of the FLAME members made their covenant to be faithful evangelists, to carry out the ministry fully.
ORDER OF THE FLAME
SPREADS TO AFRICA
The first conference of the Order of the FLAME in West Africa brought together 200 young leaders from the five denominations in the Wesleyan tradition in Nigeria, July 14-17, 2003.
The first conference of the Order of the FLAME in East Africa was held in Kenya January 26-29, 2005. (see picture below)
Order of the FLAME
RAISING UP A NEW GENERATION OF YOUNG
LEADERS IN THE METHODIST MOVEMENT...
Fifteenth Order of the FLAME Conference
Epworth-By-the-Sea, St. Simons Island, Georgia
April 8-12, 2013
A young North American pastor and his wife being inducted into the Order of the FLAME.