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Apr 2009

Road Trip…Mark Your Calendars

Mark your calendar for one of the most exciting opportunities to come to our region in awhile! On June 4-6, our good friends and partners in ministry, from Vintage21, The Summit and Christ the King, are hosting the “Advance 09” conference with John Piper, Mark Driscoll, Matt Chandler, Bryan Chapell, Danny Akin, J.D. Grear, Ed Stetzer, Tyler Jones, and Eric Mason (and more) in Durham, NC. (It’s arguably the most packed line-up of gospel-centered pastors that has been put together in a long time!)

What is the Advance 09 conference?

Here’s a snapshot from their site:

Christ promises to build the Church, and that no force will prevail against it. Yet, the local church has been heavily battered in battle. Sadly, churches in America are in steady decline, with over 4000 closing their doors and 500,000 members leaving each year–never to return. This is not what the Lord desires. The Apostle Paul tells us that “ . . . through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places“. The local church is called to lift-up Jesus so that all the world might see Him. The local church is called to make known the Gospel and to be the vehicle of redemption for the world. Led by local churches, Advance09 is a conference committed to the resurgence of the local church for the glory of God. Our aim is to equip attendees with the Gospel so that the local church might become all that Jesus calls it to be. At this conference, we hope to ensure that on our watch and in our time we honor Jesus and see the resurgence of the local church. Advance09 is open to anyone: pastors and lay-leaders; church members and regular-attenders. We invite you to join us in this Great Cause.

Why go?

  1. Fantastic Speakers: This is a rare opportunity to hear so many seasoned and gospel-centered leaders engage us on the challenge of “being the church”.
  2. Road Trip: This is a great chance for us to deepen the relationships that God is establishing among us…few things bring people together in new ways like a good road trip.

What’s the plan?

Phase 1
  • Clear your schedules for June 4-6
  • Email us before April 17 and we will secure a block of seats together (you simply make your payment to us). After the 17th you will have to register yourself.
  • Go to the “travel” section of the Advance website to get information about booking your hotel at a discounted rate (sorry, we can’t get blocks of rooms for the discounted price)
  • Prepare yourself for the adventure!
If you have any questions email us at



April 25 2009 Reply

Interested in being included in the trip. Thanks!

chirs deroco

June 4 2009 Reply

Well…we are just putting the finishing touches on our first day at the conference. Here are a few highlights:

Mark Driscoll was fired up like Red Bull and helped us think correctly and passionately about what the church is and is not. It is not just people spending time together, but 8 things that are non-negotiable aspects of what makes a group of people the church. (We’ll post that later.) Greatest point concerning the church’s message: we are a band with only one song and we will play it till he comes back. (That’s the gospel)

Tyler Jones said that we have to get back to Jesus as our first love in order to see the church Advance. Something virtuous often replaces Christ as the center.

Bryan Chappell helped us see the whole Bible as connected to redemption. All scripture either predicts, prepares, reflects, or shows the results of the cross of Christ.

Matt Chandler implored us to create a culture of confession of and hatred of sin and explained that the church at Ephesus failed at this and therefore did not continue.

The Q and A with all these guys did not disappoint. Definately check out this session online too.

Afterward, the crew from Redemption Hill walked about a mile (sorry for the walk in the rain guys. My bad) to the Satisfaction restaurant where we debriefed and mixed it up a bit, getting to know folks we have only seen or met briefly on a Sunday.

After this, we met for dessert at the Mariot with my sister and brother-in-law. We were talking about how they would like to be a part of a church plant in NoVa and lo and behold, Chris Atwell, pastor at the Portico in Charlottes, walks by. One of their pastors is looking to plant in NoVa next year and I was able to make introductions. Really cool.

Good night…


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