A Living, Loving Organism with Room for You
2018 Mission to America 1
When Trustees and brethren in IMF-USA resolved to invite the Akalonu family to this year’s National Conference, they went to the extra length of shifting the meeting date to suit the academic programme of the United Kingdom.
As the day approached for us to make the trip to America, the first order of business was to set things in order at Arise Metropolitan Assembly, the laboratory of Global School of Ministry.
With the Teach, Train, Equip, Activate and Release Paradigm, this ministry has been used by Elohim to empower over 250 saints who now function as ordained ministers. The vast majority have been released to pioneer new ministries while others who came to be trained from various congregations now serve as ministers and leaders.
A little over a dozen of the trained ministers had been led by the Lord to co-labour with us so that the mandate to activate the Melchizedek Priesthood of all saints worldwide would become a reality of Grace. Of them all, the two most senior (by their Ordination dates in 2009) are Pastor Minister Edna Uloma Ahuama and Pastor Emiliah Muteweri.
As Executive Coordinator, Pastor Edna has with her signature humility, dedication and diligence turned Frontline Intercessors into the Prayer and Spiritual Warfare Arrowhead of the Reformation, Restoration and Revival Movement. This year, great grace was deployed for Frontline to cover every minute of every hour, day, week and month in prayer. She also serves with distinction as Director of Prayer, Intercession and Spiritual Warfare of IMF-UK.
Ahead of the US Mission, Pastor Edna was introduced and prayed into Office as Acting Overseer of Arise Metropolitan Assembly and constituent arms of the Commission based in the United States.
In the same way, Pastor Emiliah was inducted into Office as Acting Chair of the Board of Trustees to work with Pastor Tony Yeboah in providing the administrative backbone to undergird the ministry.
With the large pool of ministers at Mission Central London set in order, Pastor Grace and yours sincerely with the children joyfully looked forward to the 2018 Mission to America!
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The Send Forth of the Akalonu family by saints at Arise Metropolitan Assembly was simple and lovely!
Pastors Minister Edna Uloma Ahuama & Emiliah Muteweri were used of the Lord to pray for us!
Pastors Jeremiah Emuchay & Elizabeth Emuchay who are members of the Global Governing Council of International Ministers Fellowship dropped in to fellowship and prayed for us. The Lord also brought forth a now word through Evangelist So-oso Oguibe, Head of the Go Ye Team.
It was such an empowering experience to be supported by brethren in prayers.
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While the spiritual send forth on Sunday was memorable, the physical one was equally profound! At Mission Central, Grace of Elohim has been well invested to build a Kingdom community of saints who love Elohim and each other. While this vision is still a work in process/progress, it’s superiority to the Organizational Church Model is clearly self-evident.
And so last Monday, Pastor Tony, Pastor Mudi M. Fashe, Minister Gozie Onyeaso and Minister Nad Mokhoon cleared out their schedules to pick us up and convey us to London Heathrow Airport for the outbound flight to the United States.
We enjoyed sweet fellowship both in the house, on the road and at the airport until the need to get past Security separated us.
Not only were we spared the expense of hiring taxis to the airport but more importantly, they demonstrated our mantra: we are always Better together!
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Every Project has an appointed Process! The extraordinary Convocation that we enjoyed at the Hyatt Centric Arlington was actually hatched 13 months ago at the Hilton Garden Inn in Longview, Texas.
In that lovely atmosphere, we had a great time at the IMF-USA 2017 National Conference. At the end, Trustees of the Fellowship resolved that in view of the sacrifices Pastor Grace and the children had been making since our mission to the USA started in 2002, it was needful for all the family to be sponsored to the 2018 Conference. The brethren approved the resolution.
In spite of financial challenges, Saints pulled through - some at great sacrifices- to provide all that was needed for the airfares and hotel accommodation of 7 of us. The saints were bucking a trend in favour of Kingdom Culture: appreciation and honor of leaders who lay down their lives for the brethren.
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International Ministers Fellowship has a profound history!
December 31, 2000: at turn of the Millennium, Chinedu Benjamin came from Austin Texas on behalf of Apostles Vance Russell & Debbie Faircloth Russell of Arise Ministries International in Austin, Texas.
Their request was for then Pastor George Akalonu and Pastor Grace Akalonu who lead Arise Supportive Ministries to help them to organise an Apostolic & Prophetic Summit in Owerri, Imo State of Nigeria.
May 2001: Working with such Elect vessels like Dr. Cosmas Ilechukwu & Adeola Ilechukwu; Bishop Stafford Sibige Nwaogu & Evangelist Tina; Bishop Maxwell Korie & Ebipador Korie; Bishop Innocent Erimujor; Bishop Victor Isiodu; Pastor Larry Mishael, Pastor Emma Akpelu, Pastor Bethel,Bishop Ngozi Durueke, Evangelist Olughu Orji and a host of fine ministers, the Apostolic & Prophetic Summit was successfully organised.
It was an eye opening meeting which brought home reality of the Fivefold, gift based ministry and need for ministers to connect and network for greater Manifestation of the Presence and Power of Elohim in their communities and nations.
At end of the Summit, they requested George & Grace to Coordinate the emerging Network, Arise Ministries International. Pondering on the implications, George & Grace were led by the Lord to set aside the vision committed to their trust in 1996 (Arise Supportive Ministries) and embrace the vision of Arise Ministries International.
Taking this later vision as their own, they invested every Grace, Gift and Resource at their disposal to set up and promote the new vision.
In the 3 years that followed, the Lord used Apostle Vance & Debbie to activate and confirm their Apostolic Mantle, mentored them and provided covering.
By 2004, Ministers in 32 Countries had embraced the vision of Arise Ministries International though many chapters were very unstable.
A foundation was thus laid for what would later become International Ministers Fellowship: you do not have to be ‘founder’ of a vision before you should embrace and promote it wholly!
That foundation is a strong cornerstone upon which this awesome Network is based.
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Foundation of International Ministers Fellowship
Within 3 years (2001 - 2004), the then Arise Ministers Fellowship had grown. With Apostles Vance & Debbie Russell as Visionaries based in Austin and Pastor Grace and I in Owerri serving since 2003 as International Coordinator supervising the global outreach, it was clearly evident that hand of the Lord was upon the vision.
Then suddenly, Providence intervened in a dramatic fashion: The Lord asked the Russells to hand over the Network as their part in it had been fulfilled. They called Apostle George in London to relay the news and to offer him the vision as the obvious vessel the Lord had used to grow and enlarge it.
Not comfortable with function both as International Coordinator as well as the ultimate human authority, Apostle George consulted with Pastor Grace and both agreed to recommend Pastor Cosmas Ilechukwu & Adeola Ilechukwu, then Africa Director to be vision holder and International President of the Network to whom they would be subject as the Network braced for growth.
The mantle was subsequently handed over to them. Unknown to all parties involved, Apostle George and Pastor Grace had, by Grace, passed two additional vital tests: the first is that Saints need to avoid ambition for positions and titles and learning the virtue of preferring others. Secondly, you do not have to have a position or title before you can function optimally within the Body.
Because the local congregation led by Apostle Vance Russell & Debbie Faircloth Russell was incorporated as Arise Ministries International, it was needful for a new name to be found for the Network of Independent Ministers.
The Lord brought forth a new Name - International Ministers Fellowship - which resonated with Dr. Cosmas Ilechukwu, Apostle George and Bishop Stafford.
On a mission to Houston, Texas in fall of 2004, the offerings Apostle George was blessed with was handed over to a firm for the purpose of incorporating International Ministers Fellowship. In Nigeria, the same name was registered by the Corporate Affairs Commission. The era of the first Vision holders had ended.
The era of Dr. Cosmas & Adeola Ilechukwu as vision holders and International President had begun.
Arise Ministries International was back to its original form as an Austin, Texas based Congregation and ministry founded by Apostle Vance & Debbie Russell.
International Ministers Fellowship had a new DNA: A Network of Ministers who were individually independent and subject to the Lord alone but have willingly embraced each other to achieve the vision. This extremely significant spiritual reality has become another Cornerstone which makes IMF unique in the comity of networks and Fellowships.
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The Miracle of Family elected for Missions
When the Trustees of IMF-USA resolved that the entire Akalonu family should be guests of the Fellowship during the 2018 National Conference, it was in a sense, a major milestone. To all the brethren who contributed gene Ryan died sacrificially towards the plan tickets, hotel accommodation and feeding, only Elohim can repay.
In 1996, the Father of Pastor Grace, late Nze Godwin Ugochukwu Okoro of Nekede had informed me that due to a surgical procedure she underwent as a young girl, she may not be able to conceive or bear children. Holy Spirit that moment gave me a Word ‘I came to marry the will of God for my life, not because I am looking for children. If He wills to bless us with children, they would be a blessed extra and not the issue’.
On November 30, 1996 we were joined in wedlock in a non-denominational Kingdom wedding conducted by Senior Ministers of various congregations. From 1998, Elohim over ruled opinion of experts:
1998: Favour, Female; 2000: Elect, Male; 2002: Arise, Female; 2004: Praise, Female and 2007: Destiny, Male. From one person, we are now 7 people. We are Better, Together and a microcosm of the Organic Body which International Ministers Fellowship is all about.
Thanks be to Elohim Who stirred up IMF-USA to sponsor our trip to America!
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Foundation of IMF-USA runs through Detroit, Michigan by the way of Africa!
The storied history of International Ministers Fellowship, USA Chapter will one day be told.
But suffice it to say that the mystery still persists as to why a vision birthed in Austin, Texas needed to be first embraced in Africa (Owerri, Imo State of Nigeria to be precise) before it could incubate, be delivered and break through as a key movement for demonstrating the Gospel of the Kingdom worldwide.
As it pleased Elohim to have us traverse United States of America by Greyhound buses, promoting the vision, Holy Spirit ordered our steps to Detroit where Brother Peter and Sister Eberechi Okoro were points of contact.
They set up a meeting with Apostle Fred Apostle Fred Harris & Pastor Kathleen Harris of New Risen Christ Ministries Detroit. In their office on West McNichols Road in the snowy winter of 2002, we shared the vision of a Ministers Network which they heartily embraced.
In effect, they are on record as the first couple to sign up for what is now International Ministers Fellowship and have remained connected till this day. They are on the Board of Trustees of IMF-USA, Chair the National Advisory Council/Ordination Board and represent the Continent of North America in the Global Governing Council.
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We Are Better, Together!
It has pleased the Lord to provide us the opportunity to personally pioneer and supervise some of the model national chapters of International Ministers Fellowship namely, Nigeria, United Kingdom and United States. In each case, the key principle is to locate by leading of Holy Spirit, vessels who can embrace the vision for the long haul and be committed to its manifestation within their national spheres.
Those are the individuals who are installed as Trustees. They do not engage in Executive functions but rather hold the vision in trust. Their inter-personal relationship is ever growing, even as they grow in the Lord.
In the United States Chapter of IMF, we have had Trustees working together since 2010 to provide the degree of spiritual oversight needful for the Fellowship to thrive. With Pastor Grace and I are Apostle Fred & Pastor Kathleen Harris of Detroit, Michigan and Apostle Terance & Victoria Blount of Dover Delaware.
In 2017, Apostle Candace Star & her husband Pastor David Star of Fort Pierce, Florida as well as Teacher Stephanie Foster of South Holland, Illinois were inducted into the Board of Trustees.
The Trustees are held together by the principles of Unity and One Accord in all major decisions as found in Isaiah 65:8; Matthew 18:19-20 and 1 Corinthians 1:10.
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An IMF-USA Conference like No Other!
The IMF-USA National Conference at the Hyatt-Centric Arlington in Virginia was a blast on all accounts! But one of the things which clearly stood out was the reality that it was a forum for family re-Union and Kingdom Connection like no other. We will yet dig into the 3 days of Joy unspeakable in the days ahead.
One factor which undeniably was used by Elohim to make it happen is the grace of Elohim for forging and maintenance of relationships on the National President, Apostle Ronald Shepherd & Pastor Janda Shepherd. Prior to assuming Office 4 years ago, the Lord has used them to build two critical Kingdom communities at the basic level.
In the first place, they had walked in great Grace to bring up their 5 children in the fear and nurture of the Lord. Their eldest son, Prophet Jeremiah functions with great grace as Senior Pastor of GPRC Kilgore. Knit together in love, the Shepherd family has grown from 7 to 12 with addition of 2 daughters in law and 3 grand children.
Moving in that same grace, Elohim used them to activate and oversee God’s Promise Restoration Center in the City of Kilgore, East Texas into a model Kingdom community where saints embrace the organic model of Church and flow by Holy Spirit to embrace responsibility.
Empowered in embrace of Holiness by the ministry of Brother David Wilkerson of Times Square Church, New York, Apostle Ron had to opt for the gospel and put his back to a career in professional Baseball. The Father further ordered their steps to receive the Inner Healing and Deliverance ministry of Apostle Fred & Pastor Kathleen Harris of New Risen Christ Ministries in Detroit Michigan who have been their mentors.
It was Apostle Fred & Pastor Kathleen that Holy Spirit used to connect them to both International Ministers Fellowship and our Authentic Kingdom Culture ministry. Both Apostle Ron & Pastor Janda; Pastor Jeremiah & Minister Brittney; Minister Jaron & Kedra and only daughter Minister Jessica have completed the Master class along with several of the leaders and ministers at GPRC Texas. Joseph their son is currently enrolled in the 2018 Master Class.
With such a large pool of saints who understand the Kingdom principles which undergird the vision of IMF, it is no wonder that the USA has become a powerful global model!
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Apostle William & Lady Kenya Spence Are Re-Connected Fully!
When Elohim connects vessels for Destiny and Kingdom Purpose, nothing is permitted to separate them permanently! And even if our limited perspectives and understandings cause drifting away, in fullness of time, Elohim releases the grace of re-Alignment which draws us together again!
One of the highlights of this Mission was the re-connection of Apostle William Spence to IMF-USA. He served meritoriously as the first Deputy President of the Fellowship when we launched out informally in 2009 and formally in 2010. He was my travelling companion as we shared the vision in various cities. He also represented us effectively on special assignments.
Then, suddenly, we drifted apart. Two years ago, the Father said it was time for him to resume fellowship and we arranged to receive him back as a Member of the National Advisory Council in the Austin, Texas Conference. Evidently, the time was not fully ripe.
This year at Arlington, Virginia, Apostle William - who sits as one of the Elders at the Gate of Washington DC - was back in Fellowship! And as his manner, he came with all his heart, withholding nothing! His ministry, Harvest Life Fellowship supplied the sound system we used, free of charge. His pregnant Jewel, Lady Kenya came also and experienced the love of brethren, right, left and Center as did their son William III. To top it up, Apostle William cancelled Sunday Church Meeting of Harvest Life Fellowship and brought the brethren to fellowship with their fellow saints at the last session of the Conference. He is in the process of launching a Ministry training Center which will utilise curriculum of Global School of Ministry.
An honourable gentleman and man of the Word, Pastor Grace and I and all the brethren just love Apostle William and his dear wife and son and ministry. We are so excited that he and Lady Kenya joyfully have accepted to continue to serve as members of the National Advisory Council of IMF-USA. Reconciliation and Re-connection is the way to go!
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For Office of Secretary General of IMF-USA, a spiritual change of guards from Apostle Sondra Jenkins of Detroit, Michigan to Apostles Reyes Torres Jr. & Patrina M Torres of New York!
Right at the foundation of International Ministers Fellowship is the established Kingdom Principle that leadership is Service according to the will of Elohim and Grace He chooses to release though His appointed vessels at any given time. Stretched further, the Principle makes no room for ambition for Office.
A few months ago, Apostle Sondra Jenkins who was the Second Secretary-General of IMF-USA (Apostle Corine Stone of Chicago was the first) requested to release the office to another vessel and expressed the desire to be give opportunity to deploy the enormous quality and quantity of Grace the Father generously invested in her to build up saints and challenge them to utilise their gifts and callings for Service.
Trustees of IMF-USA obliged her request and approved that she continue to serve as a Member of the National Advisory Council.
As Vision holders of Global School of Ministry, we were led to offer her the position of Executive Director of GSOM in America so that through that platform she would be fulfilled as a builder of Kingdom Capacity.
Trustees unanimously approved the appointment of Apostle Patrina Torres and her husband, Apostle Reyes Torres to serve as 3rd Secretary General and Chief Operating Officer of IMF-USA.
They lead Cross road Women and Family Ministries and Totally Healed Ministries in New York which offers hope, encouragement, Deliverance and opportunities for New Beginning for those on the border line of life.
Highly relational, they love brethren and are faithful and committed to the vision. Apostle Reyes retired from Pastoral work after over 35 years of service. Apostle Patrina has a godly Pastoral background in her parents, Bishop James & Pastor Wright of Jersey City, New Jersey.
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Trustees of IMF-USA continue to demonstrate unity of the Spirit!
The pillars the Father placed to undergird IMF-USA as Trustees were all present at the IMF-USA National Conference. As our Kingdom Culture is, all had the opportunity to declare counsel of Elohim regarding the theme: Gathered Together, by His Grace’. Though Pastor Grace and I brought forth the Keynote, their various contributions were vital to our reception of the whole Counsel of Elohim.
Trustees: Apostle George & Pastor Grace; Apostle Fred & Pastor Kathleen Harris of New Risen Christ Ministries International in Detroit, Michigan; Apostles Terance & Victoria Blount of Kingdom Reality Ministries in Dover, Delaware; Pastor David & Apostle Candace Star of Citadel of Truth Faith Ministries of Fort Pierce, Florida and Teacher Stephanie Foster, Chief of Staff of the Authentic Kingdom Culture Movement.
Please receive them in the Lord!
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National Advisory Council & Ordination Board takes shape!
While Trustees hold the vision in collective trust, a wider body of Elders of the Fellowship is the National Advisory Council. These Elders at the Gate of the Fellowship offer their collective and individual wisdom to the National Executive Committee to ensure that they receive the full scope of counsel for safety concerning the way to go. They also function as the National Ordination Board which recommends suitable candidates for ordination and licensing to the Global Executive Committee.
Including all the Trustees, IMF-UK National Advisory Council comprises these brethren: Apostle Fred & Pastor Kathleen Harris (Chair, Detroit, Michigan), Apostle Terance & Victoria Blount (Dover, Delaware), Pastor David & Apostle Candace Star (Fort Pierce, Florida), Teacher Stephanie Foster (Chicago, Illinois), Apostle Corine Stone (Chicago, Illinois), Apostle Sondra Jenkins (Detroit, Michigan), Elder Henry & Apostle Geneva Young ( Saulk Village, Illinois), Apostle James & Prophetess Diane Holley ( Waterbury, Connecticut), Apostle William & Lady Kenya Spence (D.C. & Maryland), Apostle La Vetta Williams (Illinois), Apostle Dr. Katherine Jones (San Diego, California). Apostle OC & Pastor Edith Obikaram of Dallas, Texas; Apostle Sheldon & Lady Deborah Southerland of Greensboro, North Carolina; Pastors Charles & Tony Storey of Texas; Evangelist Janice Thornton of Joshua, Texas; Apostle Joy & Pastor Chris Ibe of Lawrenceville, Georgia and Apostle Joe & Pastor Felicia Omeokwe of the Bronx, New York could not make it
These officers of the National Executive also sit on the Council to provide a reliable bridge between the two vital organs: National President (Apostle Ron & Pastor Janda Shepherd of Kilgore, Texas); Deputy President (Apostle Dr Julia Oparaocha (Meriden, Connecticut) and Secretary General (Apostle Reyes & Patrina Torres of New York).
Apart from coming to speak, the more strategic purpose of this Mission is to set things in order according to the vision Elohim showed us and as stated in the Constitution.
May we receive the collective ministry of these Elders at the Gates of IMF-USA!
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A Unique Blend of Leaders make up the National Executive Committee of IMF-USA!
The Lord has assembled an extremely gifted group of servant-leaders to function as the National Executive Committee of IMF-USA.
National President: Apostle Ronald Shepherd & Pastor Janda Shepherd, Overseers of GPRC Texas.
Deputy President: Apostle Dr. Julia Ngozi Oparaocha, Overseer of Joy Unlimited, Meriden, Connecticut
Secretary-General: Apostle Reyes Torres Jr. & Apostle Patrina M Torres, Visionaries of Cross Road Women & Family Ministries, Kingston, New York
Treasurer: Minister Tim Young, GPRC Kilgore, East Texas
Director of Women in Ministry: Apostle Brenda Jamison, Visionary of Abounding Love & Faith Ministries Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Director of Business, Professionals & Public Affairs: Apostle Sharon V Thomas, Mayor of the Borough of Pottstown, PA
Director of Prayer, Intercession & Spiritual Warfare: Prophet Rolanda Byrd of Citadel of Truth Faith Ministries, Fort Pierce, Florida
Director of Community Engagement & CEO of We Care International USA chapter: Minister Rose Etuka of Connecticut
Director of Youth & Next Generation: Minister Samuel Egiefameh
Ex-Officio: Apostle Anthonette Morehead of Renew, Restore & Rebuild Ministries, Arizona; Apostle Otha Bell of Texas; Teacher Kevin Chukwu of Connecticut; Prophet Kandis Carney of Houston, Texas.
Director of Communication: Apostle Elect Star of Indiana.
We are Better Together!
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Bishop Stafford Sibige Nwaogu came calling with a message!
All the way from Owerri, Imo State of Nigeria where International Ministers Fellowship first took root came Bishop Stafford Nwaogu.
He came with a message that was not convenient for modern Christians: The God of heaven desires an intimate relationship with saints just as a husband and wife become one.
He also was used by the Lord to challenge saints who are married to shun worldly models and embrace the biblical standard of relationship between husbands and wives.
The message resonated deeply! Bishop Stafford Nwaogu and his wife, Evangelist Tina serve as Member of both the Global Board of Trustees and Global Governing Council of International Ministers Fellowship.
He oversees Praise Center Church International in Owerri, Imo State, Nigeria.
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Voices from Afar Brought Additional Insight: Bishop Xavier (South Africa); Pastor Jarlath (Nigeria); Prophetess Rebecca (UK) & Evangelist Christina (Liberia)
By the Grace of Elohim, the last 17 years have been invested in finding and connecting the Remnant from around the globe to be part of an organic fellowship of brethren. That unique selling proposition of International Ministers Fellowship is given greater expression at the annual Open Gates Conference which holds in the United Kingdom every second weekend of January.
Over the past 5 years, the Lord has led us to open up space for the annual conferences of some national chapters, namely USA, South Africa, Zimbabwe and Nigeria to have international flavour.
Bishop Xavier Obasogie serves with his dear wife, Prophetess Audrey Tshepo Obasogie as the IMF Global Executive Director of Business, Professionals and Public Affairs.
Based in South Africa, this fine couple who walk in Integrity in the Market Place have a special place for IMF-USA. Bishop Xavier preached out his heart, encouraging the brethren to shun nay sayers and press into their destinies.
Pastor Jarlath Onuegbu served as 4th National President of IMF-Nigeria and is now on the National Advisory Council. He brought a message from the Lord. As one who was there right from the beginning of IMF, the growth of the US Chapter fills him with joy. He spoke from the heart to delegates.
Prophetess Rebecca Monioro serves with her husband, Pastor Ross Monioro who is one of the 3 Group Legal Advisers also brought forth a Word delivered with great passion. They live in West London where she also runs an early educational institution.
Evangelist Christina also known as Mamie Binda is the Director of Community Engagement and Social Action at IMF-Liberia. She is also the CEO of We Care International Liberia chapter. Experiencing the warmth of love and true fellowship for the first conference outside Liberia, her overflowing heart was on display.
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Another Change of Guard in the family: Office of Global Executive Director of Communication
A few months ago, Apostle Candace Star, the Global Executive Director of Communication of International Ministers Fellowship was persuaded by leading of the Lord to step down so that she and her husband, Pastor David Star will concentrate on a fresh vision for Kingdom expansion.
After consultation with the Global Governing Council, Apostle Dr. Katherine Jones of San Diego, California was approved to step into the role of Acting Global Executive Director of Communication until formal ratification for a 3 year term of Office. She has already hit the ground running building a brand new user-friendly website from scratch: www.imfministers.com.
Dr. Katherine who is a minister in the Market Place has been an extremely resourceful member of the team which oversees the Master Class of the Global Advanced Mentorship Program. She runs the Yes Course platform on the website www.kingdombooksclub.com which she manages as administrator.
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Reception at the Hyatt Centric was a Love Ambush!
On Thursday, July 25 we had some drama concerning the trip to Arlington Virginia. But as we embraced the process with patience and endurance, Elohim worked out all things for our good!
When we finally arrived the Hotel where the IMF-USA Conference would hold, a sizeable company of saints were already in the lobby.
Apostle Ronald Shepherd & Pastor Janda Shepherd had inspired them to just love on us. And that is what they did: we walked into a love ambush that touched Pastor and the children!
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The Love Factor that we experienced on arrival right in the hotel lobby persisted throughout the conference!
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The ‘Grand Agape Convention’ may well describe 3 nights and 3 Days of the IMF-USA Conference at the Hyatt Centric Arlington Virginia! And there was such a large company of saints who were early birds, arrived a day early to soak in all that Yahweh our Heavenly Father had for us. The electric atmosphere we encountered on arrival persisted throughout the Conference!
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Famished after a long day on the road from Elizabeth, New Jersey through Delaware, Maryland, onto Virginia, a visit to Ruby Tuesday Restaurant across the street from the The Hyatt Centric Arlington offered the much needed solution.
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Our First Order of Kingdom Business was to pray with Revelation and Passion!
Early birds to arrive Arlington, Virginia hit the ground running. Starting from 5.00am on Friday, 27th July, we had a live edition of Day Break With The King for 1 and half hours. Beginning with worship and prayers, we received prophetic releases from a number of vessels. With the heavens opened, Elohim spoke about repair of negative foundations.
Virginia is not just another State in America. Part of land used to build Washington DC, the National Capital was drawn from Virginia. It was birth place of the First and greatest of American Presidents, George Washington. Whereas Congress decided to honor him with a resting place in the Crypt, located right in the Center of the Capitol, George Washington preferred that his earthly remains be interred in his Virginia Farm. The tomb prepared for him is still empty till date.
It is significant that two of the greatest symbols of American Military prowess - The Pentagon and Arlington National Cemetery - are located in Arlington, Virginia.
Delegates prayed for Peace in America; and that hearts of President Donald Trump and all leaders of influence across the national spectrum be in the hands of Elohim to turn as it pleases Him! The toxic state of divisiveness in the nation and Church were brought before the Lord.
With the Atmosphere cleared up, the stage was spiritually set for the awesome visitation of the Lord that weekend.
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Commissioning Service of 2017 MasterClass was a profound event (1)
Every year since 2013, the Global Advanced Mentorship Program admits leaders and saints from across the world into a 9 months intensive online MasterClass. During this period, we are used by Holy Spirit to pour into brethren the full measure of revelation Elohim granted us concerning His Kingdom.
One of the toughest spiritual empowerment programs, the principle utilised is the Teach, Train, Equip, Activate and Release Model.
Participants are intentionally stretched to the point where their spirit-man snaps out of the bondage to their fleshly realms (soul + Body).
Those who truly get this far find a liberty that is real as their spirit-man soars to experience what it means to be seated in heavenly places with King Yeshua, Jesus. For these leaders and ministers, serving the Lord and saints becomes a joy of graceful service. In this s way, fit-for-Purpose manpower is emerging worldwide for the final harvest.
Out of over 200 who enrolled in the 2017 Master Class, 77 were able to complete the course work. Of that number, some were able to make it to the Hyatt Centric in Arlington, Virginia where the Commissioning Service was held between 12 noon and 4.30pm on Friday, July 27.
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Commissioning Service of 2017 Master Class (2)
Apostle William Spence, as an Elder at the Gate of the DC Capital territory officially welcomed us to the region. Apostle Ronald Shepherd, as President of IMF-USA stepped up to welcome delegates to the United States of America. Apostle Candace Star, the pioneer Director of Studies gave a rousing farewell speech while the Registrar, Teacher Stephanie announced the roll call of those who breasted the tape by completing their course work.
As Co-Visionary, Pastor Grace released a charge to the graduating class of 2017. It was truly an atmosphere of Liberty and Order in joyful embrace!
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Commissioning Service of 2017 Master Class demonstrated Body Ministry.
Alumni of various Master Class sets between 2013 to 2016 who were led by the Lord have been serving as Mentors. Out of the over 50 mentors 15 serve as Principal Officers who assist us to execute this awesome vision: Train manpower that will be used by Holy Spirit to make the ultimate Reformation of the Kingdom Church a reality.
The vision is to activate the Melchizedek Priesthood otherwise called the Priesthood of ALL Believers. The principle driving this undertaking is 2 Timothy 2:2. Those who embrace this vision also reject the Nimrodic and Levitical Priesthood Paradigm which has plagued the Church with doctrine of the Nicolaitanes hated by Yeshua!
Principal Officers and Mentors had the opportunity to speak into the life of those who were about to graduate and pray for them. It was a profound sight to behold!
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Commissioning graduates of 2017 Master Class was a profound Kingdom Assignment!
And the moment finally came when hands were laid of those of them who could make it to the Hyatt Centric, Arlington Virginia on Friday, July 27.
They did a monthlong Orientation with 26 lessons. They received intense revelation-based teaching and training which covered 10 courses. At end of each course, they submitted feedback and were examined through the Course Impact Assembly System.
Some finished their course work at the appointed time which is end of December while many others tapped into the Grace of Elohim during the time between December and the Commissioning Service. Mentors equipped them and many experienced various degrees of activation.
Our role on July 27 was to simply trust Elohim to use our vessels to fully activate and release them into productive Kingdom Ministry with Grace to reproduce after kind.
In releasing them through laying on of hands, the preceding word challenged them to recapture essence of the Great Commission which Christendom had distorted. Matthew 28:19-20 and Matthew 24:14 make it clear that the Gospel of the Kingdom is essentially a mandate to use the whole Word to impact the whole World through infusion of Kingdom Culture.
The Mandate of Global Missions Board was therefore presented as a veritable tool for advancement of the Divine Purpose.
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Principal Officers of the Global Advanced Mentorship Program had the privilege of presenting Certificates of Participation to graduates of the 2017 Master Class.
Though the program is deliberately nonacademic, the rigour of diligent study of the Holy Scriptures to the degree that they engaged in required that they be presented evidence of what they went through!
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The printed brochure is a keep sake.
Enjoy with us what Elohim is doing through the Global Advanced Mentorship Program of Authentic Kingdom Culture! We do it better when we do the Great Commission Together!
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Official Send Forth & Release of Pioneer Director of Studies, Apostle Candace Star was a profound moment!
Apostle Candace was part of the pioneer participating set of the Master Class Series when it launched in 2013. The vast extent of Grace in her and capacity for leadership led to her appointment as Director of Studies. She served with distinction as Chief Operating Officer of The Global Advanced Mentorship Program.
This year, the Lord gave her a fresh assignment in the Kingdom which necessitated a voluntary stepping down from Office. Over the past few months, there has been a gradual winding down and smooth transition as is required in Kingdom Culture. With her husband Pastor David beside her, Apostle Candace was formally released and sent forth to fulfil the Determinate Counsel of Elohim! All things were done decently and in order.
Apostle Candace is greatly beloved by brethren and there were visible eruptions of emotion. The good thing is that she will continue in fellowship and serve with Pastor David as Trustee in IMF-USA.
The event wound down shortly before the Opening Dinner of the IMF-USA National Conference. As vision holders of both Kingdom projects, our Heavenly Father has been gracious in showing us how to seamlessly integrate them to produce synergy.
Our children: Favour, Elect, Arise, Praise and Destiny made their debut in serving at an international level in this meeting as they engaged in Media work and worship.
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Alumni begin to bear fruit: Apostle Brenda Jamison in Pennsylvania and Apostle Jeanita Sykes in Georgia.
Two years ago, Apostle Brenda Jamison stepped out in faith to reproduce after kind according to Kingdom Culture. She activated Global School of Ministry Pennsylvania and in the Bahamas.
On Friday, July 27, three of those she taught, trained and equipped were presented for activation and release: Minister Eunice Spann; Evangelist Bonnie Gardner and Minister Melissa Soppick. What a joy to see fruits of her labour empowered for Service.
In the same way, Apostle Jeanita Sykes of Georgia utilised the Global School of Ministry Curriculum in the ministry committed to her trust, Zion Kingdom Embassy. The fruit of her going Forth was the presentation of Prophet Michael Adams for activation and release. It was a moving scene to see that 2 Timothy 2:2 is for real!
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IMF-USA National Conference kicked off Friday, July 27 with Fellowship of the Table!
As a matter of Kingdom principle International Ministers Fellowship practices the three dimensions of Fellowship which enables better bonding of saints from different backgrounds: Fellowship of the Heart (Agape Love); Fellowship of the Knees (Prayer) and Fellowship of the Table (Dining Together).
The Hyatt Centric offered up good food!
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Worship was pure, simple and hearty, courtesy of Pastor Jeremiah on Key Board, Minister Jessica on vocals and the GPRC team from the Golden Village of Kilgore, East Texas! These brethren were on fire.
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The Akalonu 5 - Favour, Elect, Arise, Praise and Destiny - ministered to the saints at the Conference!
At Arise Metropolitan Assembly Elm Park Hornchurch in the London Borough of Havering, our young children have been active in serving in the worship and media teams: Favour on vocals; Elect on Drums, Arise on Key board); Praise on the Projector while Destiny works with the Camera.
The Lord used their service at the local assembly to prepare them for the opportunity to serve saints at the IMF-USA Conference in Arlington, Virginia. This was a dress rehearsal for what was to happen later!
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Theme of the IMF-USA National Conference was ‘Gathered Together by His Grace’.
From different angles, Pastor Grace and I approached the Key Note Address. At end of the Night, Elohim used our vessels of Clay to deliver a crisp, clear message to delegates.
The Global IMF Theme for 2018 is ‘By His Grace’
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When The Next Generation Connected Spontaneously, The Glory Came Down!
Something unique took conferees by surprise: The Next Generation of IMF from London, United Kingdom and Kilgore, East Texas connected in a deep way which only Holy Spirit could orchestrate!
The atmosphere was charged with the Divine presence as the young people broke into worship, praises singing with melody from their pure hearts.
For almost two hours after Day 1 of the Conference they held the adults spell bound as they glorified the Lord.
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By 5.00am on Saturday July 28, a good number of delegates came down from their rooms for a Live session of Day Break With The King! For us, Prayer and Faith have always been vital instruments of connection with ABBA to know and do His will. For those who have been part of this arm of the Reformation Commission, it was another Golden opportunity to see, each other, live.
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Induction of the 2018 Master Class took place during the period of Day Break With The King! Principal Officers of the Global Advanced Mentorship Program assisted us to conduct the Induction. Apart from an intensive month-long Orientation exercise in March, 2018, participants in the 2018 have completed 5 Courses already and are on their mid-year break.
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Induction of the 2018 Master Class was a Project conducted with great grace. Again the Principal Officers and Mentors in the Global Advanced Mentorship Program played a key role in this exercise.
The Elohim of All Grace does it best! He has fulfilled the good pleasure of His Determinate Counsel in bringing us to the 2018 Mission to America!
It’s time to head home to London, full of awe at His Majesty and thankful to all officers and brethren of IMF-USA who generously pooled resources to sponsor the Akalonu family, for the first time in 16 years of extensive missions!
To Apostle Ronald Shepherd & Pastor Janda Shepherd, National President working with Trustees, National Advisory Council, National Executive, Teacher Stephanie Foster & Minister Carol Bessent to pull off this huge Kingdom undertaking, we are thankful for your love.
For all who sowed into the common pool to make 2018 Mission to America the outstanding testimony it is, may you experience an encounter with He Who gives Seed to the Sower and Bread to the Eater to the extent that All Allocations for your Assignments are fulfilled without struggle.
To All Intercessors worldwide who stood in the gap, you shall eat the fruit of your gracious investment!
To Apostle Sheldon Southerland & Lady Deborah Southerland with Sharon Southerland and brethren at Friendship Community Church and Pastor David Williams & Apostle Denise Williams: you all made the trip to North Carolina an exciting adventure!
To Apostle Ron, Pastor Janda, the Shepherd & Taylor McCarty families; Pastor Jeremiah Shepherd & Minister Brittney and all the saints of the loving, Holy mob in the Golden Village of Kilgore, you exceeded your billings!
© 2018 International Ministers Fellowship