By Warren Bird
Leadership Network has built a team of high-capacity leaders who serve churches in powerful ways. These leaders are field-tested as innovation catalysts in their ministry areas, and they bring unique backgrounds and experiences to their pursuits with church leaders in North America.
In this edition of a blog series to introduce those leaders, you’ll meet John Poitevent—a new leader to Leadership Network, but a long-time catalyst in various ministry settings who is bringing his passion for HUB:Missional Engagement.
What background qualifications do you bring to your leadership of the HUB:Missional Engagement group?
Less than a year after becoming a believer I was preaching in a mud hut church in Haiti. That experience forever burned in me a missional vision for following Christ. I went on to be a missionary with YWAM (Youth with a Mission) for 5 years, primarily recruiting and leading teens on short-term trips abroad. I also served as a campus pastor at a large multisite church, where we embraced a parish model and reached out to the surrounding community in many creative ways. I’ve worked extensively with the poor, both internationally and locally for 25 years. My first exposure to Leadership Network was through participating in the Externally Focused and Global Connections communities with Eric Swanson. Engaging the church in local and global missions has always been a passion of mine.
Why are you excited about working with church leaders on this topic? What difference do you hope to make?
I have a passion to see every member of the local church embracing their part in the Great Commission; across the street and around their world. I’m always excited to serve the body of Christ, but I am especially looking forward to working with this group of world changers. At HUB:Missional Engagement we will see churches from across the country come together to learn, be strategically equipped, and sent out to fulfill the Great Commission. What could be more exciting than that?
“John Poitevent is a seasoned and thoughtful leader, whose breadth of experience, from global missions to personal recovery makes him perfect for helping churches walk into their future in HUB:Missional Engagement.”
What’s the biggest challenge you want to help churches and church leaders work through in this area? What is the biggest opportunity to help them seize?
Every church will have their own biggest challenge, but one that I consistently hear is, “How do we compete with the busyness of our culture and instill a priority-changing Kingdom vision in our people?” Churches can give people the “how to” (training and opportunities), but if those people don’t have the “want to” (a vision and conviction that is compelling them), then our work will be fruitless.
What can leaders expect to experience from being with you and each other? What will the experience be like?
For those unfamiliar with the Leadership Network process, the HUB will be like nothing they’ve ever taken part in before. The HUB is not a conference or a seminar; this is a fully interactive, paradigm shifting experience. Through ministry evaluation, collaboration, and interactive exercises, churches will discover new ways to think about and do ministry. Leaders will gain clarity of their vision and leave with a blueprint for change.
What do you do for fun?
I love “do it yourself” home improvement projects, cooking, playing golf, racquetball, fishing, travel and live music. I’ve recently started making salsa and will bring some to the HUB!
How are you involved with your local church?
I co-lead a small group with my local church. In the past year we have begun to engage small groups more intentionally in reaching their neighborhoods.
It is one thing to talk about being the missional people of God, but it is quite another thing to be a people on mission, where every person inside your church is making an impact outside of your church. Right now your church is perfectly aligned to the results you are getting. Different results will come from the values, structures, actions, and the stories you tell that actually shape a different future – a future driven by a strong internal culture and a committed external focus. If your church is interested in creating a missional engagement culture go to https://leadnet.org/missionalengagement for more information.