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Thrive 2017 leaves lasting imprint on Converge MidAtlantic!

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June 7-9 marked a major milestone in the Converge MidAtlantic movement!  Nearly 200 leaders came together at Grace Church in Erie, PA, for a fantastic time of learning, of networking, of worshiping, and of honoring the 24 years of ministry of Executive Minister, Dan Peterson, and his wife, Sandi.

Pre Conference sessions involved nearly 100 leaders on Wednesday, June 7th led by the ministry staff of Grace Church, and also focusing on Global mission impact and Youth ministry leadership.   A beautiful dinner cruise on Presque Isle Bay on Wednesday evening, provided a lovely opportunity for pastors and leaders to relax and connect up together!  The Converge Cup golf trophy was hotly contested on Thursday morning with the Rob Paterson team from Central OH taking the prized trophy!

Pastor Dan Nold from Calvary, State College challenged our Converge leaders to invest in the next generation through service and deep sacrifice much like Stephen, who put it all on the line, and in so doing created an altar that deeply impacted Saul and the next generation.

Dan and Sandi Peterson were honored through a beautiful dinner experience on Thursday evening, followed by a moving tribute to their ministry through worship, video stories, words of affirmation and love given by Bill Heaton, Pastor Ron Crawford, fellow Executive Minister, Bruce Sumner, Pastor Derek Sanford, and Converge President, Scott Ridout.  Many members of the Peterson family came from around the country to celebrate the evening, as Anne Marie Peterson spoke of the significance of family in our service for Christ.

Friday’s sessions involved a major message by Pastor Albert Tate on developing multi-cultural churches and church plants. Then, President Scott Ridout and Dan Peterson shared with passion and energy, the vision that God is laying on the hearts of Converge leaders for the next 10 years.  Maya Elizabeth and worship leadership from Messiah Church in Reistertown, MD shared in worship.  Financial updates for our District were shared along with affirming some brief business matters.  Helpful and very practical Breakout sessions were held on Thursday afternoon and Friday morning, dealing with various facets of Next Gen, Next Ten, for our movement and our churches!

Grace Church of McKean served our movement and our Thrive event with “over the top” excellence through their hospitality, their worship, through serving in whatever role was needed, and in teaching and training through out the weekend.

To me, some of the biggest highlights were the opportunities to learn from one another and network together, the inspiration that comes from hearing from God and being challenged to move forward as a movement, and of course, the love that Sandi and I felt as our Converge family literally showered us with affirmation, generosity, and recognition.  We were really touched deep down in our souls.

My sense is, that this 2017 Thrive Conference is leaving a lasting imprint on our Converge movement, as we move forward together into the next 10 years and beyond! The vision and commitment to start more and more churches, to grow healthy churches and leaders, and to reach our world for Christ, is stronger than ever.

Be watching for additional follow up resources that will be made available to churches and leaders from this year’s Thrive Conference.

Thanks to all who served and came out, making this a deeply memorable and impactful experience!

With gratitude and appreciation,

Dan and Sandi Peterson

Converge MidAtlantic

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