We seek to design Christian leadership training systems adhering to these guiding principles:
LOCAL CHURCH | Transferable | Transformative | Contextualized | Collaborative | Accessible | Accountable & Transparent
“We just came alongside”
Protestant Christian Fellowship was born in Novi Sad, Serbia, in 1991. Entrust got to know the church and senior pastor Bera Dushan through Nik Nedelchev, then president of the European Evangelical Alliance and Entrust ambassador-at-large, in the early 2000s. Pastor Bera and some people from Entrust began to explore if and how Entrust might be helpful to this young, vibrant church.
“True to one of Entrust’s core values,” Entrust’s Rob and Sandy Shaffer recall, “we asked Bera and his leadership team what they felt their needs were.” The church selected several training topics from among Entrust’s materials.
Rob and Sandy, along with Mark and Beth Van Bebber of Entrust and occasionally other colleagues, traveled regularly from Austria and Hungary to Serbia for intensive, relational training sessions with Pastor Bera and his wife, members of the church leadership team and “many lay ministry leaders.”
Some key things Rob believes the church gained from Entrust’s investment over the years include practical discipleship, servant leadership, understanding of the separation of roles of various ministry teams (especially elders and deacons), gaining a strategy and vision for training younger generations and growth in leadership traits such as honesty, openness and vulnerability.
God is using Protestant Christian Fellowship to change lives locally and regionwide. Its drug rehab program is going strong. The young people recently hosted an international youth worship gathering with neighboring Croatians and Bosnians.
The church had “some vibrant ministries and innovative ideas before we came,” Rob says. “We’ve just come alongside them to provide needed training of their lay leaders, which probably has a trickle-down effect on others in the church community.”
Because God has chosen the local fellowship of believers as the primary vehicle for the working of his Spirit in the world, our ultimate focus is the health and strength of the local church, establishing ongoing, indigenous, church-based training of servant-leaders for generations to come.