Archive for August, 2015

Announcing: “The Art of Youth Ministry” Coming to Richmond in January

Posted in Waypoint Events on August 27, 2015 by Waypoint Church Partners

Art of YM imageFor the first time the VEF is hosting an event specifically to challenge, equip and encourage our youth leaders in the Virginia region! The many challenges of youth ministry are well known: tight budgets, high expectations, and a changing culture often at odds with the values of young disciples. It’s easy to get overwhelmed leading in this kind of environment.

However, we know how crucial these formative years are for establishing and developing your teenagers’ life-long faith. That’s why the VEF  created this one-day annual seminar, “The Art of Youth Ministry,” where your youth staff will be strengthened and encouraged while learning and fellowshipping with other youth leaders.

Nationally-known youth speaker Mark DeVries, President of Ministry Architects and author of  the book Sustainable Youth Ministry, will lead.

The Art of Youth Ministry will take place on Tuesday, January 12th from 9:30am-3:30pm at Fairmount Christian Church in Mechanicsville, VA. The $35 registration covers the cost of the seminar, materials, and lunch. Your youth leaders won’t want to miss this inaugural event just for them! It’s an easy way for your church to invest in your most important leaders.

Visit to register today!

Ethnic ICOM Project Announced for Columbia Heights in Washington, DC

Posted in Church Planting, ICOM on August 25, 2015 by Waypoint Church Partners

Washington DC Columbia Heights Map-02The VEF is happy to announce the ICOM church plant to be based in Washington, DC in the Columbia Heights area, near the National Zoo. The VEF is collaborating with New Life Christian Church, a VEF church plant, along with Passion4Planting to plant an ethnically diverse church in the Northwest neighborhood of Washington, DC. The goal of this ethnic project is to reach primarily second-generation Latinos. Second-generation Latinos (known as 2.0s) were typically born in the States to parents who immigrated from Spanish-speaking countries in Central and South America.

An Urban Institute study of the District of Columbia revealed that neighborhoods with significant Latino populations are mostly clustered in the Columbia Heights area of the District. Demographics indicate that well over one third of the population in this region is of  Latino descent.

A recent VEF church plant, Restore Christian Church in Silver Spring, launched in October 2012 and is just a couple of subway stops north on the Red Line. Prior to Restore Church’s launch just three years ago, there was no presence of the Christian Church and Church of Christ inside the Capital Beltway. This new ethnic project will give us our second and counting! Additional funding partners are being gathered to help fully resource the project.

Lead Planter Joel Pazmino was born and raised in Guayaquil, Ecuador.  Joel’s father left his job in the banking field to plant a church there when Joel was 17 years old. Later, Joel’s father came to the U.S. to plant another church for Spanish-speaking “Latino 1.0s” in the Baltimore area.

JJoel3 copyoel and his wife, Meghan, already reside in Columbia Heights. He will commute to New Life Christian Church in Chantilly, VA over the next year as part of his residency with Passion4Planting and a cohort of four other church planters preparing to plant new churches throughout the region. Meghan, a teacher, will be teaching this fall at Ross Elementary School, just four blocks from DuPont Circle in Washington, DC.

Joel recently served as Director of Spiritual Formation and Community Life at Centerpoint Church in Annapolis, MD where he and Meghan met. Joel holds a B.S. in International Business from Strayer University and completed coursework for his M.Div. from Bethel Seminary. Joel and Meghan successfully completed a Church Planter Assessment Center in November 2014. For the past 18 months, Joel has been a participant in the DC church planters’ coaching group led by Brett Andrews, the lead guy at New Life Christian Church.

Joel loves to run. He is naturally a huge soccer fan, supporting F.C. Barcelona and more locally, DC United. He’s also an avid Baltimore Ravens fan. Meghan graduated from the University of Maryland and is a big Terrapins fan. She loves cooking, baking and gardening, They have a three-year-old goldfish called “The Captain” who never stops eating.

To support Joel and Meghan as they prepare to plant a church in the heart of DC, e-mail them at You can also like their Facebook page and follow their progress at:

This article first appeared in the VEF Quarterly: Summer 2015 edition. To sign up for future issues of the VEF Quarterly, e-mail Rachel Woolard at!

Belarus: Planting a Church in “White Russia”

Posted in Church Planting, ICOM on August 6, 2015 by Waypoint Church Partners

belarus_family copyBelarus (literally “White Russia”) in Eastern Europe is a country most people could not find on a world map. But God is very much aware of the 10 million people living there. God is doing a special work in this land with young, often marginalized, evangelicals who are catalyzing a new movement of churches bringing faith, hope and new life to their communities.

Since becoming independent in 1991, Belarus has been reforging its own identity, emerging from the shadow of Russia – its largest neighbor and brother to the east. Unlike other former Soviet countries, Belarus retained much of its strong, centralized form of government while pursuing modest economic reforms. Much of the recent growth is due to government sponsored initiatives.

In Belarus, like in most of our world, over 70% of the people live in urban centers. Minsk, home to 2.3 million people, is the geographical, political, economic, and cultural heart of the country. Evangelical groups rep-resent slightly more than 1% of the population. They are distrusted and marginalized as cults by the Orthodox church and the government. The Voice of The Martyrs lists Belarus as a country hostile towards evangelical churches.

Even in this hostile climate, the evangelical church in Belarus and Minsk in particular has experienced a season of relative peace and growth. Although atheism and Russian Orthodoxy are still the predominant views, evangelical groups are stepping up to the challenge of planting new churches.

Impact Ministry Group and Impact Europe (formerly Global Missionary Ministries) have partnered to establish four of the six evangelical churches in Minsk. Now, under the catalytic leadership of Dmitry Lazuta, a new movement of churches is rising up with young leaders ready to take risks to reach their countrymen for Christ.

Dmitry Mamoyko is one of these leaders. He has planted a “Next Gen” church within the walls of an existing church, and this young congregation is ready to be fully birthed on its own. They are clearing and breaking ground in a residential area of Minsk to build their own worship center and meeting place.

Virginia Churches through ICOM are partnering with Impact Europe to launch this new church in a new building. There is a bright future for the church as God raises up young believers through new churches to shine the light of Jesus in White Russia.

About the Author: Scott LaRue is the new director of Impact Europe, a division of Impact Ministry Group (IMG), affiliated with Russian Outreach Network.

This article was originally published in the VEF Quarterly: Spring 2015 edition. If you would like to receive future printed editions of the VEF Quarterly, please send your name and mailing address to