So we are on the verge of another great Disciple Now and I started to think about all of the great events that I have had a privilege to be a part of in the past. God has really blessed me to be a part of some cool things! Disciple Now’s, Hunger for the Harvest, Camps, Christian Heritage Conference, etc.
Next to Disciple Now the most amazing events I have ever helped put together were the Christian Heritage Conferences. We would pray over a theme, set up a team of helpers, develop a registrations strategy, line up a top notch speaker, get the word out, set up a bookstore, and all on a shoe string budget. It was amazing!
Christian Heritage Conference
Though I cannot speak for the reason others were inspired, my inspiration came from a well spring of two sources.
One: The rappid movement in our day to redefine “church.” In the struggle to go back to Acts 2 many have missed the blessings that the church fathers in the first few centuries have handed to us as a guide to understanding and interpreting the scriptures (mainly the Rule of Faith). In that many have also completely abandoned church history in order to become a “pure” church like the one in the New Testament. (Which one? Corinth, Ephesus, Pyrgumum, Colasae?) I figured that if we were to take our people down such a road that they should not do so with complete ignorance of what God has done through out history with faithful men and women so that we might be able to face the new gnosticism that such a forgetfulness will soon employ. In short: if we do not learn from the past we are doomed to repeat its error and find ourselves facing the same obstacles that have already once been overcome.
Two: John Piper’s lectures in Christian Biography. I had to make a 16 hour ride home to Missouri one year while in college and was blessed to be able to listen to over 16 hours straight of the lives and times of great men that God had used to bring glory to his name throughout history. I understood then why history (for good or for ill) contributes to who we are today.
From these two wells of inspiration and a great friend and partner in ministry (Kyle Claunch). The Christian Heritage Conference was born to popularize an education of Church history for the benefit of the whole church.
Like all things it morphed and changed over the years. We covered a variety of historical figures and had a variety of Top notch Speakers. We learned to advertise outside of our local areas and expand our vision beyond college students. We contacted home-school associations, history and theology departments at local colleges and history clubs at local high schools. We also contacted pastors in the surrounding associations. We began to hold registrations so we could pull more people in earlier in the next years event.