A Note from FDM Institute’s Executive Director
I am truly excited to update you about what God is up to through our new online training institute, Family Discipleship Ministries Institute (FDMI). The need for an online Institute came about organically through requests and interest from our pastors and trainers on the ground. The global pandemic has provided us with the opportunity for greater outreach through this institute as more people than ever are familiar with online meetings and trainings. FDM’s online institute allows us to provide in the most practical and efficient way free training and online resources to the body of Christ worldwide on the biblical principles of discipleship for the church and families. As always, our focus has been raising instructors who can train others in their own languages and cultural contexts and hence our chosen Learning Management System (LMS) is a multilingual platform where students are able to interact with their instructors and classmates in their own languages.
FDM has been training and will continue to train in-person many pastors and their church members through church seminars and organized conferences. In addition to these, the online institute allows us to multiply our ability to connect with many more people who are not part of the same church or same denomination, and many who are not even within the same local area but can participate online with many others in a particular country or from another region. All FDMI courses are offered in 8 week segments or quarters as we call them.
To kick things off, we launched our first course last month – Discipleship Takes Vision and Strategy (DVS). This is the very first course that we ask all FDMI students to take to help them understand and appreciate the indispensable importance of personal discipleship to Christian growth and maturity for everyone in the body of Christ. And characteristic of FDM’s particular emphasis, special attention is given to equip churches to disciple their congregations in marriage and parenting. These things are sorely missing in the church and FDM is committed to fight the good fight to address meeting this dire spiritual need.
100 students total have enrolled in our first DVS course, which is currently being taught in three different countries by four instructors — 2 teach in India, 1 teaches in Mexico, and 1 in Tanzania. Through the faithful teaching of these instructors, we are seeing already the Spirit of God moving powerfully and stirring the hearts of these students to personal discipleship. Even though many of these students are pastors, we have learned from experience that many or even most of them have not been mentored in what it means to be a disciple and discipling others, and when it comes to applying this to marriage and family it is all completely new to them. Obviously when this is the case the people in their churches are not being taught any of these things. By God’s grace what we are seeing is that all these pastors are soaking up the teaching we offer like a sponge and bringing it into their churches. Our next quarter of FDMI classes will start in early 2023 and we’re anticipating students from Bangladesh, India, Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Mexico, Cuba and of course, here in the U.S. as well. Our students tell us all the time how hard it is in all these countries to be instructed in sound biblical teaching. This makes it so critically important to have all our FDM workbooks translated in the languages of all these countries, and as the Lord continues to open up new doors, this need will only multiply.
By God’s grace the seeds we are sowing now will reap a harvest unto the Lord. As I often say, we never want to presume upon the Lord and say how things will continue, but an expression that Pastor Craig likes to say is most fitting here — “Join God where He is going” — and that’s exactly what we are striving to do. Please pray for the Lord to be glorified through these international outreach efforts, and bring a revival of discipleship in these and many other countries.
Dr Jonathan KingExecutive Director FDM Institute
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