By Connie Hougland, NCF Heartland
Erik Fish was sitting in his car with his eight-year-old daughter, Olivia, when he checked his voicemail. It had only been a few days since staff members from the NCF Heartland offices had been on site at his Ministry, Student Church Movement, narrowing down the finalists for the 2012 Passion Awards. The message was from me, and I was calling to inform him that we still had one lingering question to ask.
“I began feeling nervous at this point, Erik recalls. “I was thinking I had bombed the last interview so they needed to ask me more questions.”
The reality of the situation was that we were in fact calling with a question. We wanted to know if he would be okay with being honored with a $10,000 Passion Award. And his response was pure exuberance.
“I hear background sounds of a roomful of people screaming, yelling, laughing and clapping at the NCF office,” Erik said. “This was followed by screaming, yelling, laughing and clapping by me – followed by strange looks from my daughter.”
We love it when that happens.
Erik and his family joined the NCF family back in November at the 2012 Passion Awards to accept their award.
The evening was one of pure joy, witnessing all the wonders that God is doing through the ministries we recognized and beyond. But what happens after the big event? What plans has God created for our winners and how will he bring their vision to life?
For Erik Fish and The Student Church Movement – God’s plan is taking them global. Erik plans to bring the Student Church Planting Experience (SCPX) into more European campuses this year and he is already exploring opportunities for expanding the movement into Southeast Asia.
“The simple church tools we use among students are incredibly reproducible in virtually any campus environment. It’s very exciting to think that the next great wave of missionaries into the 10/40 Window will probably be Asians” Erik says. “We think it’s vital to get tools for student movements and simple church planting into the hands of these future missions leaders while they are at university.”
An added accomplishment is that Student Church has already translated the Disciple book into Mandarin Chinese. This is a tool that over the last year has been used to facilitate 3,000+ Discipling relationships. They use it to equip students to make one to one and small group discipling relationships and grow simple church communities.
We absolutley share in their joy and excitment for getting this tool into the hands of Chinese speaking students in SE Asia.
According to Erik, “Not only is the tool a great resource for growing more disciples and simple church communities, it also generates income for our ministry to help us facilitate more Student Church Planting eXperiences. So the Passion Awards are helping us create tools to produce more disciples AND residual income to fund future ministry projects. We think this is wise stewardship all around.”
I think I speak for everyone in our NCF offices when I say that we are overjoyed to see what God is doing through Erik, his beautiful family and the Student Church Movement – taking his efforts and expanding them all over the world. And so we say congratulations to the SCPX! We expect big things from you and we are so pleased to see your well-deserved Passion Award go beyond our imagination, too.
For more information on Student Church Movement, visit their website and see how you can get involved.