Spirit-empowered leaders from six continents are gathered this week in Bogota, Colombia, for the annual meeting of Empowered21 (E21) international leadership. The five days in Latin America are filled with strategic meetings and fellowship gatherings designed to advance and resource the Spirit-empowered community around the world.
The Global Council of E21 opened their annual leadership session on June 4 at the Grand Hyatt in Bogota with introductions and reports from the various global regions. Global Co-Chair of E21 Dr. Billy Wilson stated that while there are 65 members of the Global Council, more than 650 leaders are represented across 14 regions of the world.
"Empowered21 is a kingdom initiative, which God has entrusted us to steward," Wilson told the Council. "This movement functions and succeeds through the efforts of the hundreds at the regional and local levels who have embraced the E21 mission and vision."
This week's E21 Global Council and Latin American Congress is the first such gathering to be held in South America.
Wilson introduced Caleb Wehrli, a missionary, evangelist and pastor who was named late last year as executive director of Empowered21. Wehrli reported on the growth of E21, particularly as it relates to engagement and social media.
Wilson also paid tribute to former director Ossie Mills, who before his passing in February, served E21 as executive director for five years.
The Council heard reports from leaders of other initiatives of E21, including "Next Gen," Discipleship Commission, Global Evangelist Alliance and a Scholars Consultation, which convened in the same location on June 3-4. Scholars from around the world presented papers on "Poverty, Its Impact and the Responses of Spirit-Empowered Communities." Other scholars joined by video conferencing.
"The presentations stirred deep emotions for the social brokenness being experienced by many that the Spirit-empowered communities seek to help," said Dr. Mike Rakes, Global Council liaison to the Spirit-empowered Scholars. "The perspectives varied dramatically and exposed the contextualization that has to be done by scholars to formulate suppositions and lead Spirit-empowered scholars to asking the hard questions that lead to the future."
The remainder of the June 4 afternoon session focused on discussion of plans for the upcoming Jerusalem 2020 Global Congress, set for May 31 through June 3, 2020. Highlights of upcoming events in Bogota include a day-long meeting of the Global Evangelist Alliance on June 5, followed by the Latin American Congress, which begins Wednesday evening at the G12 Convention Center and concludes Friday night. A livestream of the congress is available beginning June 5 at 7:00 pm CST at E21bogota.com.
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