Communitas has ended.

Communitas has ended … because we’re becoming a completely new ministry!  We’re taking things on the road!  This is a very exciting new beginning, and we hope you’ll come along for the ride!

Dear Friends of Communitas:
After much prayer, we have decided to make a major shift in our ministry focus at Harvest Communities… this is a big one! If you prefer to listen to the longer version, check out the message from the final Communitas service here.

The first “community” of Harvest Communities was a young adult church called Communitas. This ministry has been blessed to have seen hundreds of young adults grow closer to the Lord and receive training and equipping for ministry and leadership in the wider Body of Christ, including pastors, youth leaders, missionaries, and lay-ministers who are now deployed both here in the Twin Cities and world-wide. It’s been a great ride. But the Lord has been leading us down a path, and that path has started to look less and less like a “church” and more like something else.

Our calling is to equip leaders and ministers for the Body of Christ. In 2016 we started to focus our weekly sermon time more on training for ministry skills, and we went on two regional ministry trips to lead Holy Spirit Conferences (Waupaca, WI and Bismarck, ND). Both of these trips exceeded all expectations, and we saw tremendous fruit. The Lord is now leading us to take the next step. It’s a big step of faith that will pivot us from a church community to a ministry focused on outreach and training people to be leaders and ministers.

The Scripture God gave us as our vision for 2016 was Luke 10. In the beginning of that chapter, Jesus sends out the 70 … not the 12, the superstars, but the 70 … i.e. the rest of the church! Ministry is not just for the seminary grads, it’s for all followers of Jesus. Sooner or later, Jesus sends all of us out to spread the Gospel. That time has come for us, so we’re accepting His call and going out.

The metaphor the Lord gave me at the end of 2015 about Communitas was that of a caterpillar that had formed a cocoon. We were in that cocoon for about two years, and frankly I thought we’d be there for most of this next year as well … but the Lord surprised us last month by telling us that He has begun breaking us out of that cocoon.

So we are saying goodbye to the old, and ending our weekly worship services. December 15th, 2016 was our final service! That no doubt sounds crazy—but we feel that for now, in order to embrace this next phase of God’s call for us, we need to focus on doing ministry OUT THERE as opposed to in the house.

We have started hosting regular training classes. The training will focus on: cultivating the fruits of the Spirit, the life of the Spirit, hearing the voice of God, the gifts of the Spirit, prayer ministry, healing ministry, deliverance, and more. These will be open to anyone in the area who wants to receive more training, but those who are going to be part of our teams will all receive the training they need.

We’ll be doing conferences, going to churches, schools, youth groups, etc. We will have many local ministry events—including a Youth Leadership Conference on April 22nd—as well as regional trips—Wisconsin in March, Duluth in April—and international trips. We will also be heading to Brazil over Pentecost (May/June) to lead a Holy Spirit Conference. We will also be doing trips to Native American Reservations, mostly in MN, to do ministry. One of our leaders, Jacob Beguhl, has a lot of favor among the elders of these tribes and we’ve been invited to send teams as often as we can!

Obviously that’s a lot of fundraising to do, especially for young adults! And then of course there are salaries and ministry expenses … how are we going to cover all that without weekly services? We’re trusting the Lord to provide, because He’s the one Who has sent us. This is sort of an Abraham “Go and then I’ll show you” call.

I have allowed myself to ponder lately what a butterfly must feel like (if such things were possible) when it’s time to come out of its cocoon. Might it feel a bit apprehensive? After all, the cocoon is nice and warm–and safe. Who knows what might happen out there in the big scary world. But like it or not, the cocoon opens, and the butterfly has to learn how to fly. I imagine that once that butterfly begins to take flight, it might feel silly for having wanted to stay in the cocoon or remain a caterpillar … flying has to be so much better than crawling in the dirt!

I would feel privileged if you would consider taking flight with us, so to speak, through your support. I also appreciate your prayers. We know from Scripture that the Enemy likes to try to kill new ministries right when they start, and we’ve been experiencing a lot of added spiritual warfare over the past year. We really need your prayers! I will continue to update you as we embark on this exciting journey. Please don’t hesitate to ask any questions you might have. And if you want a schedule of ministry events, please let me know!

Your Servant in Christ,
Nate Johnstone