Lantz family speak at Milligan College for ‘Church Planting Emphasis Week’: College, Stadia announce partnership

Published 6:20 pm Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Star Photo/Curtis Carden                           Jason Lantz, left, looks on as his wife, Suzi, addresses Milligan College students and faculty during a special presentation on Tuesday, Nov. 29, to go along with "Church Planting Emphasis Week".

Star Photo/Curtis Carden
Jason Lantz, left, looks on as his wife, Suzi, addresses Milligan College students and faculty during a special presentation on Tuesday, Nov. 29, to go along with “Church Planting Emphasis Week”.

It has been a special time for students and faculty at Milligan College during the final days of November.
The school’s “Church Planting Emphasis Week” got off to a hot start Monday and continued into Tuesday with Jason and Suzi Lantz, vision leaders at RiverTree Christian Church in Ohio, speaking about their church planting experience inside the Mary B. Mary B. Martin Auditorium inside Seeger Chapel.
Jason and Suzi were just two speakers brought to the college. Each speaker that addresses students and attendees serve through Stadia, a world church planting organization. Along with discussions, each speaker talks with Milligan students of lunch to discuss how they can get involved with church planting.
“We were in a similar place,” Suzi said, addressing the packed house Tuesday. “Even if you’re not in ministry, God has enabled us to the opportunity to speak to everyone to share his love. It’s a privilege to be here to speak with you.”
The married couple spoke of their own church planting experiences in Ohio. Suzi discussed the opportunity to working with a woman at her previous employer. She said that a small group of women that met at her house went from four to 45 to 50 just by spreading the world.
Jason shared his story, going from being a collegiate football player to working as a pastor inside a church. He talked about Love Canton, the church he pastored at that time, and how one elderly gentleman that loved drinking Pepsi stopped by the church. While he entered hoping to receive a drink, Jason said the man stayed after his and Suzi’s kids hugged the older gentleman’s legs.
“There will be people that come in for one thing, but stay for another,” Jason said. Everybody wants a family to be part of.”
The guest speakers was just one of the exciting things to occur on campus Tuesday.
According to information provided by the school, Milligan College officially partnered with Stadia to “raise awareness of church planting and further the mission of both institutions by creating new educational opportunities for Milligan’s students and Stadia’s church planters alike.”
The partnership opens a variety of new opportunities for both organizations, according to the school, including theological training for church planters at Milligan and Emmanuel Christian Seminary at Milligan, Stadia-developed church planting courses for students and Stadia speakers along with new internship opportunities for Milligan and Emmanuel students with church plants.
“We’re thrilled to be partnering with Stadia, one of the most active and successful church planting organizations in the world,” Milligan President Dr. Bill Greer said in a statement. “We’ve had a longstanding relationship with Stadia, but this new partnership brings us even closer, allowing our students to learn from the best in the field and giving Stadia access to our students, many of whom wish to commit their lives to establishing new churches.”
Dr. Tom Jones, Stadia’s executive director and Milligan College, Emmanuel Christian Seminary at Milligan graduate, seconded the president’s statements showing excitement for the partnership.
“We believe wholeheartedly in the educational training that Milligan and Emmanuel provide,” said Jones. “I personally owe a huge debt of gratitude for the education I received from both Milligan and Emmanuel. In addition, many other of the current Stadia staff and church planters have degrees from Milligan, Emmanuel or both. We believe this new partnership can potentially provide church planters with what they need to go to the next level as leaders.”
“Church Planting Emphasis Week” continues the rest of the week with Donnie William, lead pastor at LifePointe Christian Church in Raleigh, N.C., schedued to speak at 11 a.m. on Thursday, Dec. 1, inside Seeger Chapel. Worship will be led by Milligan graduate and current worship leader at LifePointe, Ryan Hughes.

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