Full SWBC Report and thank you’s

28 10 2008

I’ve had a couple of days to gather my thoughts about SWBC.  I think I’m ready to write about all of the great things that happened this past weekend.  Here goes…..

First of all none of this would have been possible without the long reaching vision of the pastor of The Pentecostal Church.  There are few men who can match his desire for revival and evangelism.  So, I want to say thanks to him.  He’s my father and my pastor and I couldn’t have asked for better than I got. 

Thursday night was the kick-off rally.  I was at the church starting at around 2:30.  We were getting set up for registration.  Over 100 boot campers registered and we had just over 70 show up to participate in this awesome weekend.  They came from as far away as Australia and San Diego and as close as Salinas.  We had a great time hosting every single one of them.   What a great experience to host over 70 young people, pastors, youth pastors and evangelism directors who are passionate about winning souls!  The power of God was just incredible that night.  I watched as every person in the sanctuary laid upon their face crying out to God.  There was no music and no cheerleading needed at that time.  It was totally awesome!  I wept, worshipped, danced and shouted. 

We started Friday morning at 9 AM with soul winning sessions taught by Matt Maddix, David Smith, and Tim Downs.  The sessions were great!  Not only did they light a fire in your soul but they also gave practical ways to win souls.  I especially enjoyed David Smith’s session on altar work.  If you hear his teaching on altar working it will radically change the way that you do things.  It just takes a little faithand a little explanation to the person you are working withand WOW!!  The results are amazing.  I enjoyed and learned so much in just a few hours.  Then after lunch the boot campers hit the streets armed with faith, confidence and TONS of flyers advertising our block party.  We had reserved an area in Hollister right on the corner of two of our main streets.  There is a large grassy area on the corner of San Benito and 4th streets that was just perfect.  The city of Hollister made us jump through so many hoops to be able to host the event there.  Many thanks go out to Noel Cordova for her tireless work in making sure we were able to use that area!  Thanks Noel, you are awesome!  Set up began at 11:30 that morning.  The stage, music, lights, tent for serving the food, registration tables, and of course the two horse troughs that we were using as baptistrys.  Len Valenti and his crew of Gary Hurst, Rodney Ybarra, David Bush, Kyle Valenti, Todd Valenti, Christina Atkinson, Jim Knutson, Marian Knutson, Mindy Ybarra, Fred Brewster, and so many more that I can’t even remember all the names did a fantastic job of turning a empty space into “party central”.   Thank you so much! 

Guests started showing up at around 5:45 that evening.  The event wasn’t supposed to start until 6:30 but they started coming early.  Mindy Ybarra and her staff did a great job of registering them all.  Entire families started strolling in, looking around.  The boot campers and church members started to mingle with them, welcoming them and talking to them about salvation.  Luis and the musicians started playing some music to make everyone feel comfortable and then it was like a jet plane taking off!  People started streaming in and before long I looked over and we were baptizing our first lady!  Soon their was double barrel action going as both horse troughs were being used.  It’s fall here in Northern California.  That means that we have warm days and pretty chilly nights!  The sun had completely set behind the mountains and it was cold!  I know because I was baptizing people and my shirt and the bottom of my pants and shoes were soaked and I was freezing too.  The people that we were baptising didn’t care though.  They were so hungry for God that being baptized in their clothes and going home soaking wet in the cold didn’t seem to phase them at all.  I watched as we baptised entire families in the precious name of Jesus Christ!  Before it was all over we had baptized 24 and 23 had received the gift of the Holy Ghost!!!  I was so excited.   Little did I know that this was just the beginning!

We went back to the church for a late night rally that started around 10:30.  Everybody was so hyper it was unbelievable.  They (and me) were all jumping around in the altar area giving God praise for well over 30 minutes!  The boot campers even started without Bro. Maddix and his team there!  It was crazy fun.

Saturday morning started at 9:30 with more sessions and fun.  Woohoo!  By this time I was running on espresso and Mountain Dew and faith!  I hadn’t slept since Wednesday night because every time that I closed my eyes I was seeing people getting baptized and receiving the holy ghost.  My body was literally vibrating with excitement. 

Once again there was a massive crew setting up equipment and getting ready for the Party in the Park.  Our setting was Calaveras Park.  The “party” started at 3:30 pm.  We had a tremendous group from Union City Apostolic Church come down and do praise and worship music in Spanish.  We were trying to reach an entirely different group of people on Saturday than on Friday night.  Everything was done in English and Spanish.  When the group from Union City started singing I immediately noticed that our Spanish speaking guests relaxed and some even began to sing along.  It wasn’t long until the power of God was so strong in that park that we began to baptize people and they began to get the holy ghost just like Friday night!  Once again I was amazed at the hunger for God that was on display!  We never provided a single robe on Friday or Saturday.  We were baptizing people in their street clothes.  They would take off their shoes and socks and make sure their wallets and cell phones were not in their pockets and then we would baptize them.  SO AWESOME!!  The totals from Saturday were: 34 baptized and 35 receiving the holy ghost.  I didn’t think that it could get any better than Friday night but it did. 

I wasn’t sure what to expect on Sunday.  We had planned to just have one evangelistic service with David Smith preaching.  It wasn’t long after we had opened the doors that visitors started streaming in.  Once again God pre-empted our plans and before the end of the service another 11 people had received the holy ghost and we had baptized 4!  Before the evening was over we received a phone call telling us that Gloria Delgadillo and Albert and Noel Cordova had prayed through Sis. Gloria’s neighbor through to the holy ghost in her living room.  That brought the totals for the weekend to 70 receiving the gift of the holy ghost and 62 being baptized in the name of Jesus Christ!  What an incredible weekend of evangelism and victory. 

Bro. Matt Maddix and his team, David Smith, Tim Downs, Travis Worthington, Judith DeWitt, are absolutely amazing.  First of all their faith is tangible.  Secondly they just know what they are doing.  I watched so many times as they spoke the word of faith and people began speaking in tongues.  I even saw one young man receive the holy ghost without raising his hands!  It was the coolest thing I had ever seen in my life. 

Back in 2006 I went to SWBC in St. Petersburg, FL.  It changed my life and my view of what we could do in Hollister.  Two years later that dream has become a reality as we are in the process of turning our city upside down! 

I cannot say enough about Matt Maddix and his zeal for winning souls.  It has affected me more than I can say.  Thank you Bro. Maddix for all you have done and continue to do!  I can’t imagine how many people you have inspired to be great soul winners all over the world! 

Bro. Downs and Bro. Smith.  You guys are awesome!  Your practical approach to soul winning, evangelism and altar working are amazing and such a breathof fresh air!  Thank you for all that you do in going with the SWBC team!

Travis Worthington:  what a worker and such an incredible guy!  Thanks for all of your hard work and telephone calls and emails both while you were getting married and just after.  I know that being away from your wife after just four weeks of marriage was rough but we really appreciate it more than we can say.  You kept me sane during the two months before boot camp!

Sis Judith and Bro Rick DeWittare two of the greatest people you could ever hope to meet!  They are from Shreveport, LA and they are invaluable during boot camp.  We couldn’t have done it without you.  It was so nice to get to meet you and talk with you.  Sis. DeWitt and I laughed and cut up so many times.  Thanks again.

All right!  To my incredible staff!  You guys rock.  There is no way this HUGE event could have come off if you hadn’t sacrificed your time and energy this entire week.  So let’s get started with all of you…

Mindy Ybarrawas in charge of all of the registration, both boot campers and guests at the events.  Her team handled over 400 guests at the events and over 70 boot campers flawlessly!  She was incredibly organized and efficient, two things that I need help in for sure.  She was a late addition to the staff but what an incredible pick!  Thanks Mom!  Sis Mindy, you did a great great job!  We couldn’t have done it without all of your hard work and the work of your staff!

Luis Lenzi took care of all of the music!  Bro Maddix paid Luis, the band and the praise team the highest compliment they could ever receive.  He said that not only were they extremely talented but they were also extremely anointed!  I cannot tell you how great that is.  Every single musician and singer was under the influence of the holy ghost all weekend long!  Now this is not different from the way it normally is at The Pentecostal Church but it went to a new level this weekend.  Thank you Luis for all of your help and listening to me gripe and gripe!  You are da man.

Faith Nava and Bridget Rodriguez were in charge of the welcoming and making all of our guests feel at home. They picked a great team of hostesses and worked so hard.  They all had to be there at the church and event sites early and didn’t leave until late!  Thank to all of you for your hard work.

Tena Valenti was like a tornado this weekend.  She basically took care of anything that I couldn’t get too.  She made so many right calls that I lost count.  This is in addition to being on one of the praise teams and taking thousands of pictures.  Sis Tena I would have lost my mind without all of your help!

Len Valenti…WOW!  You did an incredible job of getting both events set up and broke down.  You put together an incredible team of men and women who worked tirelessly and I do mean tirelessly!  It was a difficult and almost impossible job to do and you did it perfectly!  Plus….the ushers and parking attendants did a great job getting everybody to where they needed to be and serving all of our guests with directions and anything else that they might have needed! 

Kirk and Tina Evans rode herd on 35 young people and kept them in line for the whole weekend!  HA!  Do you know how hard that job is?  Not only that but Bro. Kirk was in charge of cleaning up boththe downtown event site and the park.  There was a lot of trash from serving over 400 people at both events (boot campers, guests and church family).  I drove by the downtown site on my way home around 1:30 am and stopped to look for trash..NOT A SINGLE PIECE OF TRASH WAS ON THE GROUND!  And then the same thing happened on Saturday.  Sis Tina was also on the registration teams.  The Pentecostal Church is so blessed to have ya’ll as our student ministry coordinators! 

Scott Sarria was our sound engineer for the entire weekend.  Scott, you did a great job!  Not many people realize how hard Pastor and I are on the sound men but everyting sounded great all weekend!

Matt Silveira, my brother-in-law, was in charge of all the media and there was a lot! Every session had slide shows and videos.  You did a great job working with the boot camp staff and meeting all of their needs this weekend.  Thanks a million bro! 

Kyle Valenti was in charge of sound at the events and he did incredible getting it all set up and running.  You should have seen all the equipment they were setting up.  It looked and sounded fantastic!  Kyle, thanks for all of your hard work this weekend.  You helped usher our guests into the presence of the Lord.  Thanks dude!

Christina Atkinson….what an awesome lady.  She fed all of the boot campers on Thursday night.  It was really really late and that smile she’s famous for never left her face!!  Then on Friday night she served pizza and drinks to over 400 and on Saturday nachos and drinks to another 400 people!  She put together an incredible staff of ladies who worked and worked and worked!  Sis Christina, thank you for all of your help!  The table with drinks, candy and coffee in the lobby was a stroke of genius!  Thank you thank you thank you!

My mother was in charge of all the hospitality for the weekend.  Of course, we here in the Western District already know what a great job the “queen of hospitality” does.  She has the perfect spirit to do this job and she does such an amazing job of making people feel at home, whether it is at camp meeting or here in Hollister!  Mom, thanks for all you did.  Thanks for listening to me gripe and moan!  Thanks for the lunches you set up (thanks to Bro John Silveira for that incredible chicken dinner you made).  Thanks for cooking the beef stew that the team couldn’t stop talking about!  Thanks for being the greatest pastors wife, hospitality person and mother!  You’re the absolute best and there is no debating that!  I love ya bunches!

And last but most definitely not least THE PENTECOSTAL CHURCH!!!!  You guys are amazing!  I was told over and over and over again what a great spirit you all had.  Ya’ll prayed people through in the streets, worked until you were exhausted and then worked some more and then came to church on Sunday and danced and shouted the house down!  Every single one of you worked!  Let me say that again, when I was going through my lists of the different staffs I could only find one person not listed and then even that person was helping.  Every single person worked so hard!!  I’m amazed at the cooperation you all showed, coming up to me and asking if there was anything else you could do!  WOW!  I’m humbled and proud all at the same time! 

Let me say a few final things, I know this post is getting rather long!  haha.  It is an absolutely huge job to host a SWBC.  However, it is worth it!  We worked and planned and fasted and prayed and made financial sacrifices for over a year but in the end I can’t wait to do it again.  If you are thinking about hosting a SWBC I encourage you to do it1  It’s a lot of work but the effects on your city and church will be immeasurable.  I know that we are not done here in Hollister.  In fact i just got a phone call letting me know that we are baptizing some more people on Wednesday night!  Like Nike says, Just Do It!!!

DISCLAIMER:  If I missed anyone if was completely unintentional and I apologize.  All of your work did not go unnoticed by me or by God!  Thank you all!

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11 responses

28 10 2008
Soul Winners Boot Camp - Hollister, Ca. - 2008 « In His Time…

[…] See report from Than here. […]

28 10 2008
CLS

Please check out the video here: http://www.justinpeters.org

28 10 2008
karla

I know Cameron can’t stop talking about it!! I’m sooo glad he was able to be there to see all this firsthand. The “rest of the story” will be just as incredible!! Be sure to keep us updated.

28 10 2008
Jason West

This is awesome. Praise God for everything he did in the City of Hollister this past weekend. You are all incredible people to have vision for this.

29 10 2008
Karen Hopper

Great Report. So excited for the Hollister church, and those that received the Holy Ghost. Than, your appreciative words to those that assisted in making this camp a success were amazing. The church family in Hollister are blessed to have leaders such as you.

29 10 2008
SIS NOEL

Bro. Nathaniel, thank you for having this event. It has changed our lives forever. I have been in church all my life and this is the greatest, most powerful thing I have experienced thus far! I look forward to more in the future. It was a priveledge to be part of such an incredible moment in history! Lord Bless you..

29 10 2008
Linda (LAS)

What an incredible post! Isn’t God awesome! Thanks for the details of the exciting week. Almost felt like an Azusa Street Revival maybe? I know it was worth all of the work & effort. God Bless You all!

30 10 2008
Cheryl S.

What a great report. Excited for you all in Hollister.

30 10 2008
Linda

Nathaniel, I’m thrilled about what is happening in Hollister! It’s GREAT!

3 11 2008
thanh3

Thank you all for rejoicing with us! We had a fabulous time.

6 11 2008
James Wilder

Than… AWESOME!

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