All our breakouts are a 2-part series. Session 2 is a continuation of session 1. The breakout sessions will not be repeated. It is not the same session, given twice.

There is limited seating for all of the breakouts. If you would like to ensure seating in the breakout of your choice, please arrive to the room early.

(Concord Ballroom – 310)

Breakout Description

This session aims to challenge pastors and leaders to invest in teams and nurture a team-based culture towards healthier and more collaborative Faith, Hope, and Love Avenues. It will include discussions on team-based ministry in light of our Trinitarian theology and practices to help promote healthy Avenue teams.

In particular, the purpose of the breakout session is to help participants:

  • To discuss how the team-based culture is rooted in the life of the Triune God. 
  • To support pastors and leaders as they form and build Avenue teams toward the Healthy Church vision.
  • To provide tools to help church leaders discern their congregational identity.


 Aron Tolentino

Aron is a local church pastor and National Ministry Team member of GCI Philippines, where he also serves as the Healthy Church Coordinator helping focus churches understand and develop healthy teams and healthy Avenues. He has over 20 years of ministry experience, and being born and raised in GCI, he is passionate about leadership development and helping raise the next generation of church leaders. Aron obtained a Master of Arts in Transformational Leadership at the International Graduate School of Leadership in the Philippines and is currently completing his Master of Divinity at Grace Communion Seminary.

 Joyce Tolentino

Joyce serves in GC Crossway with her husband, Aron, where she is a member of the Hope Avenue team and where she is participating in the work of their local church to establish a Ministry Training Center in collaboration with the GCI Home Office. She has been involved across the music, youth, and preaching ministries in a bi-vocational capacity, and currently works in the field of banking and development finance.

(Carolina Ballroom – capacity 110)

Breakout Description

As congregations engage their neighbors and seek to join Jesus in his work in the community, they will quickly learn that they cannot do it all. In fact, for smaller faith communities, it may be challenging to discern how to even get started in the Love Avenue (witnessing and mission). Forming relationships with people and organizations that are already doing good work in a neighborhood can open doors for a congregation and make community engagement much easier. This interactive breakout session will define strategic partnerships, show the Biblical evidence that supports partnerships, and provide practical guidance for how congregations can get started. In particular, the purpose of the breakout session is to help participants:


  • Understand the purpose of and best practices for developing strategic partnerships in their focus neighborhood. 
  • Discern their congregational identity and the types of partnerships that would be strategic. 
  • Consider partnerships that best align with the way God is calling them to engage their neighbors and connect to the rhythms of their target community. 

Tamar Gray

Tamar Gray is the Pastor of Grace Communion Cleveland in Cleveland Heights, Ohio. She has been a music teacher for over thirty years and is involved in the church’s focus neighborhood.

“I can see how the Lord has used my living and teaching in the same area to open doors in the community. It is a blessing to watch the congregation step out and get involved in partnerships. We are having an impact, and we are being transformed in the process. It is amazing how the Lord will use what he has already placed in front of us to bring him glory.”

Dishon Mills

Dishon Mills is the National Coordinator for Generations Ministry and is leading a church planting team in Charlotte, NC. Prior to entering full-time ministry, Dishon worked as the head of the Department of Extended Learning Time, Afterschool, and Services of the Boston Public Schools for ten years. In that capacity, he and his department collaborated with over 100 different non-profit organizations and brokered over 50 durable partnerships between schools, community agencies, and faith-based groups.


(Kannapolis Ballroom capacity 140)

Breakout Description 

What is coaching and what does it have to do with the church? This breakout will introduce the foundations of coaching and demonstrate how a coaching mindset and practice can be a powerful tool for everyday discipleship and ministry development. The purpose of the breakout session is to help participants: 

  • To understand the purpose and value of coaching. 
  • To overview effective coaching competencies. 
  • To implement coaching in leadership development. 

Lily Aparicio 

Lily is a teacher by profession and coach for GCI Latin America. She considers it an immense blessing to be a lifelong member of a Spanish-speaking GCI congregation. She is grateful for the privilege to serve in GCI as a teacher, worship director, and now a coach in the United States and Latin America. Of the value of coaching, Lily says, “The coaching process helps us to slow down and take the time to allow God to guide us.” 

 Cara Garrity 

Cara Garrity experienced the benefit of coaching when she began her path as a GCI ministry intern. Through her experience, she has come to believe that coaching is one of the most transformative processes for drawing out our God-given potential. The more she experiences and learns, the more eager she is to share the gift of coaching with our churches around the world.