Fall 2020 Newsletter
Greetings from Keystone, SD, and The Keystone Project!
These are exciting times in which to live and serve our Lord Jesus Christ. I am reminded of the words of the Psalmist, who wrote, “Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord and against His Anointed…” (Psalm 2:1-2). Surely, we see the fulfillment of these prophetic words in our generation. May we be filled with faith and courage and a determination to finish the work entrusted to us by our God.
We just completed a two-week training program with leaders and individuals from many states and several countries. It was a powerful time of in-depth prophetic revelation from the Word of God, as we discovered ancient prophetic connections in the Scriptures and received instruction and equipping to finish the work of the Father, namely the Great Commission to “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations” (Matthew 28:19) in the power of the Holy Spirit. There were many moments of intense worship and praise, prayer, and fellowship. May the seed of the Word take firm root in the hearts of those who attended.
Knowing that many of you wish to receive The Keystone Project training but are unable to attend a training event, we have developed an exciting opportunity for you to do just that; The Keystone Project Online Academy is set to launch this month! The online academy features videos of four introductory modules, each hosting ten lessons. Please visit our website to learn more about how you can access our training. Click here to enroll now!
Two more discipling opportunities will be launched in 2021 – The Keystone Project Apprenticeship program and The Keystone Project Summer Internship (KPSI) program. The apprenticeship program offers individuals a paid eight-month discipling experience here in Keystone, SD, from March through October. The KPSI is a three-month paid discipling program from May through the beginning of August for young people ages 18-25. Both include in-depth training and missional engagement with young people from the nations who come to Keystone to work here in the summer months. Again, go to our website to learn more about these opportunities. Click here to submit your application now!
May the Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make His face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up His countenance on you and give you peace, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever!
President, The Keystone Project, Inc.
The Keystone Project Summer Internship by James Greene
The Keystone Project is looking for college-aged students to come and join us as we engage the lost from all over the world with the Gospel of the Kingdom. There is far more work to do than we alone can undertake ourselves, and we are in desperate need for more laborers to come alongside us in our Lord’s great harvest field.
If you truly want to make a difference and experience what it is really like to live the Kingdom life of a disciple on the mission of the Great Commission, then the Keystone Project Summer Internship is an excellent place for you. Interns will live and work for a summer in Keystone, SD, home of Mt. Rushmore and gathering place of over 3 million visitors each summer, and they will receive The Keystone Project level 1 and 2 vision and equipping training for launching organic, missional, disciple-making movements. Interns will also learn cross-cultural ministry as they work alongside and build relationships with non-Christian international students from all over the world. Many of these students have never heard the Gospel before.
Interns who participate in the Keystone Project Summer Internship will also have the potential to enter the Keystone Project Apprenticeship Program. This program will equip and train students to coach pastors and leaders, alongside veteran coaches, on how to launch disciple-making movements and refocus churches on making disciples.
Please consider joining us as we engage the Mission of God this summer by applying online at www.keystoneproject.org. If you would like The Keystone Project to have a representative come to your church and cast the vision for what God is doing and how students can get involved, then please reach out to me via the information below, and we will get you connected.
Recapping 2020: A Unique Year of Training at a Glance by Dustin Stuckey
Having recently concluded our last training event for 2020, we can now look back at the entire year and see how faithful God has been to meet all of our needs through each season and to accomplish His purposes through every obstacle this year has posed. Even though this year has brought the most challenges to our in-person training programs, it has also been the year in which we have been able to reach the most people with our training—a total of 532 students, many of whom would have never been able to travel to the US under normal circumstances.
Before the global impact of COVID-19, we kicked off this year with a weeklong West African Leaders Training in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, over January 6-10, 2020. We had approximately 182 students attend this vision-casting training, mostly from Côte d’Ivoire but also from other West African countries, such as Nigeria and Liberia. This led to the formation of several mission teams, who had selected unreached people groups in West Africa that they were committed to reaching with the Gospel. In addition to this week of training, our team of missionaries stayed in Abidjan for an additional two months to follow-up with these mission teams and provide on-the-ground coaching to reach the lost and make disciples.
Our next training event in Keystone, SD, was a Native American and US/Canadian Leaders Training, which took place over February 24 – March 6, 2020. We had 42 students attend this two-week training event, traveling here from Mexico, Arizona, Nebraska, Wisconsin, Minnesota, South Dakota, and Ontario, Canada. At the end of this training, we had the exciting opportunity to baptize 19 of these students, as they recommitted their lives to the Lord and His mission of making disciples!
Shortly after this training, we made the difficult decision to cancel the monthlong International Leaders Training in March and April, due to the growing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the new restrictions on international travel. Later in the spring, we also decided to postpone the weeklong May Training for US leaders, as we monitored the spread of the virus in South Dakota and other states. However, despite these setbacks and obstacles, this opened the door for us to host our first international webinar over Zoom on April 28, 2020. We had a total of 198 students log in and attend this 90-minute webinar, in addition to those who watched the livestream on Facebook.
These students attended the webinar from 32 different countries around the entire globe; most of these students (about 76% of the class) had never attended a training before and were introduced for the first time to the vision and mission of The Keystone Project and our training on missional disciple-making. The three countries with the highest number of attendees were the United States with 75 students, India with 33 students, and Nigeria with 28 students. Other nations that were represented at this online training event included the Philippines, Nepal, Oman, Kenya, Côte d’Ivoire, South Africa, Egypt, France, Sweden, Peru, Brazil, Canada, and Australia.
Toward the end of a busy summer, we held our next US Leaders Training over August 17-21, 2020, our first in-person training event in over five months (after being postponed from the original dates in May). As such, this was also our first training in which we implemented several new procedures and precautions to help limit the spread of COVID-19, such as moving the training into our Dining Room, which offered a larger space; opening up an overflow classroom; spreading out tables and chairs as much as possible; and serving meals in pre-packaged to-go containers. Although there were many changes to get used to, we still had a surprising turnout of 63 students attend this one-week training from 15 states, including South Dakota, Minnesota, Ohio, Maine, Nebraska, New Mexico, and Texas.
While conducting the weeklong August Training, we were also looking ahead to our next monthlong International Leaders Training, which was scheduled in October; however, it was still apparent that the lasting restrictions on international travel would not allow us to have a full class of students for those four weeks. Therefore, we shortened this training to the last two weeks (October 19-30, 2020), in order to accommodate more US students who could not attend a full month. After making this change, we were able to increase the class size to a total of 47 students, and we still had two students join us from overseas: one from India and one from Côte d’Ivoire. In addition to these two countries, we also had 16 states represented at this training, including Rhode Island, Virginia, Indiana, Arkansas, Missouri, Wisconsin, and California. And now, with the conclusion of our last training event for this year, the Keystone Project Online Academy is ready to launch soon—opening a new platform that will equip many more students than we could ever train in person.
Looking back over this year, it is clear that God never stopped advancing His work of equipping laborers for the harvest, even in spite of the pandemic. We know that no matter what challenges lie ahead, nothing can stop God from completing His mission of making disciples in every nation.
ABOUT THE KEYSTONE PROJECT
The Keystone Project is a global missions network of churches and leaders committed to the fulfillment of the Great Commission in this generation.