Dr Peter Roennfeldt at his neighbours at the launch of Following Jesus.

Author puts discipleship theory into practice

Friday, March 10, 2017
Avondale alumnus gives first copies of new book to neighbours

The Buddhist neighbours of an Avondale alumnus received the first copies of his new discipleship book after its dedication at a Seventh-day Adventist Church.

“We have great neighbours, and we eat, pray and share with them, following the simple steps Jesus taught,” says Dr Peter Roennfeldt, who launched Following Jesus: Disciple-making and Movement-building during the worship service at Lilydale Seventh-day Adventist Church in Victoria this past Saturday (March 4). “They know I’ve been writing this book. Because its launch was on the other side of the city—almost two hours away—I didn’t invite them, but they insisted on coming.”

Roennfeldt’s neighbour Shaun Perera and his father and mother received the first two copies of Following Jesus. Perera’s wife, Gishani, could not attend because of work commitments but told Roennfeldt they have started reading the book. “We are very blessed,” she said. “Your prayers are very powerful for us!”

The launch of Following Jesus came as part of the annual seminar for Adventist Book Centre managers from Australia, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, New Zealand, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu. An in-depth study of the life and ministry of Jesus, the book features 50 study guides that draw from a close reading of the gospels, direct readers to relevant chapters in the books Messiah and The Desire of Ages and offer key questions for exploration, reflection and application.

I cannot afford to miss the joy of introducing my neighbours to Jesus.Dr Peter Roennfeldt, Author, Following Jesus: Disciple-making and Movement-building

“Jesus is not only the message, He is also our example—or method—for disciple-making,” urges Roennfeldt, an experienced minister, evangelist and church planter who continues to teach these principles around the world, from eastern Africa to central Asia, the Middle East to western Europe. “The practical methods of Jesus work in all cultures. An earlier version of this book was translated into Finnish where it is being used in groups to share faith, as well as in equipping leadership teams. It is also used extensively by the Adventist Church in South England’s Adventist Mission office, which has produced the accompanying on-site complementary video clips.”

Roennfeldt has been working with Adventist Church leaders and ministers in the Trans Pacific in support of their Pacific Reach initiative. The church in the South Pacific’s Discipleship Ministries Team, which supported the publication of the book, will also use Following Jesus extensively.

“Disciple-making, church planting and preparing people for God’s kingdom is a major focus for many Christians today,” adds Roennfeldt. “So, I also have the privilege of sharing with many other Christian leaders. Distinctive Adventist insights arise naturally as we walk through the gospels. The feedback has been positive, with many leaders wanting to share Following Jesus with their networks.”

While Roennefldt is excited about Following Jesus and its potential to be used by churches and in communities around the world, his ministry begins at home, as evidenced by his neighbours’ enthusiasm for his new book. “With all the travelling and teaching I do, I cannot afford to miss the joy of introducing my neighbours to Jesus,” he says.

Learn how to become a disciple of Jesus

Following Jesus is available from Adventist Book Centres in Australia and New Zealand. Visit the Following Jesus website for more information and to access the video clips that support the study guides in the book.

Visit Following Jesus website

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Author

Nathan Brown

Nathan is Book Editor at Signs Publishing. He is a former magazine editor, a published writer and an author or editor of a dozen books. He is also a co-convener of Manifest, a community exploring, encouraging and celebrating faithful creativity.