Print this page
September 18, 2020

New discipleship coach launches fall pilot program

Written by  Micah Brickner
Dave Houser began his role as the discipleship coach for Eastern Mennonite Missions on August 3, 2020. Hilary Mashas/EMM Dave Houser began his role as the discipleship coach for Eastern Mennonite Missions on August 3, 2020. Hilary Mashas/EMM

SALUNGA, Pa. —  Dave Houser began his role as the discipleship coach for Eastern Mennonite Missions (EMM) on August 3, 2020. Houser’s first major project is launching a pilot program called Advance, which is a short-term, U.S.-based program for discipleship and mission training.

EMM’s Advance program is an opportunity for young adults (18–25) to connect with other young adults in a community setting while learning and growing in discipleship, to have meaningful relationships while deepening their relationship with God, and engaging to make a difference in a local community. 

“We believe God has much in store for us through this training,” said Houser. “Even though many people have had their plans changed or put on hold during this season, God is still at work and His kingdom is still advancing.”

Advance will begin in October with a week of discipleship training in a community cohort setting with other young adults. Each individual will be connected to a ministry or non-profit located domestically that fits with their personal interests and gifts in which they will serve in an intern-like capacity to engage and learn practical, hands-on experience. 

Each month through May 2021, the cohort will gather for a day of discipleship training and community building as participants discuss how they are growing and putting things into practice in their internships.

Internship options include full-time, part-time, and flexible schedule opportunities. Possible internships could include serving in Baltimore, Md., Lancaster, Pa., and New York City. Specific internships will be arranged based on each individual's interest, gifting, and availability.

Houser’s role as the discipleship coach is to give overall leadership to EMM’s short-term mission and discipleship programs and implement strategies and programs for youth and young adult discipleship and mobilization into missions.

“My dream is to see the day when everyone living in this world will have heard about Jesus in a way they can understand,” said Houser. He has served with Youth With A Mission (YWAM) in various capacities since 1995. Most recently, he and his family served as associated EMM workers in Thailand for 9 years, while serving primarily with YWAM. Prior to serving in Thailand, he and his wife, Summer, served in India for 10 years.

Mission Team Director Lorri Bentch said, “Dave brings many years of experience in discipleship, cross-cultural missions, and training, all of which will be of great benefit to EMM and the churches EMM serves.”

Houser is a certified mission coach, a credential he received through Coaching Mission International. He also completed five programs of study with YWAM’s University of the Nations, which is an international university with more than 600 locations. His coursework has included: discipleship training, ministry development, frontier missions, intercessory prayer, and leadership development.

Houser and his wife have three children: Kate (12), Serah (10), and Ethan (5). They live in Lancaster and attend Willow Street (Pa.) Mennonite Church. 


Learn more about Advance and register online at emm.org/advance.