“……. let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith …” Hebrews 12:1-2
Robert W. Bignold has finished the race! And he ran it well. Bob persevered in the Vision and his life impacted generations as he inspired men around the world to reach beyond themselves with the gospel of Jesus Christ.
“You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you.” John 15:16
Bob championed righteousness in our ranks. He was the personification of a Full Gospel Businessman, a real “Man of Business * Man of Purpose”. There is not enough space here to adequately detail his accomplishments, but just know that we followed him simply because he was a man of highest integrity. Against adversity, he stood for what was right. In 2009, when several of us were looking for a place to serve the Lord as businessmen, we were drawn to Full Gospel America, led by decent and honorable men like Peter Reding and Bob Bignold, Mighty Men of God. And today we remain! Our desire is to continue to build upon their foundation.
We found a home. In FGBMFA, we live the experience that “His Banner Over Us Is Love”. Bob once wrote something which I came to respect was a core value of his “… where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty…”, as he was led by that. Because the Holy Spirit was preeminent in this Fellowship, we had the liberty to grow, to exercise our gifts and talents. This Fellowship belongs to the Lord and Bob set the example clearly that we are simply stewards, entrusted to lead in the quest of the Great Commission.
Behold, I will do a new thing, now it shall spring forth, shall you not know it?
Changing of the Guard
In the fall of 2015, Bob expressed his intention to stand for election as President of FGBMFA for only one more year at the 2016 Annual National Convention. He felt that responsibility needed to pass to a younger man. The Leadership Team was encouraged to seek the Lord for direction. As I pressed in prayer, time after time, I sensed the Lord was showing me someone who had not been on my radar at the time. I confided with a couple of men to whom I hold myself accountable and asked them to continue praying. One day Bob called me, being one who does not have difficulty speaking his mind, he was a bit tentative… “Roy, uh, this succession thing”. I stopped him! Something leaped in my spirit and I blurted out, “Bob have you considered Phil Harrison?” He was so relieved because that is who the Lord had shown him. But he was feeling pulled otherwise; he openly shared about his thoughts of my service in the Fellowship over the years and having been voted in as Executive Vice President by the men, he felt it was anticipated I may want to move into the office of President. I quickly told him it was not what the Lord was showing me; and like him, I believe none of us own titles- we serve where God places us. We agreed the Lord was raising up Phil Harrison, a solid, Spirit-filled businessman, with an IT background to boot! Phil has a passion for marketplace outreaches. You can read his bio at www.fgbt.org.
This year has certainly been a time of change. First we lost our beloved Peter Reding in January and then Bob on July 28. Writing this message is especially hard in the sense that the loss I feel [we all feel]is surreal. We were just together, celebrating the goodness and faithfulness of the Lord at our Convention in Dallas.
Additionally, Stewart Kent felt led to step down after ten years as the National Secretary and the Lord raised up Dick McBain from Georgia as his successor. We have indeed experienced considerable changes since January 2016.
The Lord used Bob Bignold to take the Fellowship to new heights and to establish a Leadership Team to carry us forward… and our work will continue!
Excerpt from letter by Alan Schmook, National Administrator:
“At our 10th Annual Convention in Dallas this past June, Bob and Roy Brian introduced Phil Harrison as the nominee for a newly created position of Vice President/President-elect. Both the position and Phil were adopted at the annual National Council of Delegate’s meeting. However, our bylaws (Section 7.12.1) at this time stipulate that the successor to the office of President is the Executive Vice President (Roy Brian).”
“Upon Bob’s passing, Roy became the Interim President and Chief Executive Officer of FGBMFA and will serve until the 2017 Annual National Convention.” [Upon confirmation by the National Council of Delegates, the reigns of the Fellowship will be in good hands with Phil Harrison-rb]
While all leaders and members have a voice in governing the Fellowship, I have asked the following men to serve with me on the Transition Steering Committee:
Phil Harrison- Vice President/President Elect
Alan Schmook- National Administrator
Greg Simpson- National Treasurer
Dick McBain- National Secretary
Chris Burge- Vice President/Joshua Ministry
Here’s an overview of programs that will continue to expand and impact the marketplace:
- Marketplace Outreaches– watch for something great to be announced.
- New Cities for the Fellowship Campaign– incorporate strategies to engage, raise up and install new chapters in cities where the Fellowship is not present.
- Joshua Ministry- (Bob’s legacy) a Next Generation army is being raised.
- Holy Smoke Hangout- continues to move forward into new regions around the country, connecting and reaching youth through Live Bands, Christian Rappers, Poets, Testimonies and Guest Speakers.
- Godmobile Ministry– growing; approximately 25 outreaches per year.
- Prison Ministry– truly setting the captives free.
- Partners of the Fellowship (POTF) – by God’s grace, after a period of healing, we’ve asked Barbara to pray about continuing in the role of directing this critical women’s ministry- the backbone of the Fellowship!
- National Office Transition– Accounting & Membership being realigned for better service to our members.
- Website– Updates to be implemented for easier navigation. Chapters are encouraged to send in their activities for posting.
- Social Media Expansion– the Fellowship will be expanding and marketing, using some of the latest communication platforms.
- “Fellowship Newsletter”, formerly “President’s Newsletter”.
- War Stories for the Joshua Generation will continue. We welcome men in the field to contribute stories for both postings. Please email to; email@example.com.
- Full Gospel Global Forum– FGBMFA will continue in its role under Douglas Raine’s capable leadership.
- National Convention– Plans for the 2017 National Convention are being formulated. Bob was pleased for us to return to the Hilton DFW one more time… we will honor that. We like the fact of DFW being centrally located for all members’ travel and price point considerations.
Please join me in praying for the Fellowship- that God will touch the hearts of men in Full Gospel America to pray for a spiritual awakening. Pray for a fresh move of His Holy Spirit on our men. Pray that our Father will raise up men with a passion to serve; leaders with a commitment to lead, and to give us the men of the Next Generation to mentor. Pray for laborers in the coming harvest and for the Lord to provide the finances for the work ahead.
In my temporary assignment and in whatever more the Lord may have for me….
“I will stand my watch
And set myself on the rampart,
And watch to see what He will say to me…”
“…Write the vision and make it plain on tablets…”
“That he may run who reads it….” Hab2:1, 2
So there it is, the Vision! God’s original Vision given through Demos. That’s our mandate, say it, repeat, write so plain that even someone running by can read it.
We’ve got work to do and the Leadership Team is proud to serve with Full Gospel men across America, some who have worked in the fields together for many years. We will be successful if we hold fast to ‘The Vision’ and sincerely purpose in our heart to fulfill the Great Commission. Thank you for standing with us as we forge ahead with the gospel of Jesus Christ. Thank you for making a difference in a world desperately needing Light.
The Race continues! So let us ALL run with endurance the race that is set before us.
We speak the Father’s blessing over you, your family, business and ministry, in the name of Jesus.
Interim National President
Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship in America