History of HarvestNet
At an Ephrata Community Church retreat in 1990, God spoke very clearly through a prophetic word that said “in the fourth year, I will pour out my Spirit.” The church had just chosen to model itself after the early church of Antioch and took on a call to prepare for harvest based on the four-year prediction. The elders of ECC, agreeing that this was from God, concluded that by 1994 they should begin to prepare for the harvest by planting a church.
In the spring of 1994, ECC planted its first sister congregation, and HarvestNet was born to foster a partnering relationship between the two congregations. Barry Wissler, senior pastor of ECC, continued to provide guidance to the church plant’s founding pastor, and ECC also provided other resources to strengthen the growing flock. In 1997, another prophetic word confirmed the role of ECC as a “resource church,” and the next year two more congregations were planted, which is a trend that has continued. We planted a new church south of Lancaster City called Threshold Church in 2009, a Spanish-speaking church in Lancaster City called Vida Church International in April 2010, and a church in Annville called Lifeway Church in September 2015.
In addition to the churches planted, God connected us to others from a variety of ministries, and our tiny network grew. Outside churches asked to partner with us, and prophets and evangelists with Ephesians 4 ministries began to sense a call to partner for the sake of the harvest.
In 1999, the apostolic ministry of Alan Vincent confirmed the work of HarvestNet. Alan began to assist Barry and the elders of ECC in refining their focus as a regional equipping church. Alan continues to provide apostolic input, not only into ECC, but also to HarvestNet. Marc Dupont was also recognized as an advisor to HarvestNet because of his prophetic ministry to the network. In 2013, Larry Kreider joined the oversight team for HarvestNet, bringing wisdom from his experience in leading an international network of churches.
Because we value regional transformation, we also began several multichurch ministries under HarvestNet’s banner. The Kingdom Ministry School, originally known as the Equipping Institute, launched in the fall of 2005 to train leaders for ministry in the church and marketplace. KMS has served more than 1,400 people from 140 churches who have taken classes. Gateway House of Prayer began in 2006 to honor God with prayer and worship and is now going 24/7. The prayer room is staffed by volunteers from more than 40 local churches. The Gift International was launched in 2009 to coordinate mission partnerships to minister to the poorest of the poor in India by caring for orphans, installing clean water systems, and feeding the hungry. In 2013, HarvestNet launched HarvestSENT as a vehicle for supporting and empowering Ephesians 4 ministers and missionaries serving within HarvestNet or its many partners. In 2015, HarvestNet started its most recent ministry, HarvestNet Ministry Rooms, providing prayer for healing, deliverance, and prophetic ministry.
In May 2012, we changed our name to HarvestNet International to reflect the growing interest in our network and its continued expansion globally. HarvestNet continues to grow in Europe, India, and the Philippines. Leadership teams are being developed in each continent where there are clusters of partner churches and ministries.
In 2016, the school in USA was redesigned and named The HarvestNet School of Supernatural Ministry in order to train workers for the harvest. Today over 250 individuals and organizations have partnered with HarvestNet to join our vision.