Laurie Lind, Entrust writer
Mo Blackmon lives in Canada with her husband, Wes, and travels to Latvia to facilitate Entrust’s Women-to-Women Ministry Training (WWMT) courses. A few years ago, Livija Godina, Mo’s original colleague in Latvia, noticed a dynamic young woman organizing and leading a variety of ministries at her church, always with excellence and great enthusiasm. Livija began sending emails to Mo, expressing great hopes for this young lady, Agnese Megne. “I hope we will be with Agnese for the long haul. I’m also praying for her, that God will lead her into women’s ministry nationwide.” How generously God has answered those prayers!
Mo finally met Agnese in 2015 when Agnese took Entrust’s foundational course, Facilitating Relational Learning, which Mo co-facilitated in Riga.
Mo Blackmon, left, “passes the baton” to Agnese Megne after Agnese completed her first Entrust training module, Facilitating Relational Learning, October 2015.
Livija invited Agnese to that first course. “Our conversation was not long,” Agnese recalls, “but from the very first moment, my desire for what I was hearing was huge. I really had the feeling God was leading this process. It wasn’t even important to me to clarify all the details (which are always important to me). I simply said, ‘Yes, I want this!’”
Now, just two years and a great deal of research, study, thought and prayer later, Agnese is raising support (a process not always well understood in her country) to become director of women’s ministry for the Baptist Union of Latvia, replacing Livija, who is retiring. In addition, Agnese will direct Entrust’s ministry training program across the entire nation.
We asked Agnese about all of this.
How did you decide to lead Entrust for all of Latvia?My heart burns for the Entrust program because I have experienced how it changed my heart. I watch with joy how women who study with Entrust are changed. It is knowledge and experience which I wish for every Latvian woman (actually, I wish this also for every Latvian man). I cannot explain my decision with my mind (words and logic). It is the Spirit who has set my heart on fire for this. I have studied a lot in my life and the role of the mind is great, but this training surpasses all that I have ever experienced.
You were extremely thorough in your research before you agreed to this. What was your process?I delved into Entrust’s website where I found information I hadn’t heard previously. The more I read, the more I found interesting things I had not thought of. I felt a great desire to share this information with others. Even more important to me are conversations with people. I wanted to understand to the very root, Mo’s motivation for bringing this program into Latvia. With enormous interest, I read all the communications between Mo and Livija so I could understand, both historically and emotionally, how Entrust began in Latvia.
Agnese Megne reflects on Entrust’s ministry training in 2015. Just two years after making this recording, she now directs Entrust Latvia.
What suits you to the role you’re taking on?I naturally and easily develop relationships. I’ve been given the ability to encourage people, to see special abilities and talents in everyone, as well as gifts of the Holy Spirit. People have often told me I am a good salesperson — if I believe in something, I can very easily convince others to believe in it. I think that’s why, after my recommendation, five women I spoke with studied (took WWMT courses) with us last year. But when I remember how strongly God guided my own choice to study, it’s clear that all honor and glory belongs only and exclusively to him! I believe God will use all my experience, knowledge and heart through Entrust, that I may pass this on to other people.
Agnese, left, having completed her second Entrust module, “passes the baton” to a woman who’s just completed her first module, October 2016.
Tell us about your faith background and your family. I grew up in a love-filled family. I always sensed that my big and loving dad could solve any problem. That’s why God was not especially necessary for me. At the same time, I spent a lot of my childhood with my family in churches. We were not there for the worship, however, but to listen to sacred music. My parents are musicians; dad is a conductor and mom is a piano teacher.
God gave me a supportive, loving husband and two sons, one now 18 and the other 13. I started to intentionally search for God 11 years ago, when we learned our oldest son has a brain tumor. That was a desperate time. Trust in God was our only possibility. The doctors didn’t give us much hope. My earthly father was no longer the one who could solve everything. So, a passionate journey to know God began! I am forever thankful to God that my husband and I repented and came to Christ on the same day, the same hour, and we even think, the same minute. We experienced the touch of the Holy Spirit at an Alpha Course lesson about the Holy Spirit. From that moment on, we’ve been very active Christians, looking for ways to serve and ways to grow in understanding God’s word.
How has God used Mo Blackmon in your life?Mo and I communicate a lot through emails and Skype. She is an example of how God uses and speaks through quiet, humble, obedient and “on fire” people. To master a completely foreign language in a foreign country and be “on fire” for us Latvians is so very special; when I think of it, tears come to my eyes.
Mo set my heart on fire for Latgale (a region in Latvia ruled by the greatest poverty and alcoholism, where people don’t know Jesus personally even though the traditional Christian faith has been passed down from generation to generation). When I think about this, I feel ashamed that I live in Latvia and only discovered the reality of these problems from a person who is NOT Latvian, but who has done much more for Latgalian people than the majority of us Latvians.
With her quiet and humble example, her unobtrusive leadership style, her true love and real action, Mo has indirectly encouraged me, through her example, to great works. Observing her, I want to become quieter and more peaceful and at the same time, far more courageous in responding to God’s calling. I appreciate how she always emphasizes our need to pray and be guided by what God gives us to do.