Forge online


Your trainers for this journey are:

Alan Hirsch

Alan Hirsch is the founding director of Forge Mission Training Network. Currently, he co-leads 100 Movements, an innovative learning community helping megachurches become missional movements. Known for his innovative approach to mission, Alan is considered to be a thought leader and key mission strategist for churches across the Western world. Alan is the author of The Forgotten Ways; co-author of The Shaping of Things to Come, ReJesus and The Faith of Leap (all with Michael Frost); Untamed with wife Debra Hirsch; Right Here, Right Now with Lance Ford; On the Verge with Dave Ferguson; and The Permanent Revolution with Tim Catchim. Alan’s experience includes leading a local church movement among the marginalized; developing training systems for innovative missional leadership; and heading up the mission and revitalization work of his denomination. He is co-founder and adjunct faculty for the M.A. in Missional Church Movements at Wheaton College. He is also adjunct professor at Fuller Seminary and George Fox Seminary, among others, and he lectures frequently throughout Australia, Europe and the United States. Alan is series editor for Baker Books’ Shapevine Series, IVP’s Forge Line, and an associate editor for Leadership Journal.

Deb Hirsch

Deb is an Aussie living in America. She is a minister at the Tribe of L.A. an eclectic bunch of missional artists and vagabonds who meet in downtown Los Angeles. She also serves on the leadership team of Forge American and Christian Associates International. She is co-author of "UnTamed: Reactivating a Missional Form of Discipleship” & has recently written “Redeeming Sex: Naked Truths About Sexuality and Spirituality.”

Hugh Halter

Hugh and his wife Cheryl have planted two churches and are working on a planting a third right now. Hugh is the National Director for Forge America and also the founder of Missio, a mission training organization, and the author of Sacrilege, BiVO, and co-author of The Tangible Kingdom, AND, and FLESH. His latest book is titled Brimstone: The Act and Act of Holy Nonjudgement. He speaks extensively, encouraging and equipping pastors in incarnational ministry and missional leadership.

Brad Brisco

Brad is currently the Church Planting Strategist for a network of churches in Kansas City. He holds a doctorate in the area of missional ecclesiology; his doctoral thesis was on assisting existing congregations in transitioning in a missional direction. He also serves on the National Leadership team for Forge America Mission Training Network and is co-founder of the Sentralized Conference. Brad is co-author of Missional Essentials, a twelve-week small group study guide and The Missional Quest. He blogs regularly at

Lance Ford

Lance has over two decades of experience as a pastor, church planter, coach, and consultant and is the cofounder of the Sentralized Conference and KC Sentral, a missional training network in Kansas City. He is the co-author, with Alan Hirsch, of Right Here Right Now, Everyday Mission for Everyday People, and the author of UnLeader, Reimagining Leadership…and Why We Must, as well as the co-author of Missional Essentials and The Missional Quest. Lance’s latest book is titled, Revangelical: Becoming the Good News People We’re Meant to Be.

Laura Hairston

Laura is a wife, mom and missional practitioner. She oversees Team Development & Administration for Forge America. She Co-Directs Forge Dallas & Waken Ministries alongside her husband, Ryan. Both organizations assist the church with missionary formation and discipleship. Laura lives in the North Dallas suburb of Frisco, where she mentors teenage girls in her home and longs to see her neighborhood look more like the kingdom of God each day. Her heartbeat is for every follower of Jesus to see themselves as missionaries in their everyday lives.

Ryan Hairston

Ryan, his wife Laura, and their three girls live in the North Dallas suburb of Frisco, Texas. Ryan and Laura lead a neighborhood church and together, and they long to see their neighborhood and city look more and more like the Kingdom of God. Ryan helps to develop Forge Hubs across the country for Forge America and he and his also wife founded and lead Forge Dallas & Waken Ministries, both of which are missional training organizations. Ryan’s heartbeat is to help all people realize their ability for life change and world transformation. He is a missionary mobilizer and trainer, consultant, and teacher/speaker.

Geoff & Sherry Maddock

Geoff & Sherry are urban missionaries and micro-farmers in Lexington, Kentucky.  They are passionate about practicing a theology of place with a special concern for local food justice.  They encourage Christians to embrace mission wherever they are “placed” locally not just in global generalizations, to live as neighbors, not just church members, and to take an interest in broader issues of justice and ecology, not just individual salvation. They urge anyone who will listen to walk, plant, bake and shop locally as expressions of neighborliness. They published “Sowing Seeds of Shalom in the Neighborhood” (available on Amazon for Kindle).  It is the first briefing paper from the Summit of the International Society for Urban Mission (ISUM) and offers theological frameworks, principles, disciplines and practical suggestions for urban dwellers that want to be involved in the work and joys of neighborhood transformation.  They have a son (12yrs) named Isaac.

Scott Nelson

Scott holds a Ph.D.  in Congregational Mission and Leadership from Luther Seminary, St. Paul, MN andis the author of the five Forge Guides for Missional Conversation (InterVarsity Press). Scott loves the thrill of helping people discover how God is calling them to participate in His mission to the world. He and his family live as bi-vocational missionaries in their condominium complex and are part of a missional church that is attempting to discover how to be the presence of God in the suburbs of Chicago. When he is not participating in the missional church conversation through his writings, studies, or teaching, Scott enjoys a wide variety of athletic activities (particularly running, tennis, and disc golf), board games of all kinds, and sharing meals with neighbors, friends, or anyone else God sends his way.

Terry Ishee

Terry serves as the Director of Forge Online and Forge Austin, the Church Planting Catalyst for an network of local churches, and the Pastor of Life Church Austin. In each of these roles, he invests his energy to support missional, incarnational movement in and around Austin, Texas. Terry and his wife Amy have lived in Austin for nearly two decades, so they stand out against the tide of people moving to Austin by the hundreds each week. Together with their daughter Bethany, they seek justice as a foster family by opening their home to at-risk children in the city.