Pastor Cedric Nelms, who leads Chosen Generation Church in Long Beach, describes himself as “a husband, father, pastor, soon-to-be author, speaker, lover of learning, middle school teacher, and a dude that just loves sharing my experiences with people.”
In July, he was named as World Impact West’s city director for Los Angeles.
Earlier this summer, Nelms was one of four pastors participating in a TogetherLA pop-up panel to discuss both hope and brokenness in Los Angeles.
To truly be an urban pastor planting an urban church one must first get to know the broken parts of the city, said Nelms during the discussion.
“We have to get unified in understanding that yes, we can be a different color, we can be a different culture, we can be a different race, we can even have a different creed, but we also have to understand that there is only one gospel and one Lord,” he said.
Below is his interview with TLA about his new role with World Impact.
TogetherLA: In a quick overview, what is World Impact West?
Cedric Nelms: World Impact West (a region of World Impact) is a Christian missions organization committed to facilitating church planting movements by evangelizing, equipping and empowering America’s unchurched urban poor. Our seven initiatives encompass Evangel School of Urban Church Planting, Associates (ministry partnerships), The Urban Ministry Institute (TUMI), Urban Leadership Retreats, Incarceration to Incorporation, Urban Church Associations (UCA), and Christian Education.
TLA: What is the city director’s job at World Impact?
Nelms: The Los Angeles City Director vision is to multiply World Impact’s initiatives within a targeted geographic area with a high concentration of poverty. The goal is to get ministry done through leadership development of indigenous leaders.
TLA: What makes Los Angeles unique in terms of the other areas that World Impact covers?
Nelms: There are 18 million people that live in metro Los Angeles. In addition to that, metro Los Angeles is 45% Hispanic, 33% Anglo, 8% African American, and 13% Asian. Los Angeles is one of the premier cities for urban Christian Missional ministry.
TLA: What’s the hardest part of your work?
Nelms: Keeping the mission of what we do greater than the individual point of view.
TLA: What is the most fulfilling part of your work?
Nelms: Being in a position to give resources to local urban leaders that will help them do ministry better. As we often say, we are like the Home Depot of urban ministry: “You can do it (ministry), we can help.”
TLA: What do you look forward to doing most as the new city director?
Nelms: My goal is to resource an indigenous leader in every city in Los Angeles and San Bernardino counties with our seven initiatives. In addition to that, my hope is that we would minister cross-culturally to people unreached by the gospel of Jesus Christ through evangelism, follow-up, discipleship and indigenous church-planting. And lastly, empower urban disciples by training leaders for the advancement of the Kingdom of God.