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CBF AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2004

fellowship! C O O P E R AT I V E B A P T I S T F E L L O W S H I P

INSIDE

CBF Launches Spiritual Formation Network

Fellowship Collects Offering for BWA

CBF Commissions New Field Personnel

General Assembly Photo Spread

N.C. Couple Establishes Endowment

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Remember, Absorb, Reflect Jesus’ Power, Kinney Tells Opening Assembly Session A R E M I N D E R T H A T C H R I S T I A N S S E R V E “the only power who can

put the wet in water, the crisp in lettuce, the bubble in the brook, thoughts in your minds and wake you up in the morning” and an opportunity to show financial appreciation to the Baptist World Alliance highlighted the opening session of the 2004 Cooperative Baptist Fellowship General Assembly June 24.

Participants at the 2004 General Assembly explore the theme of ‘Being the Presence of Christ: Today … Tomorrow … Together,’ starting with a sermon by John Kinney during Thursday’s opening session and ending on Saturday morning with ministers from the same family serving Communion.

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COOPERATIVE BAPTIST FELLOWSHIP’S MISSION: SERVING CHRISTIANS AND CHURCHES AS THEY DISCOVER AND FULFILL THEIR GOD-GIVEN MISSION.


C O O P E R AT I V E B A P T I S T F E L L O W S H I P

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General Assembly worship leader Tim Mann (left), the Fellowship Mass Choir, and recording artist Kyle Matthews lead participants in song during the opening session of the General Assembly.

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The crowd of approximately 2,800 contributed $33,495 to BWA. A second BWA offering collected during Friday’s commissioning service raised $15,090, for a total of $48,585. The offering punctuated an opening worship service that used numerous congregational songs and solos, Scripture readings, interpretive dance and drama and featured a powerful message from John Kinney, dean of the school of theology at Virginia Union University in Richmond. Kinney drew parallels between the demoralized disciples of Jesus immediately after the crucifixion and Christians today who “cede power to people who have no power and forget that Jesus is alive.” “The disciples were so crushed with group grief, so busy telling everyone who would listen how, just when it looked like God was finally going to straighten things out, everything had gone wrong that they didn’t recognize Jesus when He walked alongside them on the road to Emmaus,” Kinney noted. “But when they did notice, look what happened – the power of Jesus changed them internally, Jesus departed from them, and they got up and moved.” First, “they were ‘strangely’ warmed inside,” Kinney explained. “After they recognized Him, His power flowed into them. It’s like the heat you feel radiating off a brick building at 4 p.m. on a summer day – those bricks didn’t produce that heat but are giving out what they have absorbed from the sun.” Second, “when their eyes were opened Jesus left – because they had the power of Jesus inside them so there was no need to keep looking for Him. He was no longer outside. When that happens to us we can say, ‘what I used to only know about is now a part of me.’” Third, “immediately they got up and went back to Jerusalem to tell,” Kinney concluded. “When you get the presence of Christ in your life it won’t just be Jesus getting up from the dead. You’ll get up, move and tell a world that is moping around in defeat and darkness that He lives! He lives! He lives!” Kinney used personal illustrations to drive home his points. He began by telling of a time early in his marriage when he came home to “a chilly house.” Being “stuck on stupid then,” he kept urging his wife to tell him what was wrong, noting that “I work hard to keep a roof over your head, I bring home my paycheck to pay the bills and I don’t have any major character flaws that I know of.” In response his wife pointed out that she was “an intelligent and resourceful woman who was quite capable of keeping a roof over her head on her own” but that she

didn’t want his money, she wanted him because, “even when I was at home I was not really present, I was just getting ready to go someplace else.” God is like that, he pointed out. “He wants us to be present when we are with Him. He wants our time and our attention so He can be present in our lives. When that happens, then we can be Christ’s presence in our world.” Anita Snell, an associate coordinator for mission teams with CBF Global Missions in Southeast Asia, announced the offering for BWA, noting that, “Last year the BWA took a courageous step when they invited us to be part of the worldwide Baptist family. We want our Baptist brothers and sisters in 211 conventions and unions around the world – many of whom serve God under relentless oppression – to know that we care about them and want to be Assembly Coverage good family members … anything less than a THE FOLLOWING CONTRIBUTORS sacrificial gift to show to CBF Communications and them that we appreciate Marketing assisted with coverage of the 2004 General Assembly their boldness in refusthrough articles and photography: ing to be controlled is Craig Bird, Brandon Gresham, just not good enough.” Ashley Grizzle, Lisa M. Jones, Earlier in June the Melanie Kieve, Stanley Leary, Southern Baptist Ben McDade, Sheryl McDade, Convention severed its Bob Perkins Jr., Susan Settle, ties with the BWA – April Shauf, Betsy Stewart, eliminating its annual Katherine Veach, Lance Wallace contribution of and Ally Walton. $300,000. f! Audio recordings of several By contributing writer Craig Bird, San Antonio, Texas

workshops and selected General Sessions are available (see order form, p. 19).


GENERAL ASSEMBLY

Spiritual Formation Network Launches on Eve of General Assembly The Cooperative Baptist Fellowship launched a new network linking individuals with an interest in spiritual formation at a special dinner event called “Bountiful Feast,” featuring spiritual

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formation author Tilden Edwards as the keynote speaker. The event came on the eve of the

The Spiritual Formation Network is the first of its kind among Baptists. It was formed in response to the growing number of people in the Fellowship who are interested in spiritual formation as a way of living faithfully in the Christian journey. The event included a variety of techniques for spiritual enrichment such as community, music, laughter and inspiration. Daniel Vestal, the Fellowship’s national coordinator, said the establishment of the Spiritual Formation Network was crucial for the future of the organization. “The convergence that comes with spiritual formation is integral to everything that we do and everything that we are,” Vestal said. “This is a very significant moment for CBF and the future of the moderate Baptist movement.” The Spiritual Formation Network is growing out of the experience of dozens of churches and of hundreds of Fellowship Baptists completing Companions in Christ, according to Eileen Campbell-Reed, spiritual formation consultant for the Fellowship, referring to a group study spiritual formation resource published by Upper Room Ministries. “They want to A ‘Bountiful Feast’ participant cradles a seashell, symbolic of bring the approach they’ve pouring out the generous learned to their larger congregablessings of God. tion, and they want to be able to continue practicing their faith in meaningful ways, connecting with others and growing spiritually.” Edwards, an Episcopal priest and founder of the Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation in Bethesda, Md., is widely recognized as one of the most influential writers in the field of spiritual formation. The Shalem Institute is an ecumenical organization that offers extension programs, retreats, workshops and media resources for laity and clergy. Campbell-Reed, who helped start the Spiritual

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Fellowship’s General Assembly.

Pam Hawkins, editor of the journal ‘Weavings,’ and keynote speaker Tilden Edwards share at their table during ‘Bountiful Feast,’ a Spiritual Formation Network dinner.

Formation Network, said people are learning a new way of spirituality. “Baptists are people who know and love the Bible, and who take prayer seriously,” Campbell-Reed said. “They also tend toward an active type of spirituality, putting lots of energy into meeting the needs of others through ministry and missions. “The complement to this type of active spirituality is a more contemplative or reflective spirituality. This reflective approach takes time to reflect on the action, and to rest from the action in Sabbath, and to put energy into prayerful discernment, deep listening and daily practices of faithful living. Historically, we have put the emphasis on the active. Now some folks are expressing hunger for a balance, attention to the reflective as well as the active.” “Bountiful Feast” was sponsored by CBF Congregational Life and Upper Room Ministries. During General Assembly, network organizers conducted a workshop that provided information about the history of the spiritual formation movement and described current projects, including a Spanish version of the Companions in Christ series. f! For more information or to get involved in the Spiritual Formation Network, contact the Fellowship at (770) 220-1600.

By contributing writer Bob Perkins Jr., Mechanicsburg, Pa. www.thefellowship.info AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2004


GENERAL ASSEMBLY

Fellowship Raises $48,585 for Baptist World Alliance

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role in the proceedings of the 14th annual General Assembly in Birmingham, Ala. The Fellowship raised $48,585 in two offerings to augment the $40,000 budgeted for the BWA in the 2004-05 fiscal year. In addition, BWA hosted an information breakfast, General Secretary Denton Lotz presented a workshop on BWA’s work in the world and Lotz spoke to the Fellowship during one of the business sessions on June 25. In preparation for collecting the offering for BWA on Friday, Emmanuel McCall, the Fellowship’s newly elected representative to BWA, introduced the Fellowship to 10-year-old Erin Strnad of McCalla, Ala. Strnad wheeled a wagon loaded with $915 in change she had saved to support world hunger efforts. One aspect of the BWA the Fellowship learned was that BWA dialogues with other faith groups in order for the Baptist understanding of the centrality of Jesus Christ to be heard. And the reason the Fellowship should be excited about participating in the BWA “is not because Baptists in the Third World need your money, but because you can learn from them how to experience First Century Christianity,” Lotz said. “A lot of American Baptists think the BWA is a new airline,”

Emmanuel McCall, the Fellowship’s newly elected representative to the Baptist World Alliance, introduces 10-year-old Erin Strnad, who brought a wagon loaded with change totaling $915 she had saved to support world hunger efforts through BWA to the Friday evening session.

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www.thefellowship.info

Stanley Leary photos

T H E B A P T I S T W O R L D A L L I A N C E played a prominent

Denton Lotz, general secretary of the Baptist World Alliance, brings greetings to the Fellowship during the General Assembly.

Lotz joked during a Friday morning workshop on “What is the Baptist World Alliance?” “And there is some confusion over who we are and what we do.” To remedy that, Lotz gave about 80 participants a one-hour crash course in history and current events. BWA’s primary focus is to provide Baptists with a worldwide structure to demonstrate unity on common goals. “It is important to understand that the BWA is not a church or a denomination, so we don’t write doctrinal statements,” he said. Such decisions belong to local congregations and the denominations and organizations they choose to join – not the Baptist World Alliance, he explained. The strength of BWA comes from the voluntary unity that links more than 200 Baptist groups, according to Lotz, and it positions the BWA to do things that none could do alone. Key among those is the fight for religious liberty. “Many of our member groups are minorities, often struggling to be faithful to their faith under unrelenting persecution. Yet because BWA represents millions of believers around the world, we can meet with governmental leaders and advocate for religious freedom.” Numerous examples include Cuba, Thailand and Indonesia. “We didn’t go there (Cuba) to cozy up to Castro but to raise issues. And because we went, thousands of Bibles were allowed into the country, and now thousands of house churches are meeting.” In Thailand, BWA has helped as more than 100,000 Burmese Baptists have fled to escape a punitive government without passports and with no one to speak for them to the Thai officials. And in Indonesia, Muslims who support a secular state welcomed discussions with BWA, as well as Catholic representatives.


“I’m not here to talk about the Southern Baptist Convention. That battle is over, and we are moving on,” he said. “Our regret is not over the lost money but the lost fellowship and lost opportunities around the world. But we’re moving on, and we are grateful for the Southern Baptists who have expressed their continued support for us.” Also Friday, Lotz addressed the entire General Assembly at the conclusion of the business sessions and was greeted with a standing ovation. He recalled the vote of acceptance last July “when the BWA honored the Baptist principle of freedom of association by accepting you into the family. Welcome home.” f! By contributing writer Craig Bird, San Antonio, Texas

Fellowship’s Ecumenical Task Force Focuses on Jewish-Baptist Dialogue T H E F E L L O W S H I P ’ S Ecumenical Task Force met the day before the General Assembly to delve into Baptist-Jewish relations, the Fellowship’s involvement in a new national ecumenical group and receive updates on such Fellowship projects as a newly-printed brochure, “Building Bridges, Not Barriers.” The Fellowship voted on Friday of the Assembly to ratify CBF’s involvement in Christian Churches Together USA, a new ecumenical group involving religious organizations from the five traditional faith families – mainline Protestant, Catholic, Evangelical, Pentecostal and Orthodox. “I think it is a historic opportunity for CBF,” said Daniel Vestal, the Fellowship’s national coordinator. “We are participating, and it is a joy to be a part of this effort.” The task force heard from Huntsville, Ala., Rabbi Jeff Ballon as they discussed how to better understand and relate to those of the Jewish faith. “Are you going to be a defender of the faith or a good neighbor,” Ballon asked, not hesitating to employ

Jesus’ famous story of the Good Samaritan to bolster his argument. “You can’t be both at the same time.” Ballon was speaking to the task force but his question was aimed at all Christians, especially evangelical groups like the Fellowship. In Ballon’s analogy, a “good neighbor” enters into intentional, interfaith relationships where spiritual differences can be explored in mutual respect. The object is to seek out the common ground of God’s revelation. A “defender of the faith” attacks and condemns as heretics any who disagree with any part of his understanding of God. The object is to maintain the purity of their faith group. “Some groups are so powerful and so numerous that they are only interested in maintaining their own internal cohesiveness against any outside threat,” Ballon said. “And I have to tell you that to most Jews ‘Baptist’ is a scary word. They think the only reason you are befriending them is to set them up to be converted. They don’t know that all Baptists are not alike. A strident Christian is as frightening to a Jew

as any Islamist.” Such stereotypes won’t be altered by organizational resolutions or policy statements, he said. Rather it will happen one-on-one as Baptists and Jews get to know each other as individuals. In addition to Ballon’s presentation to the task force, the Fellowship hosted a workshop on Thursday called “Barbecue and Bagels: Engaging Baptists and Jews in Dialogue,” and on Friday, the Baptist Center for Ethics hosted a luncheon with Savannah, Ga., Rabbi Arnold Belzer of Congregation Mickve Israel and Savannah Pastor Steve Jones of Southside Baptist Church discussing ways to expand the dialogue between the two religions. The task force also discussed Wake Forest University professor Charles Kimball’s book When Religion Becomes Evil and an accompanying study guide produced by the Fellowship, which is available for free by downloading it from CBF’s Web site, www.thefellowship.info. f! By contributing writer Craig Bird, San Antonio, Texas www.thefellowship.info AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2004

GENERAL ASSEMBLY

BWA’s relief arm, Baptist World Aid, takes advantage of the cooperative pooling of resources and elimination of duplication to stretch contributions. Even smaller member groups can participate in ways they could not if they worked alone. “It would be a shock to most people that the BWA has an office in North Korea,” Lotz said. “And when tragedy struck a few months ago when that train exploded, Baptists were able to provide food and medical supplies in the name of Christ ...” During the question-and-answer time, Lotz was asked to comment specifically on the recent decision of the Southern Baptist Convention to sever all ties with BWA, including eliminating its annual contribution of $300,000.

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T H E C O O P E R AT I V E B A P T I S T Fellowship commissioned 11 new Global Missions field personnel on June 25, and Amy Whipple Derrick proclaimed to an audience of about 1,800, “We are all called to go beyond ourselves, to go beyond what’s easy, to go where the Holy Spirit leads through the grace of Christ.” In a commissioning service, the following were commissioned as new CBF Global Missions field personnel: Janée Angel, born in Effingham, Ill., graduated with a bachelor of fine arts degree in music education from Eastern Illinois University and received a master of divinity degree from Southwestern Theological Seminary. Angel was commissioned to serve in Brussels, Belgium. Penny Mann graduated from the University of North Carolina-Wilmington with a bachelor of arts degree in English. She was commissioned to serve in Pecs, Hungary. Dianne and Shane McNary, from Arkadelphia, Ark., were commissioned to serve among the Romany of Slovakia. Lindsey McClintock, from Tyler, Texas, graduated from Mary Washington College with a bachelor of science degree. She was commissioned to serve youth in Berlin, Germany. Jesse Loper, from Oklahoma City, graduated with a bachelor of arts degree in political science and Spanish from the University of New Mexico. He was commissioned to serve at the Rauschenbush Ministry Center in New York City. Jade and Shelah Acker, from Birmingham, Ala., were commissioned to serve in West Africa. Amy Armstrong graduated in 1997 from Gardner-Webb Lindsey McClintock, one of the new University with a CBF Global Missions field personnel, is bachelor of arts prayed over by representatives from her degree in religious home church and the missions field studies with a minor teams where she will serve. C O O P E R AT I V E B A P T I S T F E L L O W S H I P

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CBF Commissions 11 New Field Personnel in Celebration of Global Missions

Jesse Loper (right), one of the new CBF Global Missions field personnel, gets introduced to the General Assembly by Barbara and Gary Baldridge (left) and a representative from his home church and his missions field team.

in Spanish. In 2003, Armstrong graduated with a master of divinity degree from Beeson Divinity School at Samford University. She was commissioned to serve in Los Angeles. Becky and Doug Shenton, from Fredrick, Md., were called to serve in Iranian and Afghan ministry in New Jersey. Becky graduated with a bachelor of science degree in mathematics from Mars Hill College and a master of divinity degree from the M. Christopher White School of Divinity at Gardner-Webb University. Doug graduated with a bachelor of arts degree in religion from CarsonNewman College and received a master’s degree in religion. In her sermon, Derrick, CBF Global Missions associate coordinator for Global Service Corps, envoys and student missions, said all Christians are called, but not as dramatically as some in the Bible. “Burning bush or not, we are all called,” she said. “We are called to relationship, called to what God has uniquely gifted us to be, called beyond ourselves, called to love, and called to be the presence of Christ. We really are on holy ground because God is calling each of us. How will we respond? We may run, we may spectate or we may choose to commit.” The 11 commissioned on Friday brings the total of CBF Global Missions field personnel to 146. CBF Global Missions partners with churches and others in sharing the love of Jesus Christ to the most neglected, which includes unevangelized and marginalized people around the world. f! By contributing writer Bob Perkins Jr., Mechanicsburg, Pa.


GENERAL ASSEMBLY

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Fellowship Approves Budget that Doubles BWA Funding T H E C O O P E R AT I V E B A P T I S T Fellowship’s General Assembly approved a $16,008,123 budget for fiscal year 2004-05, which included an increase in funding to the Baptist World Alliance from $20,000 to $40,000. National Coordinator Daniel Vestal during his annual address, called on attendees to make the vision, “being the presence of Christ in the world” a reality. “If this vision is to become a living reality, it will require a work of the Spirit that touches us within the deepest part of our beings,” Vestal said, and then challenged the gathering to take it seriously. Calling it the “acid test of our Fellowship,” he asked if members could love each other, pray for each other and work in collaboration not only when they agree with each other, but when they disagree. Likening it to Officers for 2004-05 are (l-r): Joy Yee, moderatoran orchestra in elect; Susan Crumpler, recorder; Bob Setzer Jr., which many moderator; and Cynthia Holmes, past moderator. diverse instruments intermingle to create music, Vestal asked attendees if they could represent the vision even to those who are different from them. “God, in beauty and power, has a way of blending our differences into a symphony when each of us will follow the Conductor,” he said. “When we learn to be the presence of Christ to those who are different from us, a mysterious and majestic music emerges.” Finally, Vestal asked if the Fellowship could fulfill the vision with people who are difficult. “I want to suggest to you that when it comes to relationships, we need to put away the remote controls, we need to stop trying to control one another,” he said. “Instead of seeing each other as a project to be completed, or a prospect to be cultivated, we need to focus on how I see the gospel itself, how I see the world, and living my life in radical obedience to God’s will. We need to embrace each day as an opportunity to participate in God’s redemptive plan.” The Assembly approved several key items: a $16,008,123 ministry and missions budget for fiscal year 2004-05 during the Friday afternoon session. The

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Daniel Vestal, Fellowship national coordinator, calls on participants to make the vision, "being the presence of Christ in the world" a reality.

budget included increased funding for the Baptist World Alliance from $20,000 to $40,000. the Nominating Committee’s proposal was approved. It included Cynthia Holmes, becoming past moderator; Bob Setzer Jr., becoming moderator; Joy Yee, becoming moderator-elect; and Susan Crumpler, continuing as recorder. Also, Emmanuel McCall and Vestal will become emissaries to the Baptist World Alliance. becoming a founding member of Christian Churches Together USA, an ecumenical organization founded in September 2001 that will be launched May 2005. In other news, Don Durham reported that CBF Foundation assets now exceed $29 million, a growth of $4 million since last year. f! For a complete transcript of Daniel Vestal’s address, go to www.thefellowship.info/News/GAcoverage/040625Vestal.icm. To reach its financial goals, the Fellowship needs the prayerful support of individuals and churches. An envelope is provided in this issue for contributions to the Fellowship's general missions and ministries budget.

By contributing writer Bob Perkins Jr., Mechanicsburg, Pa

New Coordinating Council Members THE FOLLOWING Coordinating

Council nominees were approved during the General Assembly: Florida: Lynwood Walters; Georgia: Joanne Harwell, Craig Williamson; Kentucky: Heather Barron; North Carolina: Jack Glasgow, Guy Sayles, Sheri Adams; North Central Region: Darrell R.

James; Oklahoma/ Kansas: Beth Davidson; South Carolina: Joe Goodson; Tennessee: Gene Wilder; Texas: Bill Shiell, Sandi Elizondo, Glenn Schmucker; Virginia: Hank Bowers, Roy Ford; At-large members: Troy Petty; ethnic network members: Alton Taylor, Thomas Kim, Velma Porraz.

www.thefellowship.info AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2004


GENERAL ASSEMBLY

Partners in Hope Church Teams Work to Reverse Fortunes in Arkansas Delta AS THE SECOND WEEK

of intensive church missions work came to a close in Helena, Ark.,

evidence of long-term social changes inspired in the community by Partners in Hope abound.

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Faith-based programs proliferate alongside community projects creating a difference within the community. The Cooperative Baptist Fellowship’s rural poverty initiative, Partners in Hope, is a 20-year missions commitment to join forces with people in 20 of the nation’s poorest counties. In the Arkansas Delta, the 2004 All Church Challenge was a time when teams from 16 churches across the United States came to work with Helena churches to conduct youth camps, Bible studies and construction projects focused on community renewal. Helena, once part of a thriving community of nearly 30,000 along the banks of the Mississippi River, is located in Phillips County, one of the poorest in Arkansas and the nation. Now home to about 15,000 people, the twin towns of Helena and West Helena suffer from low employment rates and high poverty levels. Two years ago, CBF Global Missions field personnel Ben and Leonora Newell moved to Helena to spearhead the Partners in Hope efforts. By forming partnerships with local churches, civic groups and residents, the Newells have helped bring about change in the community. A new recreation center, which includes a book and toy library, and a community garden are just two projects that illustrate church and community cooperation. By hosting two weeks of missions teams, the Newells hope that the work of volunteers will help continue the momentum in Helena. “When you consider the poverty and the lack of work, it doesn’t always have the feeling of hope around here,” Ben said, “but this area is full of wonderful people and we are encouraged about Billy Mitchell, a Helena resident (dark blue shirt), and Martha Dodge from West the opportunities here.” Helena scrape the walls of a historical The long-term house as Brandon Henry of Helena looks on.

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Betsy Stewart photo

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Volunteers from First Baptist Church, Lumberton, N.C., spend time with a sports camper.

commitment and vision of the Newells is what brought many volunteers to Helena this summer, including five from First Baptist Church in Elkin, N.C. “If it’s not a longterm commitment, it won’t work,” said Mark Maynard, who came with his wife, Rebecca, from First Baptist. “You can’t stop 25 years of downward spiral overnight,” said Rebecca, who is associate pastor at First Baptist. “This is transforming a community and a mindset. I think it helps us realize that we can find alternatives to allowing a community to deteriorate. We can apply some of these principles in our hometown, which is suffering an economic downturn and loss of jobs.”

Waters of Change On the other side of town, volunteers gathered by the community pool to begin the morning with sports camp. Besides swimming, children participate in baseball and soccer activities. The community pool represents changes taking place in the community. Located on “the wrong side of the tracks,” in Helena’s case, it is the wrong side of the levee. Workers say white residents who live on the other side of the levee rarely visit the pool and surrounding park. But Sue Carter, a member of First Baptist Church, Helena, did, and she led Bible study in the afternoons. “I think gradually, people are seeing that we can’t ignore the situation here, and we can’t just walk away,” she said. “We need to stay here and work together. We can start with


YOU ARE A SINGLE mom with

two children, ages 10 and 12. Your 10-year-old son is autistic. You have an older vehicle which seems to always need some repairs. You don’t have a bank account, so you pay all of your bills with money orders, which cost 90 cents each or $1.25 if they are above $500. You receive no child support. In “The State of Poverty, U.S.A.” General Assembly workshop, attendees were put into real life scenarios to see what choices they would make when faced with these circumstances. Conducted by Pat Fulbright from Waynesville, N.C., and Anne Smith, executive director of Ministries United of South Central Louisville, Ky., the simulation helped

attendees understand the perspective of the poor. “The State of Poverty” was one of five workshops during the Assembly regarding poverty. In his keynote address June 25, Daniel Vestal, the Fellowship’s national coordinator, said poverty is a priority for the Fellowship. “We want to care about the poor, and we want to care for the church,” he said. Tom Prevost, coordinator of Partners in Hope, the Fellowship’s rural poverty initiative, conducted a workshop June 25 and told attendees that the program is gaining momentum. “We now have a presence in 15 of the 20 poorest counties in the United States, which is up from nine counties last year,”

Betsy Stewart photo

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Rainy conditions don’t dampen the spirits of volunteers and community residents working on construction projects in Helena, Ark.

what do you want us to do?’ We’re just a little over 100 miles away, I can see our congregation coming down throughout the year.”f! For more information on Partners in Hope, visit www.ruralpoverty.net.

By contributing writer Bob Perkins Jr., Mechanicsburg, Pa.

he said. “Our state organizations give us a presence in six additional counties, which is an added spillover effect. In the last year, we have had more than 1,200 volunteers participate in the program.” Nowhere is this more apparent than the Partners in Hope project in Helena, Ark., in the Mississippi Delta. Ben Newell, CBF Global Missions field personnel assigned to the Delta, led a workshop telling how their actions were transforming communities. “Transformational development is physical, visible and invisible,” he said. “It goes beyond the visible communitybuilding efforts and includes spiritual development among the people where we are working.” The Fellowship’s Coordinating Council also received an update on the potential partnership

with Call to Renewal, an antipoverty advocacy group in Washington, D.C.

By contributing writer Bob Perkins Jr., Mechanicsburg, Pa.

Sheryl McDade photo

Fellowship Gives Focus to Poverty Issues at General Assembly

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just one or two children at a time. Hopefully, this won’t be something that they forget about tomorrow. Hopefully, this is something they will remember and something we can build upon.” Kate Hall, a volunteer from Hayes Barton Baptist Church in Raleigh, N.C., is a returning volunteer. More than 50 members from Hayes Barton participated in the All Church Challenge, up from 13 last year. Kristen Muse, who is on staff at Hayes Barton and volunteered for two weeks in Helena to help organize the Bible school, said they are taking Helena lessons back home to Raleigh. “Last year, we contacted an African-American school in our neighborhood and looked for ways we could get involved there,” Muse said. “We helped tutor, read … even people who hadn’t been on the trip became involved, and it’s all because we came to Helena last summer.” Pastor of First Baptist Church, Truman, Ark., Tad Rogers, was in the pool, teaching swimming. Rogers said he envisions this as the beginning of a long-term relationship with Helena. “I haven’t taught swimming in 20 years,” Rogers said. “We were definitely stretched outside our comfort zone this week. But we all had the spirit: ‘Lord, we are here,

Ben Newell, one of CBF Global Missions field personnel, describes his work with Partners in Hope in Helena, Ark., during a General Assembly workshop.

www.thefellowship.info AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2004


1. Maggie McClintock of Hoover, Ala., enjoys her smiley face pen during snack time at the children’s assembly.

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2. Marcus Moore of Marion, Ala., plays a violin for sale in the Resource Fair silent auction. Moore, a recent graduate of the Alabama School of Fine Arts, will attend UCLA in the fall. Proceeds from the silent auction raised $18,200 to support ministry projects of CBF Global Missions field personnel around the world. 3. One of the CBF Global Missions field personnel serving in Southeast Asia performs during the Friday evening commissioning service of the General Assembly. 4. Business breakout groups meet Friday morning during the General Assembly. 5. Jeffrey and Tonya Vickery, co-pastors of Cullowhee Baptist Church in North Carolina, lead the Communion litany during the Saturday morning general session. 6. Participants gather for a Taize worship sampler on Saturday morning that uses silence, Scripture and song -- all in different languages.

CBF Endorses New Chaplains, Pastoral Counselors THE FELLOWSHIP recently endorsed 35 new chaplains and pastoral counselors, bringing the total number endorsed by CBF to 414. Those endorsed were: HOSPICE CHAPLAINS: Scott H. Jensen, Hands of Hope Hospice – Heartland Health and U.S. Army Reserve, St. Joseph, Mo.; Ann T. Owen, Wuesthoff Brevard Hospice, Viera, Fla.; Kevin Quiles, VistaCare Hospice and U.S. Navy Reserve, Smyrna, Ga.; Marion "Butch" E. Stillwell, Mountain Area Hospice, Asheville, N.C.; Ron A. Wilson, Hospice of West Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Ala. HOSPITAL CHAPLAINS : Charles

A. Admire, Department of Veterans Affairs, Sanford, N.C.; Jose C. Albovias Jr., University

C O O P E R AT I V E B A P T I S T F E L L O W S H I P

of Louisville Healthcare, Louisville, Ky.; Dick L. Allison, Forrest General Hospital, Hattiesburg, Miss.; J. Craig Butler Jr., The Methodist Hospital, Houston, Texas; R. Craig Cantrall, University of Louisville Healthcare, Louisville, Ky.; Angela S. Clark, Carolinas Healthcare System, Charlotte, N.C.; Matthew F. Eddleman, BroMenn Regional Medical Center, Bloomington, Ill.; Rhonda A. GilliganGillespie, UVMC Health System, Troy, Ohio; Ronald E. Howard, DCH Health System and U.S. Navy Reserve, Tuscaloosa, Ala.; Karen E. Long, Department of Veterans Affairs, Birmingham, Ala.; Shirley M. Massey, University of North Carolina Hospitals, Chapel Hill, N.C.; Ronald C. Oliver, Norton Healthcare,

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Lisa Jones photo

GENERAL ASSEMBLY

Fellowship’s General Assembly Closing Shots

7. CBF National Coordinator Daniel Vestal and Linda Davis-Mitchum, a CBF Leadership Scholar, pray during the Friday morning general session. Stanley Leary photos

Louisville, Ky.; Michael W. Osment, Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center, Winston-Salem, N.C.; Randy H. Parks, Newton Memorial Hospital, Newton, N.J.; Scottie J. Stampe, Carolinas Medical Center, Charlotte, N.C.; Anna P. Teel, UAB Hospital, Birmingham, Ala.; Cecelia Walker, UAB Hospital, Birmingham, Ala.; Cindy R. Wallace, Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center, Waco, Texas; Glenn D. Williams, Norton Healthcare, Louisville, Ky.; Mary M. Wrye, Greenville Hospital System, Greenville, S.C. MILITARY CHAPLAINS : E. Perry

Carroll, Civil Air Patrol, Anderson, S.C.; Rebekah C. Dukem, U.S. Air Force and Baptist Health SystemPrinceton Hospital, Birmingham, Ala.; Amber E. Hipps, U.S. Navy and Mountain View Hospital, Southside, Ala.;

Jim P. King, U.S. Army, Columbia, S.C.; Robert H. McMillan, Civil Air Patrol, Edmond, Okla.; D. Robin Robinson, Chaplain, U.S. Army Reserve, Palatine, Ill. PASTORAL COUNSELORS : Fran C. Brown, South Strand Pastoral Counseling Service, Murrells Inlet, S.C.; Sam Southard, St. Petersburg Theological Seminary, St. Petersburg, Fla.; N. Diane Stamey, Mountain Center for Pastoral Counseling, Clyde, N.C. PROFESSIONAL CHAPLAINS : Kathy J. Hoppe, certified pastoral counselor, American Association of Pastoral Counselors, Sand Springs, Okla.

For more information on chaplaincy and pastoral counseling, contact George Pickle at (770) 220-1617 or gpickle@thefellowship.info.


GENERAL ASSEMBLY

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www.thefellowship.info AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2004


GENERAL ASSEMBLY

Hull Delves into Books, Film in CBF General Assembly Workshops

C O O P E R AT I V E B A P T I S T F E L L O W S H I P

www.thefellowship.info

Bill Hull presents a series of Bible studies on the "Left Behind" books, "The Da Vinci Code" and "The Passion of the Christ."

for which Jesus was charged and sent to the Romans. Even the resurrection was only a momentary blip at the end of the film, he added. “The mood of the movie is that Jesus died for you, not that he lived for you,” Hull said. The “Da Vinci Code” by Dan Brown is a “chase novel,” Hull said. People are chasing those who suppress the truth and those who discover the truth. Brown’s attack on Roman Catholicism is that Catholics have made male dominance prominent. Brown’s major claims in “The Da Vinci Code,” according to Hull, are mistakes. Brown claimed Maj. Gen. Charles Baldwin brings the invocation during the Friday morning that Constantine collated general session. Baldwin was recently promoted to the Chief of Chaplain the Bible as we know it Service for the U.S. Air Force, and played a pivotal role becoming one of the three highest in canonization. But Hull ranking chaplains in the United said this was not the case. States military. Constantine financed the Council of Nicea, but he left the agenda up to bishops. “For me, this was more of a learning event rather than a teaching event,” Hull said. f! Stanley Leary photo

Bob Perkins Jr. photo

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Bill Hull, research professor at Samford University, gave his assessment of Tim LaHaye’s “Left Behind” novels, Mel Gibson’s “The Passion of the Christ,” and Dan Brown’s novel, “The Da Vinci Code” in a series of Bible studies at the General Assembly. “Christ dominates best-selling media today,” said Hull, a minister-in-residence at Mountain Brook Baptist Church in Birmingham and a veteran Baptist educator. “The media saturate us today in a way like never before.” The “Left Behind” authors Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins have captivated the public’s interest by combining religion with entertainment. Hull, however, does not think the book series is biblical. He argues that the subject of the rapture, an idea that Christians will be seized from the world into heaven, leaving non-believers behind to undergo the tribulation – a sevenyear period of suffering – is nowhere in the Bible. The rapture is the centerpiece for LaHaye’s books. “There ain’t no ‘Left Behind’ theology in the Bible,” he said. “The Bible does not talk about every living and dead Christian leaving the world behind.” Hull’s study on Mel Gibson’s “The Passion of the Christ” called attention to the power the movie had on its public. Never before has a commercial movie received an endorsement by evangelicals as this one did. The film had churches buying out movie theaters and has grossed $400 million in the U.S. already. CHALLENGING LOCAL CONGREGATIONS to focus Hull said on God and His will, instead of tasks and an obligathe movie tion to serve, was the focus of the Congregational Leadership Institute led by Craig Van Gelder on the showed no General Assembly’s opening day. Van Gelder is procontent of the fessor of congregational mission at Luther Seminary controversy in St. Paul, Minn. By altering the focus of a church from programs and activities to a more basic underthat cost Jesus standing that God creates and leads through the His life, Spirit, believers then can be open to the different including the directions they are being led, Van Gelder told parcleansing of ticipants. Above: Van Gelder (left) speaks with Jay Robison. the temple,

Sheryl McDade photo

J E S U S C H R I S T I S everywhere in contemporary culture.

By contributing writer Ashley Grizzle, Atlanta


Coordinator Daniel Vestal announced that the Fellowship has received a $100,000 gift from C. Edwin and Laura Anne Vick of Raleigh, N.C., to establish an endowment to fund care for Global Missions field personnel deployed around the world. “This generous endowment gift will provide much needed support for some remarkable incarnational ministers,” Vestal said. “We are very thankful.” With a volunteer team of 12 counselors, five physicians, one dentist and one Missionary Kid or “MK” liaison, CBF Global Missions Member Care/Wellness services are designed to help missions workers maintain their health, as well as assist them when problems arise. “We major up front on prevention and early detection as opposed to only crisis,” said Milton Womack, the Fellowship’s associate coordinator for member care services. “We rejoice and are grateful for the Vicks’ gift and the prospects it brings to the Member Care/Wellness program,” Womack said. “It will enable us to continue to provide our missionaries with the highest quality of wellness in the areas of physical, emotional and spiritual health. There are eternal implications for each healthy missionary we are able to keep on the field, even for one day.” In addition to the member care team, 25 more individuals form a network of resources for the field personnel. These include professionals such as lawyers and financial experts. As one of the Fellowship’s field personnel put it, “We are better equipped every day to share the love of God under very stressful working conditions because of member care CBF style.” “Laura Anne and I are very impressed with our CBF missionaries from our personal experience in meeting and working with them on various mission fields around the world,” Vick said. “These individuals and families have unique needs in care and wellness. This endowment will ensure their proper care as they serve throughout the world.” Vick, retired chairman and chief executive officer of Kimley-Horn and Associates Inc., and his wife have both been active in missions work through the Fellowship and CBF of North Carolina. The Vicks’ goal is to grow the endowment fund through matching gifts to at least $1 million. This endowment would provide the needed financial resources for the associate coordinator of member care to make regular contact with field personnel and their families, cover the

expenses of “missionary kid” retreats and provide counseling or other assistance when a crisis occurs. While the focus is on prevention, member care is ready to help field personnel in crisis. When one field worker was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, member care was there. C. Edwin and Laura Anne Vick have established “Almost endowment for CBF Global Missions’ member immediately, I an care/wellness program for field personnel. received a letter from (a member care volunteer) telling me she also had RA,” wrote the worker. “She was able to give me practical information about the disease, medications and things that had been successful for her. When (another volunteer) came to do a site visit, he came loaded with medicine, hot packs and exercise tapes.” Entire congregations also play a part in member care. Providence Baptist Church in Charleston, S.C., serves as a crisis center for field personnel. The church has helped three families who are now back on the field. f! Field personnel photo

C O O P E R AT I V E B A P T I S T F E L L O W S H I P national

For more information about helping as a crisis center or joining the member care team, contact Milton Womack at (281) 395-3759 or mwomack@thefellowship.info. To make a gift to the endowment fund, contact CBF’s coordinator of development, Tom Newsom, at (254) 744-4437 or tnewsom@thefellowship.info or Don Durham, CBF Foundation president, at (770) 220-1600 or ddurham@thefellowship.info.

By Lance Wallace, CBF Communications, and contributing writer Alison Wingfield, Dallas

www.thefellowship.info AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2004

GLOBAL MISSIONS & MINISTRIES

North Carolina Couple Establishes Endowment Gift to Support CBF Care Network for Field Personnel

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BUILDING COMMUNITY

Church’s International Flavor Goes Beyond Student Outreach “U N I V E R S I T Y B A P T I S T C H U R C H does not have a ’really good’ international student ministry,” insists Dale Meredith, with a half smile. “In fact we don’t have a program specifically for international students at all. Rather, we ARE an INTERNATIONAL church.” University Baptist started in Dale and Jean Meredith’s living room while he was still a professor at the State University of New York-Buffalo. The Cooperative Baptist Fellowship-affiliated church is located near the campus in Getzville, N.Y., and maintains a visible presence at the school. The multiethnic, multicultural DNA of the congregation runs throughout the whole church body and across generational lines. It is a prime example of what the Fellowship promotes as a missional church. “We actually are a church made up mostly of professionals,” explains Dale, an Illinois native whose latest stint as interim pastor started in 1995. “We have Baptists, Methodists, Presbyterians — even a Hindu and a Muslim — that worship with us. We have members from Burma, Sri Lanka, Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, the Philippines and Zimbabwe — plus a few from the United States.” “When we moved here for Dale to teach, it was the other side of the world from Texas,” recalls Jean, who was raised in East Texas. “We started a home Bible study, expecting to have the typical all-American group. And that was true at first.” But then came a wave of Chinese students to the university, then Koreans, then Sri Lankans. The latest ethnic imprint is Kurdish, because seven years ago the church began sponsoring a Kurdish family that had been relocated to Buffalo as political refugees. “Our support of that family opened the door to other Kurdish refugees in the area who now worship with us,” Dale says.

Courtesy of University Baptist Church

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C O O P E R AT I V E B A P T I S T F E L L O W S H I P

The congregation, which currently averages about 20 in attendance, maintains a spectrum of missions, evangelism and outreach activities. In addition to regular Sunday services, there are Bible studies on Tuesday morning (led by Jean with mostly Sri Lankans in attendance) and Tuesday night (led by Dale); a potluck dinner the first Friday of each month (that almost always draws a larger crowd than Sunday worship); a Thursday morning service at a local nursing home and support of the campus Baptist Student Fellowship. The church is involved with Habitat for Humanity and the Easter offering was designated to support the work of CBF Global Missions field personnel Martha and Rick Shaw among Albanian orphans. Members collect old sheets to be rolled into bandages for a Baptist hospital in Ghana, and they participate in the local Alliance for the Mentally Ill. University Baptist’s Vacation Bible School last summer attracted 72 community residents. The church’s ministry extends across the United States and around the world. “We have a lot of people pass through but leave part of their heart here,” Dale points out. “We have 160 people signed up to get copies of my sermon manuscripts and 100 on the monthly church e-mail newsletter.” “Our church may look exotic to some people,” Jean admits. “But actually we are what most churches would be if they really opened their eyes and hearts and began to notice the people who live all around them.” f! For more information on the Fellowship’s Missional Church Initiative, contact Bo Prosser at (770) 220-1631 or bprosser@thefellowship.info, or Terry Hamrick at (770) 220-1615 or thamrick@thefellowship.info.

By contributing writer Craig Bird, San Antonio, Texas

Volunteers from First Baptist Church, Morrow, Ga., helped lead a Vacation Bible School last summer at University Baptist Church. Almost 60 children attended the community event. www.thefellowship.info


GLOBAL MISSIONS & MINISTRIES

Fellowship Church Planting Reaps Bountiful Harvest S I N C E 1 9 9 9 , the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship’s

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Courtesy of CrossRoads Fellowship

church planting ministry has helped start 56 churches that are either holding services or are in the planning stages. And much of the credit goes to a group of Atlanta church members who formed Venture Ministries. Made up of members of Dunwoody Baptist Church and Second-Ponce de Leon Baptist Church, Venture contributed $550,000 to establish an endowment fund for church starts. With the funding in place, Phil Hester filled the position of CBF associate coordinator for church starts in 2000. Since then, he has developed partnerships in 18 states and regions with churches and individuals to research and fund church starts. Hester works with local coordinators of missions in Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia, Florida and North Carolina. He also partners with institutions like the American Baptist National Ministries, the Baptist General Convention of Texas and the Virginia Baptist Mission Board. Hester explains that churches are started on the basis of need — on whether there is a moderate evangelical church in the community. The next step is researching whether there are enough resources to start a church. It takes anywhere from $50,000-$200,000 to plant a church, explains Hester, who works with partners to fund the church plant and recruit a pastor. Abe Zabaneh, director of the Church Multiplication Center for the BGCT, has worked with the Fellowship for three years. Hester recently presented a $60,000 donation on behalf of CBF to the Church Multiplication Center for two innovative church starting efforts. A church launch effort in the late stages of planning in San Antonio received $50,000. The BGCT, which also has invested $50,000 in the project, and the Fellowship will jointly select the church planter. “This church’s evangelism focus will be among the professional, English-speaking Hispanics,” Zabaneh says. Hope Community Church, a congregation which promotes itself as “a unique Baptist experience” in Belton, Texas, received $10,000. The church will be built around small groups heading up various ministries of the church, such as global outreach, resource management, students, discipleship, etc., according to senior pastor Mike Bergman. Steve Abbe, co-pastor of CrossRoads Fellowship, a church start in Waco, Texas, emphasizes the importance of understanding the calling to start a new church.

CrossRoads Fellowship wants to provide a place for residents in Waco, Texas, “where life intersects truth” at the crossroads of Psalm 84:11.

“Not everyone is called to do this,” he says. “You have to have the faith that God is going to lead you through. And you’ve got to be a leader … you have to know how to resource and network.” CrossRoads Fellowship held its first service on June 1, 2003, with 15 people. Nearly six months later, the church had 72 members and was preparing to baptize 15 more people. The church is also carrying on the vision for church starts by making a 10-year commitment to plant churches in Brazil. The Fellowship currently has a diversity of church plants all across the United States, including Korean, African-American and a Liberian church in Virginia. f! For more information on new church starts, contact Phil Hester at (678) 429-9753, phester@thefellowship.info or go to Global Missions/Church Starts at www.thefellowship.info. To order the CBF resource “New Church Starts Package” (includes a CD, two books, sample radio spots, postcards, display ads, door hangers and letters) for $149 plus shipping, contact The CBF Store at (888) 801-4223 or at The CBF Store link at www.thefellowship.info. The Fellowship’s August 2004 missions education curriculum highlights CBF new church starting. The September 2004 curriculum focuses on ministry to internationals in Canada. (Annual subscription: adult and youth, $20; children and preschool, $80. Shipping will be charged.) To order, contact The CBF Store at (888) 801-4223.

By contributing writers Krista Carnet, Clarksville, Tenn., and Craig Bird, San Antonio, Texas

www.thefellowship.info AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2004


AS WE JOURNEY

Cooperative Baptist Fellowship ... A Status Report

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CBF is a movement of spiritual and congregational renewal within the Baptist family. We are reaching consensus around the vision of “being the presence of Christ” and our mission of serving Christians and churches as they discover and fulfill their God-given mission. We cannot define ourselves simply as being the Baptists who are an alternative to fundamentalism. We must define ourselves as Baptist Christians who want to incarnate the life and ministry of Jesus Christ. To the degree that we do this, we will continue to be a movement of spiritual and congregational renewal. One of the encouraging developments this past year has been our partnership Daniel Vestal with Upper Room Ministries to provide resources to congregations in spiritual formation. One of these resources is Companions in Christ. It is being used in an increasing number of churches. We launched a Spiritual Formation Network with a “Bountiful Feast” dinner on Wednesday night at this year’s General Assembly. Another encouraging development has been the energy created around the idea of “Missional Church.” Increasingly churches are discovering that their identity and purpose is not in their denominational affiliation, programs, buildings or staff, but in the redemptive mission of God and their participation in it. There has been an explosion of literature in the last 10 years on the subject of “Missional Church,” and CBF is on the cutting edge of that conversation. We are being used by the Spirit to bring spiritual and congregational renewal. CBF is a network for nurturing and developing congregational leaders. We are now partnering with 14 schools in theological education. We do not own nor operate any of these schools, but we provide scholarships and institutional funding as well as support and networking for their graduates. We do this because we believe in nurturing leaders for the future. In addition to this institutional network, we have created a national network of clergy leadership that is formed into peer learning groups. At present we have 60 such groups with more than 350 individuals involved. Each year at the General Assembly, we sponsor a Leadership Institute featuring training, inspiration and a learning laboratory for congregational leaders. We’ve created a Young Leader’s Network, a Christian Educator’s Network, a Children’s Ministers Network and we are providing reference and referral for churches and clergy as they are seeking each other in times of search. C O O P E R AT I V E B A P T I S T F E L L O W S H I P

www.thefellowship.info

CBF is a congregational partner for global missions. We serve churches as they fulfill the Great Commission by providing a connection to global ministries. We serve churches as they fulfill the Great Commission by providing a way for them to send and support missionaries. We are now supporting 146 CBF Global Missions field personnel serving in some of the most difficult and dangerous places in the world. We serve churches by providing creative ways to cooperate in missions. One such example is the Partners in Hope initiative. We’ve identified the 20 poorest counties in America and challenged churches to become involved in transformational community development. The spiritual passion of CBF’s field personnel continues to inspire me. Their commitment to the gospel is contagious. Their ministries are characterized by compassion, maturity and humility. Like so many others, I read their stories and share their struggles. Unlike many others, I have the opportunity to see them more often. Every time I do, I’m convinced that CBF already has a very significant role in the world missionary enterprise. CBF is a denomination-like fellowship for an increasing number of Baptist Christians and congregations. We are a non-governmental (NGO) organization recognized by the UN. We are an association of churches and individuals that has an annual gathering. We are a chaplaincy-endorsing body who has now endorsed 414 chaplains, pastoral counselors and ministers in specialized settings. We are a provider of retirement benefits for clergy. Our Church Benefits Board has an asset base of more than $18 million. We partner with a number of Baptist organizations to strengthen the Baptist witness. Last year, we were admitted as members of the Baptist World Alliance and, this year we voted to become a founding member of a new ecumenical body called Christian Churches Together in the USA. And we are growing. We’ve signed a partnership with the Hispanic Baptist Convention of Texas to start 400 Hispanic churches in the U.S. in the next eight years. We signed a partnership with the Baptist Medical/Dental Fellowship to co-appoint a medical missionary, and have begun participation on national radio with the historic Protestant Hour. So, I want you to be encouraged by what God is doing in Cooperative Baptist Fellowship. I’ve been in this Fellowship long enough to be able to look back and see the hand of Providence. God has truly blessed us. f! By CBF Coordinator Daniel Vestal


FELLOWHIP FARE

Fellowship Roundup News from CBF’s states, regions and national offices GEORGIA C B F O F G E O R G I A will host

Leadership Training at First Baptist Church, Marietta, from 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m., Sept. 11. Workshops will focus on content for preschool and children’s leaders, youth leaders and adult education leaders. The fee is $15. For more information contact Devita Parnell at CBF of Georgia at (478) 742-1191 ext. 21 or dparnell@cbfga.org.

MISSOURI Leslie Limbaugh resigned as associate coordinator of CBF of Missouri effective June 30, after three and a half years of service. She served as a resource person for the CBF of Missouri, focusing on St. Louis and eastern Missouri. She also ministered to students as the Baptist campus minister at Washington University in St. Louis. “Leslie has brought a fresh desire for St. Louis area pastors and staff to fellowship and pray for each other,” CBFMO Coordinator Harold Phillips said. “Leslie’s gifts of encouragement and building bridges will be missed.” Limbaugh resigned in order to follow her calling to minister to college students on a full-time basis. CBF of Missouri recently named Jennifer Harris as its new communications associate. Harris is a senior English student at Southwest Baptist University in Bolivar where she serves as the editor-in-chief of the Omnibus, the University’s official newspaper. Last summer she worked with the Fellowship’s Student.Go program, serving on the ethnographic research team in San Francisco. NATIONAL C B F E M P L O Y E E S marking

employment anniversaries include: Tom Ogburn, 10 years (5/94);

Flo Shepley, 5 years (6/99); and Gary Skeen, 10 years (6/94). A free, downloadable study guide for Charles Kimball’s book, When Religion Becomes Evil, is available online at www.thefellowship.info at Church Life/Congregational Life/When Religion Becomes Evil Study Guide. Charles Kimball, Bo Prosser and Jeff Rogers have compiled this resource.

NORTHEAST B A P T I S T F E L L O W S H I P of the

Northeast has launched a new Web site at bfnonline.org. The site features a directory of BFN-affiliated churches, ministry opportunities, news items and members of the regional leadership team. Baptist Fellowship of the Northeast and the American Baptist Churches USA met in combined session May 7-8 in Manchester, N.H., representing the first-ever joint meeting of the Baptist bodies. The American Baptist Churches of Vermont and New Hampshire and the Northeast regional CBF organization held a joint annual convention under the theme “Still Be Our Vision—Today, Tomorrow, Together” that drew approximately 400 Baptists from New York to Maine.

SOUTH CAROLINA T H E F E L L O W S H I P recently announced its participation as a partner with Call to Renewal, an ecumenical, bi-partisan group committed to eradicating hunger. CBF Coordinator Daniel Vestal was one of more than 40 clergy leaders who signed a partnership agreement with Call to Renewal during a special event at National Cathedral in Washington, D.C. CBF of South Carolina sent a

Coming Attractions August 21 Church Leadership Academy West Hills Baptist Church, Knoxville, Tenn. Sponsor: Tennessee CBF Contact: Ircel Harrison (888) 661-8223, coordinator@tncbf.org September 26-28 Annual Preaching Consultation King and Prince Resort, St. Simons Island, Ga. Speaker: Clyde Fant Contact: Truett Gannon, McAfee School of Theology, (678) 547-6457 For a complete schedule of events, go to

www.thefellowship.info/Inside%20CBF/ Calendar.

delegation to Call to Renewal in 2003 and has remained an active participant with Call to Renewal on issues related to hunger and poverty. Michael McCullar, executive pastor at Johns Creek Baptist Church in Alpharetta, Ga., received the Jack Naish Distinguished Christian Educator Award during a recent Christian educators retreat sponsored by CBF Congregational Life at Providence Baptist Church in Charleston.

TENNESSEE T H E T E N N E S S E E C B F Christian

Education Resource Team (CERT) will sponsor a Church Leadership Academy at West Hills Baptist Church in Knoxville on Aug. 21. Cost is $15 per person with a reservation deadline of Aug. 13. To register, contact (888) 661-8223 or tcbfoffice@tncbf.org. The academy will feature a mini-retreat for deacons led by Jack Pennington, pastor of West Hills Baptist Church, and 25 workwww.thefellowship.info AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2004

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FELLOWSHIP FARE 18

shops addressing ideas for Bible study, Sunday school, youth ministry, missions education and Christian spirituality.

CBF Donates $12,000 to Aid Flood Victims I N R E S P O N S E to devastating floods

in Haiti and the Dominican Republic, the Fellowship is donating $12,000 to aid organizations that serve the two countries. Torrential rain left in its wake more than 2,600 dead and missing in Haiti and more than 700 dead and missing in the neighboring Dominican Republic, according to the New York Times. In response, the Fellowship is sending $10,000 to World Vision earmarked for Haitian aid efforts, and $2,000 to Baptist World Aid, earmarked for the Dominican Republic. Earlier this year, the Fellowship announced a partnership in Haiti with World Vision, the largest Christian relief development agency in the world. In keeping with the Fellowship’s commitment to meet the needs of the most neglected, Haiti was chosen because its people suffer from challenging socioeconomic problems stemming from a history of governmental instability and abuse. The Haitian people also face both a shortage of health care workers and issues such as malaria, tuberculosis, malnutrition and the AIDS/HIV epidemic. To contribute to the Fellowship’s effort to address the need in Haiti, send your financial gift to Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, P.O. Box 101699, Atlanta, GA 30392. Make your check payable to CBF and indicate the Haiti relief and development fund No. 17013.

C O O P E R AT I V E B A P T I S T F E L L O W S H I P

www.thefellowship.info

Fellowship Partners with D.C. Baptists I N A N E F F O R T T O H E L P revitalize Baptist churches in the nation’s capital, the Fellowship has announced a $10,000 donation and partnership with the District of Columbia Baptist Convention. The partnership is part of the Fellowship’s Missional Church Initiative, created to help local churches meet community needs. “This is an important place for us to plug in, to directly interface with congregations, and to make a difference in the lives of those congregations,” said Bo Prosser, the Fellowship’s coordinator for congregational life. The funds will help support three DCBC programs, expected to impact at least five churches in the area. One program, the Strategic Focus Churches, will receive $6,000 to begin developing missional congregations from six existing churches, to affect long-term change. Fellowship funds will also go to the Restart Initiative, which seeks to establish a missional congregation among an older, established church to help plan and initiate changes. DCBC leaders have identified Bethesda First Baptist Church for this program. “We’re enabling our churches to express their Christian ministry,” said Robert Cochran, coordinator for congregational health, evangelism and discipleship for the DCBC. “The funding is going to assist these churches to reposition themselves towards missions work.” The DCBC is a diverse group of churches created in 1845. Cochran said some churches in the organization have relationships with the American Baptists and the Progressive National Baptist Convention.

Vol. 14, No. 4 CBF COORDINATOR • Daniel Vestal EDITOR • Ben McDade MANAGING EDITOR • Lisa M. Jones PHONE • (770) 220-1600 FAX • (770) 220-1685 E-MAIL • fellowship@thefellowship.info WEB SITE • www.thefellowship.info

fellowship! is published bimonthly by The Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, Inc., 3001 Mercer University Dr., Atlanta, GA 30341-4115. Periodicals postage paid at Atlanta, GA, and additional mailing offices. USPS #015-625 POSTMASTER:

Send address changes to “fellowship!” Newsletter, Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, P.O. Box 450329, Atlanta, GA 31145-0329

“Because we’re in the nation’s capital, we have people here from across the country, with diverse backgrounds,” Cochran said. “We are affirming our churches’ choices in those relationships. CBF coming alongside us to help is timely.” Prosser said there are already some churches in this area that are a part of the Fellowship, but this partnership is a way to make a greater impact. “It lets us make a statement that we are making an investment, that we really do care, and we have a desire for positive ministry to happen here.” By Bob Perkins, CBF Communications


Audiocassette/CD Order Form Reinforce what you’ve already learned or hear what you missed at the Assembly!

Cooperative Baptist Fellowship

2004 General Assembly Birmingham, Ala.

June 24-26, 2004

Check Selections Desired General Session Highlights ❑ General Session I (Thursday evening) ❑ General Session II (Friday morning) ❑ General Session III (Friday afternoon) ❑ General Session IV (Friday evening)

Workshops

❑ Involving Adults in Planning Their Own Spiritual Growth Dennis Foust and Mike Harton ❑ Bible Study – The Passion of the Christ: Mel Gibson and the Gospels Bill Hull ❑ Baptist Polity: (Im)perfect Methods for a (Post)modern World Bill Leonard

Ron Crawford ❑ Spiritual Formation in a Youth Ministry Setting Erin Conaway and Kirk Hatcher ❑ The Quest for Congregational Vitality Roy Godwin and Larry McSwain ❑ Transformational Development Work in God’s World Ben Newell

❑ Barbeque and Bagels: Engaging Baptists and Jews in Dialogue Tom Allen

❑ Working with Multi-Generations in the Church Bo Prosser

❑ Managing Change and Conflict in the Local Church Dan Bagby

❑ Baptism: We’ve Got it Right … and Wrong John Tyler

❑ Global Missions 101 Barbara Baldridge and Gary Baldridge

❑ Becoming a Cross Cultural Friend Ana D’Amico and David D’Amico

❑ Reach for Congregational Vitality – An Acts 2 Encounter Jim Baucom

❑ Why Be or Stay Baptist? James Dunn

❑ Albanian-Balkan Team: Celebrating 10 Years Arville Earl and Shelia Earl

❑ Developing Teams to Minister to Teens Sam Hestorff

❑ Bible Study – The DaVinci Code Part II Bill Hull

❑ Little Believers: How Children Come to God Keith Herron and Hazel Morris

❑ Bible Study – The DaVinci Code: Women in the Life of Jesus Bill Hull

❑ The Acceptable Addiction: One Couple’s Story Bruce Maples and Nina Maples

❑ Bible Study – Left Behind: Is Rapture Religion Biblical? Bill Hull ❑ Who Will Step Out in Faith? Amy Derrick and Tom Prevost ❑ Operation Inasmuch David Crocker ❑ Missions for the Next Generation Amy Derrick and John Mitchell

❑ Developing a Local Church Missions Strategy Beth Ogburn and Tom Ogburn ❑ The Emerging Church – Its Values and Forms Greg Warner ❑ The Ministry of Worship: From Trends to Truth Terri Byrd ❑ Being a Church Staff of ONE Michael Duncan

❑ ChristHeart: The Art and Practice of Being Christ in the World Jeanie Miley ❑ Understanding Fundamentalism Fisher Humphreys and Philip Wise ❑ Grassroots Congregational Planning Gerald Bryant and Mark Wingfield ❑ Values Clarification: A Fresh Beginning

❑ The Most Neglected People … Those Living with AIDS Wayne Smith ❑ Create a Faith Development Blueprint for Your Church Priscilla Tunnell ❑ Living into the Future Story of Your Congregation George Bullard ❑ CBF 101 for African Americans Bob Pitts and Emmanuel McCall

Cost $10.00 per CD

$8.00 per audiocassette

All sessions recorded live and available on audio cassette and CD! Payment

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C H I L D R E N AT S P R I N G H I L L Baptist Church had an

unusual opportunity this summer to explore a re-created Jerusalem and meet characters from the Bible through an interactive project called Marketplace. “For more than two years, the children’s ministry leadership has been at work to re-create a marketplace setting as it would have been in the days of Jesus,” says Pat Lee, minister of childhood education at Spring Hill, a Cooperative Baptist Fellowship-affiliated church in Mobile, Ala. “The Marketplace experience will be forever remembered by old and young alike,” says Lee. “It became a real community experience. All ages of our adults worked together to build the set, make costumes and work together in the market shops. Parents talk of how their children would not stop talking about the marketplace and meeting Jesus. It was our most outstanding event. It’s already on our calendar for next year.” Spring Hill hosted about 240 children as more than 150 adult volunteers led them through the experience of living among Jesus’ friends and family during the weekend event. The interactive experience gave children a chance to learn about many of the trades and shops found in a Judean market in A.D. 27-28. Children who participated in Marketplace had the opportunity to make rope, make a fishnet, do masonry, make a piece of pottery, weave a basket, re-finish a fishing boat, try their hand with woodworking, smell the bread baking in a bakery and make purchases in a produce shop or spice/herb shop. The shopkeepers and their apprentices shared with the children about life in that time without making any reference to the present day. As the children came into the market with their family leaders, they paid taxes to the tax collector and met the census taker. They then had the choice of participating in a trade, shopping, listening or just looking. Children also encountered storytellers, Roman soldiers, a beggar, shepherds with animals and Zaccheus, who

Courtesy of Spring Hill Baptist Church

FAITH FORMATION 20

Alabama Church Illustrates Biblical Times for Children through Innovative Ministry

Spring Hill Baptist Church Pastor Terry Ellis (left) provides language instructions as children write on clay tablets at the Hebrew school exhibit that is part of an innovative re-enactment called Marketplace.

relayed the story of his climbing the tree to see Jesus. In the midst of all the activity, Jesus and His friends passed through the market and re-enacted several New Testament stories. “Everyone felt as if they were witnessing Jesus’ life for themselves,” Lee says. “For these participants, they will never just ‘read’ the Bible stories again. These stories will have life. It is our hope that their lives will be forever impressed with the vivid memories of Jesus and they will desire an eternal relationship with Him.” Based on a curriculum written by Betty Goetz, Marketplace represented a tremendous investment of time, effort and money to create the experience. f! For more information on Marketplace, contact Pat Lee at (251) 342-5349. The set, props, costumes and extra materials are available for use by other churches for a fee.

By Lance Wallace, CBF Communications 0410P004

P. O. Box 450329 Atlanta, GA 31145-0329 Address Service Requested

2004 August  
2004 August  

2004 August