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Serving Christians and churches as they discover and fulfill their God-given mission
J.V. McKinney photo
God’s word in every language Bekchen Wagner, a member of Baptist Church in Fulda, Germany, often lends his voice to Christian videos and recordings in the Sinti language. Wagner works with Keith Holmes, one of CBF’s field personnel, whose ministry includes creating Christian materials in the languages of the Romany people. Learn more on pages 10-17 about how Fellowship Baptists are making God’s word available to people all over the world.
General Assembly info inside!
Deacons and other servants Earlier this year, I was preaching at Central Baptist Church, Bearden, Tenn., on a Sunday they were ordaining 17 new deacons. The chair of the deacons, Bill Vinson, offered the following challenge: “Our word ‘deacon’ is a term which we transliterate from the Greek word ‘diakonos.’ This Greek word is found, in several forms, 29 times in the New Testament. Only three of those times is the word translated ‘deacon’ in most of our Bibles today. The predominant meaning of the word is ‘servant.’ For this reason, it seems appropriate that the role of deacon at Central Baptist Church is that of servant. “At Central, you are not assigned to the ‘office’ of deacon and you are not part of a ‘board’ of deacons. You are simply being set apart today as a servant of Jesus Christ for Central Baptist Church. And just as the term ‘diakonos’ was applied to common slaves — Paul, Apollos, Timothy, Phoebe, Tychicus, Epaphras, Jesus — it now applies to you. “Your job is not to vote on or administer policy, police or judge members, establish protocol or even cast the vision for the church. Those duties have already been assigned. Your job is to serve. “This is not a position of prestige or self importance. It is a role that requires a humble mindset to do whatever is required to glorify God and benefit the Kingdom, even when those tasks are too menial for others to consider worth their efforts. “And so my charge to you today is to fulfill your new role with service. Serve when every eye in the world is upon you, and when there is no one else to see: For the world is watching and God always sees. Serve when there are no thank you’s and even when you are despised for service: For you will be ignored by most and despised by the world. Serve when you are tired and you see no hope for success: For He will lift you up and all things are possible through Him. And serve when you don’t want to and when others have long since quit: For you are now a deacon, ‘diakonos,’ servant; and it is now and forever will be who you are.” These words were a powerful reminder to me that the life and ministry of the church is counter cultural to a successdriven, competitive world. Leadership within the church is not “command and control” with a “top down” structure and a “corporate mentality.” Leadership within the body of Christ is characterized by service — humble, compassionate and sacrificial service. When I was a pastor one of my sons saw my name on the church sign and asked, “Dad, who is the boss of this church?” I answered, “Jesus is the boss?” He asked again, “No, Dad, who is really the boss of this church?” How subtle is the temptation for power struggle, jealousy and Vol. 20, No. 2 rivalry about who is in authority. executive Coordinator • Daniel Vestal I realize that in Baptist churches the roles and responsibilities of deacons, as well as pastors Coordinator, Fellowship and staff members, varies. Issues relating to polity and decision making are not easy. But if a Advancement • Ben McDade church is to represent the present and coming Kingdom of God it will be because its members Editor • Lance Wallace embody the mind of Christ “who emptied himself, taking the form of a servant.” managing Editor • Patricia Heys What is true individually is also true congregationally. For a church to participate in the misAssociate Editor • Carla Wynn Davis Phone • (770) 220-1600 sion of God it must be a servant to the world, discovering the needs of its community (as well Fax • (770) 220-1685 as the global community) and seek to minister to those needs. A missional church is a servant E-Mail • firstname.lastname@example.org church utilizing its building, programs, budget and resources to serve a broken humanity. Web Site • www.thefellowship.info
fellowship! is published 4 times a year in January, April, July and October by The Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, Inc., 2930 Flowers Road South, Ste 133, Atlanta, GA 30341. Periodicals postage paid at Atlanta, GA, and additional mailing offices. USPS #015-625
Daniel Vestal, CBF Executive Coordinator
Five Tips for involving youth in the life of your church God’s word in every language: CBF field personnel and partners are providing Bibles around the world
10-15 18-19 20-23
Learn how Fellowship Baptists are responding to the earthquake in Haiti Make plans to attend this year’s General Assembly in Charlotte
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Youth group connects Bible study with missions
Photo courtesy FBC Corbin
icole Farrar, minister to youth and children and First Baptist Church in Corbin, Ky., wanted to connect Bible study with current missional and social justice emphases. That led her to choose the Fellowship’s Ignite resource for youth Bible study at her church. “I really like the content. I like the reflection questions and the biblical background,” she said. “With limited teaching time each week, I feel that striking a balance between Bible study and mission emphasis is important. My goal is always
they need to learn about what actual life is like in different places around the world. But most kids will only engage with the material when it is specifically applied to their local setting. So connecting who the least of these is in their high school is key.” Ignite’s missions focus changes each month, and Farrar appreciates the variety. She recognizes that not every youth will be passionate about the same issue. So, she hopes over the course of a year, each teenager will find one issue or cause that he or she wants to learn more about. Farrar recommends Ignite for churches that want students to see the needs of the world around them and get involved in meeting those needs. “This material will help teach young people that holistic mission is an essential part of a dynamic and biblical Christian faith,” she said. “It will help them see service as something that gives meaning and purpose to life. It’s an important resource for high schoolers especially, as they are in the process of exploring their options for college and career. It can help shape Youth at First Baptist Church in Corbin, Ky., learn about the vision of the future the Millennium Development Goals by using Ignite. that they see.”
to connect the two and that requires thoughtful planning.” This fall, Farrar started with the chapter called “A Mission for the Millennium” that included a section about the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). After one lesson, she realized that her youth needed more background information and connecting points, so she found additional resources. “My kids live in a small town,” Farrar said. “They need to hear some shocking statistics; they need to see the photographs;
IgniteTM, CBF’s resource for youth, enriches the faith journey of teenagers through mission studies, Bible studies, project ideas, worship ideas and more. Ignite Vol. 4 is now available exclusively as an online resource. Downloadable PDF files (includes teaching plans) and PowerPoint files are designed for you to customize your study to meet your youth group’s needs. Ignite works in a retreat format or as a weekly study guide. Ignite includes 12 studies plus artwork, maps and fact boxes useful for visual presentations. For more information visit the CBF Store online at www.cbfstore.info or call (888) 801-4223. To learn more about the Millennium Development Goals, go to www.thefellowship.info/mdg or check out a video about the Fellowship’s work with the goals at www.youtube.com/cbfvideo.
Praying the Scriptures
Of all the experiences of prayer practiced by Christians through the centuries, the practice of praying the Scriptures is one of the most formative and accepted among the various Christian traditions. Unfortunately, many Baptists come late to this ancient form of Christian prayer that incorporates two strong Baptist traditions — prayer and Scripture reading. Though praying the Scriptures takes various forms, one of the most traditional involves a four-step process that includes reading, reflecting, responding and resting. First, find a place of quiet and relative solitude. Take a moment to settle yourself — disconnect from the day’s occupations — and find the Scripture passage.
Prayer Calendar (CH) = Chaplain (FP) = Field Personnel (PC) = Pastoral Counselor (FPC) = Child of Field Personnel (PLT) = Church Planter (GMP) = Global Missions Partner
April 1 Frank Dawkins, Greenville, NC (PC) 1 Greg Smith, Fredericksburg, VA (FP) 2 Frank Morrow, Aledo, TX (FP) 2 Leonora Newell, Helena, AR (FP) 2 Wayde Pope, Crestview, FL (CH) 3 Marjorie Avent, Charleston, SC (CH) 3 Charles Mason, Blue Springs, MO (CH) 3 Wayne Sibley, Pineville, LA (CH) 3 Thomas Wicker, Solado, TX (CH) 5 Eddy, Asia (FP) 5 Darcie Jones, Holts Summit, MO (CH) 6 Paul Kennis, Williamsburg, VA (CH) 6 Steven Mills, Rutherfordton, NC (CH) 6 Ann Pennington, Temple, TX (CH) 7 LaCount Anderson, Scotland Neck, NC (FP) 7 Patricia Baldwin, Fort Worth, TX (CH) 7 Nathan Dean, Atlanta, GA (PLT) 7 Bonnie Hicks, Woodstock, GA (CH) 7 Mary Timms, Hawkinsville, GA (CH) 7 Mary Wrye, Henderson, KY (CH) 9 Olen Grubbs, Hixson, TN (CH) 9 Jim Pruett, Matthews, NC (PC) 10 George Hemingway, High Springs, FL (CH) 10 Ben Hodge, Winston-Salem, NC (CH) 10 Alan Rogers, Kaneohe Bay, HI (CH) 12 Beverly Hatcher, Winston-Salem, NC (PLT) 11 Geoffrey Bailey, Fort Campbell, KY (CH) 11 Dee Donalson, Ethiopia (FP) 11 Steve James, Haiti (FP) 13 Michelle Norman, Four Oaks, NC (FP) 13 Steve Sullivan, Little Rock, AR (CH) 14 Kerri Kroeker, Lakeland, FL (CH) 15 ________, Middle East (FP) 15 Jeff Flowers, Evans, GA (CH) 16 Hyun W. Shin, Southeast Asia (GMP) 16 Kay Wright, Virginia Beach, VA (CH) 17 Allison Hicks, Atlanta, GA (CH) 17 David Jones, Fort Worth, TX (CH) 18 Cyrus Bush, Pfafftown, NC (CH) 18 Will Solomon, Alexandria, VA (CH) 19 Michael Lee, Dallas, TX (CH) 20 ________, North Africa (FP) 20 David Chan, Houston, TX (CH) 20 Bill Harrill, Myrtle Beach, SC (CH) 20 Susan Stephenson, Edmond, OK (CH) 21 Richard Dorsey, Albuquerque, NM (CH) 22 Judith Grace, Temple, TX (CH) 22 Lucas Newell, 1997, Helena, AR (FPC)
1. Read the passage slowly and observe a minute of silence. Is there a word, phrase or image that stands out to you? Note the word, phrase or image — perhaps write it down. 2. Read the passage a second time, slowly. During the silence that follows, reflect on the word, phrase or image that you have discovered. Consider the question, “Where does this word, phrase or image intersect with my life today?” Consider noting your reflections in a journal. 3. Read the passage a third time, slowly. In the silence that follows, offer a response to God. As a beginning, consider the question, “How might God be calling me to respond?” Again, consider noting your reflections.
22 Brittany Phillips, China (FP) 23 Elberta Dyer, Murfreesboro, TN (CH) 23 Joseph Hwang, son, Philippines (GMP) 24 Brenda Atkinson, Greenville, SC (CH) 24 Daniel Bucur, Minot AFB, ND (CH) 24 Rhonda Gilligan-Gillespie, Indianapolis, IN (CH) 24 Laura Mannes, Hot Springs Village, AR (CH) 24 Travis Smith, Casar, NC (CH) 24 Leslie Stith, Liberty, MO (CH) 25 Connie Graham, Fitzgerald, GA (CH) 27 Pat Davis, Baton Rouge, LA (CH) 27 Carter Harrell, 1995, East Africa (FPC) 27 Pete Parks, Williamsburg, VA (CH) 28 Gary McFarland, Charlotte, NC (PC) 29 Ted Dougherty, Winston-Salem, NC (PC) 30 Joseph Caldwell, Mill Valley, CA (CH) 30 Erika Houser, 2001, Southern Africa (FPC)
May 1 Michael Coggins, Glendale, AZ (CH) 1 Katherine Higgins, Mint Hill, NC (CH) 1 Bob Whitten, Springfield, VA (PC) 2 Cathy Cole, Aiken, SC (CH) 2 Deborah Gaddis, Austin, TX (CH) 2 Stephen Murphy, Honolulu, HI (CH) 2 Jessica Rose, Peru (FP) 2 Matthew Sherin, 2004, Columbia, MO (FPC) 2 Lynn Walker, Chickasha, OK (PLT) 2 Terry Wilson, Mt. Pleasant, SC (CH) 3 Leah Harding, 1992, Orlando, FL (FPC) 3 Raeburn C. Horne, Louisville, KY (CH) 4 Gary Metcalf, Kingsport, TN (CH) 4 Skip Wisenbaker, Atlanta, GA (CH) 5 Austin, 2004, Asia (FPC) 5 Bruce Gourley, Bozeman, MT (PLT) 5 Karen Long, Birmingham, AL (CH) 5 Jay Westfall, India (FP) 6 Carol Dalton, Swannanoa, NC (CH) 6 Steve Smith, Liberty, MO (CH) 7 Dora Saul, Fort Worth, TX (CH) 8 Glenn Elkins, Edmond, OK (CH) 8 Bruce Hunter, Troy, VA (PLT) 9 Evan Bridges, 1995, Starkville, MS (FPC) 9 David Harding, Orlando, FL (FP) 9 Jin C. Kim, Philippines (GMP) 10 Sun Kim, son, Philippines (GMP) 10 Frances McKown, Burnsville, NC (CH) 11 Larry Ballew, China (FP) 11 Robbi Francovich, Emeritus (FP) 12 Charles Admire, Sanford, NC (CH) 13 Sa M. Choi, Asia (PMP) 13 Samson Naidoo, Garland, TX (CH) 14 Scott McBroom, Charleston, SC (PC) 14 JoAnne Morris, Louisville, KY (CH) 15 Paula Settle, Eastern Kentucky (FP) 16 ________, daughter, North Africa (FPC) 16 Alex, 2001, Asia (FPC) 16 Dewey Bland, Inverness, FL (CH)
4. Read the passage a final time. This time, take a minute or more to rest in God’s word to you. 5. Conclude this time of praying the Scriptures by offering a word of thanks to God for this time and experience, as well as anything else that may be on your heart. If you find it difficult to pray, pray the Lord’s prayer found in Matthew 6:9-13. If this is your first time praying the Scriptures, consider working your way through a Gospel or the Psalms. Also, be a good steward of Scripture; choose several verses or a story at most rather than an entire chapter. By Rick Bennett, CBF’s director of congregational formation
16 Steven Harris, Salem, VA (PC) 16 John Reeser, Sautee Nacoochee, GA (CH) 16 Leela Togba-Doya, 2007, Liberia (FPC) 17 Robert Duvall, Lawrenceville, GA (CH) 17 Nell Green, Rock Hill, SC (FP) 18 Wayne Hill, Greenville, NC (PC) 18 Ciera Maas, 2003, Belize (FPC) 19 Gwyen Driskill-Dunn, Fort Worth, TX (CH) 19 Becky Schultheiss, Elyria, OH (CH) 19 Joshua Stocks, 1989, Hungary (FPC) 20 Micah James, 1994, Haiti (FPC) 21 ________, New Jersey (FP) 21 Laley Norman, 2005, Four Oaks, NC (FPC) 21 Ron Winstead, Emeritus (FP) 22 Jon Ivy, Tuscaloosa, AL (CH) 22 Steven Unger, Kailua, HI (CH) 23 Cheryl Adamson, Conway, SC (PLT) 23 Polly Barnes, Brandon, MS (CH) 23 John Schumacher, Florence, SC (CH) 24 Michael Walker, Fort Stewart, GA (CH) 26 Hunter, Asia (FP) 26 Valerie Hardy, Loganville, GA (CH) 26 Gerry Hutchinson, Culpepper, VA (CH) 27 James Gilbert, Deville, LA (CH) 28 Hardy Clemons, San Antonio, TX (PC) 28 Laurel Morrow, 1992, Aledo, TX (FPC) 30 Randy Ridenour, Lawton, OK (CH) 30 Winston Shearin, Jacksonville, NC (CH) 31 Kelley Woggon, Louisville, KY (CH)
June 2 Susan Hunter, Troy, VA (PLT) 2 Emily Morrow, 1990, Aledo, TX (FPC) 2 Gary Sparks, Tyler, TX (CH) 3 Susan Arnold, La Grange, KY (CH) 5 Stacy Sergent, Mt. Pleasant, SC (CH) 5 David Smelser, Lucedale, MS (CH) 6 Erskine Alvis, Bethesda, MD (CH) 6 Wayne Bruner, Augusta, GA (CH) 6 Conrad DeLaney, San Diego, CA (CH) 6 Sung Kim, son, Central Asia (GMP) 6 Greg McClain, Lillington, NC (CH) 7 Kiersten Glenn, 2006, Los Angeles, CA (FPC) 7 Diana Place, Tucson, AZ (CH) 7 Marion Stillwell, Candler, NC (CH) 7 Diann Whisnand, Seattle, WA (FP) 8 Janice Newell, Greece (FP) 8 Larry Lawhon, Front Royal, VA (CH) 8 Randy Parks, Sparta, NJ (CH) 8 Clay Porter, Stanton, TX (CH) 8 Joseph Primeaux, San Diego, CA (CH) 8 Kyle Smith, 1989, Fredericksburg, VA (FPC) 8 Jeromy Wells, Great Falls, MT (CH) 9 Michelle Cayard, China (FP) 9 Richard Poindexter, Indian Trail, NC (CH) 9 Patricia Taylor, Tuscaloosa, AL (CH) 9 Doug Wiggington, Pineville, LA (CH) 10 Rob Edwards, Norfolk, VA (CH)
10 Cindy Goza, Little Rock, AR (CH) 10 Michael Osment, Martin, TN (CH) 10 Kim Wyatt, Canada (FP) 12 Mark Chambers, Protection, KS (CH) 12 Brady Lanoue, Silver Spring, MD (CH) 12 Chad Whaley, Richmond, VA (CH) 13 Richard Forest, Louisville, KY (CH) 14 ________, Middle East (FP) 14 Tracey Lopez, Springfield, VA (CH) 15 Jack Brown, Dublin, GA (CH) 15 Robbin B. Mundy, Fairview, NC (PLT) 16 Owen Storie, 2004, Marion, AL (FPC) 17 Linda Jones, Winston-Salem, NC (PLT) 18 Bill Hayes, Bogart, GA (CH) 19 Ana D’Amico, Emeritus (FP) 19 Alicia Porterfield, Wilmington, NC (CH) 20 Norman Bellury, Gray, GA (CH) 20 John Johns, Gulfport, MS (CH) 20 Jeff Lancaster, Cartwright, OK (CH) 20 Cherry Moore, Bryan, TX (CH) 20 Lonnie Turner, sub-Saharan Africa (FP) 21 Jim Cook, Salisbury, NC (CH) 21 Susan Harthon, Indianapolis, IN (CH) 21 Jeff Hoppe, Riverside, PA (CH) 21 Ken Lake, Fort Mill, SC (CH) 22 Kirk, Asia (FP) 22 Sharon Eldridge, Smithfield, NC (CH) 22 Joanne Henley, Winston-Salem, NC (CH) 22 Brenda Lisenby, China (FP) 22 Jessica Reynolds, Atlanta, GA (CH) 23 Andrew, 1998, Asia (FPC) 23 Sarah Ballew, China (FP) 23 David Lowe, Fort Worth, TX (CH) 23 Helen McNeely, Emeritus (FP) 23 Jin Park, daughter, Senegal (GMP) 24 Zeke DeLozier, Bogart, GA (CH) 24 Robert Fulkerson, Colorado City, TX (CH) 24 Hannah Myrick, 1989, Kenya (FPC) 25 Franklin Duncan, Roswell, GA (CH) 26 ________, North Africa (FP) 26 Michael Ferguson, El Paso, TX (CH) 26 Anna Jacks, Birmingham, AL (CH) 26 Melody Kidd, Knoxville, TN (CH) 26 Otto Mazzoni, York, PA (CH) 26 Tim Myrick, Kenya (FP) 27 Roger Dobbins, North Charleston, SC (CH) 27 Lauren Turnage, Norman, OK (CH) 28 Michael Brainerd, Fort Leavenworth, KS (CH) 28 Mark Judd, Elizabethtown, KY (PLT) 28 Roger Rich, Lexington, SC (CH) 28 Scott Sterling, Ft. Bliss, TX (CH) 29 Kevin Adams, Cincinnati, OH (CH) 29 Jeni Cook, Poquoson, VA (CH) 30 Stan Campbell, Nashville, TN (CH) 30 Margaret Guenther, Richmond, VA (PC)
“Your generous giving allows us to live and work side by side with Chinese leaders passionate about sharing the gospel. You enable much needed encouragement, theological training, church starting and basic discipleship programs. Thank you for partnering with us and giving to the CBF Offering for Global Missions.”
Bill and Michelle Cayard, CBF field personnel, China
Carla Wynn Davis photo
welve days before Christmas, CBF field personnel Bill and Michelle Cayard saw God work in hearts and lives. On that Sunday, 17 people were baptized at Thanksgiving Church, an urban church start in Chengdu, China. Of the couple hundred people gathered to witness the baptisms, 15 decided they, too, wanted to follow Christ. The Cayards have been involved in the new church since its beginning two years ago. They help with church planning, provide encouragement for the two young pastors leading this growing congregation and teach a Sunday morning Bible study. They are able to minister in China because of your gifts to the CBF Offering for Global Missions.
When you give, the Cayards are able to be the presence of Christ in China, where the gospel is spreading at a rapid rate. More people are choosing to follow Christ and be baptized. Nanchong City Church is one of the few places in Sichuan province where new believers are baptized by immersion. Gifts from CBF partner churches funded the construction of a baptismal pool, which is uncommon in China because of logistics and older facilities. Last spring Larry Ballew, one of CBF’s field personnel in another region of China, traveled to train local pastors and seminary students about how to baptize by immersion. “A few days later the church used the baptistry during the Easter service and baptized more than 40 new believers,” the Cayards said.
Bill Cayard leads a Bible study at Thanksgiving Church in Chengdu China.
To give to the CBF Offering for Global Missions, go online to www.thefellowship.info/ogm or use the envelope included in this issue. Learn more about the Cayards at www.thefellowship.info/cayards and watch a video on their ministry at www.youtube.com/cbfvideo.
Serve with field personnel and Homestead community
Wanda Ashworth says it was the
“coldest, wettest, nastiest day of the year” when a group of men from University Baptist Church in Coral Gables, Fla., showed up to plant a garden at Open House Ministries in Homestead, Fla. Despite the bad weather, the men worked alongside youth from the center, teaching valuable life skills while restoring the community garden, which was vandalized a month before.
Photo courtesy Open House
None of that surprises Ashworth, Open House’s director since 2004 and one of CBF’s field personnel, who has seen many volunteers — both groups and individuals — roll up their sleeves to keep Open House operational. Started in 1992, Open House Ministries — a partnership between Cooperative Baptist Fellowship and CBF of Florida — began through disaster relief efforts following Hurricane Andrew. Today it is a vital lifeline to people from Mexico, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, as well as a “Godspot” for everyone in the community, Ashworth said. Ruben is one example of a local resident who benefited from Open House and is now a volunteer himself. He is a former gang member who understands all too well the draw of gangs for young boys living in this neighborhood. In
September, Ruben started a soccer program to give middle school boys a place to belong outside of a gang. Anna was shy and unengaged when Open House associate director Leah Crowley, who is also one of CBF’s field personnel, met her six years ago through the afterschool program. “She was a tough little girl with an even tougher attitude,” said Crowley, who is also one of CBF’s field personnel. “We kept working with her, encouraging her and trying to keep her engaged. She now attends the teen program and faithfully volunteers in the elementary program serving as an elementary small group
leader. That tough attitude is smoothing out, and she is beginning to step up and live out her faith. It is still true that a little love goes a long way.” Even with the neighborhood success stories and the volunteers that come from the community, Ashworth said Open House needs help from other volunteers. “We don’t try to match volunteers to a needs list,” she said. “If you are willing to come teach what you know or do what you can do, we will find a way to use that skill. Our hope is that you can share what you know with a local community member so your knowledge and skills stay in Homestead after you go home.”
Ruben, left, started a soccer program at Open House, seeking to give middle school boys a place to belong.
Current on-site needs at Open House include: • Individuals and/or teams are needed to lead workshops, seminars and training opportunities. Areas of local interest include starting small businesses, financial planning, life skills, educational and spiritual growth. • With a vibrant afterschool program for children and youth (32 children and 50 teenagers), mentors are needed to provide love and support. While Open House is working to build a local volunteer base, CBF partner churches can send mentors to stand in the gap in the interim. • With all the ministries Open House provides, directors Ashworth and Crowley can find themselves working on clerical items long into the evening hours. Individuals are needed to come spend a day, a week or longer providing clerical help, including data entry and filing. Other service opportunities: If you have skills in desktop publishing, Web site development or public relations, Open House needs your help. To learn more about the opportunities listed above, contact Chris Boltin at email@example.com or (800) 352-8741. fellowship!
s a member of Parkview Baptist Church in Gainesville, Fla., for more than 20 years, Jean-Paul Calixte has watched as the connection between the church and its inner-city neighborhood dwindle. Wanting to re-connect, Calixte began encouraging fellow members to consider new ways the church could reach out and meet both the physical and spiritual needs of their neighbors. The members voted to start a community garden on the church property. A grant from the Florida Organic Growers Association provided construction materials for the raised beds and soil and advice. The local agricultural extension office of the University of Florida assisted with more advice and training, allowing planting to begin in October 2009.
Church members and community residents maintain the garden, which provides a local shelter with fresh produce, as well as private planting beds for individuals to cultivate. “Residents of the neighborhood have expressed great appreciation for the garden,” said Calixte. “One woman called it an answered prayer because the ground in her backyard is contaminated with a high level of Jean-Paul Calixte chemicals, so this is her only alternative for growing fresh vegetables. Our church staff has also had opportunities to provide counseling to different residents and groups in the neighborhood.”
raduation day finds many seminary students anxious about their first jobs. To assist with the transition from academia to ministry, the Fellowship’s ministry residency program offers support and guidance in a graduate’s first ministerial placement. “I felt called to the ministry, but I wasn’t sure in what capacity,” said Lindsey McClintock, a 2009 graduate of Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond, a CBF partner. “This [residency program] was a wonderful opportunity to continue learning the practical ministerial things you don’t learn in seminary.” In June 2009, McClintock began her two-year residency as the pastoral resident of compassion and formation at First Baptist Church in Richmond, Va. Splitting her time between missions and education re-
sponsibilities, McClintock interacts with and learns from the entire church staff. “All of the ministers have welcomed me in,” said McClintock. “Their wealth of knowledge is just amazing, and it’s helpful to hear how they have dealt with the ministerial issues I’m experiencing. They help affirm my strengths and figure out my calling and where I hope to go from this point on.” Lindsey McClintock In addition to the staff support, McClintock meets bimonthly with her resident report committee, a multi-generational group of laity who support and nurture her calling. “They’re my biggest cheerleaders,” said McClintock.
earning to listen without offering advice is a difficult task. Like most ministers, Stephanie Swanson enjoys fixing the problems her congregation brings to her. “I want to jump in and find the solution quickly!” said Swanson. But after attending the Fellowship’s narrative leadership retreat last fall, Swanson learned alternate ways of interacting with her members. The retreat assists participants in telling their own stories and then exploring how their narratives interact with their congregation’s narratives to deepen ministry within their church. “It got me to ask questions like: How can I be a better minister?” said Swanson. Swanson graduated from Wake Forest University School of Divinity, a CBF partner, in 2008 and is now in her second year as minister of congregational
life at Emerywood Baptist Church in High Point, N.C. “[The retreat] was insightful for me coming right out of school,” said Swanson. “I learned new ways to minister through asking questions and listening — not trying to fix problems.” In addition to her ministerial responsibilities, Swanson serves on the worship team for this year’s General Assembly in Charlotte. Stephanie Swanson “I’m excited about how we’re blending ancient practices and contemporary elements this year. It’s all about people praising God together,” said Swanson.
fter years of staying at retreat centers that didn’t quite fit the needs of his annual reunion with friends, Randy Tullos decided to build his own. The Smoky Mountain Christian Village (SMCV), located in Pigeon Forge, Tenn., opened in June 2009 after a major renovation to the original property. SMCV is now suited to fit the needs of its clientele, which consists mainly of church groups, para-church ministries and family reunions. “We’re about providing a place for churches to have meaningful experiences outside of their church home,” said Tullos. Despite its close proximity to the major attractions of Pigeon Forge,
SMCV’s property is situated off the beaten path, offering seclusion to visiting groups. “We take a lot of care in maintaining the beauty of the land,” Tullos said. “When you come here you have the sense of being in the middle of nowhere even though you’re really close to everything. We give you the best of both worlds.” As a CBF partner, SMCV donates to the Fellowship 5 percent of the gross revenue from any bookings by a CBF-related entity or individual.
for youth involvement in church By David Woody Minister of faith development Providence Baptist Church Charleston, S.C.
Youth have been called the church of tomorrow. In our churches, we encourage them to grow in their faith and discipleship. We support the youth ministry in the church budget. We give them dedicated space for meetings and events. We help them raise funds for missions. We give them a special Sunday each year when they teach Sunday School for the adults and lead worship for the church. Those efforts are good and noble and work. But, youth are more than the church of tomorrow. They are very much the church of right now, and churches need their youth to be involved in the larger church picture. Here are five tips for including youth in the life of your congregation.
Give youth worship leadership opportunities on a regular basis
Youth Sunday is nice, but it usually only happens once a year. Including youth in worship leadership on a regular basis teaches the church that youth are valuable, contributing members of the congregation. Youth receive a valuable opportunity to experience worship from a leadership position. Incorporating youth in worship is not difficult. Enlist a young person to read Scripture or the morning announcements. Ask a teenager to offer the invocation or benediction. Select a group of teens to collect the offering. Ignite, a youth resource from CBF, includes worship elements such as litanies, prayers or calls to worship related to missional themes. Also, youth studying Ignite could offer a reflection on a recent
Certain commit“But, youth tees do not, and are more than should not, have the church of youth involvetomorrow. They ment — personnel, finance, are very much the etc. But, there church of right are other comnow, and churches mittees where need their youth young people could serve well. to be involved in Depending on the the larger church church by-laws picture.” and structure, some revision of term-of-service might be needed, but a high school sophomore could easily serve a two-year term on fellowship, worship or missions committee. Sometimes, a fresh set of eyes is exactly what a committee needs to move toward a different ministry or focus area.
Sunday School/small group mix and mingle
In a typical church setting, adults have Sunday School in one part of the building and the youth learn in a totally separate area. Churches have followed this pattern for years as we have encouraged “age-graded” classes throughout the Sunday School hour. A newer trend in churches is the small group ministry that has taken the place of Sunday School. Those, too, are grouped by age, special interest or life experience. A few times a year, combine classes. Invite an adult class or two into the youth area for Sunday School. Invite a small group of youth to visit your small group. Choose a lesson that will work for
mission study or hands-on mission experience.
both groups and that will encourage interaction.
Recruit youth to serve on church committees Baptist churches are full of committees. Include youth on some of them.
Deacon/caregiver partner One ministry of the church that is vital is the ministry of care and
visitation. Pair a couple of youth with a deacon or church caregiver and encourage them to work and visit together. The older caregiver will have the opportunity to share his or her years of experience in ministry. The youth will learn how to meet the needs of others in the name of Christ. The one cared for will appreciate the extra company.
Intergenerational missions events
The youth have a list of mission activities they do each year. Adult Sunday School classes or missions groups have a list of activities they do each year. Combine the youth and adults on a project or two. Each group will learn from the other as the work of Christ is done by both generations. Youth are already doing the work of the church. Give them opportunities to serve beside adults, and watch what God can do. Giving youth more responsibilities in traditionally adult-led ministries of the church can add life to an already thriving congregation. Let the youth serve, lead, interact and work with the adults in your congregation. CBF’s youth resource, Ignite, also gives suggestions for missional activities in which youth can participate alongside and lead adults.
Wondering how you can take your ministry with youth to the next level? Join youth specialist Jim Conway June 25-26 in Charlotte, N.C., for a four-part workshop on “Essentials for Becoming a Very Good Youth Leader.” The workshop is part of the Essentials Conference, a new event at CBF’s annual General Assembly. Learn more on page 21. Also, connect with CBF’s youth ministry network at cbfyouthministrynetwork.ning.com.
Carla Wynn Davis photo
When they first began living among this hilltribe group, Kirk and Suzie would help plant and harvest crops as a way of building relationships and learning more about the people group. Getting to know the culture, worldview and language of the people group is the first step in the translation process.
Persistent prayers Ministry of CBF field personnel results in people group’s first Bible
n a remote region of Southeast Asia, Por was the first person in her village who chose to follow Christ. And in the years since, Por has shared the gospel of Jesus Christ with her village and family. Her mother now follows Christ. Her grandmother now follows Christ. Her younger brother and father now follow Christ. And it all happened because of the Bible. Kirk and Suzie* are Cooperative Baptist Fellowship field personnel whose ministry is translating the Bible into ethnic languages. Several years ago, they began working with Por’s people group, one of the least evangelized people groups in the world. This hilltribe people had no access to the Bible
because they only had an oral language. There was no alphabet, and most of the people couldn’t read. As a way of fostering literacy, Kirk and Suzie used ministry funds to provide university scholarships for young people including Por. At college, Por heard the story of Jesus Christ and became a Christian. Now, she and other young people help Kirk and Suzie translate the Bible into the local hilltribe language.
Scripture as a foundation for ministry Around the world, there are hundreds of languages that still lack a Bible translation, leaving an estimated Continue on page 12
Both Kirk, from Colorado, and Suzie, a missionary kid from Texas, felt early callings to missions service. After graduating from Baylor University, they met during a year-long missions experience in Thailand. They taught English for several years in Southeast Asia before realizing the great need for Scripture translation. Learn more about Kirk and Suzie’s ministry on the CBF YouTube channel. Go to www.youtube.com/cbfvideo.
Annette Ellard photo
About Kirk and Suzie
Por was the first person in her hilltribe village to follow Christ.
200 million people without access to Scripture in their native language. “It’s the beginning of church planting to get God’s word in people’s language,” Kirk said. Translating the Bible into an ethic language begins by living among the people group and learning the local language, culture and worldview. Because this particular hilltribe people had no written language, Kirk and Suzie worked with local people for two years to develop a written alphabet. Then — because few people in the village knew how to read — they developed literacy programs and
trained language teachers. With that foundation in place, Kirk and Suzie began translating Scripture with a team of local translators. The process takes years, and often the local translators — who may not be Christians — learn of God’s love for the first time. When translating Galatians 1:3, Kirk explained the concept of grace and one of the local translators asked, “How can that be? Divine beings don’t love people or care for us — do they?” Kirk was able to introduce the translators to a different concept — one of a God who loves.
Sotsai is one of the local translators. Though she wasn’t a follower of Christ, for six years she studied, learned and translated the Bible. One night in Kirk and Suzie’s home, as the translation team was proofreading the book of Acts, Sotsai decided to become a follow of Christ.
A long-term impact When Kirk and Suzie first began working among the hilltribe people, they were discouraged to learn that there were only 700 people worldwide who spoke the language.
Children in this hilltribe village are better prepared for school because of Kirk and Suzie’s translation ministry. The children have a better understanding of their native language and are more easily able to learn their country’s language.
They wondered at times if their energies and efforts were worth it. Years later, as they questioned if God had led them to the right people group, they discovered that more hilltribe people were living in a neighboring country. When they met the people, and they found a small group of believers who had been praying for more than 30 years for a Bible and hymnal to be translated into their language. “At my lowest point, God pulled back the curtain and allowed me to meet these believers,” Kirk said. “It was humbling to realize
guage, children are improving in school. And that one of the reasons I was standing there ultimately, the translation efforts and impact in Southeast Asia on that day was because of will last long after Kirk and Suzie leave. the prayers of these dear brothers and sisters. Their 30 years of persistent prayers.” As they followed God’s calling and Churches and individuals invested their lives in and among this support the ministry hilltribe group, Kirk and Suzie now know that this translation will give at least 10,000 Kirk and Suzie’s ministry is only possible people in four countries access to Scripture because Fellowship Baptists give to the CBF for the first time. Offering for Global Missions, which funds There’s also a societal impact for the their long-term presence among the people hilltribe people, who are among the region’s group. That long-term presence is vital as it poorest and most persecuted minorities. Becan take years to learn a language, develop an cause of their remote location, alphabet, encourage literacy and they have fewer opportunities translate the Bible. “At my lowest for education. The economy All the while, relationships are point, God pulled being built and the gospel is taking is struggling. Their best and back the curtain root in hearts and lives. It was six brightest young people are moving away to cities. And and allowed me years before Kirk and Suzie saw the as a minority, surrounding to meet these first person from the village accept people groups often discrimiChrist. Now, several people have believers.” nate against them. chosen to follow Christ. Kirk and Suzie believe “We know it’s a result of the their translation ministry will help the hillprayers and the support of God’s people,” tribe people in physical ways. As literacy maSuzie said. terials are translated, children will be able to Fellowship Baptists have been praying learn in their native language, eliminating the for Kirk and Suzie’s ministry since they were education disadvantage that has plagued the commissioned as CBF field personnel in people group for years. 1995. When they first began living among the “Many children when they first went hilltribe people, Kirk and Suzie made prayer to school were just immediately behind all cards with photos and stories of local people. their peers because they have never used the As they spoke in CBF partner churches, Kirk language that they are hearing from their and Suzie distributed these cards, asking teacher,” Suzie said. churches to pray for the individuals pictured. But now the people group has an alphabet, Years later they returned to CBF partner and many people are learning to read. HavChurchland Baptist Church in Chesapeake, ing greater understanding of their own lanVa., where a man said he had been praying for three years for the young woman on the prayer card. He pulled out the card Give to the Offering for from his wallet, and pictured was Thoy — a Global Missions blind woman who became the first Christian When you give to CBF’s Offering for among her entire people group. Global Missions, you support the ministry of Kirk and Suzie, as well as other CBF field “It was a joy to tell him that she was the personnel ministering around the world. The first believer among her people group and to Offering is the sole way that many CBF field see his excitement at realizing that his prayers personnel are funded, so your gifts matter had impacted this young lady for all eternity.” and are vital to the Fellowship being the presence of Christ in the world. When you give, you become part of efforts to join what God is doing in the world. Give today through the envelope provided in this magazine or online at www.thefellowship.info/give.
By Carla Wynn Davis, CBF Communications * Due to global security concerns, names and specific locations of CBF field personnel will not be publicized. fellowship!
God’s word in every language ‘God’s word is personal’: Newells provide Bibles in Albanian languages to immigrants in Greece
As an Albanian living in Greece, Alma Kole said she doesn’t know if she “would have accepted God wholeheartedly” had she not received a Bible written in her mother tongue, Shqip (the Albanian language; pronounced “ship”). Kole is a teacher of English as a Second Language in Athens, where she works with CBF field personnel Bob and Janice Newell at PORTA, a ministry center for immigrant Albanians. Kole first read the Bible in Turkish, then later received her first New Testament in Shqip. “There have been several translations since, each time a better level of the Alba-
nian language,” Kole said. “But I’ll never forget my little book of the New Testament.” “We are thrilled that reliable translations are available in Shqip and have purchased Bibles of all types — children’s Bibles, New Testaments, the entire Bible,” said Bob Newell. “We include Albanian Bibles in PORTA’s lending library, make them available to Albanians for free, and use them at PORTA when Christian activities take place. We always have them available for Albanians’ personal and evangelistic use.” “When you read the Bible in another language you have to concentrate on the meaning of words, but if you read the Bible
in your own language the word of God comes directly to you,” said Ana Muka, another Albanian immigrant. “You are free to feel the spirit of the Lord and to understand. God’s word is personal. This is especially true when you live in a place where another language is spoken, as I do here in Athens.” Many times, Albanian believers take the Bibles that the Newells give them, then give them to other Albanians as aids in their evangelistic efforts. The Newells attend a Bible study in a small apartment every Thursday night where the Shqip translation is used. An Albanian lay leader teaches from the Bible to an average of 25 adult Albanians, while Janice leads a children’s time in the basement of the apartment building, reading Bible stories from the Albanian children’s Bible. Niko Sejati, PORTA’s Albanian computer instructor, said having a Bible in his native language helps him to understand it better. “I can read and study the New Testament from the original Greek, but in my language it is easier to understand. It helps me to share my faith with other Albanians. If I see any open heart, I can give an Albanian Bible. Having the Bible in Albanian helps me to keep alive a part of the Albanian tradition. I am grateful for having God’s word in my language so I can use it for God’s glory.”
To learn more about how CBF field personnel and partner churches are involved in language
MP3 players bring gospel to immigrants in Spain
Muslim man from Africa, said, “I enjoyed listening to the family history (genealogy) of Jesus because family histories are very important in my culture.” The Whitleys have lived in Spain for more than three years and during that Joel Whitley, right, and Emmanuel, an immigrant from Ghana, listen to the Bible time have become on an MP3 player. ed onto them,” Tiffne said. “We felt this was friends with many immigrants who have a non-threatening way to present them to not heard the gospel. our friends from various backgrounds and “We started by giving some MP3s away cultures. We explained that in our culture at Christmas with the Christmas story loadwe gave gifts at Christmas and that this gift had the Christmas story on it. Now we are The Fellowship is partnering with Faith Comes By Hearing to record revisiting each person who received a player the Scripture into the heart languages of people groups among to update them with other Scriptures, and whom CBF field personnel work. Several languages should be ready for we will be ready to update them again by recording in the coming months. Learn more about the unique partnership at www.thefellowship.info/ygtt. Easter with the Easter story.”
Hearing the gospel in one’s own language is taking on new significance for the many immigrants that CBF field personnel Tiffne and Joel Whitley work with from their home base in Spain. Thanks to an ongoing donation of MP3 players by First Baptist Church in Blue Springs, Mo., the Whitleys are able to offer the Gospel books in English, Spanish, French, Arabic or Wolof. “This is a great idea to reach out to some of the people who are unable to read,” Tiffne said. “The immigrants can listen to the Scriptures loaded onto the players.” Immigrants come to Spain from many West African countries hoping to find jobs to support their families or fleeing negative circumstances in their own countries. One recent recipient of an MP3 player, a
Field personnel produce Persian Christian resources hammad. “My heart’s desire is that Persian-speaking Christians will follow Christ and obey his great commission to ‘go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them ... and teaching them to obey’.” PWO produces an extensive catalogue of resources — 400 Bibles and books as well as 396 CDs, cassettes, DVDs and tracts. Last year, PWO distributed more than $25,000 worth of resources, all sold at low cost — about $3 to $7 per book. The most requested materials are Bibles and New Testaments, books of personal testimonies, Persian Christian music CDs and books for Christian living. “In our interactions, we are the presence of Christ,” they said. “Being able to produce and distribute (these) resources extends the presence of Christ into the lives of people whom we will never see and for many years to come. We know these resources will continue CBF photo
Cooperative Baptist Fellowship field personnel Mohammad and Maryam* are helping to make Bibles and other Christian resources accessible to Persian-speaking people worldwide. With an estimated 1.5 million Iranians and 40 Iranian and Afghan churches and fellowships in the United States, there is a need for relevant and practical Christian training in Persian. Mohammad and Maryam work with an indigenous Persian Christian mission organization they helped found in 1998, Persian World Outreach (PWO). Bible and literature distribution is just one of PWO’s priority areas — the organization also offers theological training for pastors and church leaders, provides humanitarian relief and assists with church planting. “I see the need of Iranians and other Persian speakers to hear the gospel and to have the Bible and other Christian books and resources to help them grow,” said Mo-
to impact the Persian church in the future.” Sharing one example of the power of Scripture in someone’s heart language to change a life, they said, “One of the Afghan Christians that we know was on the street in Afghanistan some 20 years ago when a man came up to him, tore a page out of his book and gave it to him. It turned out to be a page from the book of Matthew. This was (our friend’s) first step in becoming a follower of Christ.” * Due to global security concerns names and specific locations will not be publicized.
translation ministries, check out the field personnel pages on the CBF Web site at www.thefellowship.info/fieldpersonnel. fellowship!
Holmes follows calling, creates resources for Romany people
ginalized throughout Europe, often denied rights to housing, employment, healthcare and education. While Holmes occasionally does translation work, mostly his time is spent producing resources in various Romany languages (the Romany have more than 20 different languages and dialects) — and then ensuring that they become available. Examples of his work include printed scripture, illustrated scripture booklets, audio recordings and films. “Sharing the word of God with people who have thought that no one actually cared about them [inspires me],” said Holmes. “When people hear the word of God in their own language for the first time, God becomes more incarnate to them. If Christ is God with us, really among us, then he speaks our language.” Holmes’ best-known work is the production of the eight-language DVD of the film “Jesus” that includes five Romany languages, plus three European languages — Romanian, Russian and French — that are most likely to be understood by Romany who CBF photos
he call to make culturally appropriate media materials for Romany Christians in their own heart languages came unexpectedly for one of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship’s field personnel. “I absolutely never thought I had a call as a linguist. I thought I was going to become an engineer,” said Keith Holmes. But after an experience as a summer missionary to Kodiak, Alaska, and an encounter with a linguistic anthropologist who had studied there, Holmes discovered a growing fascination with languages that led to his own master’s degree in anthropology and linguistics. Then, a letter from his mother jumpstarted his career in missions. In 1995, his mother sent him a listing for a CBF ministry need — a media coordinator position for the Gypsy team that matched his skills, interests and training nearly perfectly. “I thought someone had written the job description with me in mind,” said Holmes. Since 1996, Holmes and his wife, Mary van Rheenen, have lived in the Netherlands and worked among the Romany, sharing the hope of Christ to a people who have long been discriminated against and mar-
Keith Holmes, left, works with Michal Lapcak, a missions worker, and Maria Nazarejova, a community center director in Slovakia, to create a version of the Ruth video in Slovakian.
have lost their language. Nearly 3,000 copies of the DVD have already been distributed, and Holmes is working on the production of another 3,000. “Dutch missionaries to Romania, among others, have already pre-ordered hundreds,” said Holmes. Always staying busy, Holmes never has to look far for his next big venture. His latest projects include producing a children’s video of the story of Ruth translated into Romany, Czech and Slovakian (next, he plans to make a Western Kalderash version); getting illustrations printed for Scripture booklets about the woman at the well, the prodigal son and the good Samaritan; and recording a Sinti film with songs and testimony from local congregations in the Netherlands and Germany.
Do you have language skills that might be helpful in translating Scripture and Christian resources into heart languages? Find out how you might serve by contacting Chris Boltin at firstname.lastname@example.org or (800) 352-8741. Learn more about Keith Holmes’ work at www.thefellowship.info/holmes or watch a video about his work at www.youtube.com/cbfvideo.
fellowship! Small Groups Spriing 2010
This page is provided for adult small groups that want to emphasize missional engagement. It is built around a 90-minute time-frame. Feel free to adapt it to your local context. This session plan can be used once a month during adult Sunday School, on a Wednesday evening, or in a mission group or other small group session.
1. Choose a creative way to present Scripture or the text of a familiar hymn. Some options include: a. Read from a translation that is different from the one you usually use. The Message by Eugene Peterson, which is a paraphrase of Scripture, is a good choice. b. Listen to a version of a Christian song presented in a genre of music different from the ones with which you are comfortable. One place to begin is at www.beliefnet.com under the “Entertainment” tab. c. Visit www.myspace.com/danstevers for creative presentations of Scripture using media. d. Visit www.scriptureecho.com/scripts.htm for Scripture presented in a unique format. If you choose this option, be sure to enlist several people beforehand to rehearse the reading. e. Visit www.thefellowship.info/Resources/Church-Resources/ ygtt/Listen to select Scripture for listening during the session. 2. During the session, invite participants to be open to experience and receive “the familiar” in a new way. 3. After the presentation, share how the new experience was received. Consider such questions as: a. What was your first reaction? b. How is listening different from hearing? c. What layers did you have to dig through to get to a place of hearing? 4. Read Acts 2:1-6, the story of Pentecost. Let the class know how important “hearing” God’s word is. Respond to several questions: a. What would happen if we were all filled with the Holy Spirit? b. How have we diminished the role of Scripture in our churches? c. What needs to happen to elevate the role of Scripture? d. Why is it important to have new forms of Scripture? e. How can we help others hear in their own languages (whether literally or figuratively)?
5. Share some of the stories from this issue of fellowship! and reflect on the following quotes: a. “I enjoyed listening to the family history of Jesus because family histories are very important in my culture.” What stories or literary genres in the Bible are especially appealing to your ears? b. “If God became incarnate among us, then God speaks our language.” What does it mean for God to speak YOUR language? c. “… if you read the Bible in your own language the Word of God comes directly to you.… God’s word is personal.” When have you HEARD the Word of God and it had an impact on you? d. “… a foreign man came up to [the Afghan man], tore a page out of his book and gave it to him. It turned out to be a page from the book of Matthew. This was [the man’s] first step in becoming a follower of Christ.” What one page from your Bible would you give to someone who doesn’t have a relationship with Christ?
6. Close with silence and prayer. Give attention to hearing God’s word to you by meditating on this question: How might you become God’s word to someone else?
Cooperative baptiSt fellowShip | www.thefellowShip.info
Serving Christians and churches as they discover and fulfill their God-given mission
God’s word in every language
Beginning in July 2010, Opportunities to Affect will be an exciting addition to your fellowship! magazine. General Assembly info inside! This extra section will give instructions for using the fellowship! stories for small group studies. Additional ideas such as reading group suggestions and mission studies for the family will also be included in this section. Expanded tools for using the fellowship! stories at church and at home will be available as a part of Affect Online at www.thefellowship.info/affectonline. J.V. McKinney photo
How to use this page
bekchen wagner, a member of baptist Church in fulda, Germany, often lends his voice to Christian videos and recordings in the Sinti language. wagner works with Keith holmes, one of Cbf’s field personnel, whose ministry includes creating Christian materials in the languages of the romany people. learn more on pages 10-17 about how fellowship baptists are making God’s word available to people all over the world.
Responding to the
Haiti earthquake W
hen the earthquake hit Haiti on Jan. 12, CBF field personnel Nancy and Steve James were away from their home in Haiti and attending a conference in Florida. Steve said when they heard about the devastation of the quake, he prayed, “How can Nancy and I, as two people, be of any help in such an overwhelming disaster?” Steve said he was reminded of the gospel story of five loaves and two fishes and felt God calling them to “Go. Start. I will lead and multiply.” The Jameses, medical caregivers, returned to Haiti immediately, helping with response to the disaster however they could, providing medical care and coordinating relief efforts with
partner organizations. Scott Hunter, who formerly served as one of CBF’s field personnel in Asia, arrived in Haiti a week after the quake for a three-month assignment. Together, the Jameses and Hunter are assessing the long-term needs in Haiti and how Fellowship Baptists can help address those needs. “As the physical wounds are healing, we now enter the time for the second wave of servanthood in Christ,” Steve James said. “This is the wave of Jesus healing the emotional cries and wounds, which run deep and long, as people in these broken communities seek to find shelter, clothing, food, safe water and sanitation, as well as ongoing medical care.”
Children at North Broad Baptist Church raise money for Haiti
feel good because I was able to help people who are sick, hurt or need food. If my house was destroyed, I would want someone to help us. Nine hundred dollars is not much to help repair even one house, but it is better than nothing.” — Noah, age 9. At North Broad Baptist Church in Rome, Ga., Noah and other children designed note cards to raise funds for missions and completed their project just as the Haiti earthquake struck. The children decided to send the $900 they raised to the Fellowship for Haiti relief work because they had studied the importance of disaster relief last summer in Spark, CBF’s missions resource for children. After reading the Spark unit on disaster response, which
The Fellowship blog features regular updates from CBF field personnel Nancy and Steve James and short-term worker Scott Hunter in Haiti. Also, read the blog for recent developments on Fellowship’s disaster response and ways you can engage in relief efforts. Learn more at www.thefellowship.info/blog. For additional information on the Fellowship’s role in responding to disasters, go to www.thefellowship.info/cbfresponds. Learn about the ministry of the Jameses in Haiti at www.thefellowship.info/james.
Read prayer requests related to disaster response in Haiti and specific requests from CBF field personnel around the world at www.thefellowship.info/pray.
suggested building small houses to collect money, children’s mission leader Lottie Finney modified the activity to create cards with the children’s drawings of houses. “Our miracle was that Haiti’s earthquake occurred on Tuesday, and we were turning the money in the next day,” said church member Gwen Dellinger. “The children talked about the earthquake and that they had money to help. I think this speaks to the connection between the curriculum, the activity, and children coloring cards and selling them for an event that had not yet occurred.”
North Stuart Baptist Church facilitates collection of medical supplies
hen the earthquake hit Haiti in January, members of North Stuart Baptist Church in Stuart, Fla., sought tangible ways they could respond. Because of the church’s proximity to Missionary Flights International (MFI)
As of March 1, Fellowship Baptists have donated more than $340,000 to relief work in Haiti. Your giving is making a difference in the lives of those affected by this disaster. Relief work will continue for many months and even years to come. Your donations are still needed.
Photo courtesy Tommy Deal
Photo courtesy North Broad
Children at North Broad created note cards in support of disaster response ministries.
Fellowship Baptists load medical supplies from CBF partner churches onto a truck at North Stuart.
in Fort Pierce, Fla., the congregation began collecting medical supplies almost immediately after disaster hit. “When we realized what a huge opportunity we had for facilitating this ministry, the CBF family stepped in to help,” said Steve Carswell, North Stuart’s minister of education. In the first month after the earthquake, more than 4.3 tons of medical supplies were delivered to Haiti from the halls of North Stuart. Generous donations from CBF churches nationwide arrived by the truckload. With the help of Tommy Deal, associate coordinator for CBF of Florida, volunteers and supplies arriving at North Stuart were quickly sorted and packed onto trucks for delivery to MFI.
As the Fellowship and partner organizations assess the long-term needs in Haiti, individuals and teams will likely be needed to serve. If you are interested in seeing how your skills might be used in this long-term relief effort, go to www.thefellowship.info/serve.
To give, go online to www.thefellowship.info/give or use the envelope included in this issue and write “Haiti Response” in the memo line of your check. fellowship!
essentials y on ministr
D is co ve r your passion. co o p e r at i v e ba p t i s t f e l lows h i p
20th annual General Assembly June 23-26 | Charlotte, N.C.
Theme: And so we are ... (1 John 3:1) Register at www.thefellowship.info/assembly
Dynamic worship, practical ministry workshops, warm fellowship and new ideas for you and your congregation
ere youâ€™ll find important information about the Assembly, including the schedule, new events you wonâ€™t want to miss, and a step-by-step guide to attending the Assembly. More information about the Assembly, as well as free online pre-registration, is available at www.thefellowship.info/assembly.
Special Evening Worship Speakers
Bill Leonard and Lauren Winner, both from North Carolina, will be featured speakers during evening worship. Leonard, dean and professor at Wake Forest University Divinity School in Winston-Salem, will speak June 24 about Baptist life. Winner, the author of Girl Meets God, Mudhouse Sabbath and Real Sex: The Naked Truth about Chastity, will speak June 25 about the future of mainline churches. Winner, who teaches at Duke Divinity School in Durham, will also lead a morning prayer retreat on June 26.
Register online today!
Don’t miss these new Assembly events Asking how you can better serve your church? The Essentials Conference is for you.
The Essentials Conference at the Fellowship’s General Assembly is an all-new event designed especially for church leaders, including deacons, staff, committee members and teachers. In four 75-minute sessions led by experienced practitioners, you will learn essentials for effective ministry. Invite other church members to join you; this is an event you can’t afford to miss! Early bird registration cost is only $20 per person ($25 after March 31). Register online at www.thefellowship.info/assembly/essentials for one of these engaging topics: • Essential Pastoral Care Skills for Deacons and Other Lay Ministers • Essentials for a Developing a Practice of Evangelism • A Ministry for Every Disciple: Essentials for Finding Yours • Essentials for Becoming a Very Good Adult Teacher • Essentials for Becoming a Very Good Children’s Leader • Finding Your Next Minister: Essentials for Conducting Your Next Search Process • Essentials for Becoming a Very Good Youth Leader • Essentials for Developing a Collegiate Ministry • Growing Generosity Now: Essentials for Creating a Culture of Stewardship in Your Church • Essentials for Discerning Your Congregation’s Future: Questions Every Congregation Needs to Ask • Essentials for Emerging Young (more or less under 40) Congregational Leaders • Shepherding the Church Staff: Help, I’m on the Personnel Committee! • Essentials for Leading Deacons in Missional Ministry • Essentials for Sunday School and Small Group Growth
Loving Your Muslim Neighbor June 23, 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. (Westin Hotel)
Learn how to minister among the growing Muslim population in the United States. Early bird cost is only $35 ($45 after June 1) and includes materials and a catered lunch. Register at www.thefellowship.info/ assembly/muslimministry.
Discover Your Passion June 24, 1:30 – 4:15 p.m. (Charlotte Convention Center)
You will be challenged to explore and connect with specific areas of CBF missions ministry: Poverty/Transformation, Disaster Response, Medical, Internationals, Justice and Peacemaking, Church Starting/ Faith Sharing, Education or Economic Development.
Explore Charlotte and CBF Community in Worship
Explore Charlotte is an opportunity to visit Charlotte-area attractions with other Fellowship Baptists on the afternoon of Saturday, June 26. Area attractions include U.S. National Whitewater Center, NASCAR Motor Speedway, Paramount Carowinds Theme Park and much more. CBF Community in Worship is an opportunity to join local CBF partner churches in worship on Sunday, June 27. More information on both events will be available at the Assembly.
Essentials Conference presenters
Make your plans to be part of General Assembly
1. Pre-register online at www.thefellowship.info/assembly
Pre-register by April 15 to be entered in a drawing for a free two-night stay in the host hotel at CBF’s 2011 General Assembly in Tampa, Fla. (Drawing will be during the Friday evening Resource Fair Reception. Must be present to win.)
2. Plan your travel including a room reservation at the host hotel
CBF has a special discount with the Westin Hotel and Hilton Hotel, which are within walking distance of the Charlotte Convention Center. Learn more at www.thefellowship.info/assembly.
3. Find Assembly events that interest you
Some events require additional registration. Visit www.thefellowship.info/assembly for more information on specific events. Have questions? Contact the Fellowship at (800) 352-4751 or e-mail email@example.com. fellowship!
Register online today!
Build your own Assembly.
Monday, June 21 Charlotte Sessions is a collegiate missional experience June 21-26 featuring leadership and service opportunities, meaningful conversation and reflection, the opportunity to participate in General Assembly, and more. Register online for only $110 at www.thefellowship.info/ assembly/college.
Wednesday, June 23 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. — Loving Your Muslim Neighbor. This seminar will help Christians explore and respond to a call to minister among Muslims. Early registration is $35. Go to www.thefellowship.info/assembly. 9 a.m. — Meet Alan Roxburgh. Seminarians are invited to hear Alan Roxburgh, a pastor, teacher, author and consultant with more than 30 years experience in church leadership, consulting and seminary education, around the topic of missional engagement.
in Charlotte. Or, collect and bring kid-friendly snacks and backpacks for children in need. You can contribute supplies at any time during the Assembly. Learn more about service opportunities at www.thefellowship.info/assembly/ missionsproject.
Thursday, June 24 8 a.m. — Central Baptist Theological Seminary Breakfast. Join Central alumni and friends for a breakfast. To learn more, go to www.cbts.edu. 8:30 – 9:30 a.m. — Pastor’s Prayer Gathering. Come for prayer, coffee, pastries and fellowship with pastors from around the country. 11:30 a.m. — Meet CBF Field Personnel for Lunch. Make plans to eat lunch with many of CBF’s field personnel on Thursday at the Convention Center. A family friendly menu will be available, along with time and space to fellowship with those serving around the world. To learn more, go to www.thefellowship.info/assembly.
Thursday, June 24 7:30 – 9 a.m. — Auxiliary Events* (see Thursday Auxiliary Events below) 8 a.m. — Registration opens Prayer Room/Labyrinth opens
Noon – 5 p.m. — Registration Opens (Convention Center)
8 – 9:45 a.m. — A time for you to connect with old and new friends
1 – 4:30 p.m. — Leadership Institute: Leading Missional Congregations. Speaker Alan Roxburgh will focus on helping congregations embrace their role as the people of God in the world. Primary focus will be given to the leadership challenges faced as congregations find their connection to God’s mission. Cost to attend is $30. Go to www.thefellowship.info/assembly to register.
8:30 a.m. – 7 p.m. — Resource Fair Open (Convention Center, Hall B) Connect with ministry opportunities, new resources, CBF field personnel and more. Visit the missions marketplace or bid at the silent auction on work by artists from around the world.
5 – 6:30 p.m. — A time for you to connect with old and new friends 7 – 8:15 p.m. — Global Missions Field Personnel Commissioning Service. Be part of this special service at Pritchard Memorial Baptist Church in downtown Charlotte.
9 – 11:30 a.m. — Children’s Assembly/ Child Care. While you’re enjoying the Assembly, your children can engage in fun and meaningful activities of their own. Cost is only $50 per child. Register at www.thefellowship.info/assembly/children.
9 a.m. – 5 p.m. — Youth Assembly. Youth will gather for worship, conversation, missions, a scavenger hunt, and a trip to the U.S. National Whitewater Center. Cost is $75 per teen. Register at www.thefellowship.info/assembly/youth.
10 a.m. – 5 p.m. — Missions Opportunity. Serve at Hyaets, a Christian community
8:15 – 9:15 p.m. — Reception following Commissioning Service. Meet new CBF field personnel and learn about their global ministries.
11:30 a.m. — BCE Luncheon. The Baptist Center for Ethics will host a luncheon at Pritchard Memorial Baptist Church. The program will focus on the documentary “Different Books, Common Word: Baptists and Muslims” and will include a panel discussion. To learn more contact firstname.lastname@example.org. 11:45 a.m. — Campbell University Divinity School Luncheon. Campbell alumni and friends invited. Cost to attend is $20. To register, call (800) 334-4111. 8:45 p.m. — Seminarians Network. Meet other seminarians from across the country in this informal setting. 9 p.m. — Current Social. Come fellowship and network with other young (under 40) ministers and leaders at this event hosted by Current, a CBF network of young leaders. Learn more at www.thefellow-
ship.info/current or come by the Current booth at General Assembly.
Friday, June 25 7:30 a.m. — Investing in Young Baptists Conversation. Join the conversation about how the Fellowship can continue investing in young Baptists — children, youth, college, young adults, both clergy and laity. 7:30 a.m. — Heightening the Role of Women in Leadership Conversation. Join the conversation as the Fellowship continues to heighten the role of women in leadership. 8:30 – 9:45 a.m. — Interacting with the World Community Conversation. Join the conversation about how the Fellowship is developing a national
Theme: And so we are ... (1 John 3:1) 22
Find events that interest you. 9:45 a.m. — Fellowship Gathering (Convention Center, Hall C) 10 a.m. — Business Session I (Hall C) 11 a.m. — Business Breakouts 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. — Lunch and Auxiliary Meetings* 1 – 5:30 p.m. — Children’s Assembly/ Child Care
Friday, June 25
5:30 – 7 p.m. — Dinner and Auxiliary Events*
7:30 – 9 a.m. — Auxiliary Events* (see Friday Auxiliary Events below)
7 – 9 p.m. — Child Care
8 a.m. — Registration opens Prayer Room/Labyrinth opens 8 – 9:45 a.m. — A time for you to connect with old and new friends 8:30 a.m. – 7 p.m. — Resource Fair Open (Convention Center, Hall B)
7:15 p.m. — An Invitation to Worship (Convention Center, Hall C) 7:30 – 8:45 p.m. — Worship. Noted author Lauren Winner preaching
9 a.m. – 5 p.m. — Youth Assembly
9 – 10 p.m. — Resource Fair Reception and Drawing (Hall B)
3 – 4:15 p.m. — Engage Your Passion (Session 2)
9 – 11:30 a.m. — Children’s Assembly/ Child Care
Choose a type of ministry to explore: Poverty/Transformation, Disaster Response, Medical, Internationals, Justice and Peacemaking, Church Starting/Faith Sharing, Education or Economic Development
Saturday, June 26
9:45 a.m. — Fellowship Gathering (Convention Center, Hall C)
1:30 – 2:45 p.m. — Discover Your Passion (Session 1)
4:30 p.m. — State and Regional CBF Meetings 5:30 – 7 p.m. — Dinner and Auxiliary Events* 7 – 9 p.m. — Children’s Assembly/ Child Care 7:15 p.m. — An Invitation to Worship (Convention Center, Hall C) 7:30 – 8:45 p.m. — Worship. Baptist historian Bill Leonard preaching 9 – 10 p.m. — Resource Fair Fellowship (Hall B)
framework to address poverty in the U.S., supporting and promoting the Millennium Development Goals and increasing advocacy for social justice, religious liberty and human rights. 8:30 a.m. — CBF Foundation Fellowship Heritage Society Breakfast. The Society gathers each year at General Assembly. The group is made up of individuals who have included a gift to the CBF Foundation in their will or other estate plans and those who are interested in learning how to take the first steps towards this type of planned giving. Join us as we vision together the exciting future. To register, call (800) 322-3018. 11:30 a.m. — Chaplaincy and Pastoral Counseling Luncheon. Dick Hester, co-director of the Narrative Leadership Project at Triangle Pastoral
10 a.m. — Business Session II (Hall C) 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. — Lunch and Auxiliary Events* 1 – 5 p.m. — Children’s Assembly/ Child Care 1:30 – 2:45 p.m. — Essentials Conference Session I or Workshops Session I 3 – 4:15 p.m. — Essentials Conference Session II or Workshops Session II Choose your own path: Attend the Essentials Conference, a series of four sessions on the same ministry topic (register online now for one of 14 topics) or attend a Workshop Session on one ministry topic (requires no registration).
Counseling in North Carolina will present “Curiosity Didn’t Kill the Cat, Conventional Wisdom Did,” focusing on how curiosity can open our eyes to an awareness of God. To register go to www.thefellowship. info/assembly. 11:30 a.m. — BJC’s Religious Liberty Council Luncheon. Join friends of the Baptist Joint Committee as we celebrate religious liberty and look at the challenges ahead. The featured speaker is Dr. William Underwood, president of Mercer University. Underwood is a strong voice for reli-gious liberty
7:30 – 9 a.m. — Breakfast with Lauren Winner (co-sponsored by CBF and Baptist Women in Ministry) 9 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. — Children’s Assembly/ Child Care 9:15 – 10:30 a.m. — Essentials Conference Session III 9:30 a.m. – noon — Prayer Retreat with Lauren Winner 10:45 – noon — Essentials Conference Session IV Noon – until — Explore Charlotte with other Fellowship Baptists
Sunday, June 27 CBF Community In Worship (join a CBF partner church in the Charlotte area for worship)
on the Mercer campus and in the community, and he is also a former BJC intern. For more information, go to www.BJConline.org/luncheon. 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. — Faith Comes By Hearing. Celebrate what God accomplished in your church by listening to the New Testament through You’ve Got the Time: A Journey of Biblical Faithfulness. Share your experience and keep the momentum going. Learn how the Fellowship’s partnership with Faith Comes by Hearing impacts spiritual formation as well as global missions. Noon — Church Benefits Board Luncheon. Luncheon for members and guests of the Church Benefits Board, by invitation and reservation. To learn more, contact email@example.com.
Register at www.thefellowship.info/assembly fellowship!
Cooperative Baptist Fellowship 2930 Flowers Road South, Suite 133 Atlanta, GA 30341 www.thefellowship.info • (800) 352-8741
Cooperative c o o p e r a t i v Baptist e b a p t iFellowship st fellowship
20th annual General Assembly
Register online today!
June 23-26 | Charlotte, N.C.
essentials on ministry
D isc ov er your passion.
his year’s Assembly is 20 years in the making; and you’ll want to be part of this historic event. This year’s highlights include: • Baptist historian Bill Leonard and noted author Lauren Winner preaching in evening worship. • The Essentials Conference, a new Assembly event for church leadership. With 14 topics led by experienced practitioners, this is an event that your deacons, teachers and young leaders
can’t afford to miss! • Discover Your Passion, a special missions emphasis. • Leadership Institute with speaker Alan Roxburgh. • Global Missions Commissioning Service of new CBF field personnel. • Loving Your Muslim Neighbor, learn Bill Leonard Lauren Winner how to minister among Muslims. Thursday evening speaker Friday evening speaker • Plus, enjoy the worship, fellowship, opportunities to connect with missions 2010 Assembly theme: “And so we are” (1 John 3:1) field personnel, new resources and more!
Pre-registration is free and can be completed at www.thefellowship.info/assembly Pre-register by April 15 to be entered in a raffle to win a free two-night stay in the host hotel at CBF’s 2011 General Assembly in Tampa, Fla. (Raffle drawing will be held during the Assembly. Must be present to win.)
Published on Mar 8, 2010