fellowship! Magazine - June/July 2016

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A publication of Cooperative Baptist Fellowship • www.cbf.net


Practicing Patience in Cambodia


SUZII PAYNTER is Executive Coordinator of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship. Follow her on Twitter at @SuziiSYP.

Celebrations in the Fellowship ONE OF MY favorite bumper stickers is “more wag, less bark.” I think this is a good prescription for church. Let’s celebrate more! What kind of party has your church had this year? In April I attended the 90th anniversary of Bayshore Baptist Church in Tampa Fla., where in video, costumes, abundant food and historical (and hysterical) artifacts the church celebrated like it was 1926. Recently, the sounds of celebration have resounded throughout the Fellowship because of the installation of new pastors, like Travis Collins at FBC Huntsville, Ala., Courtney Allen at Grace Baptist Church in Richmond, Va., Jimmy Gentry at Garden Lakes Baptist Church in Rome, Ga., Tom Harrington at University Baptist Church in Baltimore, Md., Stacy Nowell at FBC Huntersville, N.C., Trey Doyle at FBC Mobile, Ala., Josh Hughes at FBC Lenoir, N.C., and Tyler Tankersly at FBC Cape Girardeau, Mo. You get the idea. More sounds of celebration have resounded for milestones and anniversaries like the 20th anniversary of pastor Randy Hyde at Pulaski Heights Baptist in Little Rock, Ark., and the 100th anniversary of Purdy Baptist Church in Emporia, Va. At River Road Baptist Church in Richmond, Va., the congregation celebrates after worship every Sunday with a party — complete with food and drinks and friendly chatter all around until someone says, “No more lemonade, time to lock the doors.” But maybe your favorite celebrations are the picnics, potlucks and barbeques of your church. Sometimes our best celebrations look more like “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives” than white tablecloths and anniversary silver. How do you celebrate? What makes an occasion special? You may not have thought of it as a spiritual gift, but God generally provides at least one party planner in every congregation. Chances are you can name the party-givers in your church. Celebrations are a way of blessing. In her classic picture book, I’m in Charge of Celebrations, Byrd Baylor takes charge of

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WHAT IF OUR NEWSLETTERS REPORTED THE NUMBER OF PARTIES HOSTED IN THE CHURCH RIGHT ALONG WITH BUDGET NUMBERS AND SUNDAY SCHOOL ATTENDANCE? WHAT MIGHT HAPPEN IF WE MEASURED CELEBRATIONS? making new celebrations in her desert home. “Last year I gave myself 108 celebrations beside the ones they close school for. You can tell what’s worth a celebration because your heart will pound and you’ll feel like you are standing on a mountain top and you’ll catch your breath like you are breathing some new kind of air. I’m choosy; it has to be something you want to remember the rest of your life,” Baylor writes. That passage invokes the image of the father, bringing out the best calf and sandals and ring for his long lost son and making a celebration to remember for the rest of our lives. It’s in God’s nature to create and to be joyful. Jesus shows up at more than a few celebrations and skitters down into Jerusalem on a donkey at the front of a parade. No doubt, you’ve had some heartpounding moments and surprise joys in your congregation that are worth a celebration. What about Pentecost Sunday? I love the tradition of wearing fiery warm colors and closing worship with fanfare, balloons and ice cream. What joys might just breakout in spontaneous celebrations? How can we recognize the celebrations that go on as a part of the life of every church? Are we hiding our celebrations under a bushel? What if our newsletters reported the number of parties hosted in the church right along with budget numbers and Sunday school attendance? What might happen if we measured celebrations? Every Sunday announcement time could recognize celebrations — I bet there was party in your church somewhere last week: baby showers, wedding receptions, birthday cakes, welcoming veterans home,

sending mission teams off, homecomings, celebrating teens and children. Others include celebrating life milestones like educational achievements, sobriety anniversaries, new members, marriage renewals, new ministries, and Habitat building teams, meals served in the community, volunteers being the presence of Christ. More ice cream sundaes? More bluegrass bands? More confetti? More wag? Here’s hoping you add a few celebrations to your church calendar for 2016. And don’t forget a special 25th anniversary celebration for CBF. Break out the picnic basket or silver service and wag more for the heart-pounding moments and sheer joy of being alive together in Christ.

A publication of Cooperative Baptist Fellowship

Volume 26, Number 3

June/July 2016

Fellowship! is published 6 times a year in Feb./March, April/May, June/July, Aug./Sept., Oct./Nov., Dec./Jan. by the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship Inc., 160 Clairemont Avenue, Suite 500, Decatur, GA 30030. Periodicals postage paid at Decatur, GA, and additional offices. USPS #015-625. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to: Fellowship! Cooperative Baptist Fellowship 160 Clairemont Avenue, Suite 500 Decatur, GA 30030. EXECUTIVE COORDINATOR Suzii Paynter ASSOCIATE COORDINATOR, FELLOWSHIP ADVANCEMENT Jeff Huett EDITOR Aaron Weaver GRAPHIC DESIGNER Travis Peterson ASSOCIATE EDITOR Carrie McGuffin ASSISTANT EDITOR Candice Young E-MAIL fellowship@cbf.net PHONE (770) 220-1600


CBF GLOBAL MISSIONS AT A GLANCE Discover the depth of CBF Global Missions in this changing missionary situation

FROM THE EDITOR This June/July issue chock-full of great stories of Cooperative Baptists on mission. Read on page 9 about two small churches doing big things in their communities in North Carolina and Practicing Patience Kentucky. On pp. 14-16, read about in Cambodia a Texas church that is maximizing its partnerships with CBF field personnel through an innovative giving strategy, and learn on pp. 18-20 about CBF field personnel David and Lauren Bass in Cambodia, who are practicing patience as they learn a new language and integrate into their host culture. Read on pp. 22-24 about a Georgia church that is extending its missions footprint through water projects around the world. These stories give a glimpse into the daily life of our Fellowship. And last but certainly not least, read and share the exciting news of CBF’s 1,000th endorsed person as a chaplain or pastoral counselor. In January 1998, CBF endorsed its first class, which included a hospice chaplain, hospital chaplain, a Navy chaplain and a pastoral counselor. Eighteen years later, CBF has named its 1,000th endorsee — Erin Lysse, a second-year chaplaincy resident at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, N.C. “Being a chaplain gives me the opportunity to sit with people in some of the worst times they might experience in life,” Lysse says in a new video. “CBF is endorsing me as the 1,000th endorsee, and I feel a connection to an important legacy of ministry, and my hope is to continue that legacy.” Join us in celebrating this important milestone and story in the history of CBF! Watch the video on the 1,000th endorsement at www.cbf.net/chaplaincy.


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A publication of Cooperative Baptist Fellowship • www.cbf.net


San Antonio church maximizes partnerships with CBF field personnel through innovative giving strategy By Blake Tommey



A PRACTICE IN PATIENCE CBF field personnel engage in language learning to propel ministry in Cambodia By Ashleigh Bugg


LIFE FLOW Johns Creek Baptist Church extends missions footprint through water projects By Ashleigh Bugg

9 SMALL CHURCHES DOING BIG THINGS By Martha Perusek Learn what some small CBF congregations are doing locally and globally


‘PREDATORY’ PAYDAY LOANS By Aaron Weaver CBF and diverse coalition unveil findings on predatory lending in U.S.



CONFERENCE 2016 By Aaron Weaver See highlights from the Advocacy in Action conference in Washington, D.C. AARON WEAVER is the Editor of fellowship! Connect with him at aweaver@cbf.net

30 AFFECT: JUNE 2016 Language Learning

31 AFFECT: JULY 2016 Clean Water Projects

J U N E /J U LY 2 0 1 6

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prayerspeople of the

Praying “Yes…And!” By Bo Prosser


ne of the more difficult prayer practices is praying “Yes...And!” Rarely do I want to pray in this way. I want to pray “either…or” or “certainly and narrowly” rather than in a more open way. Many of us pray for the ultimate answer. Many of us pray for clarity. But many of us do not pray “Yes…And!” Praying “Yes…And!” opens us up for the Holy Spirit to truly work in us. Imagine, “Yes, God, thank you for this challenge AND help me to be open to your leadership!” Or, “Yes, help me to face this problem AND help me to accept your revealed responses.” This is much different than praying “God, take care of this please.” Or, “God, give me the answer please.” God responds to our prayers in a variety of ways, and praying with this openness and willingness allows us a freedom to see beyond one answer. So as you pray this month, anticipate your day with gratitude and ask for God’s presence with you. Pray with thanksgiving for the challenges you face and for the solutions God will reveal. Pray as you remember God’s guidance and God’s continued presence. This will seem awkward at first so keep leaning into the practice. Next, refer to the prayer list here and pray “Yes…And!” with these names too. “Yes, God, thank you for my life and bless (insert a name) too. Yes, God, I thank you for my challenges and the solutions you reveal to me, and I thank you for (insert name) and what you are revealing to them as well.” The more comfortable you get in praying this way, the more open you become to the world and God’s working in the world. Suddenly, you’ll become aware that your prayers are becoming richer — more inclusive for God’s will to be done. Pray broadly, pray confidently, pray “Yes…And!” and see what God might do!

BO PROSSER is the CBF Coordinator of Organizational Relationships. Follow him on Twitter at @BoProsser.

Todd DeLaney, Alexandria, VA (CH) Greg McClain, Lillington, NC (CH) Norberto Prado, Oak Ridge, TN (CST) 7 Bill Peeler, Cambodia (FP) Diana Place, Tucson, AZ (CH) Gary Skeen (S-Decatur) Butch Stillwell, Candler, NC (CH) Diann Whisnand, McAllen, TX (FP) Carol Wilkinson, Winston-Salem, NC (CH) 8 Larry Lawhon, Stephens City, VA (CH) Janice Newell, Emeritus (FP) Randy Parks, Sparta, NJ (CH) Clay Porter, Stanton, TX (CH) Joseph Primeaux, Pensacola, FL (CH) Jeromy Wells, Great Falls, MT (CH) 9 Michelle Cayard, China (FP) Sara Stubbs, Monroe, NC (CH) Patricia Taylor, Tuscaloosa, AL (CH) Doug Wiggington, Pineville, LA (CH) 10 Cindy Goza, Little Rock, AR (CH) Christopher McDaniel, Charleston, SC (CH) Ansia Picou, Rensselaer, NY (CH) Michael Osment, Martin, TN (CH) Kim Wyatt, Raleigh, NC (FP) 11 Joshua Hearne, Danville, VA (FP) 12 Mark Chambers, Ness City, KS (CH) Brady Lanoue, Danville, VA (CH) 13 Richard Forest, Louisville, KY (CH) Kim Thompson, Columbia, SC (CH) 14 Chaouki Boulos, Lebanon (FP) Tracey Lopez, Vienna, VA (CH) 15 Robbin Mundy, Fairview, NC (CST) Josh Speight (S-Decatur) Melissa Whaley, Winston-Salem, NC (CH) 16 Kimberly Emery, Hartville, OH (CH) 17 Linda Jones, Winston-Salem, NC (S-North Carolina) 18 Bill Hayes, Bogart, GA (CH) George Linney, Durham, NC (CST) 20 Tim Johns, San Diego, CA (CH) Wanda Kidd (S-North Carolina) Jeff Lancaster, Cartwright, OK (CH) Cherry Moore, Bryan, TX (CH) Lonnie Turner, Emeritus (FP) 21 Jim Cook, Salisbury, NC (CH) Susan Harthon, Indianapolis, IN (CH) Jeff Hoppe, Albuquerque, NM (CH) Ken Lake, Fort Mill, SC (CH) Adam Page, Kingsport, TN (CH) 22 Sharon Eldridge, Smithfield, NC (CH) Joanne Henley, Winston-Salem, NC (CH) Kirk, Southeast Asia (FP) Jessica Prophitt, Palmetto, GA (CH) 23 Andrew, 1998, Thailand (FPC) Sarah Ballew, China (FP) David Lowe, Fort Worth, TX (CH) Helen McNeely, Emeritus (FP) 24 Robert Fulkerson, Tulia, TX (CH) 26 Michael Ferguson, El Paso, TX (CH) Anna Jacks, Birmingham, AL (CH) Otto Mazzoni, York, PA (CH) 27 Alicia Lee, Macedonia (FP) 28 Michael Brainerd, Alexandria, VA (CH) Roger Rich, Lexington, SC (CH) Scott Sterling, Whispering Pines, NC (CH) 29 Kevin Adams, Cincinnati, OH (CH) Jeni Cook, Poquoson, VA (CH) Carrie McGuffin (S-Decatur) 30 Ira Campbell, Nashville, TN (CH) Margaret Guenther, Richmond, VA (PC) Amy Holtz, Richmond, VA (CH) Gail McAlister (S-North Carolina)

JULY 2016

CBF Ministries Prayer Calendar CH = Chaplain FP = Field Personnel FPC = Child of Field Personnel GMP = Global Missions Partner PC = Pastoral Counselor CST = Church Starter S = CBF Staff

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JUNE 2016 1 Thong Lun, Houston, TX (CH) Betsy Young (S-Decatur) 2 Carmen Beard (S-Decatur) Susan Hunter, Troy, VA (CST) Inakali Kuruvilla, San Antonio, TX (CH) Gary Sparks, Tyler, TX (CH) 3 Susan Arnold, La Grange, KY (CH) 5 Stacy Sergent, Mount Pleasant, SC (CH) David Smelser, Lucedale, MS (CH) 6 Erskine Alvis, Black Mountain, NC (CH) Wayne Bruner, Augusta, GA (CH) Linda Cross, San Antonio, TX (FP)

1 Alysia Pennington (S-Decatur) Debra Walters, Lawrenceville, GA (CH) 2 Jennifer Dockum, Ashland, VA (CH) Steven Smith, Springfield, MO (CH) Kyle Tubbs, Round Rock, TX (CST) 3 Nathanael Ballew, 1994, China (FPC) Elizabeth Ellis, Crestwood, KY (PC) Brenda Lee, Williamsburg, VA (CH) Ascanio Peguero, Fort Worth, TX (CH) Meagan Smith (S-Decatur) 5 Coy Callicott, Spartanburg, SC (CH) Jeff Fryer, Murfreesboro, TN (CH) Julie Maas, Belize (FP) Amy Dills-Moore, Atlanta, GA (CH)

Bob Potts, Emeritus (FP) Mark Snipes (S-Virginia) 6 Shelah Acker, Uganda (FP) Sam Harrell (S-Decatur) Debbie Kubo, Arlington, TX (CH) William Womack, Columbia, MO (CH) 7 Barbara Dail, Greenville, NC (CH) Steven Flowers, Waynesboro, VA (PC) Julie Rowan, Washington, DC (CH) 8 Ruth Perkins Lee (S-Decatur) Renato Santos, Miami, FL (CH) Steve Sexton, Knoxville, TN (CH) Robert Summers, Lexington, KY (CH) 9 Miriam Dakin, Lynchburg, VA (CH) 10 John Helms, Jefferson, GA (CH) Heather Rothermel, Lilburn, GA (CH) Whitney Edwards Russell, Whiteville, NC (CH) Tiffne Whitley, France (FP) 11 Allie McNary, 1995, Slovakia (FPC) Steven Shaw, Jacksonsville, NC (CH) 12 ________, North Africa (FP) Christopher Morris, Winston-Salem, NC (CH) Stacey Pickering, Laurel, MS (CH) Mark Podgaisky, 1999, Ukraine (FPC) 13 Craig Stevens, Saluda, SC (CH) 14 John Deal, Emeritus (FP) Denise Massey, Lilburn, GA (CH) 15 Jean Randolph, Swannanoa, NC (CH) James Tippins, Fernandina Beach, FL (CH) 16 Mark Hart, Fair Oaks Ranch, TX (CH) David McDaniel, Kansas City, MO (CH) 17 Wayne Boyd, Honolulu, HI (CH) Caleb, 1996, Thailand (FPC) Cindy Meadows, Roanoke, VA (CH) Leanna Pearse, St. Louis, MO (CH) Kimberly Sheehan, Nashville, TN (CH) 18 Timothy Hunter, Gatesville, TX (CH) Tom O’Neal, Charlotte, NC (PC) 19 Steven Hill, Knoxville, TN (CH) Jason Pittman, Miami, FL (FP) 20 Tim Mayhall, Birmingham, AL (CH) 21 _______, daughter, Turkey (FPC) Peter Arges, Durham, NC (CH) Susan Lanford, Wichita Falls, TX (CH) Twyla Nelson, Jackson Springs, NC (CH) Keith Tekell, Beaumont, TX (CH) Walter White, Arlington, TX (CH) Lavonia Winford, Doraville, GA (CH) 22 Steve Abbe, Waco, TX (CST) Dorothy Potts, Emeritus (FP) Bonnie Reedy, Lumberton, NC (CH) 23 Butch Green, Houston, TX (FP) Donald Proctor, Lubbock, TX (CH) Mark Traeger, Peoria, IL (CH) 24 Glynn Ford, Reston, VA (PC) Jeff Huett (S-Decatur) Laurel Link, Winston-Salem, NC (PC) Ronald Oliver, Goshen, KY (CH) 26 Scott Jensen, Saint Joseph, MO (CH) Richard Min, Dallas, TX (CH) Rick Sample, San Francisco, CA (FP) 27 Peter Ott, Oak Harbor, WA (CH) Sandra Smith, Moore, SC (CH) 28 Emily, 2000, Thailand (FPC) Daniel Fairchild, Goldsboro, NC (CH) 29 Michal Patrik Brunclik, 2006, Czech Republic (FPC) Wayne Morris, Lawton, OK (CH) Karen Morrow, Aledo, TX (FP) Martha Crocker Strong, Olive Branch, MS (CST) Briana Whaley, Clearwater, FL (CH) 30 Paul Byrd, Birmingham, AL (CH) James Francovich, Emeritus (FP) Garnett White, Midlothian, VA (PC) 31 Amber Blackwell-Childers, Inman, SC (CH) Cindy Thorpe, Greenwood, SC (CH) James Tille, Lakewood, WA (PC)


ellowship ‘WE GIVE TO SEE CHANGE’ Couple promises to give back after overseas mission experience

Skyler Daniel serves as associate minister at West Main Baptist Church in Danville, Va., and chaplain for Averett University. Skyler, Ronella and their infant daughter, Charlize, live in Danville.

By Jeff Huett


efore wheels up on their flight back to the United States from Romania, Ronella and Skyler Daniel knew that their lives would never be the same. Skyler, who had graduated two years earlier with a Master of Divinity degree from Wake Forest University School of Divinity, knew that the experience in Bucharest working among some of most forgotten and forsaken people on earth would help him put his faith to action and prepare him for ministry in the local church. Ronella, who grew up in Bucharest, knew that she would be able to use her special education training to set up a program to identify students through appropriate testing, develop a curriculum that meets their needs and keep them from dropping out of school. But as their time in the country through Student.Go, the student missions initiative of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, came to a close, they made a promise to each other. “No matter what, we’re always going to make sure we have money to give to missions,” Skyler said. “We decided that in order for us to leave Romania and fly back to the United States, we would always give back.” From the beginning, international ministry experience was important in their decision to serve in Romania, Skyler said. “I knew I was called to local church ministry, but I wanted overseas ministry to give me perspective. Ronella is from Romania, and she wanted to stay connected to Romania missionally and to stay involved.” The Daniels worked among the Roma people in Bucharest through CBF partner-ministry, Project Ruth. The Roma are among the most marginalized people in Eastern Europe. Project Ruth, where CBF field personnel Ralph and Tammy Stocks serve, gives life-changing education opportunities to children living in poverty, especially those in Roma communities. Through programs developed and supported

by Project Ruth, children are encouraged to reach their full potential, to integrate in communities and to develop an attitude of acceptance for others. What most impressed Ronella and Skyler about Project Ruth was that it was started by a local Baptist church (Providenta Baptist Church) and is run by local Romanians, including founder Dr. Otniel (Oti) Bunaciu. That and it integrates social justice with the gospel. Project Ruth educates and provides religious instruction, both to empower, Skyler said. In addition to appreciating the impact of the ministry through Project Ruth, he and Ronella, as monthly donors toward the CBF Offering for Global Missions, like the Fellowship’s approach to global mission work. “As someone who has been on the other side of the ocean and has seen what we are giving toward, I feel good about what CBF is doing in Romania,” he said. “CBF has done the hard, slow work and answered the difficult questions. CBF has taken the long-term view and has integrated social justice and the gospel into the ministry.” After spending two years with people living in extreme poverty, it put the American definition of need in perspective. It made them begin to think, “Do we really need that?” and “What more can we do and give?” “For us, it’s difficult to live in a hurting world,” Skyler said. “Our ability to write a check is something we need to do to maintain our grounding. It’s something we can do to resist the evil in our world. “We don’t give for the appreciation,” he said. “We give to see change.”

JEFF HUETT is the CBF Associate Coordinator of Communications and Advancement. Follow him on Twitter at @JeffHuett.

For more information about giving to CBF, go to www.cbf.net/GiveNow or contact Jeff Huett (770-220-1600 or jhuett@cbf.net). J U N E /J U LY 2 0 1 6

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Generous Churches Churches are at the heart of CBF life, and their support allows us to be the loving presence of Christ around the world. Church support through budgetary gifts, annual and special offerings, events and other creative channels extend the work of churches far beyond local communities. This generosity ensures the long-term presence of CBF field personnel in the United States and around the world. Your giving spreads the love of Christ to hard-to-reach places, gives hope and healing to migrants and refugees, empowers women and families to earn a livable income and brings the power of literacy and learning to marginalized children and adults. You are cultivating our next generation of Baptist leaders, supporting pastors and churches, creating beloved community and being a voice for the forsaken and forgotten. We want to publicly acknowledge and show our deep gratitude to the churches across our Fellowship who so generously give to be the light of Christ in many tangible and impactful ways. This is the first of many acknowledgments and expressions of gratitude to churches doing creative and diverse work in God’s world. You are beacons of light and hope, and we thank you.


CBF Director of Development

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TOPbased 20on GIVING CHURCHES giving during the 2014-15 fiscal year Ardmore Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

Calvary Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

Central Baptist Church of Bearden

Johns Creek Baptist Church

Winston-Salem, NC

Lexington, KY

Richmond, VA

Rome, GA

Alpharetta, GA

Knoxville, TN

Mountain Brook Baptist Church First Baptist Church

Mountain Brook, AL

Abilene, TX

Snyder Memorial Baptist Church First Baptist Church

Fayetteville, NC

Amarillo, TX

South Main Baptist Church First Baptist Church

Houston, TX

Austin, TX

Tallowood Baptist Church First Baptist Church

Houston, TX

Dalton, GA

Valley Ranch Baptist Church First Baptist Church

Coppell, TX

Gainesville, GA

Wilshire Baptist Church First Baptist Church

Dallas, TX

Greenville, SC

Woodland Baptist Church First Baptist Church Huntsville, AL

San Antonio, TX

*First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

Agape Baptist Church of Fort Worth

First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

Augusta Road Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

Ball Camp Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

Baptist Church of the Covenant

*First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

Boiling Springs Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

*Boulevard Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

*Broadmoor Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

*Broadway Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

*Broadway Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

Buechel Park Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

Calder Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

Central Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church,

*Central Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

*Central Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

*Central Baptist Church of Fountain City

*First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

Abingdon, VA

Fort Worth, TX Greenville, SC Knoxville, TN

Birmingham, AL

Boiling Springs, NC Anderson, SC

Baton Rouge, LA Fort Worth, TX Louisville, KY Louisville, KY

Beaumont, TX Carthage, TX

Daytona Beach, FL Newnan, GA

Knoxville, TN

*Church on the Drive: A Cooperative Baptist Fellowship Orlando, FL

*Churchland Baptist Church Chesapeake, VA

*Cliff Temple Baptist Church Dallas, TX

*Columbus Avenue Baptist Church Waco, TX

Covenant Baptist Church Gastonia, NC

Crescent Hill Baptist Church Louisville, KY

Dayspring Baptist Church Waco, TX

East Hill Baptist Church Tallahassee, FL

Edenton Baptist Church Edenton, NC

Emmanuel Baptist Church Alexandria, LA

*Faith Baptist Church Georgetown, KY

*First Baptist Church Ahoskie, NC

*First Baptist Church Aiken, SC

Anderson, SC

Arkadelphia, AR Asheville, NC Ashland, VA Athens, GA

Auburn, AL

Augusta, GA Belton, SC

Burlington, NC

Cape Girardeau, MO Carrollton, GA Clemson, SC

Columbus, GA Corbin, KY

Corpus Christi, TX Decatur, GA

Dimmitt, TX

Gainesville, FL

Gatlinburg, TN

Greensboro, NC Greenwood, SC Gretna, VA Griffin, GA

Hereford, TX Hickory, NC

Hopewell, VA Jasper, GA

Jefferson City, MO Jefferson City, TN Kannapolis, NC

*denotes churches giving $20,000 and above during the 2014-15 fiscal year

Kingsport, TN Knoxville, TN Lavonia, GA

Lees Summit, MO Lexington, NC Marietta, GA Marion, NC

Midland, TX

Milledgeville, GA Morrow, GA

Murfreesboro, TN Norman, OK

Orangeburg, SC Raleigh, NC

Salisbury, NC

San Angelo, TX

San Antonio, TX


Abingdon Baptist Church

San Marcos, TX Sanford, NC Shelby, NC

Shreveport, LA

Signal Mountain, TN Smithfield, NC

Southern Pines, NC St. Petersburg, FL Stephenville, TX Tallahassee, FL Temple, TX Tifton, GA

Vernon, TX



*First Baptist Church

Madison Heights Baptist Church

Spring Hill Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

*Monte Vista Baptist Church

St. Andrews Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

Nineteenth Avenue Baptist Church

St. Matthews Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church

North Riverside Baptist Church

*Tabernacle Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

*Northside Baptist Church

Thalia Lynn Baptist Church

First Baptist Church

Northwest Baptist Church

The Baptist Church of Beaufort

*First Baptist Church

*Oakland Baptist Church

*Trinity Baptist Church

*First Baptist Church of Christ

*Oakmont Baptist Church

*Trinity Baptist Church

First Baptist Church of Williams

Orange Baptist Church

*Trinity Baptist Church

*Forest Hills Baptist Church

*Park Avenue Baptist Church

*Trinity Baptist Church

Georgetown Baptist Church

*Parkway Baptist Church

*Trinity Baptist Church

Greenwood Forest Baptist Church

Priddy Baptist Church

*Trinity Baptist Church

*Greystone Baptist Church

*Providence Baptist Church

University Baptist Church

Hampton Baptist Church

Providence Baptist Church

*University Baptist Church

*Hayes Barton Baptist Church

*River Road Church, Baptist

*University Baptist Church

*Hendricks Avenue Baptist Church

Rosalind Hills Baptist Church

*University Heights Baptist Church

*Highland Baptist Church

Roxboro Baptist Church

*University Heights Baptist Church

*Highland Hills Baptist Church

Royal Lane Baptist Church

*Vestavia Hills Baptist Church

*Holmeswood Baptist Church

Second Avenue Baptist Church

Viewmont Baptist Church

Huguenot Road Baptist Church

*Second Baptist Church

West Main Baptist Church

*Immanuel Baptist Church

*Second Baptist Church

*Westwood Baptist Church

Inman First Baptist Church

*Second Baptist Church

*Westwood Baptist Church

Island View Baptist Church

Second Baptist Church

*Wieuca Road Baptist Church

Jersey Baptist Church

*Second-Ponce de Leon Baptist Church

*Winfree Memorial Baptist Church

*Kings Cross Church

*Seventh and James Baptist Church

*Winter Park Baptist Church

*Kirkwood Baptist Church

Shades Crest Baptist Church

Woodhaven Baptist Church

Lafayette Baptist Church

Shiloh Terrace Baptist Church

Woodmont Baptist Church

Lake City First Baptist Church

*Smoke Rise Baptist Church

Yates Baptist Church

Lakeshore Drive Baptist Church

*South Main Baptist Church

*Zebulon Baptist Church

*Madison Baptist Church

*Southland Baptist Church

Waco, TX

Waxahachie, TX

Waynesboro, VA Wilmington, NC Winchester, KY

Winchester, VA

Winston-Salem, NC Macon, GA

Jacksonville, AL Raleigh, NC

Georgetown, KY Cary, NC

Raleigh, NC

Hampton, VA Raleigh, NC

Jacksonville, FL Louisville, KY Macon, GA

Kansas City, MO

North Chesterfield, VA Frankfort, KY Inman, SC

Orange Park, FL Linwood, NC

Tullahoma, TN Kirkwood, MO

Fayetteville, NC Lake City, SC

Hudson Oaks, TX Madison, GA


Madison Heights, VA Maryville, TN

San Francisco, CA

Newport News, VA Clinton, MS

Ardmore, OK Rock Hill, SC

Greenville, NC Orange, VA

Atlanta, GA Duluth, GA Priddy, TX

Charlotte, NC

Daniel Island, SC Richmond, VA Roanoke, VA Roxboro, NC Dallas, TX Rome, GA

Liberty, MO

Little Rock, AR Memphis, TN

Richmond, VA Atlanta, GA Waco, TX

Hoover, AL Dallas, TX

Stone Mountain, GA Pasadena, TX

San Angelo, TX

Mobile, AL

Columbia, SC

Louisville, KY

Carrollton, GA

Virginia Beach, VA Beaufort, SC

Cordova, TN Madison, AL

Kerrville, TX Raleigh, NC

San Antonio, TX Seneca, SC

Charlottesville, VA Hattiesburg, MS Houston, TX

Springfield, MO Stillwater, OK Vestavia, AL Hickory, NC

Danville, VA Cary, NC

Springfield, VA Atlanta, GA

Midlothian, VA

Wilmington, NC Apex, NC

Nashville, TN Durham, NC

Zebulon, NC

By Martha Perusek

From left to right: David Brandon, charter member and first interim pastor; Rhonda Abbott Blevins, executive coordinator of Kentucky Baptist Fellowship; pastor Roger Jasper and member Anna Hearne, break ground on Living Faith’s first building and permanent home.

Providence Baptist Church

Living Faith Baptist Fellowship

“Small churches have to be creative,” explained Julie Merritt Lee, pastor of Providence Baptist Church, where members live out the church’s motto of being “created in the imagination of the Holy Spirit” through innovative ministries and ways to generate support. With this in mind, in 2016 the congregation achieved its goal of making missions 10 percent of the church’s budget. In addition, Providence annually collects a November offering for CBF and other ministries. The church always strives to involve children in missions as well. To provide funds for a new home for the pastor of Providence’s partner church in Cuba, children collected an offering by pushing a toy washing machine through the aisles. This idea was born from the Cuban pastor’s commitment to wash the clothes of neighbors, since his home offered the only nearby source of water. Church members ultimately contributed the exact amount of support needed to buy the house. Along with a commitment to global missions, six years ago Providence started “Sunday Night Worship,” where church members join in meals, table fellowship and worship with individuals living in the poorest areas of the community. The local Fresh Market donates more than $1,500 each week in bread, deli sandwiches, produce, flowers and more. “When we made the commitment, the food and money came. You could feel the Holy Spirit every step of the way,” Merritt Lee said. Sunday Night Worship has outgrown two locations and is now held in a day center in the area. Serving about 70 guests each week, the project has evolved to be truly ecumenical, with guests participating in and leading worship. “It started with our dream of how to know our neighbors,” Merritt Lee said. “This is about more than providing food. It’s all about creating relationships. When you sit at the table with people different than you and get to know their stories over a meal, you learn to serve one another. It changes you.”

Living Faith Baptist Fellowship got its early start meeting in homes and holding worship on the dock of a local carpet warehouse. Now, 11 years later, the congregation recently broke ground on its first building. Despite having no permanent home of their own, church members have been building homes and partnering with CBF field personnel in local counties and around the world to lessen the burden of poverty. The church tithes 10 percent of all undesignated funds to missions and also conducts a vibrant CBF Offering for Global Missions campaign throughout the Advent season. It also collects an offering at Easter for the Kentucky Baptist Fellowship and other local/regional Baptist groups, and highlights missions in its worship service almost every Sunday. “Our passion for missions allows us to be related and connected to God’s work in the world,” said pastor Roger Jasper. “Our church members are very generous and invested.” Living Faith’s local mission work takes them into some of the poorest counties in the nation, where members provide substantial financial and volunteer support of KBF’s annual Extreme Build, building a new home for a low-income family. In partnership with Together for Hope, CBF’s rural poverty initiative, members give books, school supplies and other needed items to low-income school children. At Christmas, church volunteers prepare age-appropriate gift boxes that are distributed by CBF field personnel Scarlette Jasper to children and high school students. Globally, Living Faith has had a long-term relationship with field personnel in Morocco and provides support for their sister church in Fez, which has expanded to provide blankets, jackets and other much-needed items for Syrian refugees.

HENDERSONVILLE, NORTH CAROLINA Sunday worship attendance: 75

ELIZABETHTOWN, KENTUCKY Sunday worship attendance: 70

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The Work of CBF Global Missions focuses on the 3 contexts of our day: • GLOBAL POVERTY • GLOBAL MIGRATION • GLOBAL CHURCH

Facilitating Together for Hope partners in 26 rural communities in the U.S.

Serving immigrant communities in Western Europe

Serving Bosnians in St. Louis, Mo.

Working in the world’s great cities

PLACES WE SERVE INTERNATIONAL Antwerp, Belgium • Belmopan, Belize • Phnom Penh, Cambodia • Siem Reap, Cambodia • Chengdu, China • Macau, China • Czech Republic • Ethiopia • Paris, France • Strasbourg, France • Grand-Goâve, Haiti • Limbe, Haiti • Indonesia • India • Kanazawa, Japan • Lebanon • Skopje, Macedonia • Malaysia • Middle East • Westervoort, Netherlands • North Africa • Bucharest, Romania • Košice, Slovakia • Albacete, Spain • Barcelona, Spain • Bangkok, Thailand • Chiang Mai, Thailand • Lomé, Togo • Turkey • Kampala, Uganda • Kiev, Ukraine



Advocating among the most economically marginalized peoples such as the Roma and Syrian refugees

Starting new churches and training lay and pastoral leaders

Translating the Bible into previously unwritten languages

Working through Transformational Development from Togo to Uganda

Combatting human trafficking

Responding with disaster relief

Sending teams to support migrants from Sub-Saharan Africa

UNITED STATES Perry County, AL • Lee County, AR • Phillips County, AR • Cochise County, AZ • Fremont, CA • Waterbury, CT • Homestead, FL • Miami, FL • Orlando, FL • St. Petersburg, FL • Atlanta, GA • De Soto, KS • Louisville, KY • McCreary County, KY • Owsley County, KY • Powell County, KY • Somerset, KY • Stanton, KY • East Carrol Parish, LA • Tensas Parish, LA • St. Louis, MO • Bolivar County, MS • Holmes County, MS • Sharkey County, MS • Sunflower County, MS • Halifax County, NC • Raleigh, NC • Scotland Neck, NC • Shelby, NC • Quinton, NJ • New York, NY • Allendale County, SC • Buffalo County, SD • Mitchell, SD • Oglala Lakota County, SD • Todd County, SD • Ziebach County, SD • Dimmit County, TX • Hidalgo County, TX • Houston, TX • Fort Worth, TX • Maverick County, TX • McAllen, TX • Presidio County, TX • San Antonio, TX • Starr County, TX • Willacy County, TX • Zavala County, TX • Danville, VA • Fredericksburg, VA


A New Missionary Situation

Innovating in the 21st Century

CBF is deeply committed to answering God’s call to mission in the midst of major global shifts:

“In a new missionary situation, CBF is committed to long-term missionary presence that can change the world.”

Christianity has entered a global era in which the majority of Christians no longer reside in North America and Europe. The missional church movement and the increase in short-term missions changed the way in which our congregations think about and engage in mission and fund that mission.

– Steven Porter Coordinator of Global Missions

Our communities have changed. Although a large majority of Americans continue to identify as Christian, awareness of America’s cultural and religious diversity rises.

A NEW FUNDING MODEL The new funding model allows churches and individuals to strategically support missions through offerings and direct gifts that sustain all our mission work around the world. ABOUT 2/3 OF FUNDING



The annual Offering for Global Missions ensures the long-term presence of all CBF field personnel.

All CBF field personnel will raise support primarily from friends-and-family networks to support their personal mission programming budgets.



Global Missions will adopt an intentional strategy to grow its endowment to fund mission innovation and undergird CBF’s mission budget over time.

A percentage of every undesignated gift to CBF supports our mission work on the field through member care, administration and church engagement.


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CBF at 25: Stories of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship Join us during the Wednesday evening reception at the 2016 General Assembly in Greensboro, N.C., for a time of food and fellowship and to hear an announcement from CBF Executive Coordinator Suzii Paynter about a special way you can play a part in CBF’s next 25 years. All reception attendees will receive a free copy of CBF at 25: Stories of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship. This edited volume celebrating CBF’s 25th anniversary shares a history of our denomi-network of free and faithful Baptists through more than 80 first-person stories of mission and ministry from across the

Fellowship. Published in partnership with Nurturing Faith, CBF at 25 gives a glimpse at how Cooperative Baptists have been the presence of Christ around the world, and how the Fellowship is forming together as we focus on the future, living into our attributes to be Christ-like, innovative, authentic, global, diverse and to seek excellence. Contributors to CBF at 25 include field personnel, church starters, chaplains, clergy and laity, state and national leaders, theological educators, young Baptists and many more. Learn more at nurturingfaith.net.

1 to 250 By Blake Tommey


f you add together every number between and including 1 and 250, how high do you think it would get? Would the sum total be a) 10,000, b) 20,000 or c) 30,000? If your answer was “C,” then you are close. Woodland Baptist Church in San Antonio, Texas, will tell you the total is actually 31,375 — their goal for giving last year to the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship Offering for Global Missions. With some simple math and a passion for God’s mission in the world, Woodland Baptist Church is partnering together with CBF Global Missions, not only to increase giving

to CBF field personnel around the world, but to also recapture people’s imagination for renewing God’s world together. Through developing creative campaigns to increase missions giving as well as independently establishing missional partnerships, Woodland is forming together to redefine what is possible for the church. To begin with, senior pastor Garrett Vickrey said, recasting the true power of partnership means making a complex problem much more simple. “Our ‘1 to 250’ fundraising campaign maximizes participation while minimizing the burden of any one person’s financial giving,” Vickrey explained.


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“It is basic math. We are looking for 250 people to each give an amount from $1 to $250. A fourth-grader can give $14; a preschooler can give $2 from her piggy bank. The plan calls for people to give at their ability, and it challenges individuals and families to action. Even those who give $1 and $2 are encouraged by their participation and feel they are contributing to something significant.” Ultimately, Vickrey added, “giving is not for those who have in abundance, it is for those who seek to follow Christ.” Since Woodland’s formation in 1989, the church has quite literally grown alongside

CBF and shared a common mission of renewal with the most marginalized people in the world. Yet, over the past few years, Vickrey said, Woodland became inconsistent in their contribution to the Offering for Global Missions — some years giving as much as $13,000 and others pulling back to $6,000 or $7,000. Together with Ben Newell, CBF field personnel and member of Woodland, Vickrey and the missions committee decided it was time to harness the full potential of the church’s dedication to CBF Global Missions and implemented the “1 to 250” campaign in 2014. If 250 people — three quarters of their average Sunday attendance — claimed and contributed a value between $1 and $250, the congregation would more than double its giving to the offering. So the committee lined the halls of the church with envelopes, each with a value printed on it, and before the campaign ended, Woodland had surpassed its goal and contributed $34,000 to the CBF Offering for Global Missions. “God is restoring the world and we have a chance to be a part of it,” Vickrey said. “One of the biggest ways we can be a

part of that is through supporting ministries that are already doing that work. Giving is a spiritual practice. It forms us. It reminds us of what is important. It’s a statement that says God is active in the world and that mending will come.” For Woodland, giving financial support is not a hindrance to true partnership, it’s a gateway. In fact, missions committee chair Patty Villareal said it is precisely the congregation’s desire to support the ongoing work of field personnel that has led them away from a “handout” mentality toward deeper relationships with mission partners, including CBF’s Offering for Global Missions. “It’s time to start setting the tone that we are in this together,” explained Villareal.


– Patty Villareal

“We started with some intentionality about partnership. Yes, we trust that our undesignated giving supports some incredible people, but the question is, how can that move us toward more relationships with the missionaries and churches we want to support?” Dedicating nearly 20 percent of its budget to mission partnerships, Woodland also maintains direct partnerships with multiple churches and missionaries, including Alicia and Jeff Lee — CBF field personnel who work alongside local organizations in Skopje, Macedonia to address the needs of children and families living in poverty as well as Syrian refugees. Woodland’s direct partners also include Bill and Noy Peeler, CBF field personnel who plant churches and train pastors in Cambodia; Karen and Kenny Sherin, who serve in South Dakota with Together for Hope, CBF’s rural poverty initiative; and SIM missionaries Erik and Amanda Hansen, who train medical doctors in Kijabe, Kenya. San Antonio-based CBF field personnel Ben and Leonora Newell not only help mobilize the congregation in poor communities along the

Woodland Baptist Church in San Antonio, Texas, has a passion for worship as well as a passion for being a vital part of God’s mission in the world. Pictured are choir members Mike Elliot (left) and Paul Gagne (right) leading the choir procession into worship on an Easter morning.

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(Left to right) CBF field personnel Ben Newell, Lorenzo Ortiz, pastor of Iglesia Bautista Emanuel in Laredo, Texas, Rich Ferguson and Woodland pastor Garrett Vickrey participated in an innovative golfing fundraiser to build compressed earth block homes near Laredo. With sponsorships per hole, Newell played 60 holes of golf on his 60th birthday to raise money to build a home.

– Garrett Vickrey

Woodland members come together to fellowship and celebrate at the church’s Founders Day Picnic in October 2015.

Texas-Mexico border but also call Woodland their church home. Every support relationship Woodland maintains, Villareal added, was born from an established, organic connection with the congregation — not to mention from a shared philosophy of mission rooted in mutual relationship. “What is so compatible about Woodland and CBF Global Missions is a desire to help improve an individual’s or community’s condition and situation,” Villareal said. “It’s about asking how we can maximize the potential of an individual, a ministry or a community, not about handing over a sack of groceries and saying ‘See you next month!’

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Former CBF field personnel and Woodland member Diana Bridges leads a congregational dialogue on Christianity and Islam. Bridges also leads the church’s ESL ministry, which hosts about 100 students every week.

We need to be side by side. We’re all going to be at the table together. We don’t do things for people, we do things with them.” The CBF Offering for Global Missions continues to make that shared mission possible. When you give, you are investing in the cost of presence, that is, the salaries, benefits, housing costs and children’s educational needs for all CBF field personnel. Through coming to the table with the CBF Offering for Global Missions and CBF field personnel, Vickrey said, Woodland and churches around the world have an opportunity to simply do what Jesus’ followers do.

“These partnerships are an opportunity for us to practice our characteristic action as followers of Jesus,” Vickrey said. “In practicing this characteristic action, no matter what age, we become even more what God is creating us to be. We can become a fully engaged church and contribute to a Christian missions movement through CBF that engages all persons in missions, through giving and going.”

BLAKE TOMMEY serves with the Baptist General Association of Virginia as a collegiate minister at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Va.

c’est la vie SELAH PAUSE

An end-of-summer retreat for college and graduate students to pause, reflect, listen, discern and play! WEDNESDAY EVENING, AUGUST 3 THROUGH SATURDAY MORNING, AUGUST 6, 2016


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For those who have spent time serving or traveling abroad, the ability to communicate can be a challenge. Visitors to a new country may struggle with common tasks like shopping at the grocery store or ordering in a restaurant. Although language learning can be stressful, Cooperative Baptist Fellowship field personnel David and Lauren Bass have embraced this opportunity to integrate into their host culture. 18 |


(Left) A city street in Kampot in southern Cambodia displays the common sight of motorcycles and shop houses found on many city streets throughout the country. (Right) Lauren Bass uses a scratch sheet of paper to practice writing vocabulary words in the International Phonetic Alphabet to help memorize words in the Khmer language. Behind her work is a vocabulary list with words in English, IPA and Khmer.

“We believe that learning the language will Khmer, a language spoken by nearly The Basses have faced ups and downs in be essential to our ministry,” David said. 16 million people primarily in Cambodia, the learning process, leading them to rely on The couple lives and works in Phnom Vietnam and Thailand, can be tough their new neighbors. Penh, Cambodia, as partners with the for English speakers to master. “One day I asked my language teacher if Cambodia Baptist Union. Their vision is to “For all practical purposes we are still Khmer people liked it when foreigners spoke help equip Cambodian churches through illiterate,” Lauren added. “We can’t read the to them in Khmer,” David said. “‘Yes, they implementing leadership programs for pastors hymnals to be able to sing along at church, do,’ she told me, adding that ‘Sometimes they and church planters as well as exploring we can’t read the names on shopfronts or are embarrassed because they cannot speak economic development. practice reading Khmer to learn new words.” English, but they want to have a relationship Although English is widely spoken in Although difficult, the task has helped the with you, and if you speak Khmer, it makes Cambodia’s capital, David and Lauren couple practice patience and humility. them happy.’” believe it will be easier to relate to their “The greatest thing language learning is By learning Khmer, David and Lauren are Cambodian counterparts by learning Khmer. teaching me is to be patient with God’s plans able to help their neighbors feel more at ease. “There seems to be an implicit belief and with myself,” Lauren said. “After five “I had been so focused on how learning among many Christian workers here that months of studying almost every day there are a language makes me vulnerable,” David language learning and ministry are two painfully few topics I can talk about.” said. “She showed me that not learning the separate things,” David noted. “The more Despite the gradual progress, Lauren finds language makes other people vulnerable.” time I spend at language school though, the reminders of God’s provision. By opening themselves up to failure, the more convinced I become that language “This slowness reminds me that being Basses have been able to connect more fully learning is ministry.” faithful to show up — even when I don’t with their hosts. While some missionaries and aid workers understand what is going on around me, even “Language learning really forces me to choose to use translators or conduct classes when I feel I cannot contribute anything — face my pride,” David said. “I realize how in English, the Basses attend Khmer language is what following God’s calling on my life is much of my identity I have tried to find in school regularly. about.” being a skilled communicator. In Cambodia, “What is ministry if not living life my communication skills are at the “THE GREATEST THING LANGUAGE alongside people, learning to see the world level of an advanced toddler. I can LEARNING IS TEACHING ME IS TO BE PATIENT either get angry at the world for not from their perspective, allowing yourself to be vulnerable with them, all in order to WITH GOD’S PLANS AND WITH MYSELF.” affirming me as much as it used – Lauren Bass to, or I can see this as a gift — an display God’s love?” David asked. J U N E /J U LY 2 0 1 6

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opportunity to identify the areas in which I don’t trust in Christ.” Lauren and David rely on each other, their neighbors and their faith to effectively communicate. “I think that language learning has brought Lauren and I closer together,” David said. “We both bring different strengths to a conversation, and when we work together, we can usually go further. It has been fun to work as a team.” The challenge has also helped the couple relate to different populations in the United States. “The process of learning a language helps us appreciate and understand what many immigrants experience,” Lauren said. “My first experience living abroad in Spain and learning to live life in another language gave me so much more understanding of the immigrants and refugees I had known in America.” The Basses maintain learning a new language can be used to serve at home and abroad. “Learning to speak someone else’s language is a wonderful way to love and get to know your neighbors,” Lauren said. Despite the challenges and frustrations that come with not being able to communicate fully, the couple has enjoyed the process. “The best thing about this process is the breakthroughs that you get to experience every once in a while,” David said. “I love the way that people’s faces come alive when I am able to express myself to them for the first time. It lets you make connections with people you wouldn’t be able to connect with otherwise.” Lauren agrees that the cross-cultural struggle is worth it. “At its core, I think learning another language to build relationships with others is about hospitality and honoring people who are different from us,” she said. “It’s a beautiful process, even if it is also a difficult one.”

ASHLEIGH BUGG works as a community content producer at the Center for News and Design in Austin, Texas.

A page from a kindergarten-style “learn to write letters” book assists David and Lauren Bass as they learn the Khmer script and phonetic spelling of Khmer words.

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Faith leaders release research on ‘harmful’ and ‘predatory’ payday loans By Aaron Weaver WASHINGTON, D.C. — Faith for Just Lending, a diverse coalition of faith-based institutions, announced April 13 the results of new polling from LifeWay Research on payday lending along with a new report titled The Collateral Consequences of Payday Loan Debt, detailing the experiences of congregations and borrowers with payday and car-title loans. The LifeWay survey of 1,000 Christians in 30 states that allow high-cost loans found that payday lending is widely viewed and experienced negatively. The most common characteristics used to describe payday loans were “expensive,” “harmful” and “predatory.” The coalition’s report echoed this finding with clergy and faith-based social service providers overwhelmingly describing payday loans as “harmful” rather than “helpful” and frequently citing a long-term cycle of debt resulting from payday loans. Christians also overwhelmingly support laws or regulations to protect borrowers from loans with exorbitant interest or that cannot be repaid. LifeWay found that 86 percent of Christians affirm that laws or regulations should prohibit lending at excessive interest rates and 94 percent agreed that lenders should only extend loans at reasonable interest rates based on ability to repay. These findings echo previous polling which has demonstrated strong support for regulations on payday lending across party lines. The survey also found that African-Americans are the most likely to have obtained a payday loan (49 percent) and to know personally someone who has obtained a payday loan (58 percent). Lending — a financial activity — must operate within moral and ethical boundaries. According to LifeWay, 77 percent of Christians and 85 percent of evangelicals believe it is a sin to loan someone money in a way that the lender gains by harming the borrower financially. Payday loans can result in a long-term cycle of debt, family stress and shame, according to experiences shared with FJL by clergy and church members. The FJL report discovered that faith leaders who knew people with payday loans witnessed the devastating financial impact of these loans and many other negative consequences with 90 percent indicating that payday loans “mostly hurt” borrowers, 84 percent observing that borrowers remain in debt to a payday or car-title lender longer than expected and 84 percent witnessing an increased need for emergency assistance by payday borrowers. “We are concerned that our charitable dollars in fact are funding the profits of the payday lenders rather than helping the poor achieve self-sufficiency,” said Bishop Joe Vasquez of the Diocese of Austin, Texas.

Stephen Reeves, associate coordinator for partnerships and advocacy at the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, said that the LifeWay Research poll and FJL report serve as confirmation of the debt-trap realities of payday lending and urged responsible legal reforms. “These findings confirm that the attitudes and experiences of Cooperative Baptist church members and pastors are shared by Christians across the country,” Reeves said. “The payday lending business model is widely considered immoral and harmful. People of faith across a wide spectrum of belief are unified in their call for reform. It is time for lawmakers and regulators to step up, listen to the voice of the people so often drowned out by industry money and political influence, and enact fair and responsible boundaries for these predatory products.” Members of the Faith for Just Lending coalition include the Center for Public Justice, Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, Ecumenical Poverty Initiative, Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, National Association of Evangelicals, National Baptist Convention, USA, Inc., National Latino Evangelical Coalition, the PICO National Network and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. While representing distinct institutions with different histories and practices, these organizations hold a shared conviction that Scripture speaks to the problem of predatory lending — believing that just lending is a matter of biblical morality and religious concern. In May 2015, the coalition released the following set of principles for just lending: • Individuals should manage their resources responsibly and conduct their affairs ethically, saving for emergencies, and being willing to provide support to others in need. • Churches should teach and model responsible stewardship, offering help to neighbors in times of crisis. • Lenders should extend loans at reasonable interest rates based on ability to repay within original loan period, taking into account the borrower’s income and expenses. • Government should prohibit usury and predatory or deceptive lending practices.

To learn more about Faith for Just Lending, visit www.lendjustly.com. J U N E /J U LY 2 0 1 6

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Johns Creek Baptist Church extends missions footprint through water projects By Ashleigh Bugg


Johns Creek Baptist Church near Atlanta invests in clean water projects in Haiti and Ethiopia. Through partnerships with local organizations and CBF field personnel, JCBC is able to build water filtration systems in Haiti and dig wells like this one (pictured left) in the horn of Africa.

“Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.” JOHN 7:38 The city of Johns Creek, Ga., is situated on the banks of the Chattahoochee River, an area that once served as a meeting place between rival Cherokee and Creek people. According to Tom Blue Wolf, a Creek descendent, the tribes were inspired by the great river and “agreed to make the Johns Creek area a ‘sacred place’ where all tribal families could feel safe during their peace talks.” Today, the idea that water is a source of peace and healing is central to the work of Johns Creek Baptist Church, a Cooperative Baptist Fellowship partner congregation for more than 20 years. “Our sustainable living projects flow out of water,” JCBC formations pastor Michael McCullar said. “Over 1 billion people in the world don’t have access to clean water, and 1.8 billion die from waterborne diseases each year.” The church works with partners in the Dominican Republic and Ethiopia to fund and build clean water sources. “We believe if you can solve the water problem, it opens the doors for so many things,” McCullar said. The church didn’t intend to establish long-term mission work in the Dominican Republic. They entered the country after the 2010 Haiti earthquake, where they served as second-line responders. Before entering Haiti, the group flew to Santo Domingo and established a partnership with the Association of Baptist Churches in the Dominican Republic. “The Baptist movement in the Dominican was started by Haitian Baptists,” McCullar explained. “We learned so much from them during those 17-hour van rides going from Santo Domingo to the earthquake’s epicenter in Haiti.” McCullar has since made 28 trips to the island, working with local organizations. “After three trips into Haiti, we began this natural relationship with the Association of Baptist Churches in the Dominican Republic. We began to work with their seminaries, hospitals and churches,” McCullar said. While traveling, McCullar saw the need for clean water sources. In small, isolated

villages where residents work to cut and haul sugar cane for $3 per ton, many people don’t have access to inexpensive, safe water. “I’ve been all over the island preaching and teaching, and there’s a horrible water situation,” he said. “Sometimes you choose between feeding your kids and having clean water.” Johns Creek partnered with Atlanta firms, including the organization Water at Work and learned how to build water filtration systems. Next, they identified Dominican churches who could take over the projects. These reverse-osmosis filtration systems clean the water so it is not dangerous for communities to drink. Although they are expensive at $24,000 each, the church has been able to raise funds for four water systems. “We challenge the congregation if we’re putting in a clean water system…we say we’re all in this together,” McCullar explained. “Seven years ago, we needed to build a system, and giving has doubled every year since then. Last year we gave $160,000.” Johns Creek Baptist also works on water projects in the horn of Africa. In June 2014, senior pastor Shaun King and his family traveled to Ethiopia to meet with CBF field personnel David and Merrie Harding. The purpose of the trip was to form a partnership with the Hardings, who lead an organization addressing the issues of water, sanitation, hygiene and poverty in Ethiopia. Together, they dig wells which support sustainable living groups mostly run by local women.


–Michael McCullar “Once the water comes in, sustainable living groups are what come after that. They’re community-based savings and credit groups that are able to create an economy and flow of money,” McCullar explained. “It all comes out of the fact that people are healthy and have access to clean water.” McCullar maintains working with waterbased initiatives helps JCBC members, both physically and spiritually. “We are active in providing water on two sides of the world,” he said. “In a world that is thirsty for the truth in the Gospel and where J U N E /J U LY 2 0 1 6

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people are dying every day because they don’t have access to clean water, we are doing what we need to do.” Each year, the church intends to fund a water system in the Dominican Republic and a well in Ethiopia. They are also part of a coalition that builds schools in the Dominican Republic. “Our goal is to build three or four classrooms each year,” McCullar said. “We go once each year to build on a school and again to install a clean water system.” Although they see mission work as an essential part of their church’s identity, JCBC will only work with sustainable projects that can be replicated by local partners. “We decided to never do a drive-by, or say we’re from the ‘civilized West’ and we have all the answers,” McCullar said. “Instead we say, ‘We’re here to help. What’s the best way to get started?’” The church works to form lasting relationships with receiving churches and organizations.


– Michael McCullar “We are co-laborers. I go back during every trip and meet with the pastors and families,” McCullar said. “We believe if you can’t have a long-term relationship, we probably shouldn’t be doing it. We’ve lived into the idea that this is enlarging the family of JCBC.”

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Although their international mission work often revolve around water projects, JCBC also is engaged with the Arabic-speaking world. McCullar wrote A Christian’s Guide to Islam, a book giving a brief history of Muslim formation, structure, beliefs, practices and goals. He has led international trips to Turkey, worked with Iranian Farsi-Persians in England and taught a course on the subject in former East Germany. JCBC recently renewed a partnership with CBF field personnel Janée Angel who works with Arabic-speaking people in Antwerp, Belgium. She and her husband, Hary, have been aiding refugees from Syria and other Middle Eastern countries. In addition to international projects, JCBC works with local and national partners in its state as well as border-communities in Presidio, Texas. “For the past 20 years our church has lived out a missional theme: locally, nationally and globally,” McCullar said. “We have mobilized people in 12 countries and 15 states. We want to have a missions footprint while maintaining our Baptist identity through supporting CBF.” The church holds a missions fair every year and also has a missions month where they traditionally donate 50 percent of funds to the CBF Offering for Global Missions and 50 percent to local programs. In 2015 and 2016, they modified giving and now donate 40 percent to CBF missions, 5 percent to CBF of Georgia missions, 40 percent to clean water and sustainable living projects and 15 percent to projects with local partners. The church has 24 missional partners and have established a long-term commitment with Together for Hope, CBF’s rural poverty

(Left to right) Johns Creek senior pastor Shaun King, his sons Jackson and Nathan, and wife Laura, along with Molly Darwin and her daughter Abby, son Chase, husband Charlie and daughter Audrey pose alongside children from a village near Lake Langano in the Oromia region of Ethiopia.

initiative that works in 20 of the poorest counties in the United States. “We’ve had a mission presence in Presidio, Texas for nine years,” McCullar said. “We do a sports camp every January. I don’t think we’ll ever not be involved.” McCullar often uses the term “missional” to describe his church’s work. “Missional is one of the greater misunderstood words,” McCullar said. “For me, it’s the intersection between missions and ministry. People thought it was only for pastors, but anything we do can be missional.” McCullar’s favorite part of being a formations pastor is seeing the effects of missions on church members. “I like taking my people somewhere and seeing them change within days.” he shared. “It’s an extension of serving Christ. It’s getting our community members outside of themselves.” Whether creating sacred, safe places through water projects abroad or volunteering at the neighborhood YMCA, Johns Creek Baptist Church is mobilized locally and globally. “We are a church which hopes to be defined as a missional church — a church that has its own identity, but with classic Baptist roots,” McCullar said.

ASHLEIGH BUGG works as a community content producer at the Center for News and Design in Austin, Texas.

CBF Youth Ministry Network By Carol Harston, President, CBF Youth Ministry Network


youth ministries are healthy and growing, full of transformative practices and inspiring ministers. We know this first-hand by our time spent at our annual Cooperative Baptist Fellowship Youth Ministry Network gatherings, from questions and concerns shared among members and through the organic and collective effort made over two years to create our CBF Youth Ministry Network Foundational Attributes. From its beginning, CBFYMN has sought to be a collaborative group that unites, encourages, supports and challenges all those who are ministering with teenagers in CBF churches. Our network has developed these core principles to help guide our work for years to come. Here is a taste of the attributes CBFYMN holds as central to the practice of youth ministry: Authentic: Jesus’ actions were true to his words. We, too, must be believable and reliable. Authentic youth ministers and volunteers should be honest and transparent in all interactions while respecting appropriate boundaries. Formative: Healthy youth ministries build upon the ability of the church to help shape teenagers and their families into loving and graceful disciples of Jesus, who can process and articulate their faith with respect and conviction. Formative youth ministries help youth and adults set spiritual goals.

and grow. Safe youth ministries offer physical, mental and emotional safety for all participants. Sustainable: Healthy youth ministries honor the commitment of a faith community to walk the long road of life and faith together. Congregations that value sustainability seek to be aware of the ways policies, procedures and precedents impact the length and success of leaders within the youth ministry. The CBF Youth Ministry Network at Oasis 2016, a retreat for youth ministers held every other year.

Join the conversation!

Mission-Focused: A healthy youth ministry connects teens into the larger context of the church’s relationship to what God is doing locally and globally. This understanding of mission goes far beyond participation in mission trips and mission projects. It calls each of us to be constantly aware of the kingdom of God.

We invite your congregation to join CBF Youth Ministry Network this summer during our June Membership Drive. Join us at www.cbfymn.org where you can access the full Foundational Attribute Resource, connect with fellow youth ministers, participate in discussion groups and join our Facebook group.

Relational: Relational youth ministries choose to walk alongside teenagers and their families with no agenda other than to “live life together.” Relational youth ministries use measures other than numbers to evaluate youth ministry.

Join us at our workshop at General Assembly on Thursday, June 23, to hear more about how CBFYMN is reframing the conversation about youth ministry!

Safe: The words we allow, the tone of our discussions, the ability to give space for disbelief as well as belief and the way we include others all contribute to the environment in which youth learn, relate


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endorsed person

By Carrie McGuffin and Aaron Weaver DECATUR, Ga. — Less than 20 years after the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship began endorsing chaplains and pastoral counselors, CBF has named its 1,000th endorsed person. The CBF Council on Endorsement on March 5 selected Erin Lysse, a second-year chaplaincy resident at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem, N.C., as its 1,000th endorsee. Lysse expressed her passion for chaplaincy ministry and the great sense of tradition and honor to be named the 1,000th CBF-endorsed chaplain or pastoral counselor. “Being a chaplain gives me the opportunity to sit with people in some of the worst times they might experience in life. I meet folks who are experiencing crises that change their lives forever,” Lysse said. “CBF is endorsing me as the 1,000th endorsee, and I feel a connection to an important legacy of ministry, and my hope is to continue that legacy.” CBF chaplains and pastoral counselors serve in a variety of contexts including medical centers, correctional institutions, hospice organizations, police and fire and rescue departments, colleges and universities, businesses, retirement communities, pastoral counseling centers, the Department of Veterans Affairs, Civil Air Patrol and in each branch of the United States Armed Forces, as well as numerous other specialized settings. CBF’s chaplaincy and pastoral counseling ministries have a rich history in the life of the Fellowship. After several years of discussion, CBF declared itself a “religious endorsing body” and formed the CBF Council on Endorsement in 1997 and the following year endorsed its first four chaplains and pastoral counselors: Paula Peek, a hospice chaplain in Kentucky; Tim Madison, a hospital chaplain in Texas; Jim

To watch a video celebrating the 1,000th endorsement, visit www.cbf.net/chaplaincy or scan the barcode shown here.

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Pruett, a pastoral counselor in South Carolina; and Capt. Jim Harwood, a United States Navy chaplain. Within four years, CBF endorsed more than 100 chaplains and pastoral counselors and, in 2001, selected long-time chaplain George Pickle as the Fellowship’s first full-time endorser for chaplains and pastoral counselors. During Pickle’s 12-year-tenure as endorser, the number of endorsed chaplains and pastoral counselors grew from 138 to 715. After Pickle’s retirement in 2013, U.S. Navy Chaplain Capt. Gerry Hutchinson was selected to succeed Pickle as endorser. Hutchinson shared his excitement to celebrate this milestone endorsement and emphasized the privilege he feels to support those living out a call to minister in these specialized settings. “George Pickle laid a strong foundation for the ministry of chaplains and pastoral counselors with the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship,” Hutchinson said. “It is my great privilege to carry the torch onward. I am abundantly grateful that God continues to call, gift and guide women and men to CBF whose passion is kingdom work through chaplaincy and pastoral counseling.”


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Advocacy2016 in Action Conference By Aaron Weaver More than 60 Cooperative Baptists convened in Washington, D.C., March 8-10, for the 2016 Advocacy in Action conference. During the three-day annual event, participants explored advocacy as a faithful expression of Christian mission around the theme “Justice. Freedom. God’s Mission.” Participants visited CBF churches in the nation’s capital, including Calvary Baptist Church, National Baptist Memorial Church and First Baptist Church of the City of Washington, D.C. Attendees also visited the headquarters of CBF partner organizations Bread for the World and the Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty, where they learned more about how to be an effective advocate — locally, nationally and globally. The 60-plus participants held 24 meetings with the congressional staffs of U.S. Representatives and Senators on Capitol Hill to discuss a wide range of issues, from hunger relief to criminal justice reform to immigration

A small group of Advocacy in Action participants pose for a photo at the historic Calvary Baptist Church in Washington, D.C.

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issues to payday and auto-title lending to hazardous waste siting. Participants also had the opportunity to hear from global religious freedom advocates and academics focused on the role of congregations in creating a “Kingdom politics.” “I’m so excited by the rapid growth of our annual Advocacy in Action conference,” said Stephen Reeves, CBF’s associate coordinator of partnerships and advocacy. “This year’s event was our largest ever. It is exciting to see such a broad group of pastors, staff and church members dive in to advocacy, discuss challenging current issues and put their faith and commitments to practice on Capitol Hill, and be able to learn from our wonderful partners and hospitable congregations in the District. The way so many energetic young Baptists and seminarians have embraced missions-based advocacy is especially encouraging.”

Calvary pastoral resident Elijah Zehyoue spoke to Advocacy in Action participants about the need for criminal justice reform and ways congregations can become engaged in this national effort alongside other faith communities.

CBF Moderator Matt Cook, pastor of First Baptist Church, Wilmington, N.C., and CBF Past Moderator Kasey Jones, senior pastor of National Baptist Memorial Church in Washington, D.C., after a session at NBMC.

Conference organizer Stephen Reeves (far right), CBF’s associate coordinator of partnerships and advocacy, poses with CBF advocacy outreach specialists Sharon Felton (left), Anyra Cano (center) and Rachel Gunter Shapard (right).

Advocacy in Action participants learned about the mission and work of the Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty and its current efforts to defend and extend religious liberty for all.

Allen Ingram, a CBF Leadership Scholar from Duke Divinity School, debriefs on the steps of the U.S. Capitol following a congressional visit.

Pictured is a mural outside of National Baptist Memorial Church in Washington, D.C., celebrating the rich diversity of the Columbia Heights neighborhood.

J.D. Newman, a CBF Leadership Scholar at Baylor University’s Truett Seminary, shares a laugh with CBF Young Baptist Ecosystem Manager Devita Parnell.

Michelle Ballard (left), a CBF Leadership Scholar at Mercer University’s McAfee School of Theology, and Britt Hester, minister of youth and mission at Hendricks Avenue Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Fla., listen to a presentation about the hunger relief work of CBF-partner Bread for the World.

CBF Leadership Scholars Patrick Cardwell (left) and Daniel Potter (right) of Wake Forest University School of Divinity smile outside of the Rayburn House Office Building after a congressional visit.

Hannah McMahan, coordinator of the New Baptist Covenant, shared about NBC’s efforts to form covenants of action between congregations around justice issues such as literacy and racial reconciliation.

Advocacy in Action 2016 kicked off at the historic First Baptist Church of the City of Washington, D.C., whose sanctuary includes stained-glass windows featuring prominent figures from Baptist history.

Participants and speakers enjoyed their time discussing advocacy during the three-day conference. Pictured from left to right: Elijah Zehyoe, pastoral resident at D.C.’s Calvary Baptist Church; Alyssa Aldape, missions minister at First Baptist Church, Dalton, Ga.; Lauren McDuffie, a hospital chaplain in Memphis, Tenn.; and Caitlyn Furr, a CBF Leadership Scholar at Emory University’s Candler School of Theology.

Authors Sam Spears (left) and Kris Norris (right) spoke with participants about their new book Kingdom Politics: In Search of a New Political Imagination for Today’s Church.

Advocacy in Action participants convene on the steps of the U.S. Capitol after holding 24 congressional visits to discuss issues such as immigration reform, predatory lending, hunger and criminal justice reform.

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Opportunities to

June 2016

David and Lauren Bass have embraced the opportunity to integrate into the culture of Phnom Penh, Cambodia, where they serve as CBF field personnel.


Visit cbf.net/affectonline for additional Opportunities to Affect, including: In Small Groups In a Unique Setting

LEARN Learn more about the work of David and Lauren Bass at cbf.net/bass

PRAY Pray for the Basses and other CBF field personnel using CBF’s prayer guide, Prayers of the People. Download the PDF at cbf.net/pray

NETWORK Information about CBF’s Global Missions commitments and contexts is available at cbf.net/missions

GIVE Your gifts to the CBF Offering for Global Missions support all field personnel. Find more information at cbf.net/give

Language Learning AT CHURCH: AROUND THE TABLE Missions Education Resource

The outline below is designed for adult group discussion around tables. Share copies of fellowship! magazine prior to the meeting and have extra copies available. These suggestions are for a 30-minute time frame.

1. This session focuses on CBF field personnel David and Lauren Bass in Cambodia as they learn the Khmer language. Prepare by reading the article “A Practice in Patience” on pp. 18-20. 2. Prior to the session, enlist someone to lead the discussion at each table. Ask them to read the article, to gather information about the Khmer alphabet (www.omniglot.com/writing/ khmer.htm) and to be prepared to guide conversation among participants.


A publication of Cooperative Baptist Fellowship • www.cbf.net



(1) Why does David consider language learning a ministry?

5. Tell the group that there is a leader at each table who is prepared to facilitate a discussion. Give them a time frame (8-10 minutes).

(2) How has learning the Khmer language aided David and Lauren in building relationships?

6. After leaders share information about the Khmer alphabet and language, they will use the questions provided to lead the discussion.

(3) How could learning a language other than English be used as ministry in our own congregation or community?

7. Allow a few minutes for sharing of insights from the groups. Close with prayer for David and Lauren and other CBF field personnel who face similar challenges with learning other languages.

3. Print the following questions for each leader:

(4) Why might learning another language be embraced as a spiritual practice?

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4. Begin the session by sharing information about David and Lauren. Include their ministry setting, their vision and mission, their Practicing Patience reasons for learning the in Cambodia Khmer language, how it helps them develop relationships and how it makes them more understanding of immigrants and refugees in our own country.

Opportunities to

July 2016

Johns Creek Baptist Church works with partners in the Dominican Republic and Ethiopia to fund and build clean water sources.


Visit cbf.net/affectonline for additional Opportunities to Affect, including: In Worship: A Missions Moment At Home: With Children

LEARN Learn more about Johns Creek Baptist Church at jcbc.org

PRAY Pray for ministries, churches and needs around the world using CBF’s prayer guide, Prayers of the People. Download the PDF at cbf.net/pray

NETWORK Explore opportunities to join a network of support and service at cbf.net/serve

GIVE Your gifts to the CBF Offering for Global Missions help the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship foster diverse mission and ministries worldwide. Give online at cbf.net/give

Clean Water Projects IN SMALL GROUPS

Missions Education Resource The outline below is designed for adult mission groups, Bible study classes and other small groups. Share copies of fellowship! magazine with group members prior to the meeting and have extra copies available. These suggestions are for a 45-minute time frame.

1. This session centers on the ministry of CBF partner congregation Johns Creek Baptist Church near Atlanta. Read the article on pp. 22-24 in this issue of fellowship! magazine and gather copies for the participants. 2. I nvite someone to read aloud John 4:13-14 — the passage about Jesus as the Living Water. 3. Say, “ When the Samaritan woman came to the well that day, she needed two kinds of water: the kind that relieves physical thirst and the kind that relieves spiritual thirst. The same is still true of humans today: both kinds of water are essential.” 4. E xplain, “According to Michael McCullar of Johns Creek Baptist Church near Atlanta, ‘Over 1 billion people in the world don’t have access to clean water, and 1.8 billion die from waterborne diseases each year,’ which is why the church invests mission resources, prayer and relationships around access to clean water for communities in the Dominican Republic and Ethiopia.” 5. S hare how the church discovered the clean water crisis in the Dominican Republic while serving in Haiti, and began to see

that “if you can solve the water problem, it opens the doors for so many things,” including strengthening families, empowering communities, and building up churches, seminaries, schools and hospitals.

A publication of Cooperative Baptist Fellowship • www.cbf.net


Practicing Patience in Cambodia


6. T ell how the church partners with organizations to connect congregations with water filtration systems and well-digging, focusing on creating sustainable projects that can be replicated by local partners. The church is committed to funding one water filtration system and one well each year. 7. W rap up by sharing McCullar’s statement: “In a world that is thirsty for the truth in the Gospel and where people are dying every day because they don’t have access to clean water, we are doing what we need to do.” 8. C lose with a prayer for Johns Creek Baptist Church and its partners as they work to provide clean water and share the life-giving love of the One who is the Living Water.

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160 Clairemont Avenue, Suite 500 Decatur, GA 30030 www.cbf.net (800) 352-8741

ARE YOU READY for General Assembly? As you plan for your time in Greensboro: • Check out the online Assembly schedule to make sure you don’t miss any opportunities • Read up on special events and make any last minute ticket purchases


• Pick your workshops and come ready to share and to grow Need to decide last minute? You can register for Assembly onsite. Come when you can and stay as long as you like. Find all Assembly information at www.cbf.net/assembly