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fellowship!

CBF

May/June 2008

Cooperative baptist fellowship | www.thefellowship.info

Serving Christians and churches as they discover and fulfill their God-given mission

Angie Weston Hoff photo

Around the world, CBF field personnel and partner churches are working to provide educational opportunities to children. In Kenya, child development centers are changing the lives of children and giving communities a renewed sense of hope for the future. See pages 6-13.

ABetterFuture Education changes children’s lives


The Baptist Family The word “denomination” conjures up all kind of images and creates varied responses. From nostalgia to repulsion, from benign indifference to hostile rejection – few words in the Christian vocabulary cause more conversation than the word denomination. If asked what is my denomination, I readily answer – “Baptist.” Within the Christian church I find myself most at home within the Baptist family, tribe or clan. The question many are asking is this, “Are Christian denominations a thing of the past or are they here to stay?” And even more specific, “Is the Baptist denomination a thing of the past?” My own answer to these questions is that I believe the Baptist family is not only relevant for today but is undergoing something of a renewal for tomorrow. Note that I am using very relational and personal language to speak of the Baptist denomination. Although I realize the Baptist denomination is much more than this, it is in family terms that being Baptist has its greatest meaning. Baptists are real people with convictions and with whom relationships are established. The Baptist family is not about to go away, and let me tell you why I believe this is so. First, the Baptist family was born out of a faith tradition that continues to nourish a great number of churches. Recently I took our grandson to a pre-school sponsored by a local United Methodist Church. As I walked into the building seeing the posters about ministry and programs, I was made aware of a congregation now ministering to my own family. My heart was warmed, my eyes filled with tears, and I gave thanks to God for a faith tradition that had nurtured this and many other churches. The same could be said about the faith tradition we call Baptist. It was birthed by Christians who gathered in worshipping congregations and started other worshipping congregations that are ministering in today’s world. The local church is where people come to Christ and where they are nurtured in Christ. Churches are where people are baptized, ordained, married and buried. Churches are where the gospel is lived out in community. So as long as churches are started and strengthened by people who hold to a living faith tradition, the family that embraces that tradition will continue to have relevance. Second, the Baptist family is an association of churches that fosters community for churches beyond themselves. I will occasionally say to someone who wants to claim the local church as the “end all” and “be all” that the local church is the Body of Christ but it is not all of the Body of Christ.” Or to put it in different terms, the church of which I am a member is the Body of Christ, but the Body of Christ is bigger than the church of which I am a member. Churches need community and connections beyond themselves. They need association with other churches. Third, the Baptist family is a social system that extends the mission of local churches. If you Vol. 18, No. 3 are listening at all to the conversations about “missional churches,” you know that something of a executive Coordinator • Daniel Vestal revolution is taking place in which local churches are rightfully reasserting themselves as the center Coordinator, Fellowship Advancement • Ben McDade of the world mission enterprise. But I disagree with those who conclude there is therefore no Editor • Lance Wallace need for collaboration between churches in mission. None of us wants to return to the day when managing Editor • Patricia Heys churches designated the mission society or the denomination to take their place. Collaboration for Associate Editor • Carla Wynn Davis mission is woven into the fabric of the gospel. Phone • (770) 220-1600 If collaboration and cooperation is to occur in a way that extends the mission of local churches, Fax • (770) 220-1685 E-Mail • fellowship@thefellowship.info some system, structure or organization will be required. The Baptist family of today will be a Web Site • www.thefellowship.info social system that looks different from 100 years ago or even 25 years ago, but such a system is still fellowship! is published 7 times a year important. in Sept./Oct., Special I (Oct.), Nov./Dec., The Baptist family is far from perfect but it is my family and I am grateful for it. Jan./Feb., Mar./Apr., May/June, Special II (July) by The Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, Inc., 3001 Mercer University Dr., Atlanta, GA 30341-4115. Periodicals postage paid at Atlanta, GA, and additional mailing offices. USPS #015-625 POSTMASTER: Send address changes to “fellowship!” Newsletter, Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, P.O. Box 450329, Atlanta, GA 31145-0329

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Daniel Vestal, CBF Executive Coordinator


Contents 6-13

A Better Future: Education transforms lives of children, communities

15

Five Tips ... For making the most of your General Assembly experience

16

Church Benefits Board attracts members with competitive plans

18-19

CBF Offering for Global Missions: Field personnel develop Bible translations

meet Jeremy Lewis Jeremy Lewis serves as manager of Together for Hope, the Fellowship’s rural poverty initiative. Lewis works alongside individuals, churches and partner organizations to help alleviate poverty in 20 of the nation’s poorest counties. His goal is to connect people where their skills fit best, creating mutually beneficial relationships. Based out of the Fellowship’s Atlanta office, Lewis frequently travels to the focal counties of Together for Hope, building relationships with community members and assessing the goals, assets and opportunities for Fellowship Baptists to address some of the challenges these communities face. Hometowns: Cave Spring, Ga.; Smyrna, Ga.; Morrow, Ga. Education: University of Georgia in Athens, Ga.; Emory

University’s Candler School of Theology in Atlanta, Ga. Church: Northside Drive Baptist Church in Atlanta, Ga. Interesting fact: Lewis’ interest in economic development continues in his spare time. He’s involved in a cooperative catering business, Tummy and Soul, based in the Grant Park community of Atlanta. “I am so thankful for Together for Hope and the opportunity to work alongside people who are a part of this ministry. Together for Hope’s long-term commitment and capacity focused approach remind us that relationships are a catalyst for change, both physically and spiritually. At the center of these relationships, is our commitment to being the presence of Christ and finding guidance in our response to poverty from our biblical foundation.” Contact Jeremy Lewis at jlewis@thefellowship.info or (800) 352-8741.

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Fellowship People Vilma Manso and Edwin Perez

L

ove is the key to reaching the Hispanic community, Vilma Manso believes. Manso and her husband, Edwin Perez, are co-pastors of Un Nuevo Amanecer, which translates as “A New Dawn.” The church started a year and half ago and reaches out to the growing Hispanic population in Morrow, Ga. “Everyone responds to smiles and hugs … people know when they are loved,” said Manso. “[In the Hispanic community], there are spiritual, educational, fellowship needs, a need to help them grow in a foreign land, and a need to be accepted by Christians.” Natives of Puerto Rico, Manso and Perez are bi-vocational

Scott McBroom

H

elping people attempt to satisfy a deep hunger for God motivates Scott McBroom’s continued involvement in the Fellowship’s Spiritual Formation Network. A founding member of Providence Baptist Church in Charleston, S.C., McBroom served on the Fellowship task force that developed “Light for the Path: A Guide to Spiritual Formation Resources.” He believes making people aware of available spiritual formation resources is one valuable service the network provides. McBroom has also participated in the

Katie McKown

A

s chair of the steering committee for Current, Katie McKown strives to build on the “wonderful foundation” those before her established. Current, established a decade ago, serves as a network for young ministers and leaders in the Fellowship movement. “As [Current participants] engage in dialogue, we encourage one another to live the missional life,” said McKown, a graduate of Truett Theological Seminary, a Fellowship partner. “We learn from one another and share ideas, and then we employ them in

Chuck Arney

M

embers of Cornerstone Baptist Church in Lee’s Summit, Mo., strive to become more missional because “Jesus Christ came alongside people and calls the church to do so,” explained pastor Chuck Arney. And the congregation’s deepened missional commitment has grown out of “Miracle Word,” a resource developed by the church’s pastoral leadership team. The church has spent more than five years exploring what it means to be missional. With “Miracle Word,” the daily readings and missional reflections have helped church members realize 4

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pastors. She works as a counselor, and he works as a doctor. The couple encourages Englishspeaking churches to reach out to Hispanics through English classes, after-school programs, Spanishlanguage Bible studies and worship Vilma Manso and Edwin Perez services. Through the Fellowship’s Hispanic Church Start Initiative, their church has partnered with First Baptist Church of Morrow, which provides Un Nuevo Amanecer with meeting space.

network’s annual events at General Assembly and the Fellowship’s spiritual formation retreats. “It has also been tapping into a real hunger, a hunger for meaning rather than frenetic activity,” said McBroom, a CBF-endorsed pastoral counselor. “This is what I’m passionate about. It’s at the core of who I am. I’m deeply Scott McBroom interested in connecting with God and with helping other people do that. You’re not going to find peace and purpose in frenetic activity.”

our own ministries.” Currently an assistant pastor at Memorial Baptist Church in Arlington, Va., McKown helps to facilitate Current events throughout the year, including the annual retreat, a gathering at General Assembly and the 11-on-11 missions project held each September. Katie McKown “I want to help in whatever way I can,” McKown said. “I want to be part of the CBF mission – being the presence of Christ.”

how the Bible calls them to involvement in the world. The study has led some groups, particularly young adults, to develop ministry projects and has energized the overall worship atmosphere. “God is calling us to find the marginalized and to seek to connect,” Arney said. “Being missional is important because it’s the gospel. Chuck Arney It’s who Jesus is and who he has called us to be. It’s also uncomfortable because we want to gravitate toward comfort and ease.”


WhyI give... “I believe it’s so important to support CBF because together we are fighting oppression in many different forms — race, gender, socio-economic. There are few organizations out there like CBF, which looks at difficult situations and then gets involved in being part of the solutions.”

Tiffany Kellogg

Jay Paul photo

Richmond, Va.

T

iffany Kellogg’s grandfather, pastor Jerry Barnes, introduced her to CBF many years ago. But it was a “burning bush experience” at a Passport camp that reinforced her call to ministry. Since then, Kellogg, 29, has been an active leader in CBF life, including becoming the youngest member of the CBF of Oklahoma

Coordinating Council at age 24. “I felt called, and I was looking for a place to serve where I, as a woman, could have a voice,” said Kellogg. “CBF of Oklahoma offered me that place, with the Baptist distinctives I so love.” One of the Fellowship’s leadership scholars, Kellogg is currently enrolled at

Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond, a Fellowship partner, where she also serves as the school’s admissions director. ‘‘The CBF scholarship has been huge for me,” she said. “It has been instrumental in enabling me to go to school, and I’m so grateful to the people who have worked so hard to put these scholarships in place.” fellowship!

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“People were also bringing babies to Jesus to have him touch them. When the disciples saw this, they rebuked them. But Jesus called the children

ABetter F

rom mobile schools and

Future

kindergartens to specialized programs and tutoring, CBF field

personnel and partner churches are working together to provide educational opportunities to children around the world.

“Achieving universal primary education” is one of the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals, and Fellowship Baptists have been working toward this goal for years. Individuals and churches are facilitating, supporting and leading educational programs that give children resources for a better future and transform communities. Learn about their stories. Pray for the children. Explore where you can serve. And give to these ministries that make a difference.

Motima — At 15 years old,

Motima is already a wife and a mother. She’s already grieved the loss of her parents, who were killed in the Liberian civil war. But something she’s never done is go to school — until CBF field personnel Calandra and Jessy Togba-Doya helped open Balama Elementary School in 2006. Before the school opened, the only education village children received was a literacy class that met under a tree. Motima attended until, at 10 years

The Ioan Family —

In Bucharest, Romania, the Ruth School is providing hope for a better future to Roma families such as the Ioans. Doina Ioan and her three children, Gigi, 15, Valentin, 9, and Georgiana, 8, all live in one room of a four-room house shared by three other families in the Ferentari neighborhood, the poorest area in the city. Like many Romany, who face discrimination, the Ioans struggle financially. “If it weren’t for [the Ruth School], I wouldn’t be able to send all three of my 6

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old, she was forced to join “sande,” the tribal bush school where seclusion from society and female circumcision is common. Now, like hundreds of other villagers, she’s learning to read and write and will one day be able to help her young daughter do the same. “She is one of our students who never ceases to amaze us by her courage and determination to overcome the challenges women of rural Liberia face,” said the TogbaDoyas. “It is just not enough to preach

‘Jesus saves’ throughout the villages we serve. We seek to be the presence of Christ through our work by leading lives that point to Christ, being his hands and feet in hopeless situations.”

children to school. I couldn’t afford it,” said Doina, who works as a maid. Her hope for her children is that they will be able to attend high school and college and break the cycle of poverty. Founded by a Baptist church, the Ruth School offers educational opportunities to children such as Gigi, Valentin and Georgiana, who might drop out otherwise. At the Ruth School, children are not required to pay dues or pay for supplies. The school receives funding from the Fellowship and CBF partner churches and relies on hands-

on involvement from churches, including First Baptist Church of Midland, Texas, and Boulevard Baptist Church in Anderson, S.C.


to him and said, ‘Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.’” – Luke 18:15-16

Chris — One of six children being raised by a single mom, Chris dropped out of school in the ninth grade. For months, Christy Craddock, one of CBF’s field personnel in Miami, encouraged Chris to return to school, and one day he told her he was ready to go back but needed help. “In our neighborhood, where drug

Toi — When Toi’s father died, leaving her mother with huge debts, Fellowship Baptists and partner churches stepped in to provide scholarships that enabled her to complete high school and college. In Toi’s village in Southeast Asia, few children can afford to attend school past the sixth grade. With CBF scholarships, Toi and three other young people have become the first people in their village to

Lily — Two years ago, Lily would of-

ten fall when she walked and she seldom spoke. Her mother enrolled her at Angel House, one of the only programs in China that provides rehabilitation and educational services to children with cerebral palsy, such as Lily. Angel House, which is funded in part by the Fellowship, has provided Lily with the education and therapy she needed to

Ernesto — Ernesto moved to

the United States from Honduras at age 12, and without English language skills, he quickly fell behind in school. By the time he met CBF field personnel Greg and Sue Smith, Ernesto had been expelled from alternative school. But the Smiths worked with Ernesto to develop a plan. They provided counseling, tutoring and advocated on his behalf in the school and court systems. They also encouraged him to write a letter to the principal of the local high school.

dealers are happy to employ young men with nothing to do, I wanted to make sure I helped Chris get back in school,” Craddock said. “It was important to me to see Chris finish high school and be able to find a job he can enjoy.” With his mother’s approval, Craddock helped Chris gather the necessary documents to apply to local alternative

education programs. Now, Chris stops by on a weekly basis to tell Craddock how he’s doing in school.

graduate from college. “Toi was the first person in her people group to come to Christ,” said one of CBF’s field personnel. “Her boldness in the face of social opposition to her decision is all the more dramatic due to the fact that Toi is blind. But that has not stopped her from reaching her full God-given potential.” Now, Toi is attending seminary. She

plans to work alongside CBF field personnel and the other college graduates from her village to translate the Bible into her native language.

improve her physical, language and social skills, and she is now able to participate in a regular classroom. Recently, CBF representative Brenda Lisenby walked with Lily to her new kindergarten and asked the 5year-old if she enjoyed school. Lily nodded and replied, “Yes.” “I was so proud to be walking by her side, letting her hold my finger and guide me to her classroom,” Lisenby said. “I

knew we had come a long way in two years. Before, she would not interact with me. But now, she was willing to walk with me, hold my hand and converse with me.”

“What I am asking for is a second chance,” Ernesto wrote. “We all mess up in life, and I would like to have the opportunity to go to a regular high school. I would like to try sports like wrestling or maybe baseball, and get to go to homecoming and to prom one day. I have been making some good friends like Ms. Sue and Mr. Greg, and they have been trying to help me become a better person. I want to make them proud of me. And I want to be proud of myself.” The principal called Ernesto for an

interview and admitted him into the school. Now, Ernesto is finishing 10th grade and passing all his classes. fellowship!

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Change for children Early education centers transform lives in Kenya

J

— particularly something as beneficial as

velopment centers in Kenya as part of the

how he often welcomed children. He also

a school for young Kenyan children — the

ministry of CBF field personnel Melody

said that it would be better not to have

villagers come.

and Sam Harrell.

been born than to cause harm to come to

ohn Williams of Roanoke,

community, and they know the difference it

potential to better the lives of the nearly 650

Va., found that when a group

will make for their young children.

children, ranging in age from 3 to 6, who

of American Christians

“It’s just unbelievable,” said Williams,

build something in Kenya

who has helped construct two child de-

They come to watch progress happening

The Harrells call this education

will attend the schools this year. “Those who follow after Jesus will recall

a child,” said Sam Harrell. “Unfortunately,

project Change for Children because the

children as a group, remain among

the work, and they come to say thank you.

construction of eight integrated child

the most vulnerable, marginalized and

They know the change it will bring to their

development centers around Kenya has the

neglected sectors of the human family.”

Angie Weston Hoff photo

before their eyes. They come to support

As part of their partnership with child development centers, members of First Baptist Church of Hopewell, Va., sang songs with children at a center near Baringo, Kenya.

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PRAY may/june 2008

To learn about specific prayer requests related to these ministries,


Children in sub-Saharan Africa countries

“Change in the lives of children through

CBF of Missouri will continue sending

such as Kenya are among the world’s most

education, better nutrition, elimination of

teams of church members to Kenya to teach,

vulnerable children. In 2004, statistics showed

disease, and Christian love and compassion

play with children, do construction and

the region was losing ground in child mortal-

is the goal of this effort,” said Harrell.

provide medical services. Other churches

ity. Then, 42 percent of all children who died

But Kenyans aren’t the only ones changed.

supporting Change for Children have sent

before the age of 5 were living in sub-Saharan

“An equally important benefit is the

similar teams to serve and learn.

Africa. Lack of access to nutrition, vaccines,

change that occurs in the lives of those who

With all eight centers now constructed

safe drinking water and other resources are just

commit to be partners in the initiative, us-

and educating children, the Harrells look to

some reasons these children are so vulnerable.

ing their God-given gifts, resources and

the future – adding playground equipment

skills and discovering God in the process,”

to better develop children’s motor skills and

Harrell said.

continuing work to ensure children have

The Harrells, who have served in Kenya since 1999, wanted to build on the change they have seen through previous feeding

And that’s the kind of project CBF of

projects, agriculture advances and education

Missouri was looking for when it commit-

initiatives. While government-sponsored

ted to funding and supporting a child de-

primary school has been free for children

velopment center.

since 2002, pre-school and kindergarten

“We wanted to do more than raise

access to food and clean water no matter the season in Kenya. “It has been said that it takes a village to raise a child,” Harrell said. “In these days, a global village response is [needed] in order

programs are not available in rural areas.

money and give it to the project,” said CBF

that children in difficult circumstances are

Seeing a need, the Harrells launched Change

of Missouri coordinator Harold Phillips.

treated with the dignity they deserve and

for Children with the hope that the centers

“We wanted it to be an experience that had

are not forever hampered due to improper

would give children a head start in school

some personal involvement. [Change for

treatment during the most crucial develop-

and also help marginalized communities.

Children] helps us to have our eyes opened

mental periods of life.”

The Harrells turned to Fellowship partner

to a part of the world and some needs and

churches for funding and support of the proj-

challenges beyond where most of us live.”

By Carla Wynn Davis, CBF Communications

ect. Williams’ church, Rosalind Hills Baptist Church, is one of several Roanoke-area churches who have helped fund the centers. “The [centers] give children an opportunity to be in a school. It gives them a place to learn — that they can come to and not only be fed from school work but be physically fed with food,” Williams said. Change for Children includes a daily nutritionally-balanced meal. The project also ensures children have all the materials necessary for learning, are immunized and treated for parasites and malaria, have an insecticide-treated mosquito net to protect them from malaria at home while they sleep. The construction of foot bridges ensures children can get to school even during Kenya’s rainy season when river levels rise and are impassable.

Angie Weston Hoff photo

access to safe drinking water, and receive

Children from age 3 to 6 attend the child development centers.

subscribe to the prayer e-newsletter at www.thefellowship.info/subscribe.

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Mobile schools prepare Banjara childre

I

n the Banjara community in

For many Banjara children, work

a single one aspired to be anything more

India, education of the children

begins before sunrise. Some spend the day

than what their parents did,” said Eddie

began by educating the adults. As

taking care of their younger siblings, and

Aldape. “The caste system enslaves them

the parents learned to read, they wanted

others work washing dishes, selling tea or

into thinking they have no right to dream

the same for their children. So after

delivering food. School is often not a viable

of better things. But when a Banjara comes

Eddie and Macarena Aldape, CBF field

option.

to Christ, everything changes. They find

personnel, started literacy programs for

“When we first started our mobile

their worth in Christ and are no longer

adults, they began mobile schools for

schools we asked the children what they

sentenced to accept their situation — the

the children.

want to be when they grew up, and not

possibilities are endless.”

Small church makes a big impact before they can start

small and unassuming, but

first grade. The kin-

the members of Priddy Baptist

dergarten started by

Church are making a powerful impact on

the Smiths and CBF

children living in the ghetto of Skojpe,

field personnel Ar-

Macedonia.

ville and Shelia Earl

A few years ago, Cooperative Baptist

provides a free educa-

Fellowship field personnel Darrell and

tion to children living

Kathy Smith traveled to Priddy, Texas,

in the ghettos of Sko-

located 75 miles west of Waco, to speak

pje, who otherwise

at Priddy Baptist. The Smiths spoke to

might not have access

the congregation about their ministry

to education.

in Macedonia — the languages, culture, ethnicities and the needs. Many of the approximately 40 members

In addition to their annual contributions to mis-

CBF photo

T

he church building may be

The kindergarten provides a free education to children in the ghettos of Skojpe, Macedonia.

of Priddy Baptist are teachers, social work-

sions, Priddy Baptist

ers and foster parents, and they were moved

members gave $17,000 last year to support

half the year — utilities and rent, plus back-

by the stories of the children living in pov-

the kindergarten in Skopje, and they have

packs and school supplies.

erty in Macedonia. A few months later, they

pledged to do the same again this year.

invited the Smiths back to the church. “When we were invited back, the church

“We are a very small church and support

“Just as hope came into the world as a small child, so hope has come to the families of the

for this project gives us a sense of contributing

kindergarten through the efforts of a small

wanted to know more about the kindergarten

to a cause greater than ourselves,” said Butch

church,” Kathy said. “Though they might never

project,” Darrell said. “The kindergarten had

Pesch, pastor of Priddy Baptist. “We love the

meet each other, Priddy Baptist has changed

touched the heart of this church and given

Smiths and the Earls and are thrilled to have a

the lives of these children and their families.

them a vision for where God was working.”

small part in what God is doing in Macedonia.”

Only God knows how these seeds of hope that

In Macedonia there are no state spon-

The church’s funds have provided educa-

sored kindergartens or preschool programs,

tional opportunities for 40 children, paying

but children are still required to pass a test

for the expenses of the kindergarten for

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GIVE may/june 2008

have been planted will sprout and grow.” By Patricia Heys, CBF Communications

To financially support the educational programs for chil


en for classroom setting their future is brighter. Many

are prepared for a classroom setting. They

were also malnourished, and by

learn to read, write and speak English. They

providing them a healthy meal,

also learn about classroom behavior and

their learning has increased and

expectations.

their health has improved. As

“Besides the education they are receiving,

we see what God has done with

many parents have thanked us because of the

this first generation of believers,

changes they have seen in their children,” Al-

we know something great will

dape said. “Their behavior has changed and

come in the next.”

CBF photo

Through the mobile schools, children

Banjara children often begin working before sunrise.

‘Instill a love for literacy’

A

t the annual Martin Luther King

and an area for

Jr. Day parade in Helena-West

storytelling.

Helena, Ark., local children

During the

expected free candy, but they didn’t expect

school year, the

a free book. Thanks to a CBF ministry

bus goes to Kids

called Stories on Wheels, more than 200

for the Future,

books were given to children on the parade

a center where

route as yet another way to enhance literacy

children at risk

in Phillips County, one of the poorest

of development

counties in the United States.

delays are read

CBF field personnel Ben and Leonora

a Bible story and can borrow

to address literacy needs since they arrived

a book to read

in 2002. What began as a small library in

at home. In the

the local community center has grown to

summer, the bus

book giveaways at Christmas, an after-

visits outlying

school tutoring program and a traveling

communities several times a week.

library that brings books to children who wouldn’t visit a library otherwise. “The purpose of this is to instill a love

CBF photo

Newell live in the county and have worked

The Stories on Wheels bus includes book shelves and an area for storytelling.

“Literacy is a great need in this community,” said Tracy Davis, a local resident who works with children in the Helena-West

is to reduce poverty. Helping people to appreciate reading and the ability to read is part of that effort. Over the years, the ministry has

for literacy early on,” Leonora said. “Kids

Helena Community Center. “Some of the

received more than 5,000 donated books

are more likely to go to a library and

kids will never leave Helena, but if they can

and can always use more — new, gently

explore [because of] being exposed to this.”

pick up a book, who knows where they’ll

used and especially multicultural books.

land. With their imagination they can go

Opportunities are also available year-round

around the world.”

for Fellowship Baptists to be involved with

In 2005, Stories on Wheels, as the literacy program is called, grew to include a bus, which was donated by First Baptist

The Newells are part of Together for

Church in Huntsville, Ala. The inside of

Hope, CBF’s rural poverty initiative, and

the bus was refinished with shelves, books,

their ultimate goal in Phillips County

ldren, give to the Fellowship using the envelope included in this issue.

the Stories on Wheels program. By Carla Wynn Davis, CBF Communications

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School of hope

Gandhi School provides rare opportunity for Roma youth

W

hen Glen Adkins started

“Glen and I hope that we can help [the

The school gives hope to students such

the music program at the

students] to understand that God loves

as Jaelle, who when asked at Bible club one

Gandhi School, one of

them,” said Clista, who teaches English

evening what she was most afraid of, re-

the first songs he learned

classes at the school. “To understand that

sponded “I don’t ever want to have to stand

was the “Gypsy Hymn.” He was surprised to

God loves Roma people, that they are part

on the side of the road.” Jaelle, who has

find out that the chorus of the rhythmic but

of the larger family of God, and that God’s

seven siblings and whose father must travel

lamenting song translated “God, have mercy

gift of love in Jesus Christ was for Roma

to Germany to find work, was referring to

on us, so as our people should not suffer any

just as much as it was for everyone else. We

girls in Hungary who enter into prostitu-

longer, you have cursed us, you have punished

have this goal in mind in everything we do.”

tion in order to survive.

For the Romany people, also referred

Only 3 percent of Roma attend a univer-

“We are finding that people all around us

sity, and less than 20 percent attend high

seem to be looking

to as gypsies, the words of the song reflect

school. Those who do enroll in a public

for hope,” Clista said.

their experience of discrimination, persecu-

school are often placed in classes for stu-

“We are constantly

tion and suffering. The Gandhi School in

dents with mental disabilities in order to

surrounded by Roma

Pecs, Hungary, where Clista and Glen Ad-

separate them from non-Roma. The Gan-

people, particu-

kins serve as Cooperative Baptist Fellowship

dhi School provides a nurturing alternative

larly, who seem to be

field personnel, provides unique educational

for Roma, who come from impoverished

hanging on to their

opportunities for 250 Romany youth.

backgrounds. The students travel from

lives by a thread. So,

throughout Hungary to attend

with every word we

the school, and all of them come

say and every coin

from families facing hardships

we give, we hope we

— poverty, unemployment, life-

are being the pres-

threatening illnesses and social

ence of Christ.”

discrimination.

CBF photo

“When students graduate from

Clista Adkins, right, teaches English at the Gandhi School and helps to facilitate partnerships with churches in the United States.

12

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fellowship!

members of First

Gandhi, perhaps they will have

Baptist Church of

what few Eastern European Roma

Greenville, S.C.,

have ­— hope for their future,” said

first served at the

Clista. “That hope might include

school in 2005,

a broader view of the world and

but last year they

their potential to be a part of that

moved to Hungary

world, the ability to lead, opportu-

to minister full-

nities for jobs and education, am-

time. First Baptist’s

bition for their future, the ability

partnership with

and knowledge required to make

the Gandhi School

life better for the next generation

was facilitated by

or the ability to maintain their

church members

heritage while working within the

Ethel and Jim Chil-

larger society.”

dress in 2005. Since

SERVE may/june 2008

The Adkins,

CBF photo

us, you have made us eternal vagabonds.”

To learn about service opportunities related to education,


then, missions teams have traveled to the

First Baptist

Gandhi School each fall, teaching English

is one of several

classes and leading special programs.

churches partnering

“Our focus of each trip has been to build

with Glen, a former

Gandhi School The school was named for Mahatma

“Our partnership through CBF with field personnel at the Gandhi School is one opportunity for our members to live

Gandhi of India. While

out [the church’s] mission statement and

he was not Roma, he

covenant,” said Laura Shelley, missions co-

relationships, share God’s love, and teach

music minister, to

conversational English,” said the Childresses,

sponsor choir mem-

who have participated in six trips. “The

bers as they prepare

pressed in India and

inclusive love of Christ with the Gandhi

common thread in these interactions and

to perform at the

around the world.

students, we serve alongside CBF person-

relationships is openness and acceptance.

Baptist World Alli-

Over the years we have come to love these

ance Youth Confer-

remarkable Roma teenagers. Knowing

ence in Leipzig, Ger-

them and working with them has been life

many this summer.

changing. We are humbled that even though

In addition to learn-

this mission experience, transforming us in

they are treated so poorly by most people

ing hymns from the Romany tradition, Glen

ways yet unimagined.”

outside their culture, they still treat us with

is also teaching the choir songs such as “Oh

acceptance and respect.”

Happy Day” that communicate God’s love.

was an advocate for the poor and the op-

The Romany people originated from India

ordinator at First Baptist. “As we share the

nel, Gandhi teachers and Hungarian Chris-

more than 1,000

tians. An important aspect of our partner-

years ago, migrating

ship with the Gandhi School is the recog-

across Europe.

nition that God may speak to us through

By Patricia Heys, CBF Communications

Glen Adkins, far left, leads the Gandhi School choir, which has quickly grown to 40 members.

contact Chris Boltin at (800) 352-8741 or cboltin@thefellowship.info.

fellowship!

may/june 2008

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13


Meet in Memphis, June 19-20 The 18th annual Cooperative Baptist Fellowship General

Memphis. Use AirTran code MEM061908 to book flights

Assembly will gather June 19-20 in Memphis, Tenn., at

for June 15-25. Use Worldfile code NMDSW to purchase

the Cook Convention Center. Under the theme “Embrace

Northwest tickets for June 16 -23.

the World: Building Bridges,” the Assembly will explore

Get involved at the Assembly — There is a need

the significance of personal and church ministry and help

for ushers, hospitality volunteers, communion servers

discern the future direction of the Fellowship’s ministry.

and registration workers. Also, while the General

Pre-registration — Go to www.thefellowship.info/ assembly and pre-register. Pre-registration is free and

Assembly is happening, children and youth have special age-specific programming that need volunteers. Visit

can also be done by calling (800) 352-8741. Deadline

www.thefellowship.info/assembly/volunteer for more

is May 31.

information. To sing in the mass choir during worship,

Hotels — CBF hotel discounts are available following successful pre-registration. Two hotels have

contact Donna Gosser at dgosser@2bclr.com. Organizations hosting Auxiliary Events

sold out, but additional rooms are being made available

— Associated Baptist Press, Baptist Center for

at other area hotels. Go to www.thefellowship.info/

Ethics, Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond,

assembly or call (800) 352-8741 for details

Campbell University, Duke Divinity School, Central

Travel discounts — AirTran and Northwest airlines are offering up to 10 percent savings on flights to

Baptist Theological Seminary, Truett Seminary, Mercer University, Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty

Special musicians, preachers and speakers include:

Schedule of Events Sunday, June 15 “The Memphis Sessions,” an event for college students, begins.

Monday, June 16 Missions opportunities begin in Memphis and the surrounding area.

Wednesday, June 18 1-5 p.m. – “Celebrating God’s Call” Leadership Summit for ministers 7:30 p.m. – Global Missions field personnel commissioning service at First Baptist Church in Memphis Baptist minister and Christian recording human rights advocate artist Bethany Dillon Lauran Bethell performing Thursday preaching Thursday evening

CBF Executive Coordinator Daniel Vestal speaking Thursday afternoon

Mississippi pastor

Krystaal, Christian musicians from Congo, Chuck Poole doing performing during Wednesday evening’s Global Missions commissioning service

theme interpretation during worship

Thursday, June 19 8-9 a.m. – Poverty emphasis event 8:30 a.m. – Resource Fair opens 9-10:10 a.m. – Ministry workshops

Prayer, discernment about CBF’s future At this year’s Assembly, attendees will have the opportunity to be part of shaping CBF’s future ministry priorities through a guided, Assembly-wide prayer and discernment experience. “After 17 years of growing ministry, we will have important conversations about the shape of our future,” said CBF Executive Coordinator Daniel Vestal. “Where would God have us focus our energies, time and resources?” In a year-long process, CBF’s Advisory Council, Coordinating Council, state/regional leadership, staff and many others have been exploring these questions. This Assembly is an opportunity for all Fellowship Baptists to be part of the strategic prioritizing process. The discernment process begins Thursday, June 19. After receiving instructions and a time of worship prepara-

10:30 a.m. – Business session and introduction to discernment process 11:30 a.m. – Lunch & Auxiliary Events 1:30 p.m. – Worship with preparation for prayer/discernment 2:30-3:30 p.m. – Assembly-wide discernment and prayer groups 4 p.m. – State and regional CBF meetings 5:30 p.m. – Dinner & Auxiliary Events 7:30 p.m. – Worship with keynote speaker Lauran Bethell 9:00 p.m. – Resource Fair fellowship

tion, the Assembly will divide into nearly 30 groups for an hour-long, guided

9:30-10:30 p.m. – Coffeehouse concert with Bethany Dillon

prayer and discernment experience. Within these groups, small groups of

Friday, June 20

Thursday

10-15 people will form for prayer and reflection on specific questions. Each

8:30 a.m. – Resource Fair opens

10:30 a.m. business session

group’s determination of priorities will be brought to the Assembly Friday.

9-10:10 a.m. – Feedback from prayer and discernment groups

Discernment Process: – Instructions given 1:30 p.m. worship – Time of preparation 2:30 p.m. – Small group time

Friday 9 a.m. – Small group time 10:30 a.m. – Business session, Presentation of priorities

“All 30 groups will be given a list of potential priorities developed through this year-long process,” said CBF moderator Harriet Harral. “They will pray about these ideas, share responses and work through to a sense of what they feel God is calling CBF to focus on.” After the Assembly, the feedback will be reviewed by CBF’s Advisory Council, Coordinating Council and staff to develop and implement new ministry priorities. Harral anticipates a full report to be presented at the Assembly in 2009.

10:30 a.m. – Business Session 11:30 a.m. – Lunch & Auxiliary Events 1:30-2:40 p.m. – Workshops 3:15-4:25 p.m. – Workshops 5:30 p.m. – Dinner & Auxiliary Events 7:30 p.m. – Worship – A Celebration of Missional Churches 9-10 p.m. – “Baptist Blues & Barbeque Bash” in the Resource Fair


for making the most of your General Assembly experience Don’t miss: The Global Missions

Folks are gearing up for General Assembly, June 19-20, in Memphis, Tenn.

field personnel commissioning service, which will be held Wednesday evening before the Assembly begins.

This year’s Assembly features a variety of

The inspirational service begins at

worship and workshop opportunities. The

7:30 p.m. at First Baptist Church in

days are packed with activities and events

Memphis. Also, Pre-Assembly mission

to inspire, encourage and help you in your personal ministries. Here are a few tips for making the most of your General Assembly experience.

opportunities offered this year will enrich your experience. Work with other Fellowship Baptists to reach out to the residents of Memphis.

CBF photo

By Bo Prosser

The General Assembly Resource Fair will include more than 100 vendors, with resources, ideas, services and products.

as our Fellowship will pray and discern what God

3

challenge us to engage in missions and ministry in

Friday night in the Resource Fair will be a highlight.

would have us to do in the coming years. The

ways that we’ve yet to think about. Lauran Bethell

Throughout the Assembly, look for new and old

entire Assembly will stop for worship and prayer on

will certainly be an inspiration to us as she shares

friends. Don’t participate alone. Eat meals with

Thursday afternoon. We will be asking you to help us

stories from her ministry to victims of human

someone else, go to workshops with someone else

discern the work of the Fellowship as we together

trafficking. Churches involved in missional ministries

and sit in General Sessions with others. This is a

figure out “what’s next?” As we enter into a time of

will be sharing their stories and challenging us to

wonderful opportunity for networking and fellowship.

strategic prioritizing, prayer is crucial. Please pray

involve our own congregations in God’s mission

Find a buddy and share the experience with others.

that God will speak to each of us.

in the world. And the music — from choirs to

5

1

Pray Begin praying now that God will bless the Assembly. This is a very important meeting

Don’t miss: The prayer labyrinth will again be offered for those seeking a guided prayer experience. Daily devotionals and prayer thoughts

Attend the General Sessions

These times of worship are inspirational and informational. The speakers will

ensembles to soloists — is always a highlight of every Assembly. Don’t miss: Friday evening’s worship that will

will be printed in the General Assembly Guide.

celebrate the missional ministry of three Fellowship

Come expectantly for what God is going to do.

partner churches. Celebrate with them and learn

2

Come early and stay late Memphis is a wonderful place for a family vacation. There are sights and

sounds and tastes that are unique to Memphis. Bring your family and plan to spend some extended

sessions and dialogue with them about your church. Don’t miss: The Baptist Blues & Barbeque Bash

Seek new ideas Make use of the Resource Fair, which will feature more than 100 vendors,

with ideas and services for your church. Look at all the workshop offerings on the CBF Web site and

how you and your church can become involved in

plan ahead what you want to attend. More than 70

missional ministries.

workshops will teach, inspire and challenge you with

4

Spend time in fellowship Come looking for two old friends and two new friends. We are a fellowship!

fresh perspectives. Your friends are filled with ideas, so network, network, network. Take home at least five new ideas that you can immediately implement to energize your congregation! Don’t miss: There will be an opportunity to

The General Assembly is a time to reconnect and

participate in “An Offering of Letters” to stop world

Street and enjoy barbeque and blues. Cruise the

re-energize. The Assembly is a time to make new

hunger. Join others in writing elected officials,

river on an old fashioned riverboat and relive life

friends and hear new presentations. Speakers and

urging them to pass legislation that will better

on the Mississippi. Visit Graceland and immerse

workshop leaders are very accessible, so make a

the lives of poor people in the United States and

yourself in the life and legacy of Elvis.

point to meet them before or following their teaching

around the globe.

time in this grand city. Ride the trolley to Beale

Bo Prosser, the Fellowship’s coordinator of congregational life, is involved in the planning of General Assembly. Prosser coordinates the more than 70 workshops and works with other General Assembly steering committee members to plan the General Sessions. Contact him at (800) 352-8741 or bprosser@thefellowship.info. fellowship!

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15


CBB attracts members with competitive plans Because benefits are an important part of employee compensation, David Burroughs wanted to offer the best available for his employees. As executive director of Passport Inc., an international student missions ministry headquartered in Birmingham, Ala., Burroughs had many options. In addition to the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, Passport also lists The Episcopal Church USA, National Council of Churches USA, Presbyterian Church USA and The United Methodist Church Youth Worker Movement as partners on its Web site. Near the end of 2007, the Church Benefits Board became autonomous, working directly with partners such as StanCorp Financial Inc. and World Insurance Association Inc. to provide retirement benefits, life insurance, disability and medical insurance for church employees. The changes were implemented to provide more choices and more flexibility for participating members. Burroughs involved all of his employees in the decision-making process. “We had a big meeting, and our board of directors

decided to allow the employees to decide which plan we’d choose,” he said. Burroughs asked an indeFor questions or a free consultation, contact CBB at pendent financial planner to churchbenefits@churchbenefits.org or call (800) 352-8741. look at all the benefit plans Additional information and enrollment forms are available at available and help them dewww.churchbenefits.org. cide which offered the best opportunity for Passport employees. Burroughs also Benefits Board over all other plans. offered the financial planner a carrot. “Another major factor was the ability “I told him that if he could put together to go online and make it all happen,” his own collection of plans, we’d choose Burroughs said. “This was important to his plan,” Burroughs said. “The interesting many of our people. When we put it all thing is he searched and he searched, and together, it was obvious that CBB was the he couldn’t come close to the death benefit best choice for us.” and some other benefits. And this person Skeen, who is president of Church was trying hard to get our business.” Benefits Board, said the process Passport Burroughs said the choices offered by went through was gratifying. the Church Benefits Board really set it “We are confident that we put together apart from other plans they considered. benefits plans this year that are better “The plan Gary (Skeen) presented than anything we had ever offered before,” allows for much more flexibility,” he said. Skeen said. “We think we have the best “It allows for control over which funds you plans available to Baptists anywhere in the can invest in and how much risk you’re country and competitive with any faithwilling to take.” based benefit plans out there.” Burroughs said the staff at Passport voted unanimously to choose Church By Bob Perkins Jr. of Atlanta, Ga.

Professor nominated moderator-elect Hal Bass, a professor at Ouachita Baptist University, has been nominated for the position of moderator-elect for the Fellowship. The CBF Coordinating Council’s Nominating Committee offered Joanne Carr of Georgia for the position of recorder. Bass, who currently serves as the Fellowship’s recorder, is a native of Corpus Christi, Texas. A graduate of Baylor University and Vanderbilt University, Bass works as a professor of political science and dean of the school of social sciences at Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia, Ark. He is a member of First Baptist Church of Arkadelphia and has served on both the CBF national and CBF of Arkansas Coordinating Councils. Bass and Carr will be presented to the CBF General Assembly in June for election during its annual business session June 20. Nominations for moderator-elect can be made from the floor of the Assembly. Carr retired as associate medical center director for the Augusta Veterans Administration Medical Center in 2005 and now serves as a consultant with Resource Services Incorporated, a Christian organization based in Dallas, Texas. A member of First Baptist Church of Augusta, Ga., Carr currently serves as a member of the CBF Coordinating Council. 16

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fellowship!

may/june 2008

Hal Bass


Bridgewater Church

A

Photo courtesy of Bridgewater Church

t Bridgewater Church in Madisonville, La., members collect Beanie Babies to send overseas. The small stuffed animals are part of care packages the church sends to U.S. soldiers from Louisiana who are serving in Afghanistan and Iraq. “When we began shipping the care packages, we were a bit surprised to receive specific requests for Beanie Babies,” said pastor Reid Doster. “But we learned that the toys could be carried easily by soldiers and given to Iraqi and Afghani children, who in turn often warned the soldiers of land mines and other explosive devices.” One local resident heard about Bridgewater’s care package ministry and donated 440 Beanie Babies to the church. The donor said, “I had been asking the Lord what I should do with these Beanie Babies. I just knew someone could use them, but didn’t know where to look.” Bridgewater Church is one of the most recent recipients of a Cooperative Baptist Fellowship missional ministry grant. The grants resource local congregations as they

complete the “It’s Time” study and seek to determine how God is calling them to ministry. Since 2006, the Fellowship has awarded $621,747 in grants to partner churches. Beginning two years ago with four friends, Bridgewater has grown to 69 members who, along with a Bridgewater church members have reached out to the community in many ways, including doing yard work and home repairs for host of visitors, worship in local senior citizens. The Maritime Museum. “We put money into ministry, not bricks and mortar,” said Doster, a professional counselor. Before receiving the grant, members ACD Ministries in Smyrna, Ga. were actively engaged in food distribuEmmaus Baptist Church in Quinton, Va. tion, home repair and yard work for senior First Baptist Church in Blue Grass, Iowa Grandin Court Baptist Church in Roanoke, Va. citizens and financial assistance for utility Highland Hills Baptist Church in Macon, Ga. and medical bills. They have also provided Holmeswood Baptist Church in Kansas City, Mo. furniture to Katrina survivors, hygiene kits, Log Cabin Community Church in Smyrna, Ga. uniforms and supplies to school children, North Brunswick Fellowship Church in Leland, N.C. grief counseling, transportation and other Peachtree Baptist Church in Atlanta, Ga. services. Pelham Road Baptist Church in Greenville, S.C. The missional ministry grant will help Rosalind Hills Baptist Church in Roanoke, Va. The Chapel Door in Fairview, N.C. the church continue its current ministries Third Baptist Church in St. Louis, Mo. and develop adTemple Baptist Church in Durham, N.C. ditional means Trinity Baptist Church in Moultrie, Ga. to meet its comUniversity Baptist Church in Montevallo, Ala. munity’s practical Zion Hill Baptist Church in Camden, Ark. needs. The grant also has helped between the church and CBF,” Doster current church said. “I could have distributed CDs and members, only brochures [about the Fellowship] every eight of which Sunday, but it wouldn’t have done as much have a Baptist as [CBF coordinator] Bo Prosser’s coming background, grasp and preaching and handing the church that the Fellowship’s check …. It was like saying, ‘God bless you broader purpose for your vision.’” and ministry. Photo courtesy of Bridgewater Church

Church S potlight

Churches awarded grants in 2007:

Bridgewater Church and pastor Reid Doster, left, have collected Beanie Babies to send to troops overseas.

learn |

“This grant did more to solidify the relationship

By Vicki K. Brown, contributing writer, Jefferson City, Mo.

For more information on the Fellowship’s missional ministry grant, go to www.thefellowship.info/Resources/ItsTime/Grant or call (800) 352-8741. fellowship!

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17


Early in the morning, many villagers gather their lunches at the market and head to the rice fields or gardens to work.

An answer to prayers

CBF field personnel develop Bible translations in Asian languages

I

n the villages of the Muang people

it was a thief trying to see if anyone was

in Southeast Asia, houses are

home so he could rob the place.”

built on stilts and neighbors greet each other by shouting from the

Kirk and his wife, Suzie, are Cooperative

the heart’s door and call out.” But there are even greater translation challenges — the language of one hilltribe

Baptist Fellowship field personnel who

people in Southeast Asia, exists only as

serve in Southeast Asia, facilitating the

verbal language. Kirk and Suzie first had

first translations of the Bible into the

to develop a written language before they

Revelation 3:20 — “Behold, I stand at

Muang and other native languages. They

could begin translating the Bible.

the door and knock” — into the Muang

face cultural challenges, such as the one

language, a woman told him, “If I heard

from Revelation. The verse was eventually

an endeavor you do by yourself or with one

someone knocking on my door, I’d think

translated in Muang as “Behold, I stand at

other person,” Suzie said. “But it’s really all

bottom of the stairs. So when Kirk began translating

18

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may/june 2008

“People think about Bible translation as


about people and being involved with the people, and so we really prayed and God opened the doors for us to live right among the people in a family compound.” Kirk and Suzie have lived among the hilltribe people, a persecuted minority in Southeast Asia, and helped create not only an alphabet but also literacy materials. They have worked with villagers to translate legends, oral history and stories of daily life. And they’ve trained villagers to teach the language, so that the work will continue even after Kirk and Suzie have left.

individuals in one country,” Kirk said. “Since then, several thousands have been discovered in neighboring countries, including a group of Christians who have been praying for the past 30 years for a

Annette L. Ellard photos

“When we first started working among this group of people, we only knew a few

Known as “Granny,” Aphji is one of the village’s best storytellers.

translation in their language. We’re amazed

the people and seeing how and what they

to 30 years of prayer for the scripture in

by their dedication and their persistence

bring to the table.”

this language.”

in prayer all those years. Now, we see their

Kirk, Suzie and a team of local

enthusiasm that they’re getting the word

translators recently completed the book

and that they’re a part of it.”

of Mark. Several other books are in the

Kirk and Suzie spent several years as English teachers in Southeast Asia and

By Patricia Heys, CBF Communications Editor’s note: Due to global security

final stages. “It’s been great, as we’ve been visiting

concerns the names and specific locations of

during that time recognized the need for

churches in the U.S., to hold up the

some of CBF Global Missions field personnel

translations of the Bible in hundreds of

gospel of Mark and tell our friends and

will not be publicized.

languages. They were commissioned by the

supporters that they

Fellowship in 1995.

were a part of this

“One of the things that drew us to

process through

CBF in the beginning was a commitment

their prayer and

to partnering with local Christians,

through their giving

indigenous Christians and national

to the Offering for

believers in these various areas,” Kirk

Global Missions,”

said. “There is a tendency as North

Kirk said. “These

Americans to unintentionally dominate

partners, our CBF

these types of relationships. We’ve seen

supporting churches,

from the beginning that CBF has been very

are very much a

committed to working on the same level as

part of the answer

Online — Go to www.thefellowship.info/give. For questions regarding online giving, contact igive@thefellowship.info.

Mail — Use the contribution envelope included in this issue and make your check payable to CBF.

Phone — Call CBF toll-free at (800) 352-8741.

fellowship!

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19


Field Personnel S potlight

C

ooperative Baptist Fellowship field personnel Nancy and Steve James serve in Haiti, providing medical care and training. Background: The Jameses were both born to missionary families who served in Burma, and they attended school together in South India. Later, Steve earned a degree from Alderson-Broaddus College in Philippi, W. Va., and attended medical school in Mexico at the Universidad Autonoma de Guadalajara in Guadalajara, Jalisco. Nancy graduated as a registered nurse from Mounds-Midway School of Nursing in St. Paul, Minn. The Jameses began working in Haiti in 1983. They served at the Good Samaritan Hospital in Limbe, Haiti, until 1999. Ministry: In Haiti, skilled medical professionals are often overworked and poorly paid and hospitals lack the proper infrastructure. According to the Jameses, 80 percent of Haitians are too poor to pay for medical care,

and doctors, who receive no income subsidies from the government, local churches or foreign sources, are forced to focus on wealthier patients to earn an income. Partnering with the Haitian Baptist Convention, the Jameses travel regularly to small church-related medical clinics. They provide medical training and encouragement to the staff, help find medicines and supplies, and consult with patients. “We try to bring spiritual encourNancy and Steve James agement to the staff and patients, often stopping to pray for them,” the Jameses and staff training. The Jameses encourage said. “One of the clinics we work at is within Fellowship Baptists to pray for and walking distance, but the other clinics are participate in the ministry. hard to get to on bumpy, pot-holed roads or “Pray for us and the staff of these clinics, no roads at all, with the truck going through that we would have God’s vision for health rivers or streams to get to them. It often takes care in these villages,” they said. “For those hours to arrive at the clinics, when actually who feel led to come to Haiti, we welcome by distance they are not that far away. We you to serve alongside our partners in Haiti. Both medical and non-medical skills pray that Jesus would be our hands and feet can often be put to good use. But the main as we minister to the most needy here in Haiti through our medical skills.” thing is to accompany our brothers and sisThe needs at the clinics are many ters in Christ in our discipleship journeys.” — financial resources to keep the clinics open, running water, medical supplies By Patricia Heys, CBF Communications CBF Photo

Nancy and Steve James

Understanding Healing This June Ignite, the Fellowship’s missions education resource for youth, encourages teenagers to see healing as more than meeting physical needs. Through their study of Nancy and Steve James, CBF field personnel in Haiti, youth will learn about healing and reconciliation as the Jameses work holistically to meet physical, spiritual and emotional needs. The teenagers will understand fullness of healing through Bible study and worship as well as action projects in their communities. Learn more about CBF’s missions education resources at www.missionseducation.org. To order, call (800) 801-4223.

Cooperative Baptist Fellowship P.O. Box 450329 • Atlanta, Georgia 31145-0329 www.thefellowship.info (800) 352-8741

May/June 2008 fellowship! magazine  
May/June 2008 fellowship! magazine