Volume LX No. 8
By: Dr. Paul Baxley, Senior Minister October will be a wonderful month in the life of our congregaon. A!er ďŹ ve months of holding worship in Fellowship Hall, we will return to the Sanctuary for worship! This newsle)er carries the announcement that we project to resume worship in the Sanctuary on October 15! So mark your calendars and plan to join us that day. Once the enre renovaon project is complete, we will plan services of rededicaon not only for the Sanctuary but for the enre campus. As October begins, we will also enter the heart of our fall sermon series Reforming Quesons. Each Sunday in worship I will preach on a queson that either refocuses us on an essenal element of our Chrisan faith or invites us to explore on how we oďŹ€er faithful ministry in the context of our rapidly changing culture. Then, each week we are oďŹ€ering several opportunies for you to parcipate in small group discussions about those quesons. I hope you have already signed up to parcipate in those discussions either on Sunday a!ernoons or on Wednesday evenings. The Sunday groups will meet from October 1 through November 12, and the Wednesday groups will meet from October 4 through November 15. Several of the Wednesday evening groups will meet in homes, and others will meet on the third ďŹ‚oor of our church building. The Wednesday night groups will also incorporate a meal. Because our Fellowship Hall is out of use the remainder of the fall, these Reforming Quesons groups will take the place of our normal Wednesday night acvies. Please read the addional informaon in the newsle)er and contact the church oďŹƒce by phone or online to sign up for a discussion group if you have not done so already! This fall we are also beginning preparaons for our congregaonal process to discern our next steps in mission and ministry as we seek to live more fully into our vision of being a thriving community in Christ where we all parcipate in worship and are all transformed by mission. The Deacons have elected a leadership team to guide this process, which will be very similar in style to the original vision process we experienced in 2012 and 2013. That commi)ee will spend the fall developing the process, so watch future publicaons for the schedule of congregaonal conversaons that will take place this winter and spring. For now, I ask you to begin praying for this process of discernment and prepare for it by engaging our Reforming Quesons series fully. That series is designed to help us prepare to discern our next steps together. This month we begin to experience some of the results of the physical regeneraon of our campus. Letâ€™s enjoy the newness that brings, but also commit ourselves personally, and as a congregaon, to making the physical renewal of our campus an outward symbol of a spiritual renewal in our lives!
M Paul Baxley Senior Minister
Frank Granger Minister of Christian Community
Randy Bri.ain Minister of Music
Brandon Pendry Minister of Youth and Mission
Janet Cleland Minister of Children, Families and Outreach
Emily Harbin Minister of College Students
Anne Bri.ain Organist/Music Associate
Alan McArthur Pianist
Church oďŹƒce: 706.548.1359 www.firstbaptistathens.org
and to all who are giving generously. As we enter the ďŹ nal months of our As is o!en the case, however, gi!s to the operang budget lagged during congregaonâ€™s ďŹ scal year and the the summer months. But costs of calendar year, it is appropriate to ministry do not decrease during the provide an update on our churchâ€™s summer, in fact some of our more ďŹ nancial posion. signiďŹ cant costs are experienced The good news is that overall giving during the summer. It is very to First Bapst Church connues at a important as we enter the ďŹ nal record level. Gi!s to the Regenerate months of the year that we each review our budget giving to this capital campaign connue to take point in the year. If for any reason place ahead of the schedule we your giving fell behind during the expected based on pledges and summer, please prayerfully consider normal trends in such campaigns. catching those gi!s up as soon as is When combined with budget gi!s, possible. If you have any quesons our congregaon is experiencing a regarding your giving, please contact season of tremendous generosity and we should oďŹ€er gratude to God Cheri Rose in the church oďŹƒce.
C9 9 V P 2018 B9 Queson and Answer Opportunity October 8 As announced in the September church newsle)er, the church will be called into conference at the close of worship on Sunday, October 15 for the limited purpose of vong on the proposed 2018 church budget. That proposed budget was included in the September newsle)er. If you need addional informaon regarding the proposed budget, a queson and answer session will be hosted by Finance Commi)ee Chair Steve Barton on Sunday, October 8 at 9:00 a.m. in Room 7 on the third ďŹ‚oor.
C U â€” S P R -O O 15 We are pleased to announce that we project re-opening the Sanctuary of First Bapst Church for worship on Sunday, October 15! Our contractor (Van Winkle Construcon Company) conďŹ rmed at the monthly meeng of the renovaon management team that they were conďŹ dent the Sanctuary could be ready for use on that date.
Following Sunday, October 8, extensive renovaons will begin in and around Fellowship Hall as well as on the ďŹ rst ďŹ‚oor of all of our campus and in the second ďŹ‚oor areas between the Sanctuary and Fellowship Hall. In future publicaons we will provide updates on the schedule for those renovaons. But by mid-October, access to the ďŹ rst ďŹ‚oor and the Fellowship Hall will be restricted to construcon workers only.
So even as we encourage you to join us each Sunday for worship, we especially encourage you to make worship a priority that day. When the Sanctuary re-opens, we will sll have a season when the pipe organ is not available as its reconďŹ guraon cannot begin unl all other work is completed, but otherwise the Sanctuary will be enrely ďŹ nished.
The exterior work around the Sanctuary building should also be completed during the month of October. That includes ďŹ nishing the waterprooďŹ ng along the Hancock Avenue side of the Sanctuary building, the installaon of protecve covers over the shaved marble windows and the compleon of the arrivalhood at the Branyon Foyer. Already we have regained use of the main entrance to the church oďŹƒce.
Beginning October 15 we will hold only one worship service. Unl then, we will oďŹ€er two services in Fellowship Hall at 8:30 and 11:00 a.m. Watch future publicaons for further updates regarding the renovaon of our campus 2
L @ T B N D S P At their regular September meeng, the Deacons of First Bapst Church unanimously approved a moon from the church council authorizing the beginning of a process to discern our congregaonâ€™s Next Steps as we live into our vision of being a thriving community in Christ where we all parcipate in worship and are all transformed by mission. That process will be highly parcipatory and the opportunies for full congregaonal engagement will come in the winter and spring of 2018 and will be structured very much like the congregaonal conversaons that took place in our 2013 vision discernment process. The Next Steps process will be coordinated and implemented by a Leadership Team. Upon the recommendaon of the Church Council, The Deacons also elected the following persons to serve alongside the ministerial staďŹ€ on this Leadership Team: Co-Chairs: Craig Ellis Helen Mills Daniel Haygood and JeďŹ€ Randa Zach Graves Margaret McDonald Livy Baxley (youth representave) Pam GriďŹƒn Zeke Williamson (youth representave) GiGi Lasnger Fred Young Gary Blasingame Mary Colley John Marshall The commi)ee will hold an orientaon meeng in October and spend the remainder of the fall designing the process by which our congregaon will discern our Next Steps in mission and ministry. Watch future church publicaons for more informaon!
WORSHIP AND MUSIC NEWS H/0/ 12 T415 P678/
By: Randy Bri;ain, Music Director
In this season of â€œreforming quesonsâ€? I share with you a hymn text by Marty Haugen, liturgical composer, workshop presenter, performing and recording arst & author from Eagan, Minnesota. Haugenâ€™s hymn, Here in This Place, seems to capture the life of our congregaon at this moment in me, when we ancipate moving into a renovated worship space and we seek to discern Godâ€™s â€œnext stepsâ€? for our journey of faith together. The hymn is a corporate prayer to God on behalf of the diverse congregaon who have assembled for worship, longing to be transformed and used as Godâ€™s witnesses and for Godâ€™s purposes. The Sanctuary Choir will sing an anthem based on Haugenâ€™s hymn in the month of October and I hope you will pray this text in the days ahead as we ready ourselves to worship God together in a beauful new space. Here in this place the new light is streaming, now is the darkness vanished away; see in this space our fears and our dreamings brought here to you in the light of this day. Gather us in, the lost and forsaken; gather us in, the blind and the lame; call to us now and we shall awaken; we shall arise at the sound of our name. We are the young, our lives are a mystery. We are the old who yearn for your face. We have been sung throughout all of history, called to be light to the whole human race. Gather us in, the rich and the haughty; gather us in, the proud and the strong; give us a heart, so meek and so lowly; give us the courage to enter the song. Here we will take the wine and the water; here we will take the bread of new birth. Here you shall call your sons and your daughters, call us anew to be salt for the earth. Give us to drink the wine of compassion; give us to eat the bread that is you; nourish us well, and teach us to fashion lives that are holy and hearts that are true. Not in the dark of buildings conďŹ ning, not in some heaven, light years away: here in this place the new light is shining; now is the kingdom, and now is the day. Gather us in and hold us forever; gather us in and make us your own; gather us in, all peoples together, ďŹ re of love in our ďŹ‚esh and our bone.
COMMUNITY NEWS T415 H=>/ W/ H7@/: S/6/8A/B S/0C=25 72B M/B1A7A1=25 =D J=2 A>>6/A=2 : FS G9 , M C@ CBB Jon G. Appleton served as Senior Pastor of First Bapst Church, Athens, Georgia from 1976 to 1999. His 23 year-plus ministry with this congregaon included Sunday sermons, Advent, Easter, and Holy Week sermons, Communion meditaons, and various other special service messages. A special collecon of these has been edited and compiled by John Pierce, editor and publisher of Nurturing Faith. On Sunday, November 5, All Saints Sunday, special recognion of this work will be made in worship, and a recepon will be held that a!ernoon. Below is a queson and answer interview with Frank Granger with the editor John Pierce.
demands Jesus made of his followers. Right now, while Nurturing Faith is envisioning some new congregaonal resources to advance a Jesus worldview, that perspecve is needed and appreciated.
FG: This is a book of Jon Appletonâ€™s sermons. Are these sermons all from his years in the pastorate here in Athens, or do they span a longer period? JP: All of the collected sermons and meditaons were delivered by Jon to the congregaon of First Bapst Church of Athens. As with most preachers, however, some sermons probably had roots in earlier pastorates.
FG: Preachers have diďŹ€erent styles in their preaching, how would you describe the preaching style of Dr. Appleton? JP: These descripons come to mind: relaonal, FG: How are the sermons arranged? Are they in a chronological order, a themaNc arrangement, or a conversaonal, biblical, relevant, comforng yet challenging. And as everyone who knew him knew: humor diďŹ€erent approach? JP: When eding the book, including selecng the sermons was used eďŹ€ecvely. and meditaons for publicaon, I looked for some natural groupings. Overall I was struck by the common thread of FG: My assumpNon is that you have more sermons available to you than you were able to include in the hope throughout Jonâ€™s preaching ministry. So I tled the book, This Hope We Have, a phrase that jumped out at me. book. How do, as an editor, determine what not to include? The selected sermons in the ďŹ rst chapter (â€œSermons for Hopeful Livingâ€?) all speak to this theme in some way as JP: I looked for sermons and meditaons with a sense of well. Other divisions are â€œSermons from the Gospel of melessness. Some addressed a very speciďŹ c concern at a Johnâ€? (obviously Jonâ€™s favorite book in the Bible), "Sermons speciďŹ c me and place. I wanted to be sure that the for Special Occasionsâ€? (such as deacon ordinaon, message Jon sought to convey was sll something readers need to hear today â€” in any me and place. And I looked Motherâ€™s Day, Fatherâ€™s Day and Thanksgiving), â€œSermons for Advent and Christmas,â€? â€œCommunion Meditaonsâ€? and for ones that didnâ€™t include crypc notes in the margin (like â€œTell Alpine storyâ€?) which I couldnâ€™t decipher. Sermons are â€œSermons for Holy Week and Easter." wri?en for proclamaon (and o=en altered by the preacher FG: You have known Jon Appleton for many years, leading up to delivery) rather than for publicaon. So it including when he was acNvely pastoring here in Athens takes a li?le eďŹ€ort to move from one medium to another eďŹ€ecvely. and you were on the staďŹ€ of the ChrisNan Index. What did you discover or learn about him from your work with FG: Was there a sermon that you really wanted to include these sermons? but didnâ€™t? If so, what determined the choice? JP: As with many pastors Iâ€™ve known through the years, I JP: There were several good ones that were not included had few opportunies to hear Jon preach. So engaging with these sermons was insigh;ul. First, I discovered how either because of a lack of melessness in their applicaon poec he was â€” especially when conveying the essence of or because they were wri?en more in outline form or with Christmas, Easter and Holy Communion. Second, Jon didnâ€™t notes designed to prompt Jon to say something rather than being wri?en out verbam. try to make the Gospel too palatable by so=ening the 4
T@ G AT : C@ D T 9 G : J C
, M FB , C@ O @ Our children in pre-kindergarten through fourth grade spent the month of September experiencing the story of creaon. They had lots of fun and hands-on learning about all the days of creaon through cooking, art, music and games. The month of October begins a new unit in the creaon story with a focus on Adam and Eve. Speaking of creaon they made a few creaons of their own and here are just a few samples: Our 5th and 6th grade â€œSubmergeâ€? ministry on Sunday morning has been diving deeper into the book of Genesis and will be moving on in the month of October to dive into the books of Exodus and Judges. They are having a great me journaling in their â€œdiverâ€™s logsâ€?!
W N9@ AT Our Wednesday Night Adventure in Choir and Missions for our children will be changing the day and me it meets. Beginning Sunday, October 1, we will meet at 4:30 p.m. for childrenâ€™s choir and at 5:15 p.m. for Mission Kids ending at 6:00 p.m. The children will be in the same rooms they were in when choir and missions was on Wednesday night. Please note that the Music Makers Choir and the Joyful Singers Choir will be singing on Sunday, October 1 in the 11:00 a.m. worship service in the fellowship hall. Please make every eďŹ€ort to have your child in a)endance to sing in worship on that day. On October 1 we will get the children from Sunday School at 10:35 a.m. to warm-up their voices and prepare for singing in the service. â€œJon Appletonâ€? continued from previous page
FG: Do you have a favorite sermon, or story within a sermon? JP: Yes, a sermon preached in 1990 tled â€œWhen Death Comes.â€? He tells the story of making a blunder as a young pastor and how God used that situaon. I loved it because it was confessional â€” another mark of Jonâ€™s preaching and overall ministry. He called his error â€œone of lifeâ€™s â€˜li?leâ€™ deathsâ€? and conveyed the importance of being a fellow traveler on the road of faith rather than an expert talking down to others. And since this volume was published posthumously (though Jon knew it was coming) I appreciated his aďŹƒrmaon near the end of the sermon: â€œDeath is cuGng, but in Christ there is release." If you are interested in purchasing the book, you may do so at the November 5 recepon or online at h)p://books.nurturingfaith.net/ product/this-hope-we-have-appleton.
Sunday, October 29th Instead of a Fall Fesval this year the childrenâ€™s ministry team is planning a Fall Family Mission Event. Going out as families we will deliver treat bags into the neighborhoods near the church. Instead of having people come to our campus for candy and treats we will take the treats to them!
FB M ET
#MOMS Our #MOMS group gathered for ďŹ‚oats and fellowship on Wednesday, September 20. We shared a great me of brainstorming lots of ideas for a monthly event to plan for October, November, and December. Our plans are in the works and we will be announcing dates, mes and events in the near future. We hope you will join us!
CBB C@9 When the world wide web came into existence, it would have been impossible to foresee the ways in which it would u)erly change our lives. While many of us would like to go back to the days when we werenâ€™t constantly connected and there wasnâ€™t an â€œappâ€? for everything, you canâ€™t put the Genie back into the bo)le and church communicaons have faced the same challenges in keeping up with evolving communicaon tools. At FBC, we use a variety of tools to keep you informed. Our Facebook page has more than 250 followers, we launched a new website last summer with announcements updated each Monday. Members can choose to receive weekly email communicaons and we oďŹ€er a weekly printed â€˜mininewsle)erâ€™ each Wednesday night. Announcements are now in our worship bullen, and once a month, we mail nearly 400 printed newsle)ers to every address on record.
So that you donâ€™t miss any important informaon, below is a quick reference guide to FBC publicaons: FBC website: www.ďŹ rstbapNstathens.org There is a â€œMembers Onlyâ€? area of the website which includes our current prayer list, a link to our church directory, and addional informaon. If you are not already a member, please email Sharon Jenkins for instrucons. Midweek Messenger This is sent via email every Wednesday and includes all current announcements, an abbreviated prayer list, links to registraon for events and more. Email Sharon Jenkins to be placed on the list if you are not already receiving this. FBC Weekly This is printed each Wednesday and available during the week at church. This includes announcements as well as the current prayer list and calendar. This is also included in the Sunday School folders. BulleNn A calendar and current announcements are included in each weekâ€™s bullen. An abbreviated prayer list is also included. Building Signage Upcoming events are highlighted on signs around the building. Once our renovaon is complete, we will be moving to digital signage. FBCAthens Facebook Page The Facebook page oďŹ€ers photographs and links to arcles of interest. There are occasional announcements also included on the Facebook Page.
A!er a review of our internal communicaons it was clear that there was one thing missing â€” a vehicle to dive deeper into the story of who we are at First Bapst Church. Because we have so many opons for sharing announcements, the decision has been made to change this newsle)er to a quarterly publicaon which will be more reďŹ‚ecve in nature. Beginning in Advent, a new magazine style publicaon will be launched to help us be)er tell our story. The content will be based on the theme of the season and will share reďŹ‚ecve wring from our clergy and others with the goal of highlighng the ways in which God is working in our community. Any me-sensive news will sll be shared with As always, if you have any quesons or comments about FBC the congregaon through an appropriate forum â€” and we Communicaons, please contact Communicaons Manager may expand some of our current publicaons as needed. Sharon Jenkins (sharon@ďŹ rstbapstathens.org).
MISSION NEWS I @ H N W
B: B P , M Y@ M
N W B Thanks to a North Georgia United Methodist Housing and Homeless Council grant, IHN of Athens was able to purchase new Bemco Rollaway beds. This is an upgraded version of the beds we have now, with a 1" thicker ma)ress, trampolinelike decking (instead of springs), and one set of fully turning wheels making it easy to move. It is comfortable, durable and weighs a li)le less than our current beds. We hope that the new beds will help us extend greater hospitality to our families and greater appreciaon to our volunteers. The current beds will be placed permanently in the Day Center upstairs space, so move in will be easy during upstairs host weeks.
S W@ C@ GT
While our connecon with members of Chestnut Grove Bapst Church has recently expanded to include worship, Bible Study and prayer, we have actually been partners in service at IHN Athens for some me. We hope youâ€™ll consider deepening our relaonship this fall with an addional opportunity for service together at our next IHNA host week from November 5-12. Please consider joining members of Chestnut Grove to put our hands and hearts together in service to our community. If you have never volunteered with IHNA before, a one hour training session will be oďŹ€ered at FBC on Sunday, October 8 at 2:00 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall. Contact Brandon Pendry (brandon@ďŹ rstbapstathens.org) with any quesons on how to get involved with IHN. 6
S T9 T9 @ Co-Deacons for the Weeks of: October 1-7: Shaun Oâ€™Rear, Ray Noblet October 8-14: Helen & Milton Mills October 15-21: Doug & Evelyn Marn October 22-28: Julie Jenkins, Gigi Lasnger Oct. 29-Nov. 4: Jane Hubert, Connie Ivester
Fellowship Team for October
J W@ O Unl we return to the Sanctuary on October 15, we will hold services in Fellowship Hall at 8:30 and 11:00 a.m. Beginning October 15, there will be one service at 11:00 a.m. Sunday, October 1 â€“17th Sunday a=er Pentecost World Communion Sunday/ Childrenâ€™s Choirs Sing Sermon: â€œThe Foundaonal Queson: What is a Chrisan?â€? Texts: Mark 1:16-20, Acts 2:37-47, Romans 10:9-13
Kathy Coleman, Mary Conley, Jill Dawson, Pam Dillard
Usher Team for October Jerry Gouge, Carl Hedrick, Jimmy Thomason, Milton Mills, Randan Ashmore, Steve Smith
Welcome Team October 1: October 8: October 15: October 22: October 29:
Beth Sanders, Janice Love Martha & Connie Ivester Brenda & Bob Cain Be)y & Wayne Jordan Margaret Earnest, John Marshall
CounNng Commi.ee: October 1: October 8: October 15: October 22: October 29:
Al Lee, Ray Noblet Lane Chasson, Kelli Smith Jackie GriďŹƒn, Bevan Hopper Michael Jenkins, Mike Lacy Dallas Cannady, Steve Barton
Sunday, October 8 â€“ 18th Sunday a=er Pentecost Sermon: â€œThe Mission Queson: Why Church?â€? Texts: Luke 4:14-21, II Corinthians 5:16-21, Ma)hew 28:16-20 Sunday, October 15 â€“ The 19th Sunday a=er Pentecost Sermon: â€œThe Evangelisc Queson: How Do We Invite People to Faith in Jesus Christ?â€? Texts: John 1:35-42, Acts 2:29-42 Sunday, October 22 â€“ The 20th Sunday a=er Pentecost Sermon: â€œThe Calendar Queson: How Do We OďŹ€er Faithful Ministry When Sunday Morning is no longer Sacred?â€? Texts: Exodus 20:8-11, Luke 24:13-35, Hebrews 10:19-25 Sunday, October 29 â€“ The 21st Sunday a=er Pentecost Sermon: â€œThe Formaonal Queson: How Do we Pass Faith to Our Children?â€? by Janet Cleland Texts: Deuteronomy 6:4-9, Mark 10:13-16
C@ @ FB N W Sympathy We extend our Chrisan love and sympathy to: â€˘ Carole DuVall and her family in the loss of her husband, Tal Duvall, on August 30. â€˘ Julia Yocum in the death of her husband, Steve Yocum, on September 6. to the family of Miriam Drewry who passed away on September 9. â€˘ the family of Maxine Davis, who passed away on September 20. â€˘ the family of Nancy Eason, close friend of Linda Moon and a vicm of Hurricane Irma in who passed away on Monday, September 10.
New Members We welcome new members: â€˘ Zach & Rachel Graves, who joined by Le)er of Transfer on September 3. â€˘ Debbie Carrier who joined by Profession of Faith on August 27.
Food Bank Needs: Canned Soup, Canned Pasta, Peanut Bu.er Please place items for donaNon in the marked bins in the Branyon Foyer. T@S Y N
Dear FBC friends, I would like to express my hearYelt thanks to the First Bapst Church family for your outpouring of love and encouragement given to me as I've transioned to another job opportunity. Words cannot adequately express how much I have enjoyed and been fulďŹ lled by supporng the ministry of FBC. Each of you has been a blessing to me and you will always remain close to my heart. It has been my privilege to serve alongside you as the hands and feet of Christ. Love and blessings, Suzy Moon 7
First Baptist Church (USPS 193-040) 355 Pulaski Street Athens, Ga 30601
PERIODICALS POSTAGE PAID ATHENS, GA 30601
FIRST BAPTIST NEWS (USPS 193-040) IS PUBLISHED MONTHLY AT NO CHARGE BY FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH, 355 PULASKI STREET, ATHENS, GA 30601-2860. PERIODICALS POSTAGE PAID AT ATHENS, GA. POSTMASTER: SEND ADDRESS CHANGES TO FIRST BAPTIST NEWS, 355 PULASKI ST., ATHENS, GA 30601-2680
S P C@ GT
Thanks to all of you who have parcipated in our worship, prayer and study opportunies this fall as we seek a closer relaonship with the congregaon of Chestnut Grove Bapst Church. Our next opportunity for Bible Study and Prayer will be Thursday, October 5 at 7:00 p.m. at Chestnut Grove. Please plan to join us!