US Missions Foreign Missions
Greetings in the name of Jesus.
This year, our Construction Missions Teams have constructed or assisted four Church projects in Kansas, Ohio and Louisiana bringing the total to 53 since we began networking the work of our individual Teams. Several of the BFC teams returned to Chalmette to assist with the completion of the FBC building. Each of these Churches is in a position to expand God’s Kingdom in powerful ways. Your commitment and hard work have provided facilities in 16 Northeastern and Midwestern states, and two in Louisiana, to allow these fine Congregations to grow and add depth to their ministries. More than 1,500 Volunteers from over 100 Churches and Associations served in Eudora, Monroe, Ironton and Chalmette within the Builders for Christ Network. These Churches will use their new facilities intensely as Tools of Ministry in their Community. It would have been several years before they would have developed enough strength to undertake their project without the help of Construction Missionaries.
Several of our Teams are continuing to assist FBC Chalmette. They have completed the main floor and the upper level to about 98%. That needs to be completed soon. The second floor will be completed when funding is available. At their September Dedication, they baptized 15, saw a profession of faith and 3 join by letter.
The leadership of twelve of our Builders for Christ Teams, who served in this Ministry last year, has reviewed information from Churches in Ohio, Minnesota, Pennsylvania and Missouri. We also pursued and discussed projects in Maine, Massachusetts, Indiana, Wisconsin and Connecticut, but did not receive submittals from any of those Churches. We have found three (3) projects which appear to be very appropriate for the Builders for Christ Ministry this year. We have already completed initial visits and work sessions with all three of these fine Congregations. We sincerely feel God has called us to help all three Groups, to the extent we have resources. We are very pleased with all aspects of the possibility of a deep relationship between each of them through the many fine Teams who make up the Builders for Christ network. Let us share what we have learned.Please notice that a couple of years ago, that the “A” Team and the “B” Team swapped designations, only. The “A” Team is led by Lawrence Corley’s Group and the “B” Team by Earl Rhyne’s Group. The “C” Team will continue to be led by Allan Ivemeyer, while the “D” Team will be led by Gary Morrow, the Project Manager in Chalmette.
PROJECT “A” CHAPEL ADDITION TO MIDWESTERN BAPTIST THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY – Kansas City, Missouri
Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (MBTS) is one of 7 Southern Baptist Seminaries in our nation. It has educated pastors, missionaries and many other ministers since 1957, to better lead God’s work. As is typical, most of the graduates are from and serve within 500 miles of their Seminary. Midwestern is our institution to ensure that God’s word is taught and God called ministers are well prepared to lead the expansion of God’s Kingdom in our nation’s heartland. 45 of their students are training to become career missionaries. President Phil Roberts has led MBTS to significantly increase the quality of education at MBTS during his 9 years. For his entire life, he has been a leader in both international and our national mission work.
The project is a 1,000 seat Chapel, large vestibule, a Missions Connection Center, a Prayer Wall, a connecting corridor to two of MBTS’s buildings and a Campus Reception Center, totaling 25,000 s.f. We will also “hull-in” the exterior of another 15,000 s.f. for future completion. The structure will be much like that of Eudora, last year. The design is friendly to the skills of volunteers, while the project size is very large. This will be the largest project completed by the “A” Team of BFC. Slightly more effort will be needed than for the Jacob’s Well project.
The Seminary has connections with Baptist State Conventions, which should yield 300 to 400 additional volunteers, particularly during the Fall time frame. Missouri Baptist Builders will construct our kitchen in May. We carried about 835 to Eudora; the total needed for this project is estimated to be 1,400 to 1,500. Obviously we need each of our teams to grow, as well as for new teams to join the coordinated effort to do such a large task for God. If each of us talks to others early, it will be more effective.
The Seminary Staff, their Regents and others are already actively preparing to support the project and the needs of BFC Construction Missionaries. They look forward to sharing how they will support our needs at the Spring Coordination Conference.
The Spring Coordination Conference will be on March 13, 2010 in Kansas City, Missouri. It is located about 8 miles south of the Kansas City airport, off I-29.
The advanced, project set-up Group of the “A” Team will begin work on May 26, 2010. Week “A” begins Saturday, May 29, 2010, as usual, on Memorial Day weekend. Please evaluate when your week will fall on the calendar, this year.
The project to assist FBC Ironton, Ohio has been underway since October 2009. Several groups from each of our three teams have committed to construct this project during this Fall and Winter. It includes a Multipurpose Room addition to an existing Church facility. It includes a kitchen, classrooms, restrooms and a large vestibule.
PROJECT “B-2” GRACE BAPTIST CHURCH – Tyrone, Pennsylvania (commences in the Summer of 2010)
Grace Baptist Church in Tyrone, Pennsylvania is a congregation of committed Christians who chose three years ago to change their status from being an independent church to being affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention. The church has made a deliberate commitment to cooperation and is active in their local association and the Baptist Convention of Pennsylvania/South Jersey. This church has formulated and voted last fall to embark on a two-year plan to reorganize and relocate in order to better meet the needs of their community and reach more people with the gospel. Their vision is to reach families through youth ministry. This plan was initiated this past January.
Tyrone is a blue collar town nestled alongside of I-99 fifteen miles north of Altoona, Pennsylvania. The local economy is based upon a local paper mill, a chemical plant, and some agricultural involvement. The church has struggled with older, non-friendly, landlocked facilities with little parking, a down turned economy that affected giving and saw a few families relocate to other towns, and substantive changes in worship and structure this past year.
Despite these things, the church is firmly convinced that God is leading them to move forward and build, evidenced by an unsolicited offer and letter of intent from another denominational group for their current property at 1½ times the appraised value, assurances from a local bank for sufficient financing to build the new building, and the completion of a three year capital stewardship campaign that lowers the amount they would have to borrow. The church has purchased 6 acres of land ½ mile from their current location. The church is looking to Builders for Christ groups as a vital part of accomplishing their plans.
Their new building is approximately 13,000 s. f. with a 300 seat Sanctuary with choir area and baptistery, 6 class rooms plus a 1,800 s. f. fellowship hall that can be used in a number of ways,(including AWANA), kitchen, offices, restrooms, etc. This will be a wood framed with masonry, stone and vinyl siding on the exterior.
Grace has followed a number of BFC suggestions. One of the first things we felt they needed additional land for future growth so they bought it. We suggested they talk to Tom Thompson about a long range plan which they did. Tom is a retired and is a consultant for non-profit organizations and agreed to do two a year free.
So Tom Thompson developed a long range plan which included two trips from Birmingham, the last one to present suggested ways to implement it. This process involved staff and church members to reach decisions on future plans for the church. This included consideration of and decisions on programs, ministries, outreach, marketing, staffing, member assimilation and involvement, facilities, technology, finances, administration, and governance. Some of the specific areas that would be addressed were: Long term vision for Grace, Growth goals, how to achieve and maintain excellence in all Grace does, programs to reach the community, ministries to meet the needs of members and the community, how to strengthen the Sunday School and other Bible study, etc.
Our Planning Meeting is scheduled for March 13, 2010 and our first volunteers are scheduled to arrive on Wednesday, June 2, 2010.
PROJECT “C” FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH – Manteno, Illinois
First Baptist Church of Manteno, Illinois is located in a rural area of northeastern Illinois approximately 50 miles south of Chicago and 10 miles north of Kankakee. The church is located in Manteno, a town with a population of about 6000.
First Baptist was originally organized as a Baptist mission in the late 1950’s. The name was changed to First Baptist Church of Manteno in 1990 and became affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention.
First Baptist Church’s present Building is 10,500 square feet and was built by Builders for Christ in 1994. The building consists of an auditorium, classrooms, toilet rooms and a small kitchen. The present average attendance is 150-160.
The proposed building is an addition and is presently being designed with plans to be complete around December 1. The addition will be 10,900 square feet and consist of a large multipurpose room, a large kitchen, toilet rooms and 10 classrooms. The building will house the pre-school, children and youth.
First Baptist Church had a study done in 2009 of their ministry area. This area covered an 8 mile radius from their present building and showed a population of some 54138. There are few evangelical churches in the area so First Baptist Church has many ministry opportunities.
The proposed addition will more than double their space and will provide opportunity for growth in all age groups, especially preschool, children and youth. The church’s desire is to reach out to their community and reach the lost for Jesus Christ.
The first full week of work will begin on May 31, 2010. The spring meeting will be held on the weekend of March 20, 2010.
ORGANIZATIONAL NEEDS OF OUR BFC NETWORK
Indicate your preferences and flexibility on the attached Reply Form. Adjustments for everyone’s needs will be coordinated at the Spring Coordination Meetings. It is important that each Team feel free to serve at the location and time, which will enable each of us to render the greatest Mission Service. It would be much more productive if some who have been going during weeks with more than 100 to consider shifting to one of the weeks where few or none have historically gone.
Let me ask you to consider the following specific things, so that this Ministry can be most effective and coordinated:
1. Please answer the attached Reply Form (Click here for PDF; Click here for Word Document) to communicate your intent for service in 2010 by returning a copy to the Lawrence Corley, Allan Ivemeyer and Earl Rhyne by December 31, 2009. After you confirm what your Church is ready to commit to, send another copy indicating that firm Commitment. You may reply by email, if possible, copying each of the four Project Coordinators. Full Contact Data is listed for each project above.
We will use your reply forms to confirm who will need to be scheduled each week, so that the dates may be coordinated and set. A list will then be sent to each of those committing to each project. Generally, each Team should go the week they customarily serve, while considering the start dates listed above.
2. Also send the NAMB a copy of the Reply Form about your plans for the Summer of 2010.
3. If you do not wish to participate in these projects, please contact the NAMB to secure another needful project, but let us know immediately of your decision.
4. Please attend the Project Coordination Meeting for the Project you choose!!! It will be March 13, 2010, at Project “A” & “B”, and also March 20, 2010 at Project “C”. This is where we will synchronize each of our Teams to a task within our ability, the weeks we serve, the logistics and where you may witness the Ministry personality of the Church or Seminary. They will communicate the details of their Meeting with those expressing interest in their project.
5. Pray, Church-wide, for your mission task, and also for our Hosts. This will strengthen your Team’s relationship with your own Church and allow God to speak, to more than those who have been directly involved in this Ministry, concerning how they can support your Team’s Ministry from within your Body of Believers.
6. Give a copy of this letter to any leaders of other Churches with whom you have a relationship. Try to get a few from those Churches to join you, so that they can learn, first hand, how their own Church can grow in their own Mission Vision. This is not about numbers. It is about increasing what we can do to expand God’s Kingdom.
Thank you for your commitment to Construction Missions. We share a deep concern for the lost in our Nation as the basis for so great an effort to reach them for our Lord. Certainly, there will be many who will hear of our Savior as a result of the sacrifices you have made on these projects, in the past. These buildings will be Tools of God’s Ministries, for generations. Let us join again to plan carefully so that we can be as effective as possible in our service next summer. God bless you in your work for Him.
In His Service,
Lawrence Corley, Coordinator