JEFFERSON CITY – It’s that time of year again. Not just back-to-school preparations, or the hope of one final getaway from the dog days of summer. No, it’s that time of year when every Missouri Baptist church or mission is asked to complete an Annual Church Profile (ACP).
ACP is a statistical survey that tracks trends in baptisms, church membership, worship attendance, and so much more. And it’s important for several reasons, according to John Yeats, the MBC’s executive director.
First, ACP helps with research. “LifeWay Christian Resources uses the data from more than 45,000 local churches to explore and explain the many changes taking place in Southern Baptist life,” says Yeats.
Second, ACP enables every household listed to receive a free subscription to The Pathway. This twice-monthly newsjournal is Missouri Baptists’ window to the missional world, with a focus on how Missouri Baptists work together to transform lives and communities with the gospel.
Third, ACP data is used to determine how many MBC Executive Board members represent each of the eight regions in our state, and how many messengers a local MBC church may send to the Annual Meeting.
Fourth, ACP helps the MBC track trends in the local church and across our state — from worship attendance to baptisms. It also helps the convention staff learn how local churches are engaging directly in missions.
Last, ACP data “enables all Missouri Baptists to speak more accurately about the cooperative work we do to make disciples, multiply churches, and develop leaders,” according to Yeats. “Full and accurate accounting of information equips us with a more credible reflection of who we are to the world.”
MBC’s 1,800 churches have wonderful stories to tell, says Yeats. “The data collected through ACP is more than just numbers; it represents people whose lives and communities are transformed with the gospel.”
Yeats adds, “I’d like to personally ask every church to complete an ACP report this year. It only takes a few minutes – and help is just a phone call away.”
Nearly every association assists the MBC in distributing and collecting ACP data. In addition, the MBC’s Pam Jeffries is available to answer questions about the ACP, or to help complete the forms. Pam may be contacted by phone at 800.736.6227 ext. 337, or via email at email@example.com.