MBC taking the Gospel to State Fair
SEDALIA – Missouri Baptists intend to share the Gospel with as many as 40,000 people at this year’s Missouri State Fair in Sedalia Aug. 10-20.
For the fourth straight year the Missouri Baptist Convention (MBC) will have a huge tent where volunteers will do personal evangelism while offering face painting and balloons for children and music and cold drinks of water for everyone. Several Christian music groups, like Color of Music who performed last year, are set to minister periodically throughout the fair’s 10-day run.
“I think this is a marvelous time for our associations all across the state to work together to witness to a large section of our population,” said Gary Payne, director of missions, Linn-Livingston Baptist Association and one of the event’s organizers. “Through the Cooperative Program every church has a part in reaching a large amount of people through this tent.”
While all of the time slots have been filled by churches and associations, Payne explained that if someone stops by, the MBC can use them and wanted to encourage puppeteers and mimes to help out, saying that they have been a draw in the past. One thing Payne wanted to emphasize was the continual need for the prayers of people for the tent and the spreading of the Gospel.
With the current hot temperatures, many people will be in need of something to quench their thirst, thus the free water in containers with Scripture featured on the outside.
“We have witnessing tools that talk about the three things that God doesn’t know. With it, you can open three doors and it has different answers which lead up to a presentation of the Gospel.” Payne said. “We will also have a questionnaire that they can fill out about their spiritual lives and it also leads to a presentation of the Gospel.”
Some of the other tools will be the balloons, which are Christian themed, and the face painting booth where painters will have opportunities to witness to the people they are painting. There will also be breaks during the music which will lend opportunities for volunteers to witness to those visiting.
“We are hoping to have less rain this year than we did last year,” Payne said. “We had a flood last year and it slowed down the flow of people coming through. And we hope to reach more people this year.”(John Inman is a senior journalism major at Lincoln University and is serving as a summer intern with The Pathway.)