Rural Waynesville church sets example in MMO giving
WAYNESVILLE—They are just a small, country church, running fewer than 20 in Sunday School, and around only 55-60 in the regular service, but Mt. Gibson Baptist Church in Waynesville surpasses its goal every time a missions offering is given.
“We are a very missions-oriented church,” said Pastor Paul Miller. “If we set a goal, we always reach or go over the amount we set.”
Last October, Mt. Gibson had set a goal of raising just $375 for the Rheubin L. South Missouri Missions Offering (MMO).
“We questioned whether we could make it or not,” said former Missouri Baptist Convention (MBC) Employee Irene Spencer.
They not only reached that goal, but went over double the amount as the total amount raised came to $908.
John and Irene Spencer have been members of Mt. Gibson for about four to five years, and are very active in preparing the church for these special missions offerings given throughout the years.
“John and Irene always set up a display of sorts that has the goal we try to reach each year for MMO, and when we reach that goal they usually have a picture of our state with a heart that lights up in the middle,” said Miller.
Miller takes no credit for his church’s heart for missions. “We have no special services; we don’t even take up a special offering. I just preach the Word and the Spirit leads the people to give.”
The Woman’s Missionary Union (WMU), of which the church secretary, Marvella Laughlin, is president, is very active in this small church. Both Miller and Irene Spencer attribute part of the church’s success to that.
“Last year an anonymous donor told us that they would match what the entire church had given,” Irene Spencer said. “This put our total offering over the amount that had already surpassed our goal.”
It’s amazing what the Lord can do if people allow the Spirit to lead them.
“We are just a Spirit-led church and believe that giving to missions is a part of our spiritual work,” Miller said. “Nothing spurs us but the Spirit.”