In its most recent board meeting, trustees of the Missouri Baptist Children’s Home Board learned that annual liability insurance premiums for the ministry are jumping from $18,000 to $134,000. This rate increase was in spite of zero claims and clear risk-management training. The former carrier didn’t even want to underwrite them. Yet the liability insurance is necessary to do the life-transforming work Missouri Baptist churches have assigned MBCH to do.
Another record year at Super Summer. The Making Disciples group spent two weeks pouring into the lives of students from across the state. They engaged in teaching the students how to be followers of Jesus and leaders in their families and communities. This year, more than 50 students acknowledged a surrender to God’s “call” during the Super Summer experience.
These high-value ministries are making a difference in the lives of people and communities through the gospel because of your faithfulness to the Rheubin L. South Missouri Missions Offering (MMO). Because of your generosity, people are engaging in making disciples, multiplying churches and developing leaders. The MBCH receives 17 percent of the MMO offering and the Making Disciples group is allocated $173,751 for next year’s work with Missouri students who come from churches of every size across our state.
This summer, the room was mostly filled with young families. Children seemed to be running everywhere while the caterer was taking the foil coverings off the “fixins” for tacos and burritos. They were participants at MB125, a conference that works with pastors and their families in smaller-in-attendance congregations. This is a conference made possible by MMO.
Another interesting phenomenon with this year’s MB125 was that the average age this year plummeted when compared to previous years. Why? Because a new generation is rising to lead existing and new churches to fulfill their biblical purpose of life transformation through evangelism outreach, a systemic approach to making disciples, living the gospel on mission with God’s people and coaching/mentoring the next generation for godly leadership.
One of the things we noticed at some of our recent Disaster Relief call outs was the absence of younger participants. In an effort to make the DR ministry even more multigenerational, we have interns working with DR. They just returned this week from south Houston, Texas, where they were making a difference in the mighty name of Jesus with people whose houses were flooded in May/June.
This year, we are allocating funds for building up a volunteer network of Baptist Builders. The network already exists and we want to expand it. These wonderful people used their hands and hearts to construct church facilities and rebuild homes devastated by floods. In one flooded home readied for repair, an older gentleman lived with his son and daughter in law. The older man was saved and a few weeks later he died and took up residence in the presence of the Lord.
There are so many stories. There are so many projects on which we work together for the glory of our Lord Jesus. You can read about some of those projects in the center section of this issue of The Pathway. You can also go to the web – www.MoBaptist.org/MMO – and find all kinds of resources. Hint: don’t miss the videos. Our hope is to reach an offering goal of $710,000 for this year. Take a look at the resources. Please give with an open heart and hand.
Another thing you can do is learn what some churches are doing to “own” a project. There is a list of projects a single church or group of churches or individuals can provide. For example, a Bible Study group could underwrite the cost for 10 summer missionary backpacks filled with evangelism material, training resources and a first-aid kit with a sponsorship of $500. Or $250 would provide full scholarships for five inner-city youths in a week-long evangelistic sports camp. Or what would happen if a generous individual donated $1,000 to provide the training for an MBCH foster family?
So many projects, and the Lord gives Missouri Baptists the opportunity to join Him in these high-value, multi-generational methods of communicating the gospel.
“Do good and share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.” (Hebrews 13:16 ESV)