One of the enjoyable things about my work with Kentucky WMU is attending association meetings in the fall. Most of our Kentucky Baptist associations have a fall meeting which includes reports on the past year and information about upcoming plans. Reports usually include a summary of the Annual Church Profile (ACP) from each of the churches in the association as well as the work of association committees and ministries. I learn a great deal from the reports and fellowship.
Most recently I attended the Christian County Baptist Association fall meeting to report on the transition of Kentucky Changers to Kentucky WMU. Hopkinsville will be one of our 2014 sites and I wanted to convey our excitement about taking on this ministry. Upon arrival I received a copy of this year’s set of reports for Christian County Association. What I read about missions participation was exciting.
Not only did the Christian County Baptist Association include the ACP total mission projects participation of 4,140, but there was an eight page report from the Missions Committee detailing the location, group/work done, number of participants, and church represented. The list was amazing.
There were 16 Foreign Mission Trips/Projects that included Nicaragua, Brazil, Ecuador, Jamaica, Ethiopia, Guatemala, and Costa Rica. Projects included evangelism, Baptist Medical and Dental Mission, orphanage ministry, building repairs, VBS, feeding program, and a youth revival. Eight churches were represented and 95 people participated in the various trips and projects.
There were 10 North American Mission Trips/Projects that included ministries in South Carolina, New Mexico, Utah, Washington, Georgia, Missouri, South Dakota, and Louisiana. Projects included collecting and distributing clothes, school supplies and toys; evangelism; building repairs; VBS; beach ministry; women’s shelter, and more. Seven churches were represented and 161 participated in the various trips and projects.
There were nine trips/projects in Kentucky. Participants went to Lexington, Oneida, Bowling Green, Eastern Kentucky, McDowell, Somerset, and Owensboro. Six churches, involving 170 people, participated in backpack ministry, Backyard Bible Clubs, construction, evangelism, nursing home ministry, food ministry, and more.
The biggest list of projects, churches, and participants was for ministries in Christian County for a total of 91 community mission projects! Twenty-three churches participated in these projects and involved 2934 people! While some folks are counted several times because of participation in different projects, it is still a great measure of participation. Operation Hopkinsville encouraged many to participate through a special one-week effort allowing folks to take a mission trip at home. Operation Hopkinsville and other projects during the year included block parties, backpack program, monthly meal for soldiers and families, after school tutoring, coat drive, jail ministry, soup kitchen, nursing home ministry, evangelism, hospital waiting room ministry, lawn care for people in need, and much, much more!
The WMU report also included information about events such as Children’s Ministry Day with over 100 in attendance. The children brought approximate 500 hygiene items which went into backpacks for the VA Homeless Center. The children also made encouragement cards which went into the packs which were delivered during a tour of the building for the children. In addition, the Christian County WMU Annual Project during Focus on WMU was “Baby Bundle Sunday” where 788 items (onesies and diapers) were collected and donated to Impact Ministry and Alpha Alternative.
All of this to say: Missions is something we do! 1 John 3:18 says, “Little children, we must not love with word or speech, but with truth and action.” More than ever, make a difference!