Kentucky Volunteers – There when needed

The recent school shooting tragedy in Marshall County has touched many lives and in the midst of the tragedy, Kentucky Baptists were there. Dr. Chitwood wrote about the pastors who went to the school and to the hospital (See Unsung Heroes: Pastors rushed to school shooting because that’s just what they do.)

Kentucky Disaster Relief volunteers were also helping.  Coy Webb, Kentucky Disaster Relief Director, shared this note:

To Red Cross & KY Baptist Disaster Relief,
Thank You.  Thank you for being there.  There has been only two or three times in my career that I’ve had the opportunity to work alongside the American Red Cross (ARC) and the Kentucky Baptist Disaster Relief (KBDR).  The first was the floods in Ashland, the second in West Liberty for tornadoes, and now the Marshall County High School shooting.

The task of investigating any crime that involves children is daunting.  Like most of you, I have children.  For some, if not most, you have played the scenario in your mind, “What if this were my kid’s School?” Or worse, “What if my kid were a victim?”  To have to interact with the parent is sometimes harder than interacting with the child.  To be able to ask that parent or child, “Are you thirsty, or hungry?  The ARC & KBDR have brought pizza, Cokes, water, snacks, etc.”  To have that open dialogue we all commonly share, “Are you hungry or thirsty?”  Because of the ARC & the KBDR we could say to the families, “We have comfort” (even if it’s only in the form of food & drink).

We have more work to do.  More kids to talk to.  More stones to turn.  More healing to process.  In this case, comfort & healing came in the form of the ARC & KBDR volunteers.  Thank you.

Senior Trooper Jack A. Hedges  U/887
Kentucky State Police
Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT)
919 Versailles Road
Frankfort, KY 40601

Please continue to pray for the families of those killed, the students who are recovering, and all who were traumatized. Give thanks for Kentucky Baptist Disaster Relief volunteers and all who have and are ministering in Marshall County.

EBO at Work in Baptism

Do you ever wish you knew more about the results of state missions and the Eliza Broadus Offering?  Ever wonder if your offering dollars make a difference?

I feel the same way at times. I know that our praying and giving is having an impact but there is nothing like seeing the results or receiving an email with a story about someone coming to faith through state missions. I received such an email just before Christmas.

The email included a link to a video of the baptism of a student from Japan at Murray First Baptist Church. Keith Inman, pastor and former Collegiate Ministry Director for the Kentucky Baptist Convention, was so excited to be baptizing this student.

In the video another international student read the testimony of the Japanese student who is studying ESL (English as Second Language) at Murray State University. The great thing about his testimony is the connection of international missions and state missions. The first Christian this student met was a missionary in Japan who did student work. He would hang out with the Japanese students, play Frisbee or cards, or visit coffee shops. After seeing how kind this Christian missionary was, the Japanese student became interested in his faith. The missionary shared stories from the Bible, explained who God is, and what makes Christianity different from other religions.

Then Tucker (American name that he chose) came to Murray to study. There he met students from the BCM (Baptist Campus Ministry) who befriended him and shared their faith. Over Thanksgiving break, Tucker went home with another student and began to realize that God had been orchestrating his life for many years. In the car, he believed that God is holy and that he was separated from God by his sin. In that moment he believed in what Jesus had done for him

Before baptizing Tucker, Keith asked everyone who was present who had any part of his journey to faith to stand, including things like giving him a ride to Walmart and subject of Jesus came us. Keith said, “You never know how God is going to use the faithfulness of His people to help a young man or a young woman to understand that God is at work.”

Thank you for your gifts to the Eliza Broadus Offering which provides funding for Baptist Campus Ministry and outreach to international students. You were a part of Tucker’s salvation story.

Focus on WMU will be observed in February. We are asking every WMU group to receive a Focus offering for EBO. The timing of the 2017 hurricanes impacted EBO giving, yet state missions needs go on. Your gift now will make an impact. Be sure to see the video from Dr. Paul Chitwood for Focus on WMU and EBO

And if you want to see the video of Tucker’s baptism and share it with others, it is available online and may be downloaded to share with others. The video will touch your heart and allow you to see EBO at work for yourself!


Refurbishing the Kentucky Room at National WMU

National WMU is embarking on a huge remodeling project at the national WMU building. Our beautiful WMU home office has been in constant use since it was built in the mid-1980’s. It is time for wall paper to be removed, carpet to be replaced, lighting to be updated, new window treatments added, and much more.  This includes the Kentucky Room.

The Kentucky Room is a conference room at the National WMU Building that was furnished by Kentucky WMU.  Through the years, I have always been proud to visit the Kentucky room whenever I have been at the National WMU building. I always pause in front of the picture of Eliza Broadus and show my respect for our beloved leader. A few years ago a framed print of “My Old Kentucky Home” was added to the artwork in the room, placed there in memory of my mother, Dorothy Luebbert.

But carpets get worn and decorating styles change. With the availability of more efficient lighting and better equipment for conference room use, it is time for an upgrade. Kentucky WMU has committed to cover the cost of the renovations to the Kentucky Room, including some volunteer labor to strip wallpaper and paint.

If you would like to have a part in the Kentucky Room renovation, send your donation to Kentucky WMU. The projected cost for the project is $11,500.  We will keep a list of donors who helped with the renovation of the room. We will continue to be “Kentucky proud” of this room and its importance at the national WMU building.

Beyond the Kentucky Room, renovations are planned building wide. Anyone and everyone is invited to help with the costs of remodeling. Contributions for the building wide project can be made to the WMU Foundation. Building renovation donations will be placed in the Wanda Lee Joy Fund and this will be the funding channel for the building work.

The Southern Baptist Convention will meet in Birmingham in June 2019. We know that many will visit the national WMU building at that time and we want it to be ready for guests. Renovations will  also improve the functionality of the facility for meetings and other events which take place.

Please pray for this project, for Sandy Wisdom-Martin and Linda Cooper as they lead us, and for the national WMU staff as they continue their work in the midst of the renovations. Pray for generous donations and for a renewed excitement about our WMU home.