Inspire boys, students with new missions outlook this fall

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By Jon Auten

In September, the publications RA World and RA Leader will feature the new theme, Mission: My Life, based on the 2016-18 WMU theme By All Means.

As RAs and their leaders learn the lessons and unpack the meaning of the new emphasis, the prayer is that boys will be challenged to make missions a part of their daily lives by engaging fully in missions learning and action.

Parents and leaders, this material is written to help you teach RAs about how the Great Commission impacted the early disciples, how it informs the lives of current-day missionaries, and how it can transform the lives of believers today. RA Leader, RA World, and all the other resources you need to help your Royal Ambassadors grow into “well informed, responsible followers of Christ” are available at wmustore.com.

As you plan for the coming year, please mark your calendars for RAMCON 2017 on March 18 at Beaver Dam Baptist Church. As the date approaches, more info will be posted on the website.

Follow “Kentucky Royal Ambassadors” on Facebook.

Challengers & Youth on Mission

What if the teenaged boys in your Challengers group, or the boys and girls in your Youth on Mission group, did the following things on a regular basis:

  • Followed Christ’s example?
  • Stepped into the world around them?
  • Cultivated relationships with others, and
  • Created opportunities to demonstrate the love of Christ?

You certainly would be proud of a group of young people who lived like that, wouldn’t you? With the help of the new Challengers Leader book and Youth on Mission Plan Book for 2016-17, you can equip the young men and women in your group to live in just this kind of way.

By All Means, that’s the overarching theme in the Bible studies, mission studies, personal growth studies, and missions activities that will enable your students to live for Christ in all they do.

You can also engage teens in practical missions  through Kentucky WMU’s Creative Ministries Festival and Kentucky Changers.

Stay up to date on news, events and resources for students at kywmu.org/students.

Kentucky Challengers” and “Kentucky Changers” are on Facebook.

Jon Auten is the RA/Challengers and Youth on Mission consultant for Ky WMU, [email protected]

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Excel 2016: Learn how to do world missions at home

Guest Commentary by Brett Martin

It doesn’t take long for you to find out that they are lonely.

In April 2016, a Christian walked onto a university campus in Kentucky and asked international students a question. “What needs do you have that no one is willing or able to meet?”

Students quickly replied with one of two answers: “I want a friend,” or “I’m looking for an American family.”

The Kentucky Baptist Convention has launched the Twelve24 Initiative. It is a movement to help churches help every student on every campus to encounter Jesus and experience life to the full.

Additionally, Reaching Internationals is one of several special interest workshops offered at Excel, Kentucky WMU’s leadership development events Aug. 20 in Independence, and Sept. 10 in Louisville.

Consider that 95 percent of these students would say they are not a practicing Christian. If those numbers don’t rock your boat, consider the more than 8,000 international students in Kentucky. The majority of these students are coming from China, India, and Saudi Arabia.

Most people from these countries have never met a Christian, let alone heard the gospel. Last May, a family in Kentucky hosted an international student who had questions such as, “Who is Jesus?” and “Why did He have to die?”

The student even told this family, “I want to treat my future wife and children the way you treat yours, not the way my culture treats theirs.”

The KBC consists of 2,400 churches who cooperate together to reach Kentucky and the world for Christ. One would think Kentucky and the world would be two different ministry locations, but with God bringing the nations to us, we see that one can reach the world by simply walking out the front door. You can impact the world by stepping onto a campus. Now, you can even impact the world by simply inviting international students into your home.

If you have had little experience interacting with different cultures, it does not matter. God can use you. He has planned before time that it would be through His Church that the gospel would go forth.

The KBC desires to see the world reached and we are committed to helping Kentucky Baptists help every international student encounter Jesus and experience life to the full.

So, you may be asking, “Where do I start?” Here are a few first steps:

Pray for international students and for more laborers who may serve them.

Connect with your Kentucky Regional Campus Missionary at www.kybcm.org.

Brett Martin is international campus missionary for the Kentucky Baptist Convention.

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Kentucky Changers – Still.Changing.Lives

imageKentucky Changers has wrapped up another successful summer of projects working in four locations this summer. Denise Gardner, Jon Auten and I were privileged to join Peggy Murphy and a host of wonderful volunteers as students and adults joined together to minister. Students were reminded often that we had come to do more than build decks, paint, roof, and other repairs. Instead, we had come to share Jesus and grow in our own faith walk.

imageAnd indeed lives were changed, including many of the student participants. Each day, students stopped for lunch and had a devotional which often included a testimony from a student or adult leader. Each evening, after a full day of working on houses, students returned to the school for supper and an evening worship time. In the evening worship, the gospel was clearly presented and students were challenged to accept Christ if they had never done so. During the four weeks, there were 17 salvation decisions, 14 rededications, and 20 who expressed a call to ministry. Many more left as stronger believers, understanding what hands-on missions is all about.
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An important aspect of Kentucky Changers is teaching students to share their faith. Students spent time on Sunday afternoon learning how to share the plan of salvation using a “colors of faith” bracelet. They also wrote out their personal testimonies, which is a great way to build confidence in sharing your faith.

For many of the students, learning to share their faith was the highlight of the Kentucky Changers experience as evidenced in this email:

imageDear Peggy, My name is Sydney Amos and I am a member of Valley View Baptist Church youth group in Vine Grove, KY. I was at Changers a few weeks ago with my youth group, which was my third year at Changers. I’m just writing this E-mail to let you know how much I love the salvation bracelets that we used as a tool to share the gospel this year. These bracelets provided me with so many opportunities to share the gospel on and off the job site! They are great to share God’s Word and love with people of all ages, but they are especially great to share with children! I must have given out at least 10 bracelets that week, sharing the meaning of them while I was at it! Not only were they great for the people you give them to, they also helped me to be more confident in sharing God’s word. My youth group and I love them so much that we are ordering a bunch of them and we are going to  start passing them out at my school this upcoming year! Thank you so much for providing us new ways to share and for all the amazing things that you do for and with Kentucky Changers! See you next year! God bless you.

Our thanks to all of the volunteers who served as chaperones, project coordinators, construction coordinators, crew chiefs, assistants, runners, cooks, shower trailer workers, tool trailer coordinator, nurse, and the myriad of other tasks. Some of our volunteers served with us all four weeks! We also want to thank the college and high school students who served on the Ministry Team as Peggy’s assistants. These students do an awesome job with all the behind the scenes tasks. A big shout out to the pastors and music leaders who led in worship each evening and visited job sites during the day to talk with students.

imageWe are grateful to Peggy Murphy who serves as Kentucky Changers Coordinator. She was honored at the last homeowner celebration service with a quilt made from Kentucky Changers t-shirts.

Still.Changing.Lives!  Kentucky WMU helps churches learn, pray, give, go, and send missionaries, including these student missionaries we call Kentucky Changers.

 

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EBO gifts at work this summer

Summer is upon us with all of the wonderful ways that Kentucky WMU involves children and students (youth) in missions.

Mission Adventure for Kentucky Kids will take place June 16-18 in Richmond and June 23-25 in Bowling Green. Red House Baptist Church will host in Richmond and Calvary Baptist Church in Bowling Green. Each three day mission trip includes prayer walking, worship, Bible study, mission projects and Kentucky Kid fun! Ministries include sorting, organizing donations of food and clothing, home meals delivery to the homebound, games with children at a shelter, making cookies for international students, and more.


Equipment TrailerKentucky Changers
will do home repairs for low-income home owners in Hopkinsville (June 11-17), Calloway County (June 18-24), Greensburg (July 2-8), and Frankfort (July 9-12).  Building on the 2016 theme, “Stay Connected to the Source,” students will be challenged through nightly worship to stay connected to Jesus in all of life. Volunteers of all ages assist with teaching construction skills, supervising projects, cooking, checking out tools, and many other tasks to support the students as they serve.

Overnights for Mothers and Daughters and Girls in Action will take place at Cedarmore (July 1-2) and Jonathan Creek (July 8-9). Participants will meet a missionary and enjoy summer fun while they learn. Acteens Quest, our newest overnight, will be held at Jonathan Creek (July 8-9) followed by a state Acteens Activators Team trip (July 11-17) to New Orleans to work at the Baptist Friendship Center.  Acteens Leaders are invited to their own event, Acteens Quest for Leaders, August 5-6 at Liberty Baptist Church, Campbellsville. This will be a time for leaders to get acquainted and share ideas.

Camp Courage, a campout for boys will be July 29-30 at Laurel Lake Baptist Camp in Corbin. Boys will participate in a variety of outdoor activities while learning about missions.

We are most excited to report on the completion of a new Kentucky WMU storage facility at Cedarmore. With the addition of Kentucky Changers to the WMU family, the need for adequate storage of all the required equipment was huge. We are grateful to Mercer Baptist Association for the use of their storage building for the past two years. We also appreciate the partnership with Crossings who allowed us to construct a building at Cedarmore.

Whether supporting summer activities led by Kentucky missionaries, helping with WMU sponsored ministries, or funding outreach by church planters, EBO is at work all summer long!

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WMU needs to hear your voice!

National WMU is in the process of evaluating missions resources for children and students. We have been asked to enlist as many people as possible to participate in the surveys as WMU seeks ways to enhance materials for children and students.  There are separate surveys for the leaders of Girls in Action, Royal Ambassadors, Children in Action, Acteens, Challengers, and Youth on Mission. If you work with one of these organizations, we ask that you would participate in the appropriate survey by October 30. As a thank you for your time, you will find a promotion code at the end of each survey for 20% off your next purchase of WMU, New Hope, or WorldCraft products.

To make participation in the survey’s easier, Kentucky WMU has placed the links for all the surveys on one web page.  Please visit kywmu.org/surveys.

Your input will help national and state WMU leaders as we seek ways to improve missions materials and enhance learning for children and students.  Thank you for taking one or more of the surveys and letting WMU hear from you.

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EBO at Work This Summer

11026158_10155722938270035_3590013821719565541_nLast year Kentucky WMU decided to go in a new direction with “summer camp” for children and began making plans for Mission Adventure for Kentucky Kids (MAKK). Our first two adventures were awesome. In both Princeton and Inez last month, children arrived on Thursday where there were introductory activities. Every activity was purposeful as the children were being prepared for how they would be on mission.

The first ministry was to prayer walk the community. Children were introduced to the concept and provided with a ring of cards with prayer prompts for the community. They used these as they walked and prayed. The intergenerational praying was wonderful.

11666025_10155722938145035_3698061792306832906_nOn Friday morning the children participated in Bible study, music, games, drama, and crafts. Again, everything had a purpose for a ministry project. Everything the children were learning was so that they could lead in a Backyard Bible Club to be held on Saturday.

On Friday afternoon the children headed out to sing at area nursing homes, then go to another local ministry to help with sorting and shelving donations. The afternoon included fun as well with swimming and fun at the park. A missionary was part of the team at each location.

We are so excited about MAKK and how this experience takes camp and missions learning to the next level for children. Adult leaders were very positive about the experience and both locations wanted to know if were coming back next year. We do plan to move this around the state so that more children can participate in a hands on mission adventure.

11402297_10153375163532834_4969325594735714180_o11406410_10153375161087834_1455619308694133407_oKentucky Changers has also been underway in June with projects in Richmond, Marshall County, and Maysville. The final week is July 13-18 in Henderson. It was exciting for me to be present for the closing celebration in Richmond and watch as students filled the front of the church indicating that they had made some type of decision for Christ during the week. And not only students have made decisions this summer. In Richmond I counseled with one adult who came to help that had been touched by what had taken place. Decisions by homeowners have also been reported. Changers totals thus far:
Richmond had a total of 420 participants who worked on 28 jobs. There were 53 decisions.
Marshall County had 154 participants who worked on 13 jobs. There were 14 decisions.
Maysville had 245 participants who worked on 24 jobs.  There were 19 decisions.
For Henderson we have 171 registered and they will be working on 13-14 jobs.

overnights badgeGA and Mother/Daughter Overnights are a highlight for girls and leaders and moms in July. We will be at Jonathan Creek, July 10-11, and at Cedar Crest, July 17-18.  Camp Courage at Laurel Lake for RAs, Challengers, leaders, and dads will be July 31-August 1. In all of these missions events, the Eliza Broadus Offering is at work. Thank you Kentucky Baptists for providing missions learning and opportunities.

courage2015EBO for 2014-15 is nearing the end of the offering year which closes on August 31. As of July 7, the total received is $1,185,269 towards our goal of $1,250,000.  It’s not too late to give to help reach the 2014 goal. Give online or through your church.

 

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Take It to the Streets with Creative Arts

CMF frontUsing creative arts to share the gospel will be the focus of Creative Ministries Festival 2.0 – Taking It to the Streets, March 6-7, 2015 at Living Hope Baptist Church, Bowling Green, Kentucky.  The event will include classes in creative arts, a missions fair, and block parties where participants will use their skills to present the gospel. General sessions will feature guest artist Jeff Smith, director of Salt and Light Ministries, Richmond, VA.

Creative Ministries Festival 2.0 is a two-day experience that will equip students and adults to share the gospel in creative ways. The 2.0 version refers to new features and a missions emphasis that has been added to the traditional elements of this popular event which recently came under the sponsorship of Kentucky WMU.  Five workshop times will be offered to teach techniques and routines in areas such as puppets, balloons, interpretive movement, sign, “God Rods,” skits, juggling, face painting, magic, lip synch, clowning, and human video.

The event theme “Taking It to the Streets” emphasizes the importance of using creative arts to tell others about Jesus. During a missions fair on Friday evening, students will meet missionaries and ministry leaders who want to have creative ministry teams come serve in their location. Every participant will attend a workshop on sharing the gospel and will be encouraged to use creative arts in missions.

“Taking It to the Streets” will become a reality on Saturday when students use their creative arts skills in four simultaneous block parties in the Bowling Green area.  Sites have been selected to help a new church plant as well as outreach in needy communities. Every group will be assigned to participate in a block party and groups may sign up in advance to perform routines that they have prepared in advance.

Guest artist Jeff Smith uses drama, music and storytelling in his unique brand of ministry. He offers basic instruction on a variety of creative arts, but his niche is creative movement and human video where he is known as “The Rodfather.”

Creative arts workshop leaders include: Dawn Baker, Tim Bertram, Felicia Bland, David Buckner, Lori Durbin, Katherine Gilbert, George Halitzka, Ashley Hicks, Karen Holbrook, David and Susan Huffman, Terry and Sharon Kelly, Peggy Leach, Beth Swadley, and Matt Tullos. Conferences for adult leaders on planning mission trips, block parties, on-going missions involvement for students, and other topics will also be offered.

The registration fee per person is $20. Registration information and other event details are found at www.kywmu.org/cmf. For more information contact Peggy Murphy at 502-489-3457.

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