September 23, 2016
By Aaron Weaver
DECATUR, Ga. — Prayer, updates from the mission field, discussions on church engagement and reflections on the 25th Anniversary General Assembly were the focus Thursday at the fall meeting of the Missions Council of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship.
CBF Global Missions Coordinator Steven Porter reflected on the 2016 General Assembly in Greensboro, N.C., and shared about the implementation of “For the Joy Set Before Us” — the strategic plan developed by the CBF Missions Council and adopted by the CBF Governing Board for a sustainable, equitable model for CBF field personnel serving around the world.
Porter said the implementation has focused to date on the technical aspects of moving to the new equitable model and that three transition training sessions are scheduled in the coming months with field personnel in the United States and at two locations overseas.
He noted continued efforts to raise the profile of the Mission Distinctives of CBF Global Missions including the commitments to cultivate beloved community, bear witness to Jesus Christ and seek transformational development in the mission contexts of Global Poverty, Global Migration and the Global Church. Porter said that new Bible studies and the 2016-17 Offering for Global Missions theme of “Bearing Witness to Jesus Christ” and other resources highlight these commitments and contexts.
Porter also shared about engaging numerous churches over the past year at Mission Collective events on the topic of “Reclaiming Evangelism for the 21st century.” Launched in 2016, Mission Collective is a one-day event for equipping churches in best practices through collaboration, where expert practitioners, church leaders and CBF staff gather around a relevant topic and bring together collective wisdom for collective action.
Additional updates featured CBF’s newest church resource for short-term mission engagement called Pivot and a report on the recent gathering of Together for Hope, the Fellowship’s coalition partnering with rural communities for holistic development.
Porter asked the council to continue to pray for CBF field personnel serving in locations in close proximity to ongoing violence and recent natural disasters.
“Please continue to pray daily for our missionaries who serve in high-risk contexts around the globe and invite your congregations to pray for them,” Porter said. “Please pray for the staff as we lead the team transition trainings and Mission Collectives and other events this fall.”
The council also heard financial, development and church engagement reports as well as an update from CBF Executive Coordinator Suzii Paynter. The two-day meeting concluded Friday with working sessions and reports from council subcommittees.
The members of the CBF Missions Council, chaired by Caleb Oladipo, professor and chair of Christian Evangelism and Missions at Campbell University Divinity School, include:
- Caleb Oladipo (Chair) – Professor and Chair of Christian Evangelism and Missions, Campbell University Divinity School, Buies Creek, N.C.
- Christy Edwards (Chair-Elect) – Laity, Second Baptist Church, Liberty, Mo.
- Alan Sherouse (Past Chair) – Senior Pastor, First Baptist Church, Greensboro, N.C.
- Courtney Allen – Senior Pastor, Grace Baptist Church, Richmond, Va.
- Rick Burnette – Director of Agriculture, ECHO, Fort Myers, Fla.
- Roger Capps – Retired Missionary, Beaufort, S.C.
- Chris Ellis – Minister of Missions, Second Baptist Church, Little Rock, Ark.
- Frances Ford – Executive Director, Sowing Seeds of Hope, Perry County, Ala.
- Lauren Hovis – Research Analyst, Contract Support for U.S. Trade and Development Agency, Washington, D.C.
- David W. Hull – Interim Senior Pastor, First Baptist Church, Augusta, Ga.
- Rickey Letson – Senior Pastor, First Baptist Church, Laurens, S.C.
- Jackie Baugh Moore – Vice President, Eula Mae and John Baugh Foundation, San Antonio, Texas
- Alice Mull – Laity, Living Faith Fellowship, Elizabethtown, Ky.
- Randy Shepley – Senior Pastor, First Baptist Church, Newport News, Va.
- Mark Wingfield – Associate Pastor, Wilshire Baptist Church, Dallas, Texas
View photos from the September 22-23 meeting of the CBF Missions Council here.
CBF is a Christian Network that helps people put their faith to practice through ministry efforts, global missions and a broad community of support. The Fellowship’s mission is to serve Christians and churches as they discover and fulfill their God-given mission.