By Martha Perusek
With members representing 5 different continents, Pole Line Road Baptist Church’s diverse congregation engages in a rich and equally diverse array of mission projects and community ministries.
“We have a Kingdom view that we are part of more than just Pole Line Road Baptist Church,” said Pastor Exter Hardy, who also serves as part of the CBF 25th Anniversary Church Gifts Committee. “By supporting and joining together in ministry with CBF, we are able to be a part of what God is doing around the world. Because we are “Cooperative” with other Christians, we can be a part of an even larger global church and thus God’s activity. We see our involvement with CBF as vital to our fulfilling Christ’s command to ‘go and make disciples of all nations’ and a blessing to be in fellowship with other believers.”
Recently transforming the old building through a major expansion, Pole Line now hosts three additional church congregations, including its Hispanic mission.
“God has amazingly blessed us with an almost completely remodeled and expanded facility, debt free,” said Hardy. “There is no way our small congregation could have accomplished this apart from a miracle from God. The building itself stands as a testimony of God’s grace, as does the wonderful loving family inside.”
Pole Line’s migrant center outreach includes a mobile medical and dental unit, worship with a barbecue dinner and unique services to provide comfort and hospitality to farm workers. The church provides children’s ministries through a local Iranian organization, hosts parents’ night out events throughout the year to reach new families and hosts a popular annual community yard sale providing a venue for people from the community to sell crafts and household items.
In addition to generous support of CBF’s Offering for Global Missions, the congregation provides direct support to field personnel Rick and Lita Sample, who work among refugees and immigrants in the San Francisco Bay Area, and Larry and Sarah Ballew, who minister to staff of the large hospitality industry, schools and other groups in Macau, China.
Ten percent of Pole Line’s budget is allocated to missions, and ten percent of their members spend at least a week of their time in ministry. The church also conducts innovative Offerings for Global Missions two times a year.
To honor the Fellowship during CBF Celebration Week, Pole Line read the CBF 25th Anniversary Litany of Celebration in worship, alongside focus on CBF Global Missions and prayer for the Fellowship. In the 8:00 a.m. service, a 9-year-old read the words of CBF Executive Coordinator Suzii Paynter in the litany, and inspired by her role in the service proclaimed she was going to be the first child deacon for the church.
The gathering included a special offering of funds to support the CBF 25th Anniversary campaign, totaling nearly $1,200.
This celebration of the Fellowship is based in the congregation’s passion for being connected to this denomi-network and the shared values of the church and CBF.
“By supporting CBF and Global missions we are investing our money in what we believe,” said Hardy, “sharing the love of Christ with the world.”
Join Pole Line Road Baptist Church and other churches and individuals from across the Fellowship in celebrating 25 years of CBF October 16-23. During this week, Fellowship churches and individuals will set aside intentional times of celebration to honor CBF’s 25th Anniversary. Through special worship services, mission projects, Bible studies, state and regional gatherings and other special events, this CBF Celebration Week will be an opportunity for Cooperative Baptists across the country and around the world to thank God for the past 25 years and look forward to our future as a Fellowship. Resources are available at www.cbf.net/cbf25.