The Columbia Metro Connection eNewsletter — June 20, 2018
A Message from George Bullard, Director
Last week my wife and I got away to celebrate our 46th wedding anniversary. (I love that gal even more than ever!) We did not go far. Just to Charlotte. The idea was to get away, have a change of pace, and spend some time together.
Charlotte holds special meaning for us. We lived there for a little over two years almost 40 years ago. I was serving on the staff of the local Baptist association—then known as the Mecklenburg Baptist Association. During our short time there I organized two new congregations and preached for them for the first five or six months of their life. One was Candlewyck Baptist Church and the other Lake Norman Baptist Church.
Candlewyck is a church not unlike many churches that lived out its founding dream or vision for its first generation of life, and then never dreamed another dream again. They have just this spring been absorbed into a relatively new congregation called Mercy Church. (See them at www.mercycharlotte.com)
Lake Norman Baptist Church continues to be a booming church now 40 years later. While I had seen Candlewyck often because of driving by their location, I had not seen Lake Norman for many years. We drove out to it and were amazed about its continued growth. (See them at www.lakenormanbaptist.com)
As I complete my first year as Director of Mission for our association, I believe we have started some things that help us strengthen existing congregations. Now my second year I want us to focus on the starting of new congregations.
Church Planting is one of my greatest joys in ministry. We have a lot of opportunities in Columbia Metro to start new congregations strategically situated for various neighborhoods and affinity groups of people throughout our association. We currently have around 100 congregations connected with our association. Will you be part of the next 100?
Our Family Stories
Outgoing BCM Director Andy Weems Applauds Work of CMBA Churches with College Students
As Andy Weems concludes five years of Baptist Collegiate Ministry (BCM) service with Columbia colleges and universities, he quickly applauds the support of the Columbia Metro Baptist Association and the involvement of its churches with students.
Andy is leaving the South Carolina Baptist Convention staff to pursue Clinical Pastoral Education through Palmetto Health Baptist, in Columbia, as a means to open the door to chaplaincy in what he calls “a wide variety of settings.”
“I came to South Carolina in January 2013 to work with Columbia campus ministry,” Andy says. “The Kingdom growth through our campuses would not have been possible without the support of the Columbia Metro Association, especially regarding administrative and programming assistance. A huge part of our programming expenses were funded by the association. Even through the leadership transition of (associational directors of mission) Bill Dieckmann to George Bullard, these men bent over backward to be supportive of me and collegiate ministry.”
Continue reading HERE.
Let’s Be Part of a Compassion Revolution!
You may remember that our first Vision Tuesday—January 2018—had as the speaker John Daughtery of Operation Inasmuch. (See them at www.operationinasmuch.org) This Christ-centered organization in Knoxville, TN, helps congregations to participate in a compassion revolution. The beginning is an Inasmuch Day where Christians leave the church and serve as the presence of Christ in their community context. We are piloting this process in our association.
We are planning for the Inasmuch Days on September 22nd and 29th. One goal of an Inasmuch Day is to see the church strengthened in unity by the members working together to demonstrate the love of Christ. Another goal is the community’s perception of the church is changed by witnessing that love through the actions of the church. The ultimate goal of an Inasmuch Day is to see individuals transformed to live the compassion lifestyle. The Operation Inasmuch model offers detailed organization tools to help churches in carrying out this ministry. We have reached our first tier of churches committed to our pilot Inasmuch Days. Churches can still sign up to participate by contacting Cathy Locklear at CathyLocklear@ColumbiaMetro.org or calling her at 803.622.0923.
The 14 participating churches are: Concord Fellowship, Fort Clark, Grace Fellowship, Harmony, Mt. Elon, New Heights, North Columbia, Rosewood, Sawneys Creek, Spring Valley, St Mark, Temple Zion, Winnsboro First and Woodfield Park.
Our Important Dates
We covet your prayers for these experiences and the congregations and leaders who will be involved. To see logistical details about each of these, go to the calendar page of the web site.
- Saturday, June 23rd 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. is Region II Associational WMU Leadership Training at Trinity Baptist Church, 112 Chester Avenue, Great Falls, SC. This training is free. Please register by Thursday, June 14th by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 803.227.6210.
- Monday – Wednesday, August 27th-29th is the next Congregational Champions “Retreat” held in the office of the association. It is three days where participants learn a process for leading their congregation through transitions and changes to transform for the next chapter in the life of their congregation. It starts at 1:00 p.m. on the first day and ends at 1:00 p.m. on the third day with no evening sessions. For more information contact George Bullard directly at 803.622.0923 or GeorgeBullard@ColumbiaMetro.org.
- Saturdays September 22nd and 29th – Inasmuch Days in CMBA. Our prayer is to see many churches in our association serving their communities. The Operation Inasmuch ministry has developed helpful tools and approaches to assist churches in conducting successful ministry experiences. Quarters for Jesus is a sample story of how a little girl in a congregation sprang into action to support a compassion revolution through her church. If your church wants to be involved in one of these Saturdays, contact Cathy Locklear at 803.622.0303 or CathyLocklear@ColumbiaMetro.org. She has a training kit and will also personally help your church get ready.
Our Family Gathering Place
Conversations Around Our Family of Congregations
Pray for Congregations Seeking a New Pastor: Columbia First Baptist Church, Stephen Greene Baptist Church, Hope Baptist Church, and Calvary Baptist Church.
Several of our churches need music and worship leaders. If you know of people who desire to serve part-time in this area of ministry in a church, please have them send a resume to George Bullard at GeorgeBullard@ColumbiaMetro.org.