Dear Church Family,
Another exciting summer has come to a close. I remember when I started in ministry, I was warned about a “summer slowdown” when ministry would seemingly take a hiatus. That certainly has not been the case at your Bradley Baptist Association! We are as busy as ever ministering the Gospel in our Jerusalem and the uttermost ends of the earth.
It was another banner year for Ocoee Outreach this summer. During the past eight weeks, we have hosted more than thirty out of town churches who have come alongside many of our Bradley Baptist churches to reach the lost in our Jerusalem – through construction projects, block parties and servant evangelism. In fact, in one block party hosted by Big Spring Baptist Church, we had 49 decisions for Christ!
One of the highlights of the summer is our international mission trip. This year, myself and about twenty of your fellow church members, travelled to Cernavoda, Romania to work with IMB Missionaries Bob & Gayle Hill and Kevin & Lisa Kail. We shared the Good News of Jesus Christ with the poorest of the poor children who are called Roma (Gypsies). Seventy five percent of the people in this community are involved in prostitution and human trafficking. Little girls are being snatched from parents and sold for prostitution. Through our partnership, we are offering those in these tragic circumstances a beacon of hope in a dark world. Thank you for making this possible. It was a great ministry experience and God showed Himself over and over during our trip. You may check out a video of us on mission in Romania on the homepage of our website, www.bradleybaptist.org.
In additional to the Romania video, we also have a video tribute on our homepage to a great missionary of the past, Bertha Smith. In 1917, "Miss Bertha" as she was affectionately called, went to her first assignment in China. She developed a burden for the Chinese Christians to whom she ministered and the millions of Chinese people who had not yet come to faith in Christ. She was a participant in the great Shantung Revival that latest from 1927-1936. We should always be open to emulating such a great missionary spirit as Miss Bertha in order to fulfil the Great Commission.
We also have added a new blog feature on our website where you can find these monthly letters posted as well as other news about your association and its ministries. Other features of our site include a block party trailer calendar where you can check your reservation dates as well as when other area churches are hosting a community block party. Past annuals and Beacon issues are also available for download.
This September, we will be launching our new Love Cleveland initiative. This is an association-wide emphasis to mobilize churches to love the people of Cleveland into a relationship with Jesus Christ through servant evangelism. The idea is to saturate our community with God’s love by expressing it through practical acts of kindness. If your church would like to know more about this ministry, please contact Randy Bonner at the association office.
It is you – our partnering churches – who make all these ministries possible. Thank you for doing your part in the Great Commission.
In His Grace,