As Thanksgiving approaches and many in our state spend time counting their blessings, North Carolina Baptists have the opportunity to express their gratitude through giving to the annual Thanksgiving Offering, which benefits Baptist Children’s Homes of North Carolina (BCH).
Since its founding in 1885, BCH has served families and given them hope for the future. In 2014 alone, BCH served more than 15,500 people.
BCH provides ministry in all 100 counties of North Carolina, in addition to running an orphanage and medical clinic in Xela, Guatemala. BCH’s stateside ministry also includes facilities to care for disabled and aging adults. With BCH’s widespread reach, it is no surprise that many of the people served through the organization are unengaged with the gospel.
In fact, 80 percent of the children and families BCH serves do not know Christ. What a wonderful opportunity the Lord has provided us to share the love and compassion of Jesus through this ministry!
BCH’s vision is “Sharing hope … changing lives,” and that vision is evident in the testimonies of those whose lives have been impacted through BCH. I’d like to share with you a story about two young boys who went “from homeless to hopeful” thanks to the generosity of North Carolina Baptists through the Thanksgiving Offering.
At a young age, brothers Jonathan and Thomas witnessed their parents’ separation, their mother’s move to another state and out of their lives and ultimately a period of homelessness during which the brothers and their father spent many nights sleeping under a bridge. Jonathan and Thomas were later sent to live with their grandparents, but due to the elderly couple’s health, age and financial situation, they felt that they were not able to give their grandsons the best care they needed.
With help from their grandparents’ church family, the boys were referred to BCH. There, they now enjoy new clothes, plenty of food, warm beds and even piano lessons. Jonathan and Thomas are also able to spend time visiting with their grandparents.
I hope you and your church will consider taking part in this offering for BCH – whether at Thanksgiving time this year or at another time more convenient for your church. The goal for this year’s offering is $1.5 million, and the official week of specific, intentional prayer for this offering is Nov. 15-22. Please pray about how the Lord might lead you to take part in this special offering in support of this important ministry. Also, please encourage others to do the same. The Thanksgiving Offering is truly a way to put your gratitude to the Lord into action and to show His compassion to those in need.
For more information about the offering and to learn more about the testimony of Jonathan and Thomas, please visit bchfamily.org/offering.
“As you have therefore received Christ Jesus as Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving”
– Colossians 2:6-7 (NKJV).