Pastor Francisco Ortiz is
quite healthy, but thousands of North Carolina Baptists help him step into the
pulpit each Sunday.
His small but growing
congregation is “Iglesia Bautista Hispana Cristo el Salvador,” or Christ the
Savior Baptist Church, in Jefferson. Most of the Spanish-speaking members are
from Mexico, Ortiz said.
They meet Sunday afternoons
in the building of partnering Fletcher Memorial Baptist Church in Jefferson and
are receiving start-up funds from Ashe Baptist Association, the local
fellowship of 44 Baptist congregations.
Ashe, in turn, received the
funds to help the new church from North Carolina Baptists through their North
Carolina Missions Offering (NCMO).
Each year 10 percent of the
North Carolina Missions Offering is distributed to the state’s 79 Baptist
associations from which they came for use in area missions and ministry
Here are samples of the
diverse and life-changing ways associations put those NCMO funds work.
NCMO: New churches
The Cooperative Program
provides two-thirds of the funds used by the Baptist State Convention for
The NCMO supplements Cooperative Program funds by providing
the other one-third.
Together, these funds
supported 98 new churches in 2009.
But associations also use
NCMO funds to start other new churches locally.
Greater Gaston Association,
based in Gastonia, was one of the leaders in church planting — they worked with
19 new church plants in 2009, said Larry McElreath, associational missionary.
“Some of these received NCMO
funds,” McElreath said.
“Thousands of people’s lives
were impacted with the gospel message. Without these funds, we as an
association could not have made much of an impact in the community.”
NCMO funds also helped
Greater Gaston send out summer missionaries to hold Vacation Bible Schools and
Backyard Bible Clubs.
“I am more thankful every
year that we have an opportunity to be part of the NCMO. I believe that doing
together what we can’t do alone makes a huge difference in Kingdom growth,”
Sandhills: New church plant
in Pinehurst, new Hispanic ministry in Robbins, plus lifestyle evangelism
training for pastors.
Sandy Creek: New cowboy
church and purchase of witnessing tracts for use in public events.
Raleigh: New church plants:
The Creek Church in Cary and The Passage Church in Wendell.
New churches are needed
throughout the Raleigh area as the capital city’s population has topped 400,000,
exceeding the populations of cities such as New Orleans, St. Louis or
NCMO: Outreach, ministry
Yancey: Witnessing booth and
diaper-changing station in downtown Burnsville for the Mt. Mitchell Crafts Fair
“We had 33 professions of
faith,” said Harvey Sharpe, missions director.
Catawba River: Ministered at
the Historic Morganton Festival last September, partnering with volunteer teams
from Hull’s Grove Baptist Church, Vale.
“Hull’s Grove sent their
Horseshoe Ministry Team and we passed out over 600 horseshoes, each with the
person’s name stamped on it. While they waited (on the stamping), we were able
to share the gospel message,” said Phil Oakley, associational missionary. He
said 28 people prayed to receive Christ that day.
Catawba River also used NCMO
funds to support their annual Christmas toy store.
In 2009 the association
helped 504 families and gave toys to 1,069 children and 49 people prayed to
Randolph: Held a Sports Expo
in March which drew a whopping 1,200 hunters and fishermen for a meal and
“Sixteen were saved and
about 13 made rededications to Christ at the event,” said Steve Sells, director
Robeson: Supported Hispanic
mission in Raeford, constructed wheelchair ramps and repaired roofs on area
Metrolina: Supported three
college students for 10 weeks to work with Vacation Bible Schools, youth camps,
outreach projects, ministry in multi-housing areas.
“NCMO has been the primary
funding tool for our summer missions effort in Metrolina Association,” said Bob
Lowman, missions director.
Green River: Sponsored
worship services during the summer at two campgrounds in the Chimney Rock
NCMO: Missions trips
Stanly: Sent dozens of area
Baptists on their first missions trips, including some to overseas.
New South River: Helped high
school seniors make mission trips with Baptist Student Union, sponsor a youth
crusade, bought resources for churches.
West Chowan: Sending
missions team to Quebec, Canada, this summer.
Beulah: Sending missions
team to Rhode Island; supporting a local pastor and his family serving two
years in Turkey. Sent pastor on missions trip to Peru.
“Each of these has produced
Kingdom purpose results and we are so grateful we were able to help,” said
Danny Glover, associational missionary.
NCMO: Meet needs
South Fork: Funded local
missions projects by Baptist Men.
“So far, we have helped
purchase a used mobile home and renovate it for a woman,” said associational
missionary Bob Wise. Her previous house was in such poor condition that Social
Services deemed it unsafe; the agency took the woman’s children.
Three Forks: Local missions
projects, including home repairs, handicap ramp construction, roof repair and
providing food and heating costs to needy families. “The majority of our funds
are set aside for our Oct. 2 Operation Inasmuch Community Blitz Day,” said
Barry Neely, associational missionary.
Macon: Planted garden to
feed needy families; ministered to carnival workers.
support for their Surry Christian Counseling Center, seeing more people because
of high unemployment. “Thanks for helping us to help our community with
Christian counseling,” said Billy Blakley, associational missionary.