The road out to Holly Springs Baptist Church in Franklin winds through rolling hills that rule the scenery across Macon County. A newer and larger sanctuary sits alongside the smaller, original building.
More than 600 members gather here weekly for services led by Pastor Ed Trull or “Pastor Trull,” as he prefers to be called.
Despite the scenery, Pastor Trull is quick to point out that they are not really isolated.
“The world shows up – folks come here from all over the world,” he said.
Though the church was organized in 1914, its hip new website indicates Holly Springs is keeping up with the times.
Pastor Trull has led his congregation to reach out to new people moving into subdivisions that have been carved into the surrounding pastures and farmland during the past decade, part of Macon County’s rapid growth that leaders there talk about.
BSC photo by Mike Creswell
In recent years Pastor Ed Trull has led Holly Springs Baptist Church in Franklin to give about 10 percent of its undesignated receipts through the Cooperative Program.
But Pastor Trull equally wants his members focused on reaching the world – the one that lies beyond these hills.
That missions vision explains why Holly Springs has consistently averaged giving about 10 percent of its undesignated receipts through the Cooperative Program (CP) in recent years.
Pastor Trull sees CP as the answer to how Baptists could work together on missions causes.
“When Southern Baptists were formed in 1845, we did a lot of good things, but we didn’t know how to support them very well. For about 60 years we struggled with that in a lot of ways,” he said.
Pastor Trull described a time when local churches were flooded with representatives of orphanages, mission boards and other Baptist entities, because there was no centralized system to help enable churches to conveniently support many causes.
It was Baptist forefathers, “those guys who are heroes in Southern Baptist Convention life,” who in 1925 developed a better way for Baptists to support multiple ministries, he said.
“God gave us a vision for a way to work together and pool our resources to not only reach the next-door neighbor but our neighbors on the other side of the world,” he said.
The Cooperative Program also enabled churches to fund supporting ministries, such as schools and seminaries … “everything it takes to support that vision to reach the world with the gospel,” he said.
“I’m thankful we have the Cooperative Program as the avenue we use to get to the world with the gospel,” he said.
Pastor Trull has served on the Baptist State Convention’s Board of Directors, and has seen how working together can work, just as he has supported Macon Baptist Association, of which Holly Springs is a part.
Through their Cooperative Program giving, Holly Springs members support a wide range of ministries across North Carolina that includes: starting 125 new churches in 2010, the Baptist Children’s Homes of North Carolina, Fruitland Baptist Bible Institute, a youth program that reached more than 7,000 young people last year, evangelism and church growth ministry, prayer ministry, music ministry, women’s ministry, partnership missions and provides other pastor and church staff support.
The Cooperative Program helps the North American Mission Board (NAMB) with about 5,000 missionaries at work on evangelism and church planting across the U.S. and Canada.
It also supports nearly 5,000 IMB (International Mission Board) missionaries who seek to share the gospel among unreached and unengaged people groups around the globe.
This support includes six Southern Baptist seminaries that equip more than 13,000 students for church leadership and missionary service.
Those schools include Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary at Wake Forest.
Other ministries receive CP support as well.