Our state convention was founded in 1830 because North Carolina Baptists believed that more could be accomplished for God’s Kingdom by working together. Churches believed in the value of cooperation – a principle that we as Southern Baptists still very much believe in today.
Not only did churches come together back in 1830, but 14 Baptist associations also united and established this Convention. We have grown from 14 Baptist associations to 78 associations that help involve churches in ministry and missions locally, nationally and throughout the world.
Associations play a significant role in the life and work of the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina. We value and need the wisdom and influence of directors of missions/associational missionaries and association staff members, as these individuals best know their communities, their churches and the context in which they serve. I am grateful for the godly associational leaders in North Carolina who invest their lives into seeing people across our state grow in their relationship with Jesus Christ and become engaged in missions.
Throughout the year associational leaders are involved in many training and equipping opportunities. This year a number of directors of missions and associational missionaries have given their time to participate in Great Commission Initiative training. Through this training they are learning much about developing strategies for evangelizing and discipling the unchurched and unreached people groups in their local communities.
Every year North Carolina Baptist associations receive a portion of funds from the North Carolina Missions Offering (NCMO) for local mission projects that help engage their congregations in missions. From feeding ministries to renovating houses for people in need, Baptist associations are doing wonderful ministry because of your contributions to NCMO. The associations plan and host events such as mission rallies and disaster relief training. At the present, the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina is partnering with two associations on a pilot project to identify unreached people groups in their area with the hope that this project will be expanded all across the state and contribute to the planting of many new congregations.
Over the past several months I have traveled across the state meeting with associational missionaries about the Convention’s new five-year strategy. I am encouraged by the strong support from almost all directors of missions regarding the new strategy. As we look toward 2014, I am optimistic and excited about the ways state convention staff will serve and support local association leadership and church leaders in the development and implementation of strategies to impact lostness through disciple-making.
Your Convention staff is prepared to serve your association as you seek to fulfill the Great Commission through an Acts 1:8 model for missions. Lester Evans in the Associational Partnerships Office is eager to assist at your request.
Thank you, North Carolina Baptist associations, for your dedication to advancing God’s Kingdom. It is a joy to work in partnership with you.
“Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ … striving side by side for the faith of the gospel.” Philippians 1:27