May 2014

BCM college students in summer missions

May 20 2014 by Milton A. Hollifield Jr., BSC executive director-treasurer

For some college students, the summer break is really not a break at all. Will you join me in praying for the college students who have chosen to serve God through missions this summer?
 
Summer break allows college students to engage in missionary activities that impact lostness here in North Carolina and beyond. Rick Trexler, leader of the Collegiate Partnership Team, works with members of his staff to connect students with summer missions opportunities.
 
Trexler said that college students will make a big impact on the mission field this summer: “Over 200 North Carolina students will be engaged through numerous Convention ministries, including, but not limited to: Baptist Campus Ministry (BCM), BeDoTell, Camp Caraway, Deep Impact and Fort Caswell. These students will be working alongside church planters, organizing backyard Bible clubs, serving in social relief ministries (particularly dealing with homelessness, hunger relief, and human trafficking), as camp staffers and as youth ministers,” he said.
 
Trexler also noted that college students will have a missions presence abroad this summer.
 
Through Convention partnerships with churches and BCM groups, 19 students will go overseas to various locations in Asia, including Thailand, India and Senegal to assist International Mission Board missionaries. Others will serve alongside North American Mission Board missionaries in Canada, Texas and New York.
 
Indeed, these summer mission opportunities do more than aid existing missionaries; for a number of students, they can be a time of recognizing God’s call on their lives. “Many of our current missionaries and professional ministers have realized their vocational calling through student missions,” Trexler said.
Merrie Johnson, the Baptist State Convention’s senior consultant for youth evangelism and discipleship, directs the BeDoTell youth camps at Fort Caswell each summer.
 
Hundreds of students surrender their lives to Christ and answer God’s call to missions and ministry during these weeklong camps. College students comprise the BeDoTell worship team and band. They also serve as small group discussion leaders and fulfill numerous other duties.
 
The Convention also employs college students in other Caswell camps each summer. The same is true at Camp Caraway, where the Convention conducts camps that depend upon the leadership of college students.
 
Tom Beam, consultant for North Carolina Baptist Men (or Baptists on Mission), coordinates Deep Impact Missions Weeks for middle and high school students, where college students can serve as summer staff. Workers are divided into two teams and travel to different locations in North Carolina, New York City, Honduras and Cuba to work with more than 1,800 youth and leaders who participate in Deep Impact mission projects. 

You may have fond memories of summer missionary experiences as a college student.
 
I hope that you will take some time to thank God for the work He did in your life then, and also that you will pray that He will work in the lives of college students this summer in wonderful ways. We want to help college students impact lostness through disciple-making, and in so doing, glorify our Lord and Savior.
5/20/2014 12:23:30 PM by Milton A. Hollifield Jr., BSC executive director-treasurer | with 0 comments



Impacting lostness through disciple-making on college campuses

May 6 2014 by Milton A. Hollifield Jr., BSC executive director-treasurer

A major ministry component that is significant in carrying out the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina’s (BSC) new strategy is Baptist Campus Ministry (BCM). We continue to invest a substantial portion of our Cooperative Program budget in our efforts to reach and disciple college and graduate students in North Carolina. The Collegiate Partnerships staff is working to mobilize and assist churches in making disciples of the 591,134 college students in North Carolina.
 
In previous years, BCM focused on a limited number of college campuses in our state. However, the new strategy allows us to work through churches, Baptist associations and collegiate networks to impact lostness through disciple-making on more college campuses throughout North Carolina. Our methodology may have changed, but the mission remains the same.
 
Not only are we working to retain a visible presence on or near the campuses where we have provided full-time ministers in past years, but in the past four months, the Collegiate Partnerships Team has worked with 12 Baptist associations and engaged as many as 50 churches with the potential for reaching out to 15 new campuses. We anticipate this number will continue to increase as more and more churches realize that campuses around them are significant points of lostness in our state.
 
In eastern North Carolina, Scott Setzer, pastor of Second Baptist Church in Washington, is leading the South Roanoke Association to explore ways to minister to seven colleges in their region. BCM of the High Country in northwestern North Carolina has expanded the relationships cultivated between Appalachian State University Baptist Campus Ministry (ASU BCM) and local churches by partnering with Meat Camp, Cove Creek and South Fork Baptist churches.
 
Meat Camp has joined the prayer ministry of ASU BCM while South Fork is enthusiastically considering ways to partner with the Convention to disciple students.
 
Numerous churches have started work on college campuses where the Convention has historically lacked a presence. At Asheville-Buncombe Technical College, Jason Speier, minister of youth and worship at Woodland Hills Baptist Church, is recruiting 100 volunteers for Campus Aflame. Campus Aflame is a ministry of prayer and discipleship and seeks to develop gospel communities on the Asheville–Buncombe Tech campus.
 
The Haywood Baptist Association is prayerfully formulating a BCM model that will mobilize local churches to target unreached people groups in vocational tracks of study. It will present new opportunities for disciple-making by bringing church members with specialized skills and training, such as cosmetology and law enforcement, onto community college campuses.
 
In central North Carolina, Russ Reaves, pastor of Immanuel Baptist Church, facilitates Baptist work at UNC-Greensboro (UNCG). Reaves, along with UNCG BCM president Logan Macon, coordinates church efforts in the Piedmont Baptist Association to maintain a Baptist presence at UNCG with worship services, Bible studies and discipleship groups.
 
Opportunities for ministry among international students are also increasing. Recently, I attended a portion of the Convention’s Annual International Student Retreat at Fort Caswell. There were 133 people at this retreat including students representing 33 different nations.
 
The growing ethnic diversity in Durham has led Braggtown Baptist Church to develop a ministry with international students and young adults in the area through an outreach effort called The River. Another church in this region is in the initial stages of establishing a strategy to engage and minister to the international students at Wake Technical Community College’s Northern Wake Campus.
 
In Kannapolis, several churches are partnering together to offer conversational English classes for international students and scholars at the North Carolina Research Campus. They are also offering Bible studies and support for a local Chinese church.
 
In March, the Collegiate Partnerships Team also collaborated with Pitts Baptist Church in Concord to host a statewide training for Collegiate T4T, a storytelling discipleship model.
 
For more information about how your church can become more involved in collegiate ministry, please contact Abby Edwards at the Collegiate Partnerships Team at (919) 459-5536 or aedwards@ncbaptist.org.
5/6/2014 12:09:00 PM by Milton A. Hollifield Jr., BSC executive director-treasurer | with 0 comments