“Finally, brothers and sisters, rejoice. Become mature, be encouraged, be of the same mind, be at peace, and the God of love and peace will be with you. Greet one another with a holy kiss. All the saints send you greetings. The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.” 2 Corinthians 13:11-13
New members welcomed at Home Church
Home Church in Frederick, Maryland, welcomed four new covenant members to the church on Sunday. Pastor Eli Choi said one of the families began attending about a year ago and the other right before the pandemic.
Choi said he’s thankful to see God’s hand in the midst of COVID-19. “Even through the quarantine, we have been able to walk with them and get to know them.”
On an Instagram post, Choi wrote, “This is another reminder that God is in control and Jesus is the head of the church, no matter what is going on in the world.”
Appreciation to retail workers and first responders
Life Connection Church in Severn, Maryland, has been showing love and appreciation to local retail workers and first responders who have worked extra-long, hard hours due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Church members began brainstorming who might need some extra care. They decided on workers at a local Food Lion grocery store and a CVS pharmacy, businesses that most of the congregants patronize regularly.
The church provided Chick-Fil-A catered lunches to the employees. Observing all CDC COVID-19 recommendations, several church members met the delivery person at the doors and set up stations in the stores for the employees. They offered prayer and Bibles to all who participated and expressed appreciation for the workers.
Several weeks later, the church followed up with individually packaged cookies from a Baltimore-based dessert chef.
The small acts of kindness opened doors. Bennett said that when he walks through the stores now, workers recognize him and say hello.
“A pharmacist assistant at CVS said to me, with tears in her eyes, that they felt no one cared about how much they were affected by the long hours and having to stay open,” Pastor Martin (Marty) Bennett shared.
Instead of going through the CVS drive-through to get prescriptions, Bennett now goes into the store to chat with employees.
At the CVS entrance, Bennett was pleasantly surprised to see photos of the catered lunch event on the CVS community bulletin board.
The church members later decided to reach out to first responders. They wrote a message of appreciation to the Severn Rescue Engine #4 Fire Station and framed it, then delivered the letter to the station, along with pre-packaged cookies.
The precinct captain thanked the church members and took the opportunity to share a little about the fire company. Bennett shared about the church.
LCC members plan follow up with a Chick-Fil-A luncheon for the first responders at the firehouse soon and hope to partner with them for future community events.
FBCW provides schools bags of Halloween candy for students
First Baptist Church of Waldorf in Maryland delivered over 2,000 bags of candy to three local public schools for teachers to hand out to students for Halloween. Senior Pastor Randy Stacks approached school officials asking what the church could do for the teachers. He considered perhaps the church could provide candy, but thought that wouldn’t work because the students were not meeting at the school due to the COVID-19 restrictions. School officials told him he was in luck! During the last week of October, students would be at the schools to turn in paperwork.
Stacks said God opened the door.
Valley Baptist Church
Valley Baptist Church in Lutherville has a drive-by food drive from 5-6 p.m. each week to collect food for the Assistance Center of Towson Churches. Particular needs include deodorants, razor blades, shampoos, toilet tissue, and other toiletries.
Camp Wo-Me-To fundraiser follow-up
The Christian group, “Seven Mile Walk with Jesus,” had a fundraiser for Camp Wo-Me-To in Jarrettsville, Maryland, on the campground property earlier in October. Over 100 people attended for a sing-a-long and testimony time. Many shared how they grew in their spiritual walk through their experiences at the BCM/D Women on Mission-owned camp.
Frank Ulmer, resident manager, is grateful for the fundraiser’s donations, and for those who gave afterward. Ulmer said the camp staff is on furlough with the exception of himself and Operations Manager Ben Block, due to the COVID-19 restrictions which shut the camp down for many months.
“God has been good. He is keeping us afloat. We will keep being faithful.” The staff is asking God for the next step, he shared. “We’re not sure what that step is, but God is in control. This didn’t surprise Him at all.”
“The teaching of the Holy Spirit is in the heart first; man’s teaching in the mind. Let all our thinking ever lead us to cease from thought, and to open the heart and will to the Spirit to teach there in His own Divine way, deeper than thought and feeling. Unseen, within the veil, the Holy Spirit abideth. Be silent and still, believe and expect, and cling to Jesus.” ―
- During a 1940 SBC annual meeting in Baltimore, messengers approved a resolution for churches to take an offering to support the American Bible Society. “The British and Foreign Bible Society, which shares with the American Bible Society the responsibility for supplying our missionaries in foreign lands with Scriptures in many languages, is seriously handicapped because of the war, and the American Bible Society is undertaking to expand its service to meet the emergency …”
- In 1963, South Burlington Church, Vermont, organized, and the Baptist Convention of Maryland now had churches in 11 states. The SBC had churches in 50 states.
- In 2009, BaptistLIFE transitioned to a “hybrid publication.” The staff printed and mailed six issues and delivered five electronically through the website.
History Bites are adapted from “Gofwd, a Southern Baptist Perspective,” a special feature publication of BaptistLIFE and BaptistLIFE newspapers and magazines.