|From the General Secretary |
In Step with the Spirit
By Neville Callam
The old quinquennium is over; a new one has begun and, early in this new period, do we not have opportunity to reflect on the road we took during the last quinquennium? Shall we not take steps to ensure that we are benefitting from the lessons the Spirit has endeavored to teach us?
The 2005-2010 period was one of structural change in the BWA. A vast amount of time was spent discussing what structures best serve the purposes and priorities of the BWA. Much effort was expended in securing the constitutional changes designed to give expression to the agreements made and to build up a fortress against those who would not offer full compliance. Some people are still asking why this task was considered so urgent and why it occupied so much of the BWA's time.
At this early stage of this new quinquennium, the task of identifying needed structures and clarifying operational principles has been found to be incomplete. One of the first tasks being undertaken currently is the completion of charter documents that are believed to be necessary for orderly governance within the organization in its second century of existence. The hope is that this task will be completed by July 2011. May God enable us to achieve this goal! Only so will we be able to move from consideration of structures to a fuller focus on actual mission.
Is it not wise, however, to remember that right structures do not necessarily secure right results? It is not logical to think that because processes are clarified and followed, favorable outcomes are guaranteed. Attention to structures and processes - necessary as this may be - falls short because it cannot deal fully with two factors.
The first is the human factor. It is not structures and processes that teach people the sort of persons they should be. The most efficiently designed systems can yield shameful results because of the sort of people who operate them. Besides, humanly engineered designs are not flawless!
The second is the divine factor - and this is where the theme for the next five years in the life of the BWA becomes so vastly relevant. For human beings to serve well within ecclesial structures, they need more than rules and regulations. They need the guidance and help of the Holy Spirit. They must be persons who have had, and are having, transforming encounters with God. They need to be persons who are willing to submit to the control of the Holy Spirit!
It is indeed true that, even where the regulatory framework has been manifestly inadequate, wonderful results have been registered. Why? Because the people who served together understood that the work they were doing was God's work and the manner of their service needed to be acceptable to God.
No system that human beings devise will solve the problems -real or imagined - affecting the operation of the structures they have created! Instead, it is people who regard their work in vocational terms, who consciously affirm their accountability as stewards in God's service, and who understand that they need to be guided by Christian principles who will serve in a manner that will serve the just ends church organizations pursue.
If we are going to do God's work in God's way, we must be a people who understand that ours is the calling to walk in step with the Spirit of God.
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|What BWA Member Bodies are Doing|
| Baptist Union of Denmark
The Baptist faith was established in Denmark in 1839 through the work of Johann Gerhard Oncken, the German regarded as the father of Baptist mission in continental Europe. The Baptist Union of Denmark (BUD) was formed 10 years later in 1849, affiliated with the German Baptist union. In 1888, the union was reorganized and became autonomous.
The BUD has established mission work in Rwanda, Burundi, Tanzania and Kenya in Africa, as well as other countries such as Papua New Guinea, Vietnam and Honduras.
In Burundi, the BUD is involved in church construction and water projects, as well as literacy programs for women and children, teaching approximately 1,600 women in basic literacy and numeracy skills.
In Nagaland state in Northeast India, the BUD has assisted in the establishment of several self-help projects, each with approximately 15 women organized to support each other in savings, micro-credit financing and income generating activities.
The BUD has more than 5,200 members in 50 churches.
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|First Baptist Church
First Baptist Church of Kearney, Nebraska, in the United States, states that "one of our purposes as the body of Christ is to support missions." This focus has led the 400-member congregation to plan mission trips to other countries, such as Israel and Thailand, and to other areas in the United States, such as Rushville, Indiana, and Savannah, Georgia.
Locally, the congregation offers support to the Roger Williams Fellowship, which serves the students of University of Nebraska Kearney and other young adults in the community; Associate Care, which provides support and aide to individuals whose lives and spiritual health is burdened by misfortune; the Food Pantry; the Jubilee Center; the Salvation Army; and the church's Youth Mission Trip.
The Prison and Jail Ministry not only reaches out to those who are incarcerated, but to victims as well. Recently, First Baptist Kearney launched a Child Abuse Prevention Team where more than 270 persons volunteered to be part of the program, all of whom were specially screened and approved to work with children and youth.
First Baptist of Kearney, A Baptist World Alliance Global Impact Church since 2006, designated September 2010 as "30 famlies in 30 days" the aim of which is to identify 30 faamilies throughout the state of Nebraska who are willing to sdopt or provide foster care for 30 children.
|New Church Partners|
We welcome to the BWA "family"
Global Partner Churches:
National Baptist Church of Pakistan
Global Impact Churches:
University Avenue Baptist Church, Honolulu, HI, USA
Antelope Springs Baptist Church, Roseville, CA, USA
First Baptist Church, Vienna, VA, USA
|To Don and Becky Sewell for gift in memory of Delores Ann Trawick
|To Stefan and Jerzy Rogaczweski, Baptist leaders in Poland, on the loss of their wife and mother, Alicja Rogaczewska. |
|In Memoriam: Pulukuri Abraham|
Pulukuri Abraham of Secunderabad, Andhra Pradesh state in India, died on September 19. He was 52 years old.
Abraham, a member of the Baptist World Aid Committee, was director of HAO (Hope for an Oppressed) India which works among the poor and marginalized in relief and development. He helped to establish integrated community development and self help programs, sewing and primary health care centers, technical training institutions and educational centers, orphanages, as well as awareness programs on HIV/AIDS.
He received the Mahatma Gandhi Seva Puraskar, the Mother Teresa Memorial Award, the Rajiv Gandhi Gold Medal for Excellence, and the National Integration Award, among other honors and awards.
Abraham was president of the Samavesam of Telegu Baptist Churches from 1995 to 1997. He earned bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees from Osmania University in Hyderabad, the capital of Andhra Pradesh state.
He was buried on September 20 and a memorial service was held on September 25 at Centenary Baptist Church in Secunderabad.
Abraham leaves wife P. Usha Abraham and son Neil.
Baptist World Aid
|BWAid grants for the months of July, August and September|
Grants recorded in United States dollars unless otherwise noted
Democratic Republic of Congo
Goat Relief Project - 10,000.00
Poverty Reduction - 6,000.00
Orphan Education - 2,110.00
Accident relief - 2,000.00
Water Pump - 6,000.00
Mosquito Net Distribution - 6,100.00
Peace bulding and Reconciliation - 9,250.00
Flood Relief Through BMS World Mission - 20,000.00
Flood Relief Through Hungarian Baptist Aid - 10,000.00
Earthquake Relief through Hungarian Baptist Aid - 20,000.00
Roma Hunger Relief - 12,500.00
TB Sanatorium - 2,000.00
Toilet Project - 33,556.00
Delmas 19 Complex Construction - 100,000.00
Gressier Orphanage - 10,000.00
North AmericaUnited States
Bread For the World Hunger Report 2011 - 5,000.00Back to top
Monthly Prayer Guide
Each week, the staff of the Baptist World Alliance prays for conventions and unions throughout the world.
We invite all other Baptist conventions and unions, and individual Baptists everywhere, to join us in these prayers.
For the month of October we will remember the following:
Union of Evangelical Christian Baptists in Kyrgyzstan
Union of Evangelical Christian Baptists of Middle Asia (Uzbekistan)
Bangladesh Baptist Church Fellowship
Bangladesh Baptist Church Sangha
Garo Baptist Convention of Bangladesh
Nepal Baptist Church Council
Indian conventions and unions
Assam Baptist Convention
Baptist Church of Mizoram
Baptist Union of North India
Bengal Baptist Union
Bengal Orissa Bihar Baptist Churches Association
Evangelical Baptist Convention of India,
onv. Bapt. Church of the Northern Circars
Garo Baptist Convention of India
India Association of General Baptists
India Baptist Convention
Karbi Anglong Baptist Convention
Karnataka Baptist Convention
Lairam Jesus Christ Baptist Church
Lower Assam Baptist Union
Maharashtra Baptist Society
Manipur Baptist Convention
Nagaland Baptist Church Council
North Bank Baptist Christian Association
Orissa Baptist Evangelistic Crusade
Tripura Baptist Christian UnionSri Lanka
Sri Lanka Baptist Union
Association of Bible Baptist Churches in Madagascar
Baptist World Alliance Hunger Month, October 1-31
Baptist Women's World Day of Prayer, November 1Back to top