The muddy and winding Ohio River flows through or borders six states, two of which are KY and OH. Along the Ohio River’s path sits America’s original Boomtown—Cincinnati, also called the Queen City. Cincinnati is most notably known as the home of Reds baseball where the Great American Ballpark rests on the bank of the river.
To the surprise of most, the Reds went on a run this year. In fact, they didn’t get eliminated from the playoff race until the last weekend of the regular season. After finishing with a record of 82-80, most fans look forward to next year with excitement. What has made the difference in their late season run and increased fan optimism? It’s simple. New players. A group of new players joined the team after a rough beginning to the season. But what does Reds baseball have to do with the Cooperative Program?
Well, metro Cincinnati boasts of 2.1 million people, which is nearly half of the population of the whole state of KY. Sadly, only 13.7 percent of Cincinnati’s metro residents are affiliated with any evangelical church. In other words, 1.8 million in metro Cincinnati have no evangelical church affiliation. Not surprisingly then, in the five counties around the city, there is only 1 SBC church for every 10,298 people.
What does this mean? We need more players in the game, if you will, to defeat lostness and to make disciples through the planting of churches. This is why the KBC is partnering with NAMB and the 36 Send Cincinnati church planters to connect KBC churches with them as they invest their lives in the Queen City for maximum gospel impact.
One church planter in Cincinnati told Kentucky Baptist pastors and leaders who were visiting him on a vision trip, “KBC churches have made it possible for us to do more through their partnerships with us than we could on our own.” Cooperative missions is what we are about as Southern Baptists. We really believe we can do more together than we can by ourselves.
When your church gives through the Cooperative Program, you are stepping up to the plate to help advance the gospel as churches are planted in Cincinnati. Churches giving through the Cooperative Program help support financially all 36 church planters in Cincinnati (and eventually the additional 7 which are in the hopper), as the gospel is multiplied in the Queen City. Now that’s worth our cooperation and excitement.