Mission Partnerships

In 1925, Southern Baptists began the Cooperative Program to unite our resources for the furthering of the gospel.  Southern Baptist churches give a portion of their offerings to the Cooperative Program to fund both state and national convention work.  Over the years, thousands of missionaries have been deployed all around the world for gospel advancement; and countless churches have been strengthened as well as planted in areas in need of the gospel.

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We are a cooperating denomination.  We work together for the advancement of Jesus’ fame.  This cooperation is meant for not only our giving, but also our serving.  We do not simply give so that missions will be done for us.  We give to partner more strategically and effectively that missions might be done together.  Regardless of the size of the church or location of the church, each church that gives through the Cooperative Program can truly say that they help to support over 8,000 missionaries around the world.

Yet, we do not give simply to support missions; we give to strengthen our partnership in missions.  We can do more together than we can alone.  Hence, we give our dollars, but we also want to give our lives.  The Missions Mobilization Team of the Kentucky Baptist Convention desires to help churches reach Kentucky and the world for Christ.  To this aim, we want to be a funnel for churches to partner in certain parts of Kentucky, North America, and the World. 

We create relationships with missionaries in order to connect our churches to strategic opportunities for gospel partnerships.  The partnership is ultimately with the local church, not the KBC.  By partnership, the KBC desires simply to connect and allow each local church to develop partnerships for the Great Commission.  While the KBC cannot connect churches everywhere, we are connecting churches to strategic places in North America and the nations.

Here are our current areas of emphases for KBC churches, both in North American and Internationally:

In partnership with NAMB, we are connecting churches to three SEND cities:

  • Cincinnati, OH: 1,639,443 people live in the metro Cincinnati area.  There is one SBC church for every 10,857 metro Cincinnati residents. 
  • Salt Lake City, UT: 2,743,111 people live in the Salt Lake City metro area.  There is one SBC church for every 43,942 metro Salt Lake City residents.
  • New York City, NY: 22,000,000 people live in the NYC metro area.  Only 4% identify themselves as evangelical. 

In partnership with IMB, we are connecting churches to several international areas:

  • São Paulo, Brazil: São Paulo is one of the largest metro areas in the world with a population of over 20 million people.  It is estimated that between 18 and 19 million people are lost.
  • Sub-Saharan Africa: With over 40 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, the need for the gospel is great there.  From disaster relief to theological training to evangelism to church planting, the opportunities for partnerships are numerous.
  • Central Asia: Over 385 million people live in Central Asia and it is estimated that 98%-99% are lost without Christ.   

The KBC is here to assist churches in any of these areas for gospel partnerships.  In fact, if your church is interested in other areas not mentioned in these emphases, we are more than willing to help you connect wherever the Lord may be leading you.  Contact me at [email protected] for further details.  I look forward to helping you reach the world for Christ.

Caring Enough to SEND Our Very Best

One of the most recognized and trusted advertising slogans in the world is “When You Care Enough to Send the Very Best”.  This phrase is more than just a slogan for Hallmark, it was a business commitment for the distinctive card company.  When Ed Goodman, a Hallmark sales and marketing executive, wrote the words on a 3×5 index card in 1944, he was trying to capture the essence of why Hallmark stood as the very best in the world. Little did Goodman know just how much pressure the slogan would put on the company to be the very best and second to no other card company.

Thinking about this slogan, I wondered, do we send our very best to show we care?  I don’t mean do we send Hallmark cards.  What I mean is, do we send on mission the very best from our church to show a lost world we care?

The God we serve is a sending God.  Nearly every time He speaks to someone in scripture, He is sending them on a mission.  From Abraham to Moses to Paul, to us, God’s people are always being sent into the world on mission.  God showed He cared by sending His best and only son into the world to save us.  Jesus is referred to as “sent” forty seven times in the New Testament.  Clearly, God is a sender by nature and cares about us. 

After His resurrection, Jesus passed on his identity to His disciples:  “As the Father has sent Me, I am sending you”  (John 20:21).  Like his disciples – we too, have a responsibility to send our very best.  

We read in Acts 13:1-3 that after prayer and fasting, the church at Antioch sent Barnabas and Saul out on mission to share the Gospel.  They did so in obedience to Jesus’ command to go and the Holy Spirit’s leading.  Make no mistake about it, the church sent out on mission two of their best because they cared for those who had not yet heard the Gospel. They correctly believed that people who don’t know Christ as Savior and Lord will suffer God’s judgement. So why would they not seek to share the Gospel with those who need to hear it?  Barnabas and Saul were strong leaders and faithful teachers, but the church didn’t try to talk them into staying.  Rather, they cared enough to send out two of their best churchmen because they cared for the unreached. Our failure to send out the very best from our churches to serve on mission or start a new church speaks to our lack of care for those who have not yet heard the Gospel and experienced the grace of Christ.    

In the same way the slogan put pressure on the Hallmark company, I pray the example of the church at Antioch will put pressure on our churches to send the best members out on mission.  Let’s show the lost world we care by sending our very best to share the Gospel with them.    

Remembering Ms. Dottie

On January 29th our KY-MSC Family lost a dear member.  Ms. Dottie Gebhart, who served with Hope Academy for Kids, went home to be with the Lord.  Dottie and her husband Chuck served together as Food/Nutrition Department leads and Chuck, also a KY-MSC Missionary, directs the van ministry.

Nelle Thomas, Executive Director of HAFK, shared.  “Our HAFK family has suffered a great loss in the passing of a ‘hall of fame’ volunteer and KY-MSC missionary who fed thousands of children in Hardin County for over 15 years. Ms. Dottie’s passion to nurture children with the love of God has eternally impacted all kids, big and small, who had the privilege of knowing her. Thank you for leaving your handprints on our HEARTS, Ms. Dottie Owens Gebhart! We will press on and carry out our mission of HOPE and make you proud.”   

Hope Academy for Kids began in 2007 as an outreach of a local church, when a handful of church members volunteered to transport children to the church facility for a weekly Bible study.  Immediately after the program began, volunteers realized that the children were hungry and started a chapter of Kid’s Café, to provide a meal, Bible study, and activities for 150 children living in poverty.  With such a large growth, and a desire to do more for the kids, Kids’ Café dissolved, and Mission Hope for Kids was officially established in May 2012.  The name has  since changed to Hope Academy for Kids and continues to disciple and mentor Elizabethtown-area students in grades K-12, addressing educational, spiritual, physical, and emotional needs, serving upwards of 185 students.  Ms. Dottie has been with the ministry since the beginning.

Volunteers that worked with Dottie describe her as “a special lady, loved by all, witty, having a heart of gold, a servant’s heart, one of a kind, and a person that impacted all of us.”

A parent of one of the students wrote the following sentiment. “My greatest memory of Ms. Dottie was when she would come to our house for outreaches. She never met a stranger and didn’t care how or what we looked like. We got hugs and food, and she would talk to us how much Jesus loves us and that she and Mr. Chuck love us too! She would ask us if we needed anything and she and Mr. Chuck would go buy it, or if she thought my family needed anything from food, school supplies, gas or just to cook us dinner and she and Mr. Chuck would eat with us, and sometimes Ms. Dottie would cook a meal and knock and leave it at the door and would surprise us! We KNEW WHO IT WAS FROM.  We will forever miss Ms. Dottie.  Now we have to love extra on Mr. Chuck.” 

Two HAFK students (sisters) remember Ms. Dottie and Mr. Chuck always being their biggest fans.  “Ms. Dottie would ask for our softball schedule each year.  She would tell us stories about her playing softball, give us tips on how to catch, throw, and hit the ball hard, and coach us from the sidelines.  She encouraged our whole team to play harder and play our best.  My sister and I will continue to play in memory of Ms. Dottie.”

Dottie was indeed a special lady that impacted the lives of many.  Thank you, Ms. Dottie, for giving to the Lord.  What a beautiful legacy you have left.