‘We were babied,’ says millennial-generation preacher

Minister Ben Giselbach

Minister Ben Giselbach

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (BNc) — The number one reason Ben Giselbach thinks most millennials are leaving the church: the previous generation “didn’t challenge us enough.”

That lack of challenge led millennials to look elsewhere, the Cedar Creek minister wrote today. “We are smart, and if our intellectual needs aren’t met inside the church, we look somewhere else. For whatever reason, we didn’t grow because we weren’t challenged.”

With the assumption that in the church statistics are similar to the 59% loss among denominations, Ben charges: “The last generation failed to make New Testament Christianity appealing to my generation.”

He put into words some of the sentiments that his generation are feeling.

He noted exceptions, of whom he is one, and acknowledged that the millennials themselves are responsible for their own faith.

As a solution, he touched on a direction for the church to consider:

How can we keep those that are left? We’ve got to challenge my generation. We must teach them God’s Word. We need to engage their minds and demonstrate that New Testament Christianity is relevant and meaningful. We need to show them that being faithful child of God is the only way to find true success and happiness.

Ben’s article is available at this link.

New congregation, Bible School outreach to begin in Tarlac City, Philippines: Michael Hildreth

Michael Hildreth

Michael Hildreth

TARLAC CITY, Philippines (BNc) — “We have arrived safely in the Philippines!” Michael Hildreth wrote yesterday to BNc. He and his family just moved there to begin a new congregation.

“I am beginning a new work in Tarlac City with the help of some local preachers and members of the Body. It will be a newly planted congregation and Tarlac Bible School,” Michael wrote Nov. 28 to BNc.

The city, located in the Central Luzon region, has a population of 314,000, with 76 barangays, or neighborhoods. Continue reading

Baptisms in agitated surf firstfruits of new effort

JOÃO PESSOA, Brazil (BNc) — Jesus didn’t say “Peace, be still,” to these waves and wind and rain, but he did bring peace to two hearts from the Industrial District of the city, firstfruits of the area and concrete evidence of the hope for a new congregation. Continue reading

Twelve baptized today in county jail

GENEVA, Ala (BNc) – On Thursday evenings men from the Geneva church meet at the local county jail to teach the Bible to the inmates. Going their separate ways last night, Douglas Williams, minister of the Geneva church, was teaching in the open dome area. One of the men asked about baptism and the study began as different ones participated in the conversation. Some offered what they believed about the subject, and Williams always directed them to what the Bible taught. At the end of the class one young man said he wanted to be baptized right then. Baptisms have to be arranged with personnel, and at their convenience, so it wasn’t possible to baptize him immediately. However, three men, from other classes, were already scheduled to be baptized today (Friday). Soon a total of ten souls were requesting baptism.

On Friday morning, August 31, imagine Williams surprise to see two more men from his class join the group to be baptized, making a total of 12 whom he baptized into Christ for the remission of  sins. To God be the glory.

Small Kansas church reverses losses

small churchesANDOVER, Kan. (BNc) — A small congregation turns things around, with door-knocking and clothing give-aways, and five baptisms.

Not long ago the Andover church had over 100 saints, many of them children. As with many American congregations, they have been hit with the age factor. A few move away and some pass away, but what Andover has in 2011 is a core group who is hopeful of the future in the Flint Hills of Kansas. Continue reading

Church meets for the first time in Porirua

PORIRUA, New Zealand (BNc) – The Porirua church met on May 8 for its first worship service, with 78 people, many visiting Christians from surrounding areas.

For two Saturdays before the first meeting, with the help of a group from Freed-Hardeman, they conducted a campaign to put flyers in letter boxes and door-knock, saturating the closest neighborhoods. Approximately 18,500 homes were personally visited, covering the entire Porirua area.  Ten Bible studies were set up, with eleven additional contacts to revisit. Continue reading

TRENDS: Africa worker examines ‘numbers test’

by George Jensen, Tanzania, East Africa

Missionary George JensenWhen elderships, congregations, and individuals ask about mission efforts it is a good sign. We each reveal our interests by the inquiries we make. For example, who has not heard a question about the most recent standing of a sports team? Sports fans are usually easy to detect. So also Christians ought to be known by their enthusiasm concerning work about the great commission (Matthew 28:18-20).

In a previous article we addressed one primary consideration when assessing the worthiness of a mission worker or work. Namely, it must be biblical throughout! Not only must the missionary teach the truth, but also the way the work is carried out must conform to New Testament authority.

We now turn our attention to an “evaluation tool” which is sorely misunderstood and frequently abused. This tool or test may be termed the “numbers test.” Continue reading

Amerindian Mission Trip is Fruitful

by Glenda Williams, BNc correspondent

Jerry O. Davidson, missionary to the Amerindians in Guyana, returned home Monday evening from his latest mission trip. Davidson has been leading groups deep into the Guyana bush to establish the church for 13 years. A team of eight Americans, two Trinidadians and approximately 25 Guyanese, arrived on February 21, for a three week soul-winning effort. Continue reading

Indian Christians harrassed and threatened

by Timothy Arnold

Timothy Arnold with Indian ChristiansSINGAMPALLY, India (BNc) – I came to India a month ago to work with the Fred O’Neal School and Children Home in Rajahmundry, Andrha Pradesh. It has been a wonderful experience and I think my co-worker, Harry Anderson, would agree that it has been a fruitful mission.

I have seen the faith of people who have no social advantage to being Christian go against their culture, government, communities, and families to obey God’s Word. I have witnessed the baptism of a lady from a strong Hindu family and community say that, “If my soul leaves my body I will still be a Christian,” which means not denying the Savior even unto death. I have met men who are preaching the gospel in and out of season in villages where they and their families are threatened and harassed, but they continue to preach with very little resources and still produce fruit for God’s kingdom.

Of these villages Singampally stands out in my mind because of the faith of brother B. Koteswara Rao. Singampally is a medium-sized village just outside of Rajamundry with dirt streets and three huge Hindu temples. Continue reading

New website for church

by Glenda Williams, BNc correspondent

GENEVA, Ala BNc — A new website, http://www.thechurchofchrist.ws has been created by Sonnie Parker (William Roger Parker, Jr.) of Luverne, AL.  Parker is a member of the Sasser congregation where Jeff Grimes is the preacher.

Main highlights of the site are:

  • Forums for individual members: For posting comments and questions on various topics and having open study discussions
  • Private forums for congregations: The webmaster will work with a congregation to set up private forums for their members.
  • Private Women’s forum: Women will have their own private area for teaching and study. Additional forums can be added.
  • Blogs: Each member can have their own blog.
  • Groups: Members can set up general, congregational, mission and study groups, and may be made public or private.

The Front Page consist of announcements, calendar, Biblical articles, Bible lessons library, tutorials, links to sound commentaries, Christian links, Bible games/quizzes, etc.

Congregations are encouraged to list their group in the online church directory.

The site is completely ad free and donation free. Sonnie Parker hopes this website will be a central site for church growth and is ready to help in any way.

Evangelize Kentucky Project needs help

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (BNc) – The Evangelize Kentucky Project soon will be starting a congregation in Owen County Kentucky in the town of Owenton. They are in need of 10-15 matching pews, preferably no longer than 14 feet, a Lord’s supper table, pulpit stand, number boards, etc.

The property has already been purchased and Bill Dayton who will preach there has recently moved to Bowling Green, Ky. to spend time getting to know the sponsoring congregation at Lehman Avenue. A house is currently being remodeled for them to live in.

The church building will be a converted metal warehouse building similar to the one in Grant County, the first congregation planted by the Lehman Avenue congregation. Continue reading

Brazil: The church is now here!

City of Campina Grande, Paraiba, Brazil

CAMPINA GRANDE, BRAZIL (BNc) – The church arrived before the mission team in this city in northeastern Brazil!

Campina Grande is the second largest city in the state of Paraiba, with a population of 400,000. Saints are preparing to take Christ there. The church is praying. Brazilian congregations are raising money to send two national families there, in addition to a missionary family planning to move there this year.

But even before they arrive, God is working, as Joe McKinney tells below: Continue reading