Mission visitors from Lebanon and India

Three candlesWhat a special day we had last Sunday with all our international visitors! It was a delight to welcome Dan and Sarah Chetti, missionaries from Lebanon; Ramesh Kumar and Dr. A. J. Samuel from India; and Leonardo Nogueira, a visitor (Baptist) from Rio de Janeiro. Dan preached for us on bringing the good news to the nations of this world; Sarah shared in our Time for Children and Youth; both brought testimony and videos about the work they are doing – Dan in the Arab Baptist Seminary and Sarah with female migrant workers who are brought to Beirut as domestics and then often mistreated. Ramesh brought greetings from Balasore Technical School and Dr. Samuel from the Telugu Baptist Convention of south India. All of them had been in the USA for the missions conferences, held at Green Lake, in celebration of the 200th anniversary of Baptist foreign missions.

Dr. AJ Samuel, Ramesh Kumar, Sarah and Dan Chetti
Dr. AJ Samuel, Ramesh Kumar, Sarah and Dan Chetti

After worship and a time of sharing, Marilyn Hunwick, Nana Spiridon and the Missions Task Team provided a lovely lunch on the patio. We had dishes from India and Lebanon along with fresh fruit as everyone continued the conversation under the trees. I am also pleased to report that Ramesh has pledged $1000 to our special mission offerings for Habitat for Humanity and One Great Hour of Sharing, from the money BTS makes selling its goods and Dr. Samuel pledged $1000 from the Telugu Convention for the work of the Chettis! Of course, this doesn’t let us off the hook. It simply adds to what we have and will continue to give with our characteristic generosity.

At the end of the luncheon, both Doug and I commented on what good day it was. Special thanks to the Hunwicks for the key role they played in pulling all this together and for the indomitability of their missionary spirit! Thanks to everyone else who helped make the day special. I love not only the multicultural flavors of our own congregation but also our vision and appreciation for how modern missions bring all sorts of people together in a common family of God.

This Sunday promises to be another special day as well as we celebrate our annual joint worship service in Mitchell Park. This year I am very pleased that the folk from University AME Zion will be joining us, including their new pastor, Kaloma Smith. I believe the Tongan congregation “nested” in their space will also participate. Margaret Boles, Kal and I have had a good time planning a service around the theme, “All Are Welcome.” The service will be followed by the traditional potluck lunch so bring food to share. This would be a wonderful time to invite some others to join you.

Remember the service begins at 10:30 AM this week only! Y’all come.

God grant us more light, more love, more life as we journey together.

Pastor Rick  

Missions Sunday: August 3

I know it’s summer time and many things are pulling us in many directions, but I hope you will make every effort to be here Sunday for our special Missions Sunday. It is not that often that we have the privilege of hosting international visitors.

Dan and Sarah Chetti are international missionaries whose work we support on a regular basis. In addition, we gave $10,000 to help with the creation of a Migrant Worker Center in Beirut, a project in which Sarah is very involved. Dan will be preaching and  they will also have some brief videos of the work they are doing in Lebanon. It has been a while since Dan visited and this is our first opportunity to meet Sarah and hear about her work so it should be an exciting day.

Also, the same day we will be graced by a visit from our friends, Ramesh Kumar, Principal of the Balasore Technical School (another long time mission partner of FBCPA) and Dr. Samuels from the Telugu Baptist Association of southern India. They,  along with the Chettis, have been in the USA for the big Missions Conference at Green Lake.

Pastor Rick

You are invited to welcome international leaders and missionaries who will be present in the 10 AM worship service with Dan Chetti preaching, followed by a time of sharing and an international luncheon on Sunday, August 3:

Rev. Dr. Dan Chetti and Sarah Chetti are A B Missionaries to Lebanon where Dan teaches at the Arab Baptist Theological  Seminary to prepare leaders for ministry in 9 countries in the Middle East and North Africa. Sarah has begun a ministry with immigrant women working as maids in Lebanon. She and her helpers visit two prisons and run a Center for Domestic Workers  in Beirut.

Ramesh Kumar has been Principal of Balasore Technical School in Balasore, Orissa, India, since 1997. With an Engineering  Degree from the Coimbatore Institute of Technology in South India, Ramesh assumed his position with 83 students enrolled in 7  courses. After 17 years, BTS now has more than 500 students, including women students. BTS is affiliated with the Bengal Orissa Bihar Baptist Churches Association, BOBBCA, with 95 churches and 45,000 members.

Mr. A. J. Samuel represents the Baptist Convention of Telegu Churches, South India, as Director of Socio Economic Projects. Divided into 5 Regions, the Telegu Churches number 764 churches and 1,484 preaching places, with approximately 980,000 baptized members.

 

International Ministries 200th Anniversary Celebration!

World Mission ConferenceTwo hundred years ago, on May 21, 1814, our mission society was formed under the name of “The General Missionary Convention of the Baptist Denomination of the United States of America, for Foreign Missions.”

All current AB Missionaries and their families will be present at Green Lake, Wisconsin on July 21-26 for the 2014 American Baptist World Missionary Conference, and in addition 100 “international partners” have been invited by International Ministries (IM). The celebration ” will center on what God is doing in global mission today and where we’re heading into the 3rd century of mission. There will be worship & music, Bible study and opportunities to hear from the missionaries and global partners, as well as fun, interactive events,” according to the IM web page.

Dan and Sarah Chetti will be home from Lebanon for the conference and have been invited to FBCPA on August 3. We have heard from Ramesh Kumar from Balasore, India who is coming as well as Mr. A. J. Samuel of the Baptist Convention of Telegu Churches, South India, who would like to visit us also on August 3.