MARBC News & Notes, September and October 2011

You can also download a PDF of the Volume 57 Number 5 September/October 2011 (PC: Right click / MAC: Control click on the link and choose “Save As”)

From The Baptist Testimony – Volume 57 Number 5 September/October 2011

ALLEGAN, First Baptist Church (Greg Carlson, Pastor) – First Baptist Church will celebrate its 170th Anniversary on Saturday-Sunday, September 24 and 25.  The church invites you to join them during this special weekend to rejoice in God’s blessings upon its ministry.  A special concert on September 24 at 6:30 PM with southern gospel quartet, Skylight, will be followed by an Ice Cream Social. Previous pastors will be the featured speakers on Sunday, September 25: Ray Mayhew at  9 AM; Jim Turner at 10:30 AM; and Clare Saliers at 6 PM.  Former associate and youth pastors will also be in attendance.  Dinner on the grounds will follow the morning services. The anniversary celebration will also feature photo displays of memories; a video trip down “Memory Lane,” reunion with dear friends, and a possible tour of the old church building downtown.  A new history of the church will be given to each household represented. There will be other special features to enjoy during the weekend.

EVART, Calvary Baptist Church (Scott Farrell, Pastor) – A team of 13 people ranging in age from 8 to 60 were sent by First Baptist Church to partner with missionaries Dave and Jan Santos in Sao Paulo, Brazil. The team consisted of seven men and six women, including both the senior pastor and youth pastor and ministered for two weeks in July.

While in Sao Paulo, the team served in Vacation Bible School at Castro Alves Baptist Church.   During that week, God brought many children to the church and seven came to know Christ as Savior.   Members of the team with construction expertise worked on preparing the church parking area for a delivery of cement.  

Immediately after the team went back to the states, another team came to finish the pouring of the concrete, this was a huge undertaking that only God could bring to reality.

Team members were invited to the homes of the people from the church where they heard their testimonies and were deeply moved by what they heard.  They were also able to do some outside painting at an orphanage and meet some incredible people who sacrifice daily to serve the Lord in taking care of the children.

God did great things in the hearts of the team and they all feel greatly blessed to have participated in this life-changing experience.  Seeing what missionaries do and the sacrifices they make helps to understand the commitment behind the support of missionaries in the local church.  The words taken from the Doxology say it best, “Praise God from Whom all blessings flow!  Amen.”

GRANT, Grace Hispanic Baptist Bible Church (Pastor Pepe Morales) / Rice Lake Baptist Church (Pastor Dan Fullmer) – The Grace Hispanic Baptist Bible Church recently held two special ministry events in the facilities of Rice Lake Baptist Church.  The church plant held a Daily Vacation Bible School the week of August 15.  Several sister MARBC churches assisted in the ministry of the DVBS, including Blythefield Baptist Church in Rockford, First Baptist Church in Fremont, First Baptist Church in Newaygo, Kent City Baptist Church in Kent City, and Rice Lake Baptist Church in Grant.  There was an average attendance of 127 children.  Friday night’s closing program had 147 children and 40 adults in attendance.  The group rejoices that 47 made commitments to Jesus Christ as Savior during the week.

On Sunday, August 28, a Thirteenth Anniversary Service was held in the afternoon.  The service included singing, recognition of those who pray, help, and give to the Lord’s Work for the Hispanic Community, and a special gospel message by Joe Murray, member of Rice Lake Baptist Church, assistant with the Grace Hispanic Baptist Bible Church ministry, and missionary with Release Time Bible Ministry.  Seven individuals gave testimonies of their professions of faith and participated in believer’s baptism.  The service was followed by a time of fellowship.

Pastor Pepe Morales is the founding pastor of the church.  He is faithfully involved in the preaching and teaching ministry of the church, leads Thursday night Bible group studies, holds weekly jail ministries, a weekly Hispanic radio ministry, and ministers in the many migrant camps in the region.  We are thankful for Brother Morales’ commitment to this important work and commend this ministry to our MARBC family.

HAMILTON, Hamilton Baptist Church (Pastor Jim Ruse) – Once again, Hamilton Bible Institute is pleased to invite those in the community who are interested in an in-depth survey of the Bible to join us Tuesday, September 7, from 7:00-9:30 p.m. All the following classes will be held on Monday evenings. The cost is $35 for each five week module. The Institute is sponsored by Hamilton Baptist Church and is located at 3690 M-40, in Hamilton. The Old Testament module being offered at this time will cover the United Kingdom of Israel and Hebrew Poetry. Other modules involving the New Testament and major biblical doctrines will be offered throughout the fall and spring.  Contact the church office for more information. 269-751-8596.

HOUGHTON, Evangel Baptist Church (Pastor Steve Wilson) – Evangel Baptist Church held an ordination service for its associate pastor, Nathaniel Marsh, on Sunday, August 21.  A special fellowship dinner in celebration of the ordination was held following the service.  An ordination council was held on Friday, August 19, to examine Pastor Marsh regarding his doctrinal convictions and proficiency in handling Scripture.  Rev. Ken Floyd, MARBC, served as the council moderator.  Brian Knight, pastor of Bethany Baptist Church in Dollar Bay, served as the council clerk.  The council unanimously recommended that Brother Marsh be ordained by the church.

An ordination service was held on Sunday morning, August 21.  Evangel’s senior pastor Steve Wilson led the service.  MARBC Director Ken Floyd gave the charge to the church.  Tom Maxwell, Nate’s former youth pastor, gave the charge to the candidate.  A delicious fellowship meal was held in honor of Pastor Marsh following the service.  Nate is a native of Roanoke, Virginia, and is a graduate of Cedarville University (where he met his wife, Natalie) and Dallas Theological Seminary.  Natalie is originally from California.  The Marshes have two small children and are in their second year of ministry at Evangel.

ISHPEMING, Bible Baptist Church (Pastor Jim Hill) / WEST CANNON BAPTIST CHURCH (Pastor Doug Crawford) – 
A team from West Cannon Baptist Church in Belmont assisted an Upper Peninsula sister church in an MARBC CPR project in July.  Pastor Jim and Ruth Hill report: Plans began in January to have a group from West Cannon come to help Bible Baptist Church reshingle the church building. We are so thankful for West Cannon’s Executive Pastor Mark Cizauskas organizing the more than 40 who came. Mark spoke in Sunday School and the morning service on July 31st and work began Monday morning, August 1. The extremely warm weather and some rain slowed down the project, but it was completed in four days, along with some other painting, cleaning and maintenance projects. Jim and Marie Chase, Continental Baptist Missions missionary builders supported by Bible Baptist Church, were able to come up to supervise the project.

The plan was to do the parsonage roof, too. But that was too much project. So, a week later the church family spent about 5 – 14 hour days reshingling the parsonage and garage roofs.  There was rotted wood on the parsonage roof that needed to be replaced, and unexpected rain the first day that damaged the living room ceiling.  We are so grateful for the help of the group from West Cannon and many of the Bible Baptist Church family who were able to help with the project.

KINGSFORD, Family Baptist Church (Pastor Kevin Sullivan) / VESTABURG, First Baptist Church – A team of eleven people from First Baptist Church traveled to the far western Upper Peninsula to assist in an MARBC initiated CPR (“Church Partnering Relationships”) project in July.  The team aided the Family Baptist Church in Kingsford, which is located next to the city of Iron Mountain on the Wisconsin border.  Family Baptist Church is pastored by Kevin Sullivan.  The first main project involved the repainting of the exterior of the church building.  The team also restained the front of the building and stained and installed new chair railing in the lower level of the building.  The Vestaburg team was able to get a donation of some paint from the Sherwin Williams paint store and other supplies from the local hardware store. The First Baptist Vacation Bible School children raised money that went directly to this project. They were able to raise $131.63 in just pennies!  The Family Baptist Church family and Pastor Kevin Sullivan are greatly blessed by this special partnership with their sister church from down state.

MIDDLEVILLE, First Baptist Church (Pastor Frank Snyder) – The First Baptist Church of Middleville held its 2nd Annual “FBC Amazing Race” on July 30th. The FBC Amazing Race is a team competition requiring teams of two to locate and complete a series of challenges. The team that completes all the challenges in the fastest time wins. The competition included a mix of both intellectual and physical challenges. There were forty two-person teams who competed in the race. 

The purpose of the FBC Amazing Race is to reach out to the Middleville community telling them about Christ, gaining interest in our church, and to raise funds for the Special Operations Warrior Foundation. The goal is to demonstrate the church’s love of Christ and, most importantly, Christ’s love for each and every person. The church seeks to plant seeds within the community to further spread the Gospel, just as Christ has directed in His Great Commission. 

After a short message from Pastor Frank Snyder teams completed the following challenges: 

  • Finding spoons throughout stage coach park that spelled Soldier, 
  • Finding 4 coins in a mud pit, completing an obstacle course or making a basketball shot from behind the hoop, 
  • Drinking a 44oz slushy, 
  • Decoding a phrase using 500 bricks, 
  • Kicking a goal blind folded, 
  • Completing 3 Frisbee golf holes, 
  • Completing a 20 piece match relay game, 
  • Walking on stilts and completing 2 out of 3 legs of a wipe out course on water, 
  • Solving a domino puzzle
  • Teams completed the final leg of the race back at First Baptist Church campus and had to solve a 14′ by 48′ billboard puzzle. 

Winning the race this year was the team of Sam Thaler and Nate Vaught (Nate won last year with Sam’s older brother Josh Thaler) with a time of 2:46:13.

Following the race, an “Amazing After Party” was held at the church facilities and included inflatables, games, and food.

The inaugural FBC Amazing Race in 2010 was held in honor of Army Corporal Nate Roush, a member of First Baptist Church in Middleville, who was killed in 2009 while serving in a special operations unit in Afghanistan.  Adding to the success of last year’s event the FBC Amazing Race team decided to raise money for the Special Operations Warrior Foundation. The Special Operations Warrior Foundation provides full scholarship grants and educational and family counseling to the surviving children of special operations personnel who die in operational or training missions.  The Foundation also provides immediate financial assistance to severely wounded special operations personnel and their families. This is the same foundation that is providing resources to the 36 families of those recently killed in the helicopter crash in Afghanistan.  

The FBC Amazing Race was able to raise over $3,600 through player registrations, challenge level sponsors from many local businesses, and personal donations made during and after the event.  More donations have been received after the event.  If you would like to make a donation please contact the Special Operations Warrior Foundation at


CAMPUS MINISTRY SUMMIT:  The #1 time people walk away from church and their relationship with God is during their college-age years!  Vision for Youth (VFY) is committed to doing all it can to help stop this exodus from the church.  They are holding two seminars in Michigan in the coming weeks:

National Youth Ministries Summit.  Sponsored by “Vision for Youth” ministries and hosted by Cornerstone University in Grand Rapids.  Saturday, September 17, 9:00 a.m.-3:30 p.m.  Cultivating students of influence and developing spiritual leaders in your church and student ministry.  Speakers include Mel Walker, Glenn Amos, Tim Ahlgrim, Don Jackson, and Gerald Longjohn.  $30 pre-registration rate per person which includes all sessions, notes, resources, interaction, snacks, and lunch.   $25 for full time students.  Contact “Vision for Youth,” 570.586.1843;; Email.

Campus Ministry Summit.  Sponsored by “Vision for Youth” ministries and hosted by Northeastern Baptist Church in Kalamazoo.  Saturday, September 24, 9:00 a.m.-3:30 p.m. The number one time people walk away from God and quit going to church is during college.  Learn how to stop the exodus in your church.  The summit is designed for pastors, youth pastors, church leaders, campus missionaries, Sunday School teachers, campus student leaders – anyone working with college-age young adults.  $30 pre-registration rate per person which includes all sessions, notes, resources, interaction, snacks, and lunch.   $25 for full time students.  Contact “Vision for Youth,” 570.586.1843; ; Email.

North American Missions Congress.  September 27-29, Crossroads Bible College, Indianapolis, IN.  Free registration!  You are invited to attend a great networking congress on Sept. 27–29 at Crossroads Bible College, Indianapolis. Congress organizers Ariel and Yna Abadiano are offering free registration. They explain, “The Lord has recently led us by faith to waive the registration fees for the congress, thus opening the door for His children to take advantage of a rare opportunity to invest their God-given talents, resources, and time for that which is closest to His heart—the ‘glocal’ (global and local) harvest. This will allow this 3-day congress to be offered free of charge registration for the first 400 NAMC participants to register online at our website.”  

This is a historic gathering in North America of conservative Baptist church leaders and follows similar congresses held on 3 other continents.  You are encouraged to participate for your own edification and for the encouragement of our international brethren.  Plenary sessions will tackle issues that are crucial to movements and partnership efforts as well as offer challenging perspectives in “glocal” missions.  Emphasis will be placed upon cross-cultural church planting ministries, missions’ partnerships, stewardship, tent-making missions, etc.  For more information, consult the NAMC website,; or Email.

SMARBC Men’s Retreat, “More Than Conquerors,” The Springs Camp, October 20-22:  If you’re interested in a real “shoot’em up” men’s retreat, you won’t want to miss this one. If you like to shoot hoops, bring your basketball. If you like to shoot golf, bring your clubs. If you like to shoot targets with a variety of “military hardware” than bring your shotguns, rifles, hand guns and lots of ammo. If you like to shoot fish…bring your bow. If you like to shoot eagles…bring your camera. But most seriously, be prepared to allow God to aim in on your heart with some messages that will challenge you to examine your faith and be the man God calls you to be. Basic cost will be $90 for Plan A (5 meals) Thursday night 7pm through Saturday about 4pm and $55 for Plan B (3 meals) Friday night 5pm through Saturday about 4pm. Your stay at the Springs Camp will be in cabins (bunk-bed mode: bring bedding or sleeping bags). Additional cost is added for golf (about $25 for 18 holes/cart) and for shooting clay pigeons (?). This will be a great opportunity to invite an unsaved friend. We would also extend the invitation for you dads to bring your sons (age 10 and up). Lastly, if you are a bow hunter you might want to bring a stand. 

Contact Pastor Rich Griffith at 517-531-3645 if you have any questions. 

Early Bird discount by September 20th (Plan A $85 or Plan B $50)   
Late Registration after October 10th (Plan A $95 or Plan B $60) 
Please register by sending your check (payable to “S.M.A.R.B.C.”) to: 
Lansing Ave Baptist Church, 4000 Lansing Ave., Jackson MI 49202

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