Bringing the Kingdom of Heaven to Richmond,
A Year-long, Every-Member Mission Trip
The members of
Richmond’s First Baptist Church have launched a year-long, every-member mission trip to our own hometown:
Senior Pastor Dr. Jim Somerville has explained the background and
rationale in a “white paper.” He said, “We are called
to labor alongside the Lord Jesus in the joyful work of bringing heaven to
earth… What if—for the year that begins with One Sunday in 2012 (September 9) and
concludes with One Sunday in 2013—we focus our efforts on the Greater
Richmond Metropolitan Region, as if we really had climbed on board a bus for
a mission trip and the bus had stopped here, at the corner of Monument and
the Boulevard, with the mission field spreading outward in every direction?
And what if we tried to get every member of the church on that bus, so that
it’s not just the 20 percent who usually do most of the work, but 100
percent of us working together? How would we step off the bus onto the
mission field? What kind of work would we do to make a difference?”
Dr. Somerville and Senior Associate Pastor Lynn Turner talked about what
we're trying to do.
To assist the members in finding a way to get “get on and off the bus,”
the staff has assembled an initial list of mission projects which provide
opportunities for people with different gifts and interests to find an
avenue of service that fits them. The list of projects is not exhaustive,
nor is it complete. More projects will emerge as we move through the year.
And so will the stories of those who are carrying out the mission. Those
stories, and the constantly-updated list of projects, will be posted on this
Every team in the church has been involved in a process of discerning
God’s leadership in their ministry area for the coming year. This process of
discernment will lead to the development of the church’s Ministry
Action Plan, or budget. As the teams listen for God’s guidance and follow
faithfully where He leads, they will add other projects and avenues of
ministry to the list.
On Saturday, September 22, the team leaders gathered in the Dining Hall with the staff, and the members of the Budget, Finance and Personnel Teams to share the results of their discernment process. Here's what they shared...
It is possible to do more harm than good, even though our intentions are
good. How can we practice compassion in a Christ-like way?
Our Associate Pastor for Christian Compassion gives us some pointers...
Reaching out in ministry to others can help us grow and mature as
Christians. Steve Booth, Associate Pastor for Christian Formation, talks
about how to reflect on mission experiences.
Read Jim Somerville's “white paper”
which provides the rationale for KOH2RVA.
Follow the Pastor's blog for daily updates.
See the stories of those who are participating.
Begin your own discernment
process to find your place of service.
Check out the project
Read our Ministry Teams'
visions for the next year.