Bringing the gospel to those who are farthest from it in word and deed is the priority of Mission Georgia. As our state emerges from the pandemic, one thing is clear – churches are eager to engage the needs of neighbors with the hope of the gospel.
The theme for this year is “Numbers are Our Neighbors.” When we look at the numbers and statistics that tell us our state is in desperate need of help, we must remember that these numbers have names. They are our neighbors. Statistics are souls.
Mission Georgia participated in and hosted a number of events in the spring that represent the new vision and heart of the initiative moving forward.
Preview of September emphasis
Behind every statistic and piece of data is a face, a soul. These numbers are your neighbors. This year’s Mission Georgia emphasis during the month of September will help churches better understand the reality of these issues in more personal ways. You’ll have the opportunity to meet individuals who are leading efforts to transform their communities through videos, prayer guides, speakers and special events. All gifts to the Mission Georgia offering are used to strengthen ongoing ministry and enable outreach and programming that bring gospel-centered care to the most vulnerable in Georgia. Materials will ship to churches starting in late July.
Please contact 770-936-5320 or email firstname.lastname@example.org with questions. There will also be materials available for download at missiongeorgia.org/offering. These include: downloadable videos, bulletin inserts, social media promotion, a PowerPoints and more.
The first outreach event of 2021 for foster families took place on April 17 at OneDay FunDay in Douglasville. Working with Waymark Foster ministry, 170 foster kids and families enjoyed a day of outdoor activities at Exodus Ranch. The day featured horse rides, bungee jumping, a petting zoo and magic show. Because of gifts to the Mission Georgia offering, foster kids and families were treated to OneDay FunDay T-shirts, lunch and gift bags that included age-appropriate devotionals. Volunteers from FBC Fairborn, Central Baptist Douglasville and Rising Oaks Missions helped with the event. Shane Wilbanks of Make Known Ministries provided the magic show and a gospel presentation.
Foster Care Support 101 Training
Churches and ministries in Georgia are rising to meet the ongoing foster care crisis with compassion and hope every week in Georgia. With more than 13,000 children currently in state care, many more are needed in this ministry area.
Mission Georgia works with existing ministries to “model and multiply” the ways they are making a difference in their own community. Foster Care Support 101 training events will feature these ministries this year.
The first training was May 1 at Warren Baptist Church in Augusta. The foster care ministry of the church, Better Together, hosted a Saturday morning training that included a panel of foster parents, a foster care social worker, church staff and a local foster care ministry/organization.
Foster Care Support 101 training events will take place in each region this year, hosted by churches that are actively involved in foster care.
Mission Georgia Roundtables
Mission Georgia Roundtables kicked off April 1 at Bethlehem Church in Bethlehem. The roundtables brought together leaders from local churches and nonprofit ministries for a collaborative conversation to hear about Mission Georgia initiatives and from one another. Participants made connections and discovered new ministry opportunities.
After Bethlehem, roundtables were held in Columbus, Clarkston, Cordele, Gray and Valdosta. Each roundtable averaged 35 individuals, collectively representing more than 175 churches or ministries.
Read Georgia connects churches, schools
Helping kids read well by fourth grade can make a significant difference in their lives and our communities. Data from the Prison Policy Initiative and Begin to Read indicate that the majority of kids who can’t read at grade level by fourth grade end up in crime or on welfare. In collaboration with Georgia Baptist Literacy Missions, a new resource is now available to help churches partner with local schools to improve reading scores. Read Georgia walks churches through the simple step-by-step process of starting a collaboration with school staff that allows church members to volunteer at the school once a week during the school year. Read Georgia provides a program manual, video training and coaches.
To get involved, simply visit missiongeorgia.org/readgeorgia. You’ll find an interest form on this page. After filling it out, you’ll have immediate access to everything you need to start a Read Georgia program in your church and local schools.