YORKTOWN, Va. (BP) – Members at Bethel Baptist Church here call their commitment to missions “glocal thinking.” Community involvement standing atop global missions and the Cooperative Program helps Bethel Yorktown achieve its purpose, Pastor Thurman Hayes said.
By Karen L. Willoughby
YORKTOWN, Va. (BP) – Members at Bethel Baptist
Church here call their commitment to missions “glocal thinking.”
Community involvement standing atop global missions and the Cooperative
Program helps Bethel Yorktown achieve its purpose, Pastor Thurman Hayes
“The Cooperative Program is a way for me as a pastor
to get my church, my local church, involved in God’s global purpose,”
“What’s so exciting to me about the Cooperative
Program is that it enables our local efforts to be connected to a
worldwide purpose,” the pastor continued. “I tell them, ‘As you give
every week you are touching every week North America and the world for
Bethel’s commitment stands as strong as its 21
percent giving of undesignated offerings to the Cooperative Program,
the Southern Baptist Convention’s method of funding missions,
missionaries and seminary training.
It’s a commitment that stands as resolutely as the
care Bethel has given to area residents since before the Civil War.
And it’s a commitment that couples with the church’s
multiple mission trips that give members hands-on experience and a new
perspective on the world and their place in it.
It’s nothing more than standing strong on the Bible,
said Hayes, pastor since 2000 of the church where more than 800 people
worship in two Sunday morning services fused with a common Sunday
“We have a passion to reach our community for
Christ, but a Great Commission church has a heart for the world too,”
Hayes said. “Our giving to the Cooperative Program comes from our
belief that we want to be part of something larger than what we can do
on a local level.
He uses the Bible to teach missions to the
congregation, and they respond by reaching out to others, the pastor
AWANA is one of Bethel
Yorktown’s ministries to children. About 175
youngsters from age 3 through the fifth grade participate in this
weekly, fun-games-and-prizes Bible study.
Bethel Yorktown prays about missions and goes on
mission trips, as well as gives to missions 25 percent of undesignated
income (21 percent to CP Missions) plus North American and
International missions offerings.
In addition to missions giving and praying, the
church strongly promotes participation in mission trips as New York and
Pastor Hayes credits Ryan Davidson with
strengthening Bethel Yorktown’s commitment to being a
praying/giving/going on mission church. Davidson, was named the
church’s minister of worship and missions in 2004.
“The double vision I see is that as Southern
Baptists we have a fabulous opportunity to do missions,” Davidson said.
“Whether it’s prayer walking in our area at Easter, or somewhere else
in the world, we want to be a part of people accepting the Lord.”