Just this past January, we shared the story of Living Word Baptist Church in an article titled A Church of the Community, not a Church in the Community” where Dr. Reginald Fletcher shared about a 15 unit apartment building built by his church to serve their community. The story of God’s work in this church has continued in exciting ways and we are thrilled to announce that Living Word Baptist Church has become an official Send Relief Affiliate Ministry Center through a cooperative effort between the North American Mission Board and International Mission Board.

 

“Send Relief’s affiliate ministry centers are like-minded, Southern Baptist ministries offering restoration to their local community and opportunities to replicate for other churches and ministries. Through conducting excellent day-to-day local ministry, serving as sites of mission trips, trainings, and offering valuable resources, these affiliate ministry centers inspire, equip and empower local churches to take their next step in compassion ministry.” (https://www.sendrelief.org/projects/affiliate-ministry-centers/)

 

When I asked Dr. Fletcher how he heard about the opportunity to become an Affiliate Ministry Center, he shared that he heard about this opportunity from an article in the Indiana Baptist newsletter about Pastor Jimi Stanton in Huntington, IN. Pastor Stanton is serving his community in a similar way to Living Word Baptist Church and reading the article stirred a desire to know more. Dr. Fletcher made a call to Sammy Simmons at Send Relief who visited Indianapolis to see firsthand what God was doing through his church. After this visit and follow-up conversations, a new partnership began.

 

This new partnership opens doors for others to get involved in God’s work as well. Indiana churches can join Living Word Baptist Church in serving their community with prayers and by providing opportunities for Dr. Fletcher to share what they are doing in their community to reach the lost. Dr. Fletcher shares, “In today’s climate we need to get out of the box of ministry and challenge our congregations to get outside the walls and comfort of traditional ministry. I would welcome the opportunity to share about this community minded ministry to engage our congregations to meet Luke 14:23, “Then the master said to the servant, “Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.”. We can no longer wait for them; we have to Go and get them!”

 

As Dr. Fletcher leads his church into the community, there will be countless ways your church can partner with them to serve. If you are interested in learning how your church can connect with God’s work at Living Word Baptist Church, please reach out to Dr. Fletcher at rbaronfletch@yahoo.com.