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SBC DIGEST: Michigan Baptists seek new exec; 770 volunteers for Augusta Serve Tour

Michigan Baptists’ Timothy Patterson to retire, search begins for new exec

By BP Staff

PLYMOTH, Mich. (BP) – Timothy Patterson, executive director/treasure of the Baptist State Convention of Michigan, has announced he will retire at the end of this year.

Patterson “has spent this last decade, alongside his specifically curated team, rebuilding and unifying the great churches in Michigan,” said a statement from the convention. “He has brought the state convention back from the edge of certain death by establishing healthy leadership within the state office, pouring into long time pastoral leaders, and developing over 115 new church plants!”

During Patterson’s tenure, the convention has seen a rise in Cooperative Program giving as well as reported baptisms, the release said.

The convention is asking members of Michigan Baptist churches to fill out a survey to help them better understand the needs and priorities of BSCM churches. The survey can be found at bscm.org/survey.

Those interested in applying or recommending someone for the position of executive director/treasurer of the BSCM, go to bscm.org/search.

The Search Committee will accept resumes until April 7, 2024, at 11:59 p.m. No resumes will be accepted after the deadline. All applicants will be contacted no later than April 30, 2024, informing them if they have been selected to progress to the next stage of the application process.

Questions should be submitted to the search committee admin at [email protected].

Augusta Serve Tour ‘testament to the power of unity and service’

By Kent Mallett/Send Relief

AUGUSTA, Ga. (BP) — With its rich history and vibrant community, Augusta became the focal point for the latest missional experience by Send Relief’s Serve Tour. The event, held in a city known for its southern charm and the prestigious Masters Golf Tournament, saw volunteers and local churches unite in a concerted effort to address the community’s physical and spiritual needs.

Serve Tour volunteers in partnership with 65 Augusta-area churches encouraged the elderly at a nursing home.

Volunteers – more than 770 of them from 65 different churches – converged on Augusta to participate in a series of 35 projects designed to support local communities and share a message of Gospel hope. The activities ranged from revitalizing community spaces and parks to organizing food drives, underscoring Serve Tour’s commitment to serving immediate needs and fostering long-term community development.

“Our presence here in Augusta is a testament to the power of unity and service,” said Send Relief President Bryant Wright in the event’s opening ceremony. “Together with local churches, we’re addressing immediate needs and laying the groundwork for lasting change in these communities.”

One of the standout projects was transforming a dilapidated park into a vibrant community gathering space. Volunteers spent days painting, landscaping and installing new playground equipment, creating a safe and welcoming environment for families to enjoy.

Coach Mark Richt encourages and supports volunteers at the rally held February 10th.

In addition to physical projects, the Serve Tour placed a significant emphasis on addressing food insecurity, a pressing issue in many Augusta neighborhoods. Teams assembled and distributed hundreds of food packages to families, offering sustenance and a connection to local churches.

Local leaders and churches supported the volunteers’ efforts, guiding the projects to ensure that the work aligned with the community’s needs and aspirations.

At a Serve Tour Rally at West Acres Baptist Church, volunteers heard about partnership opportunities from Disaster Relief, Georgia Baptists and Send Relief and were encouraged by Wright; Thomas Hammond, executive director of the Georgia Baptist Mission Board; and Mark Richt, former University of Georgia head football coach. Georgia Baptist Disaster Relief made lunches for volunteers and smoked barbecue for the rally.

The impact of the Serve Tour in Augusta extended beyond the week of service. More than 3,400 people were served in the community, with 540 Gospel presentations and 24 salvations reported. Local churches reported strengthened ties within their communities, enhanced credibility and new opportunities for ministry outside their traditional settings. The Serve Tour’s activities provided a tangible expression of love and support, breaking down barriers and opening doors for ongoing dialogue and engagement.

Additional Serve Tour stops in 2024 include U.S. cities like Dallas, Texas, and Flint, Mich., as well as international locations such as Armenia and South Africa.

Learn how your church can participate in a Serve Tour stop in 2024 at SendRelief.org/ServeTour.

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  • BP Staff