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Utah-Idaho mission projects planned in weeks surrounding convention


ALPHARETTA, Ga. (BP)–The Crossover Salt Lake City evangelism initiative is not the only means through which Southern Baptists will impact the area during this year’s SBC annual meeting. A number of churches have responded to the Utah-Idaho Convention of Southern Baptists’ invitation to be a part of mission projects before, during and after the convention.
“More Than A Meeting: It’s a Mission” is the theme of the special emphasis.
“We realize the SBC probably isn’t going to be back here in our lifetime for a meeting, so we want to maximize the opportunity,” said Jim Harding, executive director of the Utah-Idaho Southern Baptist Convention. He added mission trips will allow the SBC to make a difference in both Utah and Idaho, rather than just the northern Utah area where Crossover events will be focused.
“A lot of the churches in the Deep South live in an area where they have huge resources,” Harding said. “Some of the associations we’ve been talking with have as many churches as we have in our entire convention. The resources available to them are constant … whereas for us this is a one-time shot.”
Projects planned in the weeks surrounding the convention include many of the projects normally planned for mission trips — just in higher numbers than usual. Those already scheduled include Vacation Bible Schools, sports clinics, revivals, building projects and even an “Experiencing God” weekend.
First Baptist Church of Artesia, N.M., for instance, will be assisting First Baptist Church of Provo, Utah, with a variety of projects, including a Vacation Bible School, four backyard Bible studies, four sports clinics and maintenance on the church. The team, which includes individuals from other churches in the association as well as other church staff members, also will help lead a revival in Payson, Utah.
Richard Cody, associate pastor and minister of education at the church, said about 40-50 youth and adults will make the trip. “We do something like this every year,” he said.
In another event not directly tied with either Crossover Salt Lake City or the “More Than A Meeting” emphasis, the entire Oklahoma Baptist Convention is planning its own Crossover Idaho Falls in Idaho.
Shane Spannagel, an Oklahoma convention evangelism associate, said the June 5-7 event will include four block parties, door-to-door evangelism, a large worship service in the city’s convention center and a youth concert featuring “The Kry.” Modeled after the larger SBC events, Spannagel said the Idaho Falls Crossover also will serve as a training ground for Oklahoma leaders to conduct Crossover events in their own state.
For more information on mission project opportunities through the “More Than A Meeting: It’s A Mission” emphasis, contact Harding or Martha Wilson at the Utah-Idaho Convention of Southern Baptists, (801) 572-5350.