From Chris Crain, Director
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July 10, 2018, 12:05 PM

God is Blessing!


ear St. Clair Baptists,

I am amazed at what God has done through this Association! These past almost two years as Director of Missions provided an extraordinary challenge for me. New churches joined our Association, existing churches were strengthened, leaders developed new ministries, Disaster Relief volunteers shared the Gospel across the country, we sent mission teams to advance the Gospel here and across the globe, families were rescued through Pathways Counseling, Impact Campus Ministry grew at Jeff State College, and pastors formed life-giving relationships across the county.

Thank you for allowing me a front-row seat to the activity of God in encouraging, equipping, and engaging churches in Great Commission ministry! I am indebted to you and your church for the love, support, and prayers along the way.

The St. Clair Baptist Association—dollar for dollar—is the best value for investing in associational ministry I have witnessed. In fact, your Association spends less today to get the job done than two decades ago! Contrary to perception, the Association does not receive budget support from the Alabama Baptist State Convention, the Southern Baptist Convention, or the Cooperative Program. Our support comes from you—our member churches.

As your church evaluates supporting missions next year, please consider increasing your support for the St. Clair Baptist Association. Would your congregation pray about increasing gifts to the St. Clair Association budget by either a) adding fifteen percent to your 2018 gifts next year or, b) sending an additional one-half of a percent of your general budget receipts for 2019? Regardless, we will continue to be your faithful partner and serve you and your church in any way possible. We are grateful for any and all support given through our churches!

Receive a biblical education for $50 a class on Monday evenings in Pell City! The Ministry Training Institute is a great way for pastors, deacons, youth leaders, Bible study leaders, or ANYONE to earn a diploma with Samford University. I will join Rick Earnest at the Eden-Westside Campus this Fall to teach Baptist Doctrines; this excellent course covers most key doctrines of the Bible--Scriptures, Trinity, Salvation, Church, Last Things, etc. Rick will be teaching Biblical Interpretation--a great class to begin your program. Please enroll! Every Bible teacher in your church would be enriched--and they will get credit with Samford. Term is August 20-October 12 (6-9 PM on Mondays). Looking forward to seeing you!

I would be honored to come and share our vision with any of your church leaders. Also, we have designed a promotional insert about the Association; let us know if you would like copies of these inserts for your church. Please contact me at the office if I may serve you in any way at 205-594-5173 or chris@stcba.org.

Prayer Requests
Please pray for the Haiti Mission Team from Eden-Westside Baptist Church and me. I am scheduled to go with Pastor Jacky Connell, Scotty Pinson, and others to assist in preaching an evangelistic crusade and teaching the Epistle to the Philippians to local church pastors. The trip departs on July 31.

Pray for the St. Clair Baptist Annual Meeting to be held at Bethel Baptist Church, Moody on Monday, October 29. NAMB Senior Director of Replanting Mark Clifton has been used by God all over North America. Pray for him as he comes to share his experiences with us on Sunday, October 28 at 4:00 PM at Mt. Pisgah and on October 29 at Bethel. Mark shared a few thoughts on his Podcast with Thom Rainer:

“An empty church is like an abandoned castle of a long-forgotten king.”

“Empty, dead churches rob God of His glory.”

“Church replants generally value the process of decision over the outcome of decision.”

“Churches don’t have to die. They are not without hope. They can live again through replanting.” 

“The remaining members in a dying church are not in the way of your ministry, they are your first step in your ministry.” 

“You know an idol is false when you’re afraid of losing it.”


“One characteristic of a dying church is an over-reliance on programs.”

With sincere gratitude,
Chris Crain, SCBA




May 31, 2018, 9:35 AM

Keep Your Chin Up!



 

Dear St. Clair Baptists,

 

The reports of moral missteps and impropriety among some SBC leaders captured headlines in several publications. Dr. Al Mohler, in his recent article “The Wrath of God Poured Out—The Humiliation of the SBC,” wrote:

 

“We thought this was a Roman Catholic problem. . . . When people said that Evangelicals had a similar crisis coming, it didn’t seem plausible — even to me. I have been president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary for twenty-five years. I did not see this coming. I was wrong. The judgment of God has come.Judgment has now come to the house of the SBC. The terrible swift sword of public humiliation has come with a vengeance. There can be no doubt that this story is not over.”

 

I appreciate Dr. Mohlers’ frank assessment—especially from his vantagepoint as President of one of the six SBC seminaries.

 

I have one word for this aspect of the state of the SBC: mournful. In the past, I worked as senior pastor with more than twenty employees and several classrooms full of children in our church buildings each weekday. The rigors of assuring that no real or perceived improprieties took place wore on my mind. Truly, the cost and responsibility of leading and protecting the church is great! Church leaders, we must walk closely to the Lord, knowing that the grace of God that bought is the grace that will keep us!One of my mentors, a formidable man and battlefront chaplain during Vietnam, would say, “Chris, keep your chin up and your nose clean!” We must keep our “chins up” and keep a watchful eye on the flock, protecting those in our care. We must keep our “noses clean” and not bring shame or embarrassment to our Lord by mishandling the Gospel, failing to deal with inconvenient truths. Please pray that the mournful state in the SBC will end and a new era of Christlike humility and integrity will begin.

 

Prayer Requests

  • Pray for the upcoming Southern Baptist Convention in Dallas on June 12-13. My wife, Carol, and I will be messengers. Pray for the IMB, Executive Committee, and Southwestern Seminary as they seek leadership.
  • Pray for the pastors and leaders of the churches of the SCBA.
  • Pray for your SCBA mission team to Blackey, Kentucky on June 16-23. We will conduct two Vacation Bible Schools, work on several construction projects, worship with three churches, and feed 60 families. We kept the cost of this trip low for participants. Please consider making a special financial donation to help us. Send your gift to SCBA; PO Box 160; Ashville, AL 35953.
  • Pray for the new charity medical clinic opening in Pell City for residents of St. Clair County.
  • Pray for the church revitalization events during our SCBA Annual Meeting with Mark Clifton on October 28-29 in the St. Clair Baptist Association.
  • Pray for our Impact students as they travel home from Austria.

 

I appreciate the honor of serving you.

 

Sincerely,

 

Chris Crain, SCBA

 

 

“HEALTH NOTE” from Your Friends at Easter Seals Community Health Clinic, Inc.—Pell City

According to recent studies, walking briskly can lower your risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes as much as running. All three of these conditions are risk factors for heart disease and stroke — and you can do something about them. So set a reachable goal just for today. Then you can work toward an overall goal of walking 30 minutes a day by increasing your time as you get in better shape. Walk the dog, use the stairs instead of the elevator, investigate a new park in your community. Just get started . . . you WILL notice a difference!

 




May 7, 2018, 12:00 AM

Where Does Evangelism Begin?


Dear St. Clair Baptists,

 

Where Does Evangelism Start?

Evangelism in your church starts with Jesus Christ working through you! Take four stepstoward having conversations about the Gospel: 1) Lookfrom the inside of the circle (see image below) and move outward. 2) Pray for each person listed daily; tuck the list of names inside your Bible or make a note on your iPhone. 3) Talkto a each person weekly about your real relationship with Jesus—casually and confidently. 4) Watch God begin to work through you.

Thank you St. Clair Baptist Evangelism Committee and Seddon Baptist Church for a great weekend!

 

Up to the Mountains

Last year, winding through the hills of Appalachia, our mission team found new friends, a unique culture, and remarkable opportunities for the Gospel. In June, we will take 80 people from many different St. Clair churches—of different sizes and approaches—to experience the activity of God at Calvary Campus—Blackey, Kentucky. North American Mission Board Missionaries, Paul and Mary Jo Radosevich work tirelessly to communicate the life-transforming message of Jesus Christ in word and deed. We will serve in VBS, evangelism, food ministry, and construction.

 

Recently, Bill Barker of Appalachian Regional Ministry shared about delivering a tractor-trailer load of backpacks to Calvary Campus for distribution: “A group of eager men met me at the road as a I drove the truck toward the receiving area. I thought Paul and Mary Jo had organized a team to help offload the truck. They worked tirelessly unloading backbacks. After everything was unloaded, I thanked the men. Then, I realized that they were there to receive some of the backpacks for their own children. One man, with tears in his eyes, said, ‘Oh, thank you Mr. Bill! Tell all of the people who sent these to us how much they mean to us.” So, I am relaying the message to you, St. Clair Baptist Association!

 

Please pray for your St. Clair Kentucky Mission Team. We will leave on Saturday, June 16. Would you, your small group/Sunday School class, or church consider helping us by donating a few of the items on our list?Let me know that you pledge to do this by emailing chris@stcba.org.

 

Thank You!

I am grateful to all of the ministries and partners of the St. Clair Baptist Association—there’s no way to name them all! Raceway Ministryvolunteers—thank you for a great Spring Race at Talladega! Lives were eternally transformed by the Gospel! St. Clair Disaster Relief—thank you for spending day after day in northern St. Clair, Etowah, and Calhoun Counties cleaning up after the storm. Christina Puckett and IMPACT Campus Ministries—thank you for an awesome year at Jeff State College. Pathways Counseling—thank you for transforming hearts, lives and families with the Gospel! English as a Second Language,St. Clair WMU, and Vacation Bible School Team—thank you for making a tremendous difference! Last but not least, thank you to the staff, teams, committees, and supporting churches of the St. Clair Baptist Association!

 

The best is yet to come, St. Clair Baptists!

 

Sincerely in Jesus,

Chris Crain, SCBA




January 16, 2018, 8:23 AM

Kentucky Mission Trip 2018



Mission Trip to Calvary Campus in Blackey, KY

NOTE: Details are subject to change.

DATES: June 16-23, 2018

COST: $140 per person covers transportation (first come, first serve), meals, and lodging. Background check required for all adults who work with minors—small fee may apply.

INCIDENTALS: Bring money for travel meals (approx. 2), snacks, and souvenirs.

HOUSING ARRANGEMENTS: Families may stay together in small apartments. Men’s quarters and women’s quarters are dormitory style.

DEPARTURE: Sat. June 16, 2018  

RETURN: Sat. June 23, 2018

PACKING LIST: TBD

REGISTRATION DEADLINE: March 31, 2018

QUESTIONS: Email SCDirector@Windstream.net

 

Dear Potential Missionary,

This year’s Summer Mission Trip will be in the Bluegrass State as we travel to Calvary Campus in Blackey, Kentucky. Calvary Campus, part of Meridzo Ministries, is a multi-functional retreat and educational center nestled in the beautiful Appalachian Mountains. We will be volunteering at their VBS, as well as working in light construction, electrical work, and other areas around the campus. For more information about Calvary Campus, visit www.meridzo.com/calvary-campus. This missions experience is designed for families or individuals who want to engage in missions. We will be able to use many adults, students, and children in various capacities on this trip. If you have never been on a mission trip, this is a great trip for you.

To secure your slot, please complete the following two-step process before March 31, 2018:

  1. Click on: MISSION TRIP FORM and follow the instructions. You may pick up a printed form at the SCBA Office. Please print out the form for EACH participant. Fill out completely. You must attach a copy of your insurance card. Any minors without traveling parents must have permission to travel by the SCBA TRIP COORDINATOR in advance; minors without traveling parents must the form notarized. When all forms are complete, mail the forms to SCBA Mission Trip; P O Box 160, Ashville, Alabama 35953. Or, forms may be delivered to the offices of FBC Ashville or the St. Clair Baptist Association before the DEADLINE on March 31, 2018. This trip is on a first come/first service basis.
  2. Pay the $140 per person non-refundable trip cost by clicking here.  Go to DONATE ONLINE and process through PayPal. Or, you may write a check to SCBA and include it with your completed form.

Please mark your calendar to attend our INTEREST MEETING on March 4, 2018, at 2:30 PM at the St. Clair Baptist Association Office, Ashville. This meeting will answer many of your questions.

Dr. Jay Stewart, FBC Ashville (Missions Development Team, SCBA)      

Dr. Chris Crain, SCBA (Director)

Maggie Walker (Trip Coordinator)




October 9, 2017, 6:41 PM

Read My Report to the Annual Meeting


https://mychurchwebsite.s3.amazonaws.com/c206/domannualmeetingreport.pdf

Please read my report at the link above.  Thank you for allowing me to serve you  

Sincerely,

Chris Crain, SCBA

 

 

 


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