BOWIE, Md.—For many years, the DelMarVa Baptist Fellowship has wanted to see a church planted in the Bowie area of Maryland. With the organization of Shiloh Baptist Church, the fellowship is beginning to see this desire come to fruition.
In 2012, the fellowship contacted Jeff and Deb Minniear, missionaries with Continental Baptist Missions. They were wrapping up the planting of Grace Baptist Church in Guilderland, New York, which had graduated from mission status.
For the past four years, Jeff and Deb have been building contacts and leading Bible studies. On Oct. 23, 2016, they started holding public worship services, with 24 in attendance the first Sunday. The Minniears are continuing to get the word out about their church and making contacts. Soon they will develop small groups to help their people minister to each other and to the community, building relationships and leading people to salvation in Christ.
To aid in this work and to gain hands-on experience, the Minniears’ daughter and son-in-law, Holly and Ian Carton, have moved to the Bowie area. The Minniears and Cartons will be joined this summer by Mark and Jennifer Tylavsky, also with CBM, who are raising support.
Meanwhile, CBM missionaries Kurt and Lori Schroder are planting Good News Baptist Church in Cascade, Maryland. They and their four children previously completed a revitalization work in Woodruff, Wisconsin.
Good News Baptist meets in what was an army chapel on the former Fort Ritchie, which is in the beginning phases of a redevelopment that could double the area’s population.
Attendance runs from 15 to 20 people. Ministry in the local public school through Child Evangelism Fellowship has built a good number of contacts and opportunities to minister to families, says Kurt. Several area children have come to faith in Christ through the Good News Clubs.
Ron Faith, pastor of Evangel Baptist Church in Hagerstown, says that after years of prayer and preparation to help a church-plant ministry in the area, “we have been pleased to be able to, in some small way, partner with Kurt and Lori Schroder and their family as they work to establish Good News Baptist Church.” He says it has been a blessing to see the Schroders’ consistent ministry and the provision of the historic Fort Richie building. Some of Evangel’s members have been able to serve on a regular or occasional basis with the ministry of Good News Baptist Church.
Church groups desiring to assist a church plant need look no farther than Cascade, Maryland. The Schroders could use help canvassing neighboring communities, doing physical labor in the area, and conducting 5-Day Clubs. Kurt says that if a team wanted to participate in ministry on the Sundays before and after the 2017 GARBC Conference, they would be welcome (call 715-614-4073 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org).