CrosstownBaptist_inlineSILVIS, Ill.—The weekend prior to Valentine’s Day brought together the entire congregation of Crosstown Baptist Church for its Friendship Bible Conference. “We chose to call it this because whether we are single or married, we all need the love of friends and family, and all were invited to attend,” says Pastor Ron Burnet.

On Friday evening, Feb. 12, attendees gathered for a dinner prepared by a church member. Another member had decorated the room and tables with hearts, unique block-glass lighting, and candy. That evening, Bernie Augsburger, state representative of the Illinois-Missouri Association of Regular Baptist Churches, brought a message titled, “Is God Your Valentine?”

The men returned on Saturday morning for breakfast and to hear Augsburger speak on “Do Not Be Afraid” from Palm 27:1. The ladies returned at noon for lunch and to ask Augsburger’s wife, Marcia, questions about ministry and family life.

“Sunday morning greeted us with snowfall, which hindered attendance somewhat, but we all had a wonderful time of worshiping the Lord,” Burnet says. The congregation sang about the love of God, and Augsburger brought messages on “The Amazing Uncommon Love of God” and “Abiding in Love.” His last message was in keeping with the theme the church has adopted for the year: “2016: The Year of Fruitful Abiding” (John 15:4, 5).

Burnet says, “All of us are richly blessed by the wonderful, amazing love of God that sent His only son to be our Savior.”