A WORD FROM THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR - MARCH 2017
Her name was Miss Edna. She had lived her entire life in Texas. She had been a Baptist for more than 50 years. Though she had often done outreach projects for her church in Texas, she had never been on a mission trip outside her region. During the North American Mission Emphasis Week at her church, she heard about a group coming to Vermont on a mission trip and decided to join the team.
She spent the week cooking for the mission team and along the way she befriended a number of teens, mostly from troubled situations. Though she was not a preacher, Miss Edna's life shouted praise to her Lord and Savior. One night after dinner, she was sitting in a chair outside the church watching the teens play volleyball. She entered into a conversation with a particularly troubled young lady. By the time the conversation ended, that young lady knew she wanted the peace that Miss Edna had. Though the young lady did not trust Christ that night, she did come to faith some months later and sent me a message on Facebook so that I would know it was Miss Edna who helped her begin her journey to the Lord. Though Miss Edna passed away some years ago, her spiritual legacy lives on.
Miss Edna was one of 1,500 volunteers who made up 70 volunteer mission teams that came to Vermont in the summer of 2009. They arrived in wave after wave of church buses and spread across Vermont like a flood of the Holy Spirit. Though only the Lord knows the full extent of what happened that summer, records show that at least 2000 people enrolled in one of our 40 multi-day summer outreach efforts. These multi-day outreaches included traditional Vacation Bible Schools as well as sports camps, day camps, and backyard Bible clubs. At least 59 decisions for Christ resulted from these ministries!
Those volunteer teams also hosted dozens of one-day outreach events such as concerts and block parties. So many people came to these events that we could not even count them all. Many people prayed to receive Christ at these one-day events as well, though we were unable to get accurate counts due to the nature of the events. What a summer it was!
As we look forward to the summer of 2017, now is the time to be planning for your summer mission trip. Whether your church is inside New England or outside our region, you can browse through our list of New England mission projects. Like Miss Edna, you can invest a portion of your summer in sharing Christ with others and create a lasting spiritual legacy.
As we work together, we can see New England changed by the Gospel. Thanks for partnering with us in reaching New England for Christ.
Your Missionary to New England,
Dr. Terry W. Dorsett
Executive Director, Baptist Convention of New England