January 2008

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How Does Being Part of the Strawberry
Baptist Association Benefit Our Church?

The Association is a mission organization. It was founded 231 years ago to help share the message of Christ in a new world and establish and strengthen Christian churches. Every member church of our mission family had at her start an intimate relationship with the Strawberry Baptist Association and the sister churches who made up this church planting organism.

The wrong questions to ask in this relationship are, “What do we get out of being part of Strawberry?” or “What will I gain through partnership with the Association?” These are egocentric and miss the very heart of the meaning of “association” and “mission.” The right questions are “How may I minister to the needs of my sister churches and pastors?” “How may I partner with others in my local area to carry out the Great Commission and reach people for Jesus Christ?” and “What can we put into the Association that will bless others?” It is about helping, supporting, encouraging, and even financing other churches, personnel, and ministries that together make up the sum total of what missions is all about.

What do we get out of giving to Lottie Moon, Annie Armstrong, or giving to missions in Nicaragua, Mexico, Korea, China, or Russia? It is the same principle at work as we support our local missionaries and the work that is carried out in the name of Strawberry Association to the honor and pleasure of God.

This is not a social or community club to which we pay fees and receive magazine subscriptions, special hats, or chocolate candy bars. It is not about our comfort and convenience. This is about pooling resources for mission efforts locally, nationally, and even internationally. If we are not at peace and experiencing God’s blessing as cheerful givers to the cooperative efforts of this Association and the support of those we have called to serve with us, then we are not giving with the right spirit or with integrity.



Earn College- and Masters-level credit in Southwest Virginia
Church History: Tuesday evenings, 6:30-9:30
Christian Education: Thursday evenings, 6:30-9:30
(Both classes offer 3 college-level credit hours)
Cost: $375 per class (Audit: $188)

Introduction to Preaching: Thursday evenings, 6:30-8:15
(2 Masters-level credit hours)
Cost: $600 (Audit: $300)

All classes offered at Bonsack Baptist Church, Roanoke
Week of January 28 through May 19, 2008

Tuition supplements available for BGAV church members
For further information and registration, please contact
The Southwest Virginia Christian Leadership Network
Phone: 540.777.3014 or 1.866.223.9344 (toll-free)

A Ministry of the Virginia Baptist Mission Board


Feb 16 Marc Jantomaso (River Rock)


Feb 12 Chris & Susan Smith (Staunton)
Feb 14 Todd & Dana Childers (Norwood)

Focus on Our Family

Hunting Creek provided 49 shoeboxes filled with goodies for Operation Christmas Child.

On Wednesday, December 19, a group of Christmas carolers (ages 7-78) from Mentow delivered fruit trays to 13 homes in the community. Following the deliveries, the group enjoyed fellowship and refreshments at the church. Mentow church family and friends will celebrate the Christmas season with a covered dish lunch following the morning worship service on December 30.

During the month of November, Morgans was on mission to help those in need. Thanks to everyone's dedication, they delivered the following items: 120 shoeboxes for Samaritan's Purse Operation Christmas Child, 19 pairs of pajamas to the Bedford Christmas Station, approximately 20 packed bags of canned items to Lake Christian Ministries pantry from Awana's Line 'Em Up Night, a meal to a family in the community from the Edith Hicks Circle, 6 care packages to Sgt. David Suggs who is proudly serving our country in Iraq, 14 pairs of gloves, 10 hats & 10 books to Lake Christian Ministries compliments of the children in Awana.

"The Richards" will be in concert at Radford on Sunday, February 17, 6 p.m. Sherry Meador Richards, a native of Moneta and Diamond Hill Church, and her family make up this gospel group. More information may be found at or

Rainbow Forest will be offering its annual Missions Institute on Monday nights from 6:30-9:00 p.m., from January 14th through March 17th. This year's theme is "Making Him Known." The 2008 Missions Institute is for the whole family. There are appropriate classes for all ages, and childcare is provided free of charge for children under 5. A few exciting changes to this year's Institute are: expanded small group time that incorporates Bible study, a new selection of classes focusing on practical applications of missions, an opportunity to audit classes and expanded worship and chapel times. Informational brochures and signups are available online at If you would like more information, please contact the Missions Ministry at 540.977.1789.

Help Wanted
Beaverdam is seeking a part-time Youth Director. They are hoping and praying for someone with musical or singing ability to help the Worship Leader and involve the youth in praise and worship music on Sunday a.m. The applicant will need to work with the youth, grades 6-12, on Wednesday nights, assist with youth Sunday School on Sunday a.m., and sit with the youth during the a.m. worship service. They do not have a Sunday evening service.

Norwood is looking for a pianist to play for Sunday morning and Wednesday evening services. Send résumé to Personnel Committee, 1045 Random Way, Forest, VA 24551, or email to

Thaxton has an opening for a part time secretary. If interested, send a résumé to Personnel Committee, Thaxton Baptist Church, P.O. Box 32, Thaxton, VA 24174.

Click for January Calendar

Etc., Etc., Etc.

Thanks for continuing to pray for the Uganda Mission Team traveling February 2-16, 2008. A number of folks from Strawberry will be going with Arise Africa Ministries to the city of Jinja where there will be preaching and much evangelistic work. This mission effort has been going on for a number of years now, and thousands have come to faith in Christ through the sacrifice and commitment of the volunteers. Pray that doors will be open and missionaries protected as they serve in harsh conditions. Pray that the many Muslims will experience dreams of Jesus coming to them and telling them to listen to the Christian messengers sent to their land to preach the Good News.

Virginia Baptist Evangelism Conference
February 15-16, 2008
First Baptist Church of Woodbridge
13600 Minnieville Rd, Woodbridge, VA 22193

Registration is now open for 21-C, 2008! The theme this year is “Causing Heaven to Celebrate,” based on Luke 15:7. We believe that Jesus establishes an important priority when He says, “I’ve come to seek and save lost people.” Shouldn’t lost people be a priority for His followers as well? It has been estimated that 4.5 million people in Virginia have no connection with any religious organization. How are Virginia Baptists going to respond?” 21-C has become synonymous with kingdom vision, innovation, and courage. This year will be no exception:
  • Kingdom Vision: participate in a movement that will reach 600,000 lost people with the Gospel of Jesus Christ over a five year period.
  • Kingdom Innovation: incorporate the APEPT model of Ephesians 4:11 to discover spiritual gift-base.
  • Kingdom Courage: commission, orient, and mobilize the 670. (go to for more information)
Alan Hirsch: teacher, church leader, and key mission strategist for churches in the UK and New Zealand. Author of The Shaping of Things to Come and The Forgotten Ways.
Doug Murren: church consultant; lead pastor of New Heights Christian Fellowship in Boise, Idaho; director of Square One Ministries; and has assisted in the start of 87 churches; author of 14 books covering a wide variety of genres.
Dennis Pethers: founder and General Director of Viz-A-Viz, an evangelistic organization committed to relevant communication of the Gospel to people today; Author of the book More to Life.
Nelson Searcy: founder of The Journey Church of the City in New York City. Author of the book Launch: Starting a New Church from Scratch.
Curt Watke: president of the Intercultural Institute for Contextual Ministry, Inc., a “think tank” dedicated to understanding missiological concepts that are effective in reaching the various cultural groups in North America and around the world.

We eagerly await your arrival in Woodbridge.

A Place for You in WMU!
Mrs. Lois Stevens, WMU Director
1118 Roundtree Dr., Bedford 24523
Phone: 540-586-7409

Women on Mission: Radford is leading devotionals at Oakwood Manor in January, February, and March. Bethlehem will host the January birthday party for residents of Bedford County Nursing Home; Mount Olivet will host it in February. On Sunday, December 16, Mentow’s Women on Mission delivered home baked pound cakes and sour dough bread to 18 homes in the community.

SBA WMU Planning Meeting
(Church WMU Directors &
SBA WMU Leadership Team Members)
Thursday, January 10, 2008, 5:15 p.m.
SBA Office

Happy New Year!

Help us all stay informed. If you have information about what's going on at your church, please share it with us. Items for the next newsletter should be written and in the association office by Wednesday, January 23.

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Strawberry Baptist Association
163 West Main, Bedford, VA 24523
FAX: (540) 586-4246

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Updated 12/31/2007
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