by Wayne Guinn
The IGNITE Conference at BBC Springfield this year took place October 14-16 and featured a multi-cultural approach to church planting. America has become a vast melting pot of cultures and if we are going to impact our nation with the gospel we must recognize these cultural differences. We invited the Brothers of Cyrene, a group of black pastors whose burden is to reach black America with the gospel of Christ, to participate in the conference. We also had a group of Spanish pastors and a group of Native Americans. Jack Baskin was our keynote speaker and challenged us with the fact that God has brought the mission field to our shores and it’s our obligation to reach them with the gospel. He also did a breakout session on how to impact the Asian culture. It was a great two days and I believe it had a major effect on the students.
Boston Baptist College hosted the NCPO IGNITE Church Planting Forum on their campus November 4-5. What a tremendous spirit on campus as the students and faculty were challenged about church planting in rural areas by Dan Lamb, vice president of the BBFI and pastor of Hillsboro Bible Baptist Church in Hillsboro, Ohio. Then Charles Lyons, pastor of Armitage Baptist Church in Chicago, presented the call to start churches in our urban areas of the big cities. This was followed up by breakout sessions involving Rob Willis, pastor of The Journey Baptist Church in Rochester, New Hampshire, and Josh Bevan, pastor of a new church (Lighthouse Baptist Church) in Xenia, Ohio. The students and faculty responded well to the diversity of rural and urban ministries. They really appreciated the passion with which each of the speakers shared his heart about church planting.
The presidents, administration, and staff of both colleges did a terrific job of hosting the conferences, and we pray that God will raise up more church planters through our colleges.