Pastors in transitional churches can get help at confab

Pastors in transitional churches can get help at confab

Significant event scheduled for Second Baptist, Springfield

By Allen Palmeri
Staff Writer

August 23, 2005

JEFFERSON CITY – Transitioning a church from one level to another can be a difficult thing, according to Ron Barker, Missouri Baptist Convention (MBC) personal evangelism/spiritual awakening specialist. That is why the MBC is co-hosting a conference with Second Baptist Church, Springfield, Sept. 26 on how to do it.

Transitioning to better fulfill the Great Commission will be the topic of the one-day conference that will last from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Speakers include: John Marshall, pastor, Second Baptist Church, Springfield; Frank Page, pastor, First Baptist Church, Taylors, S.C.; and Hosea Bilyeu, pastor, Ridgecrest Baptist Church, Springfield.

Registration opens at 8:30 a.m., with the conference being offered free of charge. Lunch also will be provided for free.

“These are men who don’t just read about stuff and talk about it,” Barker said. “They have done it and are doing it.”

Barker said a common error in transitioning is to assume that a church must go from traditional to contemporary. He would rather promote the idea that a church go from a tendency to not reach that many people to reaching a whole lot of people with the Gospel.

“This has to do with creating an environment to reach lost people,” Barker said. “These men have been able to feed their sheep and encourage their membership, but at the same time connect with the culture and reach lost people. They’ve been able to do that without splitting the church and running everybody off.

“Sometimes some of the transitioning that we hear about and we read about has caused great pain. These men have been able to do it in existing churches.”

Barker emphasized that practical helps in ministry will be a priority.

“This is not a theoretical conference,” he said. “This is not a conference about high ideas. This is about the nitty gritty of church life and reaching lost people, especially in the culture that we live in.”