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Bethlehem Blogs

April 29, 2020

All-Church Quarterly Strategy Meeting (April 26, 2020)

Amanda Knoke

Director for Communications

Meeting Highlights ...

  • Devotional From Pastor Jason Meyer
  • Fill These Cities: 25 x ’25 Report (Global Outreach and Church Planting)
  • Treasurer’s Report
  • Q&A Time


Pastor Jason presented a devotional on 1 Peter 1:1–2. The theme of the letter is a call to followers of Jesus to stand firm in the grace of God in the midst of trials. The introduction to the letter in verses 1 and 2 tells us that we are exiles, which means that this world is not our home. It also tells us that we are elect, according to God the Father and set apart by the sanctifying work of the Spirit to obey Jesus, with whose blood we are sprinkled, making us people of the New Covenant. As elect exiles, longing for Jesus and obeying him, we endure trials of any kind (abuse, disease, pandemic) because this is not our final home. We are longing for a better one.

Fill These Cities: 25 x 25 Report

Global Outreach

Brad Nelson, Pastor for Global Outreach Strategic Short-Term Ministry

  • Highlights on how global partners are adjusting their ministries to meet needs in the Name of Jesus. (At the time of COVID-19, some global partners were in the U.S. and have been unable to return to their ministries, some decided to return to the U.S., and some decided to stay in the countries where they are serving.)
  • Update on Global Diaconate 2019 funding and 2020 funding to date (see a PDF of the funding details)
  • Update on the Business As Mission (BAM) loan fund
  • Update on Short-Term Ministry trips: Most trips for the year have been canceled.

Church Planting

Kenny Stokes, Pastor for Church Planting

  • The Church Planting Residency is accepting applications.
  • Andrew & Lida Sheard will go before the elders in May to plant a church in Henniker, New Hampshire.
  • Tom & Emily Boyer will go before the elders in June to plant a church in White Bear Lake, Minnesota.
  • Dieudonné & Dominique Tamfu were sent out of Jubilee Community Church (a Bethlehem plant) to Cameroon to church plant and give leadership to a Bethlehem College & Seminary extension site in Yaoundé. The elders are reviewing this church plant for endorsement.
  • Update on how Bethlehem church plants are dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • See a PDF of the Church Planting updates.

Treasurer’s Report

Tim Brinkmann presented the Treasurer’s Report to the assembly.

First Quarter Summary

Giving was $2.12M.

  • Down $30K when compared to Q1 2019 giving
  • $135K below Q1 2020 budgeted giving

Spending was $2.34M.

  • Up $20K when compared to Q1 2019 spending
  • $145K below Q1 2020 budgeted expenses

Spending exceeded giving by $223K.

  • In Q1 2019 spending exceeded giving by $173K



  • We are thankful for an increased number using online giving and recurring giving options while we are prevented from worshiping together.
  • We continue to manage expenses in line with revenue, although timing of receipts and expenditures causes fluctuations on an interim basis


  • Pray for continued generosity in 2020 so that planned and budgeted ministry initiatives aren’t deferred.
  • Pray for wisdom for the leaders of the church and the financial team to manage and plan in an uncertain economic environment.

Q&A Time

Ken Currie, Lead Pastor for Downtown Campus and Strategic Implementation

The following topics were addressed by various elders:

  • COVID-19 and the church
  • PPP—CARES Act Payroll Protection Program
  • 20/20 Vision Update
  • Open Leadership Positions (updates on the Downtown Campus Minister for Women’s Ministry and Pastor for Worship, and the North Campus Pastor for Children & Family Discipleship)
  • GRACE (Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment) certification update

Thanks to Church Clerk Bobby Ratliff for his assistance in preparing this update.