Each fall, Florida Baptists turn their attention to the challenges in their Great Commission mission field at home. They are doing this by praying for the spiritual needs in the state and giving to the Maguire State Mission Offering, which funds 16 compassionate ministries that complement Cooperative Program goals and supports the Great Commission mandate.
The Week of Prayer for State Missions emphasis will be observed by churches Sept. 11-18.
Of the 20 million people calling the Sunshine State home, nearly 75 percent do not have faith in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. From rural, moss-covered towns to teeming cities with diversity of culture and language; from thriving farmlands to some of the world’s most stunning beach communities, Floridians need the hope found in the message of Christ.
The theme of the 2016 Maguire State Mission Offering,“#reachFlorida and beyond,” reflects Florida Baptists’ commitment to go into all the world to make disciples with the message of salvation, said Tommy Green, executive director-treasurer of the Florida Baptist Convention.
“Jesus commands us in the Great Commission to go to the ends of the earth,” said Green. “Through the offering, we are committed to reach Florida and beyond with the claims of Christ.”
“We are equipped like never before to take the Gospel to the ends of the earth. Modern transportation and modern technology provide an unprecedented distribution tool that enables us to reach Florida and beyond Florida.
The state mission offering responds to the Great Commission calling by undergirding Florida Baptist work internationally through long-term partnerships with Haiti, Eastern Cuba and Western Cuba. “In each of these countries we are playing a major role in working with believers and churches to impact their homeland with the Gospel,” Green said.
In North America, the offering will support an on-going partnership in West Virginia and a new partnership with Montreal, Canada, designated as a SEND City by the North American Mission Board. Montreal, and its surrounding area, is home to 6.7 million people, and an estimated 99 percent spiritually lost persons.
“Across Florida, mission opportunities abound as we are able to provide interest-free loans to church plants that are purchasing their first piece of property as they begin establishing ministries all across our state,” explained Green. “Disaster relief is an important part of our ministry within Florida as we are able to respond in times of crisis within our state.”
Other compassionate mission initiatives funded within the borders of the state include health ministries, children’s camps, collegiate missions, jail and prison ministries, regional ministries, ministries to internationals and migrants, and the mobile dental unit.
This year’s offering goal is $830,000.
“I am excited about this year’s Maguire State Mission Offering. I pray we will give sacrificially over and above our tithes and offerings to support this very viable and vital ministry,” said Green.
A streamlined version of promotional materials is available to churches to share the state mission story this year.
These materials include:
- Prayer guide in English, French and Spanish
- Poster in English, French and Spanish
- 75-second video to show during worship in English and titles in French and Spanish
- Pew envelopes
- Planning guide/mission study with ideas to adapt in large and small groups settings
- Stories about Florida Baptists featured in the prayer guide
- A sample of prayer guide, poster and envelope, and an order form was sent to Florida Baptist pastors and mission leaders during the past weeks.
Other promotional aids, including the video and planning guide/mission study can be downloaded from the Convention’s website at http://www.flbaptist.org/MSMO
Quantities of these materials can be ordered at: www.flbaptist.org/MSMO; email: MSMO@flbaptist.org; Fax 904-396-7712; attn: Maguire State Mission Offering; and by phone at 800-226-8584, ext. 3072 or 904-596-3072.