In the book, “In Praise of a God Who Saves: 110 Stories of Everyday Evangelism,” Southwestern Seminary student Amy Carlson is quoted as saying, “The teenagers in today’s society will rule the world in the near future. They are our future presidents, doctors, soldiers and teachers. If no one shares the gospel with them, this world will be plunged into darkness.” It has been an accepted truism, substantiated by Barna Research in a 2004 article, that two-thirds of all born again believers made that commitment to Christ before their 18th birthday.
Brodhead Baptist Church, under the leadership of pastor Ralph Baker, makes certain they are reaching out to children and teenagers with the Gospel.
Brodhead Baptist, part of the Rockcastle Baptist Association, averages around 340 people in worship attendance, which has more than doubled since Bro. Ralph became pastor. Brodhead baptized 28 people in 2017, which is an evangelistically healthy ratio of one baptism per every 12 church attenders. Over half of those baptisms were of children under the age of 18. While it averages over 300 in Sunday morning worship, its most recent Vacation Bible School recorded a registration of 348.
When asked how the church measures evangelistic success, Baker says, “Fifty new members being added to the church is a good year, which has been the case for approximately 15 years with 35 of those being from baptisms.” For Bro. Ralph, another measure of success recently was going 13 months with having first time visitors in the service every Sunday morning. Baker says, “The church is good at inviting people, and if they come to church, then there are six to eight people who will witness to those who come.”
Part of Brodhead’s success for reaching children and teenagers comes as a result of Bro. Ralph and several of the members being involved in the local school system. These classroom educators have a heart for kids and especially look forward to Vacation Bible School every year. They treat it like a summer evangelistic mission experience. He says, “They are bold witnesses and work hard during VBS.”
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Source: Baptist Press