William Carey is often called the “father of modern missions” because of his zeal to evangelize the world and his dedication to reaching the people of India with the gospel. He became a missionary at a time when very few were going to the field, and he had a long and dedicated ministry despite many hardships.
While Carey is very well known, those who helped train and send him are often not as well known – men like Andrew Fuller and John Sutcliffe. Andrew Fuller pastored a church in Soham, Cambridge from 1775 to 1782, and Kettering, Northamptonshire from 1782 to 1915. Fuller led the way in setting up a Baptist Missionary Society that helped raise funds for William and other overseas missionaries.
John Sutcliffe pastored Olney Baptist Church for thirty-nine years, from 1775 until 1814. During his time in Olney, he set up a seminary to train preachers in a couple of houses close to the church. Two of those trained there, were William Robinson, a missionary to Serampore, and William Carey, missionary to India. John Sutcliffe helped ordain Carey to the gospel ministry, and Olney Baptist was the church that commissioned Carey to the work in India.
The influence and investment of John Sutcliffe and others in the life of Carey are a great example and inspiration to local churches, pastors, and Bible college teachers. The work that goes on behind the scenes to train and support others is not in vain and is a vital part of getting the gospel around the world. If you are in the role, keep on investing, giving, mentoring, and training. It will be worth it in the end!
Bonus: Below is a short video I recorded recently while on a visit to Olney. I apologize for the background noise, but I hope this video encourages you as much as visiting the church encouraged me.
Note: Special thanks to Olney Baptist Church for their helpful history section. (source)
The Open House at the Baptist Center for World Evangelism on Saturday, 14th May went very well! It was a monumental event with nearly 100 people in attendance including five pastors, missionaries, students, and friends! Thank you to everyone who prayed, gave, and help to make this dream a reality!
After several months of general clearing out, cleaning up, and yard work, the focus of work has shifted to the “Taylor Building.” This building is going to be the initial location of the VBM home offices.
Great progress has been made on the building with walls being erected, electrics being installs, painting, and flooring going in this week. The next step is to get a new Air conditioning unit. So far, God has provided all the funds, but the air conditioning and ceiling tiles will put this part of the project $7,000 over budget.
Please continue to pray for God to provide for, and if you would like to give, you can do so online or by sending a check to: Vision Baptist Missions, PO Box 442, Alpharetta, Georgia, 30009 (Memo: “BCWE”).
In February, God opened the doors for Vision Baptist Missions and the Our Generation Training Center to purchase a piece of property dedicated to training missionaries to go around the world the gospel. We are calling the property “The Baptist Center for World Evangelism.” It is located at 77 Hugh Stowers Road, Dawsonville, Georgia, 30534.
On Saturday, May 14, we are inviting the public to join us for an “Open House” to see the property that the Lord has given us and to pray for the Lord to use this new property as a tool for the training of many more missionaries. Please make plans to join us May 14th from 10-11 am! There will be a tour, a time of dedication, prayer and refreshments!
God has been very good to us, and we are very grateful for all those who have prayed and given to make this possible. Don’t miss this exciting event!
On or before Easter Sunday, April 17, Vision Baptist Missions is asking churches and individuals to consider taking up a special offering for a new missionary training facility we are developing called the Baptist Center for World Evangelism. The sole purpose of this facility is to train missionaries to go around the world with the gospel.
We are asking God to provide $300,000 for the next phase of development on the property. These funds will be used for:
Fixtures, furnishings and equipment (15%)
IT and communication technology (8%)
Inspections, permitting and environment (6%)
Construction planning (33%)
This is a great opportunity to invest in the next generation of missionaries! Please pray about what God might have you do!
In this article, we interview Michael Turner, who recently returned home from a six-month internship in Burkina Faso, West Africa. Michael was completing the internship as part of his requirements to graduate from the Our Generation Training Center. He was working with missionaries Dustin and Ashley Brown.
How long you were in Burkina Faso and why you were there?
I was an intern in Burkina Faso, West Africa for 6 months. I was there to get a hands-on experience of what being a missionary is like.
What were some of the things you were doing there?
While there, I spent 3 hours Monday to Friday in language school learning French. I was given many opportunities to preach, go on outreach every week, work in a kid’s club, and grow in my relationship with the Lord.
What lessons did you learn during your internships?
Some lessons I learned were:
How to budget in a foreign country.
How better prioritize my time.
How to improve the way I interact with others.
How to improve my preaching.
How to discipline myself to continue to grow and learn everyday.
How were you changed by your time in Burkina Faso?
During my internship, God grew and molded me more than I thought He would. During my time, God taught me how to be more content in all things (Philippians 4:11), to be more loving, to be less prideful, to serve others better, to be disciplined, and to lean on Him a whole lot more.
Anything else you’d like to share?
I have learned that there are just a few things that you are going to need if you want to be a missionary. These are humility, a heart to serve others before serving yourself, openness to new things, a desire to always be learning and bettering yourself, and a heart to see souls accept Christ as their Lord and grow in Him.
I was able to see God save and change the lives of numerous people who were working at bars, living in prostitution, and were abusive. I saw them choose God and quit their jobs at the bar, quit living in prostitution, and grow closer to their families. These are some of the things God used in life to grow my love toward Him and my desire to be a missionary.
I also learned that things on the mission field can be difficult and frustrating at times. One time I was in bed, sick with malaria. Everything I ate or drank came right back out. I didn’t have power, and the water was cut for an entire week. A couple of weeks late I went to an ATM to get money for groceries. The ATM took my card and everyone we asked said the card would be returned to America. I felt like I couldn’t catch a break. Then I realized that God was putting me through the fire so that He could mold me into the man He needs me to be. He was helping me to rely and focus more on Him than on myself. After all of these tough times, God always worked it out and showed me that He is in control.