Wednesday, December 6, 2023
Wednesday, December 6, 2023
HomeAll The News2023 Departmental Report: Baptist Trumpet

2023 Departmental Report: Baptist Trumpet

     Do you like to be in the know? Do you like to have access to the latest, most up-to-date information that is available? I know that in the world in which we live, we sometimes get overwhelmed with the information and “news” that is coming at us all the time. On top of that, we don’t often know if what we are hearing or reading can be trusted and is an accurate picture of what is happening.

     Since 1939, the ministry of the Baptist Trumpet has been to keep you updated and “in the know” about all things related to the Baptist Missionary Association — from the local church level to missionary efforts worldwide.

We Need Your Information

     As we seek to keep our readers informed about everything related to the BMA, we want to include how God is working in your church. When you share about those who made professions of faith or moved their membership to your church, it encourages others. It is also a way to praise God for what He is doing because we can all rejoice that someone has been added to our BMA family. Remember that we are all working for the same cause and His glory.

     So, please share when someone joins your church, when you have scheduled revival services, local association or district events, other special events, homecoming services and even when someone in your church family passes away. We list these in every issue of the Baptist Trumpet to inform everyone about what is happening in our association. You can also share about successful ministries in your church, such as outreach events, special events and more, to include in our “It Worked for Us” column to encourage others. When your pastor or church holds a special anniversary or celebration, please write an article and let us know so the rest of your family we can rejoice, pray and celebrate with you.

     It also records the information in the Trumpet and then is included in the Baptist Trumpet archives. That means it preserves what God has done as a record for others in the future. Let me share a story about how this is important.

     The BMA family recently lost a faithful servant when Jerome Cooper, who was currently serving on the Publications Committee, went home to be with the Lord. As with all BMA pastors who pass away, I began to compile the obituary we would run in the Trumpet. I always start with the information the family shares, look at any data we have in our records to supplement it and then comes the search of the archives. I was able to locate all the information from when Bro. Jerome surrendered to the ministry and was licensed, along with every church where he served and in what capacity, because it was reported in the Trumpet. This is just one example of how sharing important information is vital as a history of our churches and those who serve our churches.

Associational Involvement

     Throughout this year, we have tried to encourage more conversation regarding the decline in associational involvement from the local to the national level. The “Why Do We Associate?” insert from the April 19 issue has been produced in booklet format and is available for all who want a copy. The Trumpet had a representative at every local association meeting this year, and we shared some vital information from the 55 pastors who completed our Associational Involvement Survey.

     While many have been talking about the decline in associational involvement, I believe that change must begin at the local church and local association levels to see more participation at the state and national levels. I challenge everyone reading this report to ensure your church is actively involved in every level of our association.

     Increasing associational involvement is essential to ensure that we can continue to fulfill the Trumpet’s mission of informing and inspiring our readers. Simply put, we need more subscribers. Every church needs to be on the church plan so that every member can stay updated about our associational work. It has been said at every local association meeting this year, and I believe it is true — the best church member is an informed church member. It is impossible for you to share from the pulpit or church bulletin all the information we make available weekly through the Baptist Trumpet.

We Need You

     I haven’t mentioned financial concerns until now because the rate increases we implemented over the last few years brought some financial stability. The theme for our Special Emphasis this year was “Delivering Total Access Weekly.” The new subscription we introduced in conjunction with our rate increase last year is the Total Access subscription. That means you can access Trumpet content in every way we offer it — print, email and our web page. And you get this weekly — 45 issues each year — “Total Access” delivered weekly to every subscriber.

     While we still face a slight deficit between actual production and post-production costs and the subscription rate, we are thankful for those who include us in their regular giving to help offset this deficit. Would you consider adding us to your regular giving if you are not already?

     Let me close with a challenge to each of you. Although it might be harder financially for some churches than others to send their members the Trumpet through the church plan, I truly believe it is well worth the investment, and our Lord will always provide what is needed. By ensuring the people in your church stay informed about all things BMA, you will show that their spiritual enrichment, enjoyment and knowledge about the great work and needs of the work we do together through the BMA is a priority in your church. Please consider allowing us to set you up on a three-month free trial for your church. If your people realize they are a part of the BMA family, they will enjoy staying informed about what God is doing in Arkansas and around the world. Seeing what God is doing in our extended BMA family is a blessing!

     Thank you for the opportunity to serve you through this ministry. If there is anything we can do for you, please don’t hesitate to reach out.