Sterling | Emmanuel Baptist Church has played a major role in IBSA’s Children’s Missions Day for the past several years, hosting projects in their community and encouraging kids to get involved. When the spring event was canceled due to COVID-19, children’s ministry leader Ashley Covell got creative. The missionaries could “earn” their Children’s Missions Day T-shirts by finding projects to do around their homes and communities.
“We were really blessed,” Covell said. “We had 32 children register, which is the most that we’ve had for our years of hosting it.” Participants took goodie bags to first responders, cleaned up after summer storms, and found other ways to help right where they are. They took photos of their projects and posted them on the church Facebook page.
Children’s Missions Day is one of the ways Emmanuel is working to reach families in their community, and inspire life-long missions commitment. The small church, pastored by Chris Nolin, hosts a monthly, missions-focused kids club. Vacation Bible School was virtual this year, but the kids collected $500 to support a missionary family in Italy—the same amount collected through last year’s in-person VBS offering.
“We’ve had to try to find new ways to do ministry, so that we’re still reaching those families and the children,” Covell said. The church wants to share the love of Jesus, she said, and the hope he brings. “Especially in times like this right now, people need the hope.”
Staunton church back in action after shutdown
Net Community Church has worked hard to build relationships with its neighbors over the past four years, making the pandemic-related shutdown difficult for the young church, said Pastor Derrick Taylor. But on Sept. 12, the church went back out into the community, partnering with the city of Staunton to clean up abandoned properties around town. Net’s “In and Out Day of Serving” (pictured at top) also included projects at the church, where volunteers made progress in the effort to put in a new kitchen and fellowship hall.
Net planned a similar service day for later in the month, Taylor said. “We take no credit for this,” he said. “It’s all glory to God for his faithfulness and providing the volunteers and resources.”