There are some words we just do not like to hear in church. One is the “C” word … CHANGE. This presents a predicament since the church yearns to experience growth while resisting change. Of course the idea of growing and not changing makes no sense. The simple truth is; growing things change! Children’s bodies go through significant transformation as they mature and grow. Plants do the same. Everything that grows changes. So a church that’s growing must change. This axiom of increase does not include an evolving gospel. The church should never manipulate any biblical truth to afford a bigger Sunday crowd. This said, let me tell you of some changes PBC is making, to prayerfully, affect Kingdom growth.
Church planting is part of our history, theme and vision statement. Our denomination’s National emphasis is the same. The Pennsylvania/South Jersey Convention has been investing in church planting for decades. These three entities, local church, National and State conventions are joining forces through the Multiplying Church Centers or MCC’s. This a network of Great Commission Churches (SBC) with hearts for church planting. A MCC essentially is an incubator for new planters to intern under an established pastor in the context of a community in which he starts a new work. The National convention (North American Mission Board) provides financial support; the State convention (Penn/SJ) offers strategic planning; and the local church offers the contextual environment and platform from which the planter launches the new work.
A Multiplying Church Center provides a methodical, intentional process to ensure the birthing of healthy churches and minimize failures. Pittsburgh Baptist has been invited into the MCC network. No additional financial commitment is expected of us. Our investment is to partner with church planters through an eighteen to twenty-four month internship program as they acquire ministerial knowledge and experience. Interns will work closely with the pastoral staff and lay leaders. There is also opportunity for interns to begin or oversee existing ministries at PBC when needs arise. I do not know when our first intern may start. I am encouraged by the prospect of partnering with others for the purpose of growing the number of churches in Pittsburgh.
Another change is the launch of our radio ministry with the Truth for Today program on WORD FM, Sunday, March 3. This half-hour program will air at 11:00 each Sunday morning. It will include music, songs, PBC ministry and event announcements and feature portions of previously recorded sermons. As one who attends our church, Truth for Today gives you the opportunity to invite others to preview PBC before committing to a Sunday morning visit to our campus. It is another virtual “front door” the unbeliever or unchurched person may enter on their way to a full commitment to Jesus Christ and His Body. Truth for Today is also a voice for the gospel to both groups as the Lord leads people to 101.5 FM during the time the program airs. Pray Christ uses it for His glory as an instrument of the salvation message. We also believe it will minister to the home bound church. Many brothers and sisters-in-Christ simply cannot physically make it to corporate worship because of physical limitations.
Thank you for your willingness to change in order to be a growing portion of His Kingdom.