Partners in multiplication

As Arizona Southern Baptists focus on intentionally multiplying leaders, disciples and churches, they do so with three key, mutually beneficial partnerships.

Arizona Baptist Children’s Services & Family Ministries, the Arizona campus of Gateway Seminary and Christian Challenge AZ — Arizona Southern Baptists’ ministry on college and university campuses — all receive funds given by Arizona Southern Baptist churches through the Cooperative Program. The three also assist in fulfilling Arizona Southern Baptists’ Centennial Vision, which has the mission of “working together to make disciples of all peoples in Arizona and around the world.”
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Students serve Arizona church plants

For six weeks this summer, a group of 13 college students from all over the United States made their way to Phoenix to participate in the immersive missionary training experience known as the GenSend program.

Through GenSend, a program of the North American Mission Board, college students are sent to large cities across the country to assist with a local church plant for their six weeks.

The Phoenix GenSenders this year originated from many states, including Mississippi, Alabama, Wisconsin, and even two who attend Grand Canyon University but are from out of state.

This year’s group was split into two smaller groups, one assigned to Salt River Community Church in Tempe, and the other to Relentless Church in Phoenix.

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Kuban retires from Historical Commission

Marge (Marjorie) Kuban has retired after serving the Arizona Southern Baptist Convention’s Historical Commission for 16 years — four as a volunteer and 12 as the archivist.

Kuban was responsible for collecting, organizing, cataloguing and retrieving information, including various publications and articles, about Arizona Southern Baptist churches. She also stored and preserved artifacts from churches and associations.

“I enjoyed the environment, the research and the organizational aspects of the position,” Kuban said. “But, visiting churches and presenting anniversary certificates was one of the most satisfying parts of my job.”

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Zona Camp: Here’s what it’s all about

It’s the size of a small town. More than 1,200 Zona Camp participants wake up early, and friends walk together to have breakfast with their youth groups. Afterward, students prep for morning worship and cram themselves as near as possible to the gymnasium’s double doors waiting for them to open.

Finally, morning worship is ready to begin. The collegiate Zona crew ushers in students. This year’s camp band, The New Divide, leads in musical worship before Jeff Moors, camp speaker, gives a short message — something to get students ready for the day and to prepare them for the longer sermon at evening worship.

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Disaster Relief teams serve following flooding

Devastating flooding has rocked the states of Nebraska and Iowa for months. Record snowfall coupled with warm rains falling on the frozen ground set the perfect conditions for the historic flooding.

Catastrophic damage and lack of fresh drinking water means the need is great for help in the hardest hit communities. When Arizona Southern Baptist Disaster Relief was called for help, they were read to serve.

“[We] were ready to help in whatever way needed,” said Patty Kirchner, Arizona Disaster Relief associate state director. “Many responded and were organized into several Flood Recovery teams.”

Three flood recovery teams and two feeding teams were deployed, with the first team heading out on April 22. Team 1 worked in Fremont, Neb., helping clean and muck out the flooded area. The second team arrived on May 3 and finished clearing out Fremont before moving on to Glenwood, Iowa. Finally, on May 12, both teams 2 and 3 worked in the small town of Pacific Junction, Iowa.
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For Arizona pastors: Evangelism conference calls

Tuesday, April 16, about 80 Arizona Southern Baptist pastors took advantage of the exclusive opportunity to engage in the first of a series of evangelism conference calls with Eddy Pearson, church life team facilitator, and a noteworthy guest. This first call featured Johnny Hunt, longtime senior pastor of First Baptist Church, Woodstock, Ga., and currently the vice president of evangelism and leadership at the North American Mission Board (NAMB).

Pearson intentionally scheduled the quarterly 45-minute brown bag lunches at noon so bivocational Arizona pastors have the opportunity to participate. Pastors were prompted to dial a provided number and enter an access code 10 minutes before the scheduled call or to log onto the call through an online meeting link. Either way, participation in the live conference call is free of charge.
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Six receive degrees from Gateway AZ

Six students graduated in the commencement ceremony of the Arizona Campus of Gateway Seminary May 25. Dallas Bivins, director of the Arizona Campus, presided and Jeff Iorg, president of Gateway, delivered the commencement address at the formal ceremony held at CalvaryPHX in Phoenix.

Iorg spoke about the graduates being called to people who are physically, emotionally, socially and spiritually hurting. Iorg read from Mark 1:40-45 and shared the story of the leper as an illustration of Jesus’ ministry to hurting people. Jesus had compassion on the leper, which Iorg defined as, “a deep inner stirring that motivated him to action.”
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Seasonal outreaches yield results

A number of churches partnered with the Arizona Southern Baptist Convention and Outreach Inc. in an effort to reach more people at Easter.

At Engage 24, the North American Mission Board evangelism event held in Phoenix last February, about 10 churches won free promotional materials worth $1,500-$2,000, said Eddy Pearson, AZSBC church life team facilitator. At the meeting, churches also received information about an Easter postcard mailing through Outreach that included free social media advertising.

Aletheia Church, Sedona, received an evangelism grant from Arizona Southern Baptists to assist in its Easter promotional efforts through Outreach, which included mailing 6,900 postcards to homes in Sedona and the Village of Oak Creek.
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Multiplication Pipeline aims to grow leaders

One thousand churches working together across the state to change the lives of individuals, families and communities by 2028 — that’s the vision Arizona Southern Baptist leaders have cast.

Monty Patton, North American Mission Board Phoenix Send City missionary, urges Arizona Southern Baptists to catch that vision. “This does not happen by accident,” he said, “but by intentionality.”
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