Category Archives: Louisiana Baptists

100 Cities, 41 Parishes

This month, Louisiana Baptists will mark new churches number 228 and 229, since 2010. The goal is 300 by 2020. We’ve passed the milestones of 10,000 new commitments to Christ, and celebrated 150 and 200 churches planted. Another interesting stat to watch for me has been the breadth of church planting in Louisiana. With the next two plants, we’ll mark the 100th city or town to have a new church planted in it since 2010. And keep in mind, Louisiana only has 304 incorporated cities and towns. Grateful for our church planters, partner church’s, and all who contribute to the Cooperative Program and State Missions Offerings to see churches planted across Louisiana.

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We actually still have some significant towns without a Southern Baptist church in Louisiana, and a few with little or no evangelical presence. So our work continues…

And if you’re wondering WHY? Why plant churches in Louisiana, see my post entitled Recent Q&A: Why Plant Churches.

Multiply New Orleans 2018

New Orleans is extremely important to Louisiana & our efforts to reach & resource churches there should be of highest priority.

  • 21% of the Population of Louisiana live in the New Orleans Baptist Association’s five parishes. (991,000 is the latest estimate)
  • Includes Louisiana’s second largest & most diverse Parish – Jefferson
  • Louisiana’s largest metro area, with over 1.2 Million living in the Governments statistical area.
  • One of the United States’ most influential ports & tourism industries.
  • And an often quoted fact: the North American Mission Board’s original charter mentions the necessity of reaching New Orleans.

How are we doing at reaching the Big Easy?

  • Church to Population Ratio: 1/7,929. Our state goal is to see every association at 1/2,850.
  • % of the Population attending Worship in an SBC Church: Only 2.1%. (Hard to estimate as only about 60% of the church fill out an ACP – Annual Church Profile)
  • % Evangelical Population: 11% (according to thearda.com).
  • Unaffiliated Population (Nones): 432,270 (according to thearda.com)

The churches of New Orleans have endured much & are a strong lot that do great work reaching its population. And the story God has began writing through church planting over the last few years, in my opinion, is historic & amazing.

  • In 2012, New Orleans became a Send City in the North American Mission Board’s Send City Strategy & George Ross became the Send City Coordinator.
  • In May 2013, we held the first Send City Strategy meeting at Celebration Church to coordinate strategy & try to open a door for church planting to make a difference in the area.
  • Since that time, 43 new churches have been planted. 57 since 2010 when our current state strategy began. 
  • Louisiana Baptists have now gone over $2 million of cooperative funding invested in New Orleans for Church Planting since the beginning of Send New Orleans in 2012. Not including NAMB or Georgia Barnette State Missions Offering grants for startup & building renovation cost.
  • A wide door of opportunity has indeed opened for the next generation of churches to be planted in New Orleans.

NOLANew Orleans is a tough place to minister & we have some incredible young families laboring to plant literally in some of Louisiana’s toughest neighborhoods. I’m inspired by their courage & hard work & pray for them by name on a weekly basis.

Follow much of what is happening in church planting in New Orleans on the Send New Orleans Facebook page. And you can get info on our planters in New Orleans by checking out the Planter profiles at NAMB.net.

Multiply Baton Rouge 2018

capitalThe Baptist Association of Greater Baton Rouge covers all or part of Ascension, East Baton Rouge (Louisiana’s most populated Parish), West Baton Rouge, Iberville, Pointe Coupee, St. James Parishes.

  • Population: 640,059
  • 1 Southern Baptist church (SBC) for every 6,096 persons. Rest of Louisiana is 1 to 2,895. 131 new churches would be needed to get to 1 to 2,895.
  • Only 1.1% of the population (7,049) attended a Bible Study in a SBC Church in 2016.
  • Only 1.9% of the population (11,861) attended worship in a SBC Church in 2015.
    49% of the population is non-anglo (41% African-American, 3.9% Hispanic, 2.5% Asian) with only 16 non-anglo SBC churches. 1 to 18,154.
  • 23% of the population is evangelical, showing that Baton Rouge has a healthier evangelical population than the rest of South Louisiana. 
  • Baptisms are down 25% from a high of 757 in 2006. 558 in 2016.
  • Association Executive Director is Dr. Tommy Middleton. Staff: Chuck Lowman, Randy Osborn, Dana Truitt, Jan Terral. Check out BAGBR.org.

Some good progress made in 2017-2018 in Church Multiplication: 

  • One new Church Plant – Renew Church Baton Rouge.
  • Four new Church RePlants – Oak Crest / United Believers; Sherwood / Living Hope; Park Forest / The Church at Park Forest; Logos and Life / Westside Community.
  • Repurposed Associational Church Planting Team.
  • New churches in the pipeline for Zachary (Living Hope), Ascension Parish (Hispanic).
  • Greenhouse Training planned for August 17-18.
  • Potential Mission Builder Project at Fellowship South Ascension in 2018-2019.  

Pray for Current Church Planters:

1. Cardell Barbarin, Bread of Heaven Baptist Church, Baton Rouge
2. Steven Beckham, Church of Life Fellowship, Gardere
3. Todd Blount, Fellowship Church, Gonzalez
4. Brian Crain, Progression Church, Baton Rouge
5. Patrick Eagan, Celebration Church, St. Gabriel
6. Miguel Flores-Olivera, Jefferson Baptist Hispanic, Baton Rouge
7. McArthur Greensberry, New Beginnings Baptist Fellowship, Baker
8. Nhukm Lama, Louisiana Kachin Baptist Church, Baton Rouge
9. Guillermo Mangieri, Istrouma Espanol, Baton Rouge
10. Josh Morris, Cross Creek Cowboy Church, Zachary
11. Cedric Murphy, Body of Christ Church, Baker
12. James R Riley, House of Prayer, Baton Rouge
13. Edward Scott, Temple of New Life, Baton Rouge
14. Kevin Snaril, True Hope Baptist Church, Plaquemine
15. Ernest Swanson, The Church at Park Forest, Baton Rouge
16. Checkerz Williams, Renew Church, Baton Rouge

Louisiana’s Healthy and Growing Churches – 2017

Last year, I attended a seminar with Dr. Bill Day on evangelistic church growth. Dr. Day, defines a Healthy, Growing Church as a church that has had:

  • 10% growth over a 5 year period.
  • At least one baptism per year in that period.
  • An attender to baptism ratio of 15:1.

I like this formula, because it helps us see that not every church that is a healthy church is a growing church. And not every church that is growing, grows by evangelistic growth. This formula cuts through the pack to get to the healthy, evangelistic, growing churches. 

You can see my reports on Healthy and Growing Churches in Louisiana in 2016 Here and Here.

2017 Data is in, so here’s the latest look at Healthy and Growing Churches among Louisiana Baptists:

  • 182 Louisiana Baptist churches, or 10%, grew by 10% growth between 2013 and 2017.
  • Only 75 Louisiana Baptist churches, or 5%, were healthy and growing churches between 2013 and 2017; with 10% growth, 1 baptism per year, and a 15:1 attender to baptism ratio.

Where are these churches?

  • 27 are in south Louisiana, 48 are in north Louisiana.
  • 25 along I-20, 26 in Central LA, 9 in SWLA, 15 in SELA, 1 in New Orleans, 1 in Baton Rouge.

How old are these churches?

  • 3 are less than 10 years old
  • 8 are 11-25 years old
  • 11 are 26-50 years old
  • 23 are 50-100 years old
  • 30 are 100+ years old

What’s the size of these churches?

  • 5,000+ – 1
  • 1,000-4,999 – 4
  • 500-999 – 7
  • 250-499 – 9
  • 100-249 – 30
  • 1-99 – 24

Who are theses Churches?

Top 25 Churches with the largest % growth between 2013 and 2017

  1. Christ’s Community, Denham Springs, Pastor Willis Easley, grew 211%, from 225 to 700 with 348 baptisms.
  2. Journey Church, Pineville, Pastor James Greer, grew 136%, from 360 to 489
  3. Summerville, Olla, grew by 105% from 20 to 41 with 526 baptisms.
  4. Unity, Oak Grove, Pastor J. Kelly Coleman,  grew by 100%, from 90 to 180 with 27 baptisms
  5. Heflin, Pastor Ronnie Osborne, grew by 100% from 75 to 150
  6. New Hope, Jennings, Pastor Eric B Crochet, grew by 100% from 20 to 40
  7. First, Moss Bluff, Pastor Steve Bennett grew by 91% from 643 to 1,229.
  8. Memorial, Monroe, Pastor Roger Stoffer, grew by 90% from 30 to 57
  9. Open Door Fellowship, Coushatta, Pastor Steven W. McAbee, grew by 87% from 75 to 140
  10. Mt Gilead, Vivian, Pastor William H Treadway, grew by 80%  from 50 to 90
  11. Calvary, Bayou Chicot, Pastor Wayne Holston, grew by 80% from 50 to 90
  12. Main Street, Pineville, Pastor Samuel H West, grew by 78% from 45 to 80
  13. Union Hill, Montgomery, Pastor Chuck Lacroix, grew by73% from 52 to 90
  14. New Beginnings, Castor, Pastor David H Bolyer, grew by 73% from 55 to 95
  15. St James, Madisonville, Pastor George Burris, grew by 67% from 150 to 250
  16. The New Beginnings, Walker, Pastor Charles R Smith, grew by 63% from 43 to 70
  17. Bethany, Bethany, Pastor Marvin Cooper, grew by 61% from 56 to 90
  18. Oak Forest, Leesville, Pastor Joe Call grew by 57% from 54 to 85
  19. Antioch, Farmerville, Pastor Rubin Weaver, grew by 52% from 186 to 283
  20. First, Robeline, Pastor Brian Ray, grew by 50% from 163 to 245
  21. First, Golden Meadow, Pastor Matthew Chouest, grew by 50% from 70 to 105
  22. First, Sterlington, Pastor Ben Hackler, grew by 48% from 100 to 148
  23. First Mt Nebo, Jena, grew by 47% from 95 to 140
  24. Newton, Delhi, Pastor Buddy McGurk, grew by 46% from 65 to 95
  25. Bogue Falaya, Folsom grew by 45% from 120 to 174

Churches that Added the Most People between 2013 and 2017:

  1. Celebration Church (SBC), Metairie, Dennis Watson. Added 2,073 people
  2. First, Moss Bluff, Steve Bennett, Added 586 people.
  3. Journey Church, Pineville, James Greer, Added 489
  4. Christ’s Community, Denham Springs, Willis Easley. Added 475
  5. Cypress, Benton, John Fream. Added 389
  6. First, Bossier City, Brad Jurkovich. Added 246
  7. His Church, Pineville, Steven Speer. Added 161
  8. First, Franklinton, Paul B Watts. Added 138
  9. Addis, First Baton Rouge, Tom Shepard. Added 130
  10. St James, Madisonville, George Burris. Added 100

Top 10 Baptisms by these churches in 2017:

  1. Celebration Church (SBC), Metairie 602
  2. First, Bossier City 169
  3. Journey Church, Pineville 141
  4. First, Moss Bluff 100
  5. Cypress, Benton 95
  6. Christ’s Community, Denham Springs 74
  7. First, Robeline 62
  8. Addis, First 57
  9. His Church, Pineville 50
  10. Newton, Delhi 46

Email me for a copy of the full report – lane.corley@louisianabaptists.org.

 

Recent Q&A: Why Plant Churches?

Recent Question from an honest member of a local church. “What’s the thinking of the Louisiana Baptist Convention (my employer), behind planting all these new churches? Why not just send more people to great churches like mine?” 

Answer: There are Three Major Problems with this kind of thinking as I see it.

1. The problem of the numbers. How many does your church seat? “1,200”. Let’s say your church fills its building 4 times each week. That’ll be 4,800 people attending church. Praise God! I’ve studied your community, and there are actually 125,000 people that live there, and after much research, liberal estimates show that only 10% of them attend an evangelical church. Another 10% attend Roman Catholic churches based on research and liberal estimates. That still leaves 100,000 people that are not going to church anywhere. Where are we going to put that many people? If all the current evangelical churches in the community filled their facilities twice each Sunday, there would still be no room for the majority of these people.

2. The problem of the people. I’ve been to your church and I like it. Most of the people look a lot like me and dress like me and the music fits what I like to listen to. I feel very comfortable there. The preaching speaks to me, because I’ve been in church all my life and I like good Bible preaching. However, did you know that there are a lot of those 100,000 people who have never been to church. They don’t know who Noah or Abraham or Moses are, and they would be a little lost just opening a Bible for the first time. They also listen to different kind of music, their lives look a lot different than mine and yours because of race, upbringing, past mistakes, etc. So, we need to start ALL DIFFERENT KINDS OF CHURCHES, FOR ALL DIFFERENT KINDS OF PEOPLE along with making our churches more comfortable for everyone.

plants3. Saturation vs. Parish Strategy. Louisiana Baptists and most evangelicals have a saturation strategy of evangelism and church planting. Until EVERY PERSON has had the opportunity to hear and respond to the gospel, we keep doing EVERYTHING we can to deliver the gospel and disciple them. And the Evangelical community has found that church planting is one of the most effective means of doing that. Roman Catholics and other liturgical churches have a Parish Strategy, meaning, we’re going to plan to have one church for an area or part of town, and assume that everybody that needs the gospel will respond at or through that church. It doesn’t consider the number of people, or types of people in the strategy, limiting the number of people that can be reached through the church.

Does that make any sense?

Response:  YES! I understand!

1. I was actually thinking about how many people in my neighborhood don’t go to church. Out of 70+ homes there is only 2 or 3 of us that go to church on Sunday.

2. And you know, you’re right, I wish they would, but they probably would not all feel comfortable in a church like mine.

3. And yes, we believe we should do everything we can to share the gospel with our community.

What are some ways that my church could help??!! 

#winning

 

Charles Starnes: Planting Churches is not Optional

charles_starnesPastor Charles Starnes went home to be with the Lord on December 29th, 2017. He served as Pastor of Calvary Baptist Church in Slidell for 32 years. During that time the church baptized 485 new believers and added 733 other members to their roles. They also gave over $1.5 million to the Cooperative Program and other missions causes. I remember Bro. Charles as a great encourager of church planters, which included me, after moving to St. Tammany Parish in 2001 to plant a church about 35 minutes from Calvary. Under Bro. Charles’ leadership Calvary was part of planting six new churches, including the first Hispanic SBC Church on the Northshore of Lake Pontchartrain. I’ll never forget what he said at the constitution service of one of those church plants, Thompson Road Baptist Church in West Slidell. He said,

“Everyone always makes a big deal about Calvary planting churches. Thanks for the kind words, but I just thought that planting churches and missions is what every church was supposed to be doing.”

On another occasion he said it like this:

“Everybody makes a big deal about Calvary being part of planting churches. I always say, I didn’t know it was optional.”

Grateful for Bro. Charles and his vision for multiplication and encouragement for church planting everywhere. May his tribe increase.

Reaching Hispanics in the U.S.

With 27 Hispanic Church Plants since 2010, Louisiana Baptists have almost doubled the number of Hispanic Churches in our state through church planting.

23511134_10214455728815072_6661653279867099511_oGuillermo Mangieri, with Istrouma en Espanol in Baton Rouge, recently shared Four Realities Impacting Hispanic Ministry in the US with our Church Planting Network:

1. Hispanics are the fastest growing population in the U.S. – 50 million. And the U.S. has the 2nd largest population in the world.

2. Hispanics are receptive to the message of the Gospel.

3. 23% of the Hispanic population in the U.S. are under the age of 18.

4. The Hispanic population will continue to grow in the U.S. no matter what.

In Baton Rouge alone, there are 17,000 Hispanics. 4% of the population.

Are there Hispanics in your community that could be reached? Are there enough Hispanic churches and ministries to impact the growing population in your community? Let us know if we can help you assess your community and strategize to reach different people groups around your church.

Check out Dr. Daniel Sanchez’s book Hispanic Realities Impacting America for more info on Hispanic Ministry opportunities: http://ow.ly/6NJS30gCyao

Louisiana’s HEALTHY AND GROWING Churches, Part 2

shutterstock_302009690On Monday, I reported on Louisiana’s healthiest and fastest growing churches, per Dr. Bill Day’s definition of churches that have:

  • 10% growth over a 5 year period.
  • At least one baptism per year in that period.
  • An attender to baptism ratio of 15:1.

Who are some of the churches on this list? Take a look:

(NOTE: If you think a church should be on one of these list and they are not – there were some with high % growth, additions, and baptisms that did not make the 15:1 Attender to Baptism ratio cut. Also, there are 300 churches or so that do not turn in an Annual Church Profile annually). 

Churches with the largest % growth between 2012 and 2016

  1. Life Point Community, Mansura, Pastor Jacob Crawford, grew by 317%, from 60 to 250.
  2. Ridge Memorial, Slidell, Pastor Paul Dabdoub, grew by 177%, from 26 to 72 regular attenders.
  3. Brushy Creek, Bancroft, Pastor Jerry L Hext, grew by 175%, from 20 to 55.
  4. The Church at Addis, Pastor Tom Shepard, grew by 161%, from 157 to 410.
  5. Christ’s Community Church, Denham Springs, Pastor Willis Easley, grew by 147%, from 273 to 675.
  6. Journey Church, Pineville, Pastor James Greer, grew by 138, from 356 to 849.
  7. Unity, Oak Grove, Pastor J. Kelly Coleman, grew by 112%, from 85 to 180.
  8. Calvary Spanish, Morgan City, Pastor Daniel Brown, grew by 91%, from 55 to 105.
  9. South Bossier, Bossier City, Pastor Chris Young, grew by 91%, from 140 to 267.
  10. First Baptist Church, Moss Bluff, Pastor Steve Bennett, grew by 81%, from 655 to 1,186.

Churches that Added the Most People between 2012 and 2016:

  1. Celebration Church, Metairie, Pastor Dennis Watson, added 2,750 attenders.
  2. First Baptist Church , Moss Bluff, Pastor Steve Bennett, added 531 attenders.
  3. Journey Church, Pineville, Pastor James Greer, added 493 attenders.
  4. Christ’s Community, Denham Springs, Pastor Willis Easley, added 402 attenders.
  5. East Leesville Baptist, Leesville, Pastor John Hebert,  added 375 attenders.
  6. The Church at Addis, Pastor Tom Shepard, added 253 attenders.
  7. Cypress, Benton, Pastor John Fream, added 208 attenders.
  8. Life Point Community, Mansura, Pastor Jacob Crawford, added 190 attenders.
  9. First Baptist, Ruston, Pastor Chris Craig, added 189 attenders.
  10. South Bossier, Bossier City, Pastor Chris Young, added 127 attenders.

Baptisms by these churches between 2012 and 2016:

  1. Celebration Church, Metairie, Pastor Dennis Watson – 2,153
  2. Journey Church, Pineville, Pastor James Greer – 445
  3. Cypress Church, Benton, Pastor John Fream – 378
  4. His Church, Pineville, Pastor Steve Speer – 323
  5. First Baptist Ruston, Pastor Chris Craig – 310
  6. The Church at Addis, Pastor Tom Shepard – 285
  7. Christ’s Community, Denham Springs, Pastor Willis Easley – 281
  8. East Leesville, Leesville, Pastor John Hebert – 277
  9. Pine Ridge, Melder, Pastor Jason Townley – 276
  10. Life Point, Mansura, Pastor Jacob Crawford – 266

Louisiana’s HEALTHY AND GROWING Churches

kyle-glenn-341122Recently I attended a seminar with Dr. Bill Day on evangelistic church growth. Dr. Day, defines a Healthy, Growing Church as a church that has had:

  • 10% growth over a 5 year period.
  • At least one baptism per year in that period.
  • An attender to baptism ratio of 15:1.

I like this formula, because it helps us see that not every church that is a healthy church is a growing church. And not every church that is growing, grows by evangelistic growth. This formula cuts through the pack to get to the healthy, evangelistic, growing churches. 

His research shows that in 2015, only 5.4% of the 40,000+ Southern Baptist churches in North America were healthy and growing by this definition. And this number is in decline! In 2007, it was 7.1%. In 2010, it was 6.8%.

Louisiana’s Healthy and Growing Churches

I was curious about Louisiana churches in regard to Dr. Day’s formula, so I asked Shana Johnson, Leader our Louisiana Baptist Information Services Team for a little help. Here’s the report:

  • 163 Louisiana Baptist churches, or 10%, grew by 10% growth between 2012 and 2016.
  • Only 88 Louisiana Baptist churches, or 5.4%, were healthy and growing churches between 2012 and 2016; with 10% growth, 1 baptism per year, and a 15:1 attender to baptism ratio.

Below is some info on these churches. More on some of the individual churches in the list later. Apply this formula to your church and see where you stand.

Where are these churches?

  • 40 are in south Louisiana, 48 are in north Louisiana.
  • 7 in NELA, 22 in NWLA, 15 in Central LA, 14 in SWLA,  30 in SELA.

How old are these churches?

  • 7 are less than 10 years old
  • 14 are 11-25 years old
  • 10 are 26-50 years old
  • 27 are 50-100 years old
  • 32 are 100+ years old

What’s the size of these churches?

  • 5,000+ – 1
  • 1,000-4,999 – 3
  • 500-999 – 6
  • 250-499 – 13
  • 100-249 – 31
  • 1-99 – 35

By Louisiana Baptist Association:

  • Acadia – 3
  • Greater Baton Rouge – 5
  • Bayou – 4
  • Beaureguard – 2
  • Bienville – 1
  • Big Creek – 1
  • Carey – 1
  • Concord Union – 4
  • Deer Creek – 1
  • Delta – 2
  • Desoto – 1
  • Eastern LA – 5
  • Evangeline – 2
  • Gulf Coast – 3
  • LaSalle – 2
  • Louisiana – 2
  • Moorehouse – 1
  • Natchitoches – 4
  • New Orleans – 4
  • North Central – 2
  • North Rapides – 3
  • North Sabine – 4
  • Northeast – 1
  • Northshore – 8
  • Northwest – 8
  • Ouachita – 1
  • Richland – 3
  • Sabine – 2
  • Vernon – 1
  • Webster – 4
  • William Wallace – 1

200 Churches Planted Since 2010

Wow! It’s been a busy summer! Great stuff, including celebrating 200 churches planted by Louisiana Baptist churches since 2010. Check out the above vid for some great quotes and highlights from the celebration. Here’s a few notes about the 200 plants:

  • 200 Church Plants since 2010
  • New Churches have been Planted in 91 different Louisiana Cities and Towns
  • New Churches have been Planted in 25 different Louisiana Associations
  • New Churches have been planted among 13 different people groups:
    – 60 African-American
    – 11 Asian
    – 2 African Language
    – 27 Hispanic
    – 14 Multi-Ethnic by Design
  • New Churches also include 21 Multi-Site developments and 25 RePlants

Great to be a part of this movement in Louisiana and across North America.

 

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