November 2017

A monthly newsletter to keep you informed about ABCUSA

Tuesday, November 28, 2017 is #GIVINGTUESDAY!

Have you thought about what you will support? Join us in ministry as we serve as the hands and feet of Christ.

We invite you to support any of the ministries or offerings listed to the right through giving on the ABCUSA website, as you recognize #GIVINGTUESDAY 2017, and throughout the year.
ABCUSA Board of General Ministries Meets in Valley Forge, General Secretary Lee Spitzer Installed

The Board of General Ministries of American Baptist Churches USA (ABCUSA) met November  16-18, 2016, at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in King of Prussia, and also at the ABC Mission Center in Valley Forge, Pa.

Board of General Ministries members gathered with over 100 others for a Celebration and Thanksgiving Service held Thursday afternoon, November 16, at the American Baptist Churches Mission Center in Valley Forge.

General Secretary of American Baptist Churches USA, Rev. Dr. Lee B. Spitzer, was installed during a worship service at the Board of General Ministries meeting on Friday evening, November 17. Six regional executive ministers and members of the National Executive Council participated in the ceremony.

Two New Associate General Secretaries Named, Ministry Team Takes Shape

The American Baptist Churches USA (ABCUSA) Office of the General Secretary's ministry team will soon have two new members. Rev. Marsha Scipio will serve as Associate General Secretary for Missional Initiatives and Partnerships, and Rev. Dr. Kevin Walden will serve as Associate General Secretary for Congregational and Pastoral Effectiveness. Announced during the Board of General Ministries meetings at the Crowne Plaza in King of Prussia, Pa., Scipio and Walden will join the Office of the General Secretary Ministry Team in January 2018.

Support for The Retired Ministers and Missionaries Offering Kicks Off in November

For many pastors and lay church workers, retirement can be a time of financial hardship and stressful uncertainty. With roots dating back to the mid-1930s, in 1977 MMBB Financial Services and American Baptist Churches USA (ABCUSA) partnered to provide a helping hand to those who have dedicated their lives to helping others.

Today, The Retired Ministers and Missionaries Offering (RMMO), is an annual campaign through which church congregations collect an offering that provides a much-needed thank you check to former ministers, missionaries, their widowed spouses and elderly clergy within their churches. In 2016, RMMO raised $1,059,444 and more than 3,443 checks were distributed. This year the campaign hopes to raise $1.1 million.

2017 is the 85th Anniversary of Love Gift!

In 1932 when American Baptist Churches faced a large deficit, individuals were asked to give financial contributions in excess of their tithes and pledges. Women, specifically, were challenged to raise funding to help meet the crisis. Receiving the challenge, women began the over-and-above contribution called Love Gift that continues today.

Love Gift is an initiative of women across American Baptist Churches USA to help support the full range of American Baptist mission. Love Gift is a gift to United Mission and supports American Baptist mission and ministry.

American Baptist Women's Ministries receives United Mission dollars equivalent to 15 percent of Love Gift, which helps empower vital ministries for women and girls in American Baptist congregations, including the AB GIRLS ministry, a new advisory team of young adult women, and mission projects that bring hope and wholeness to women and girls worldwide.

New Love Gift boxes were produced in 2017 to celebrate this anniversary. To order Love Gift boxes for your church, email Or, give to Love Gift here.
Third National Baptist-Muslim Dialogue to Meet in April 2018

The third national dialogue between Baptists and Muslims will be held April 16-19, 2018, at the Green Lake Conference Center/American Baptist Assembly in Green Lake, Wis.

The target group for the third dialogue is Baptist and Muslim religious leaders fifty years of age and younger who, together with their congregations*, are willing to pair with others to build long-term relationships, foster mutual understanding and participate in a joint project to enhance the welfare of their community. The dialogue is not between individual religious leaders alone. The goal of the dialogue is to partner a Baptist congregational* leader and a Muslim congregational* leader in a community, and their two congregations*, for an ongoing relationship.

Read more.
Generosity: The Subject Jesus Talked About Most

A team working together around the challenge of stewardship in the 21st century has worked hard over the past eighteen months to put together "The Generosity Project," a pilot program running from Sept. 2017 - Dec. 2018 which will work to provide stewardship resources and support to a cohort group of pastors from New England regions. Members of the team have prepared blogs for "The Generosity Project" participants, which will also be shared on the ABCUSA website in the coming months.   To learn more about The Generosity Project, click here.

In November, team member Ken Marsenburg, Director of Development for the ABCUSA Office of the General Secretary, provides his thoughts about stewardship and giving. Read Marsenburg's reflections, here and here.
2018-2019 ABC Directory/Planning Calendar Available for Download

The 2018-2019 ABC Directory/Planning Calendar is available for download. We invite you to print this calendar as a reference tool for use in weekly planning throughout the calendar year and into 2019.

Click here to view the 2018-2019 American Baptist Churches Directory/Planning Calendar.
ABHMS to Debut 'Discipleship Matters' Bulletin Inserts in January 2018

In response to requests for bulletin inserts aligned with American Baptist values, American Baptist Home Mission Societies (ABHMS) will debut in January 2018 its new "Discipleship Matters" fee-free monthly inserts for inclusion in church bulletins. Based on a theme-such as nature's seasons or highlights from the church calendar-each insert features brief, easily digestible articles, related scripture and other famous quotables, all presented in an interculturally sensitive manner. Topics include stewardship, meaningful rituals, the development of conscience, Christian family as Christian community, child-friendly faith formation, the inclusion of children and teens in church life, and the introduction of spiritual disciplines to children. 


American Baptist Churches USA
PO Box 851  Valley Forge, PA 19482-0851  

American Baptists serving as the hands and feet of Christ.