BWA Connect February 2018
From the General Secretarygensec
Elijah Brown

When prayers change a nation

Emergency. That was the word Alberto Mamani, president of the Bolivian Baptist Union, used to describe what was beginning to unfold in Bolivia.
Early last month as part of broader legislation meant to address human trafficking, Article 88, paragraph 11 of the new penal code in Bolivia raised the possibility that inviting and helping facilitate someone's participation in a church worship service could lead to prosecution and imprisonment for seven to 12 years.

Member Bodies in Action mbody

The Grenada Baptist Association (GBA) gained membership in the Baptist World Alliance in 2016. The group's mission is "to provide leadership, training for spiritual development, to foster oneness among member churches and mission in communities." Its vision is "to be a national and highly trusted model of relevant transformational Christian leadership, evangelism and service."
Baptist witness on the Caribbean island has a colorful history. In 1972 Leon Edwards, on death row for murder, came to faith after listening to the Baptist Hour radio program from outside the United States while in his cell at the Richmond Hill Prison.
Edwards wrote letters to Baptist leaders in the US requesting the establishment of a Baptist church in his country. In response, the Jamaica Baptist Union and the Foreign (now International) Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention collaborated to start Baptist work in Grenada in 1975.
GBA has developed programs of outreach and service to the broader Grenadian community, including providing medicine to the poor, sick and elderly; food supplies to the most vulnerable; scholarship fund to train pastoral and other church leaders; as well as support for college students. It has also participated in hurricane disaster relief and recovery efforts in Grenada and other islands in the Windward Caribbean sub-region.
Vonnie James, GBA moderator and acting chair of the Conference of Churches in Grenada, expresses delight at the support given by the Baptist World Alliance. "Since we have become members in 2016, we continue to be treated with respect," James declares. "Our body feels that we are truly part of this family of churches. We love the Baptist World Alliance."
Church Spotlight church 

Describing itself as aspirational, Church on the Drive in Orlando, Florida, in the United States, says, "We want to be diverse. ... We want to be multi-generational. ... We want to be known ... for demonstrating what it means to authentically follow Jesus Christ."
Its mission commitment places Christ at the center. "Through acts of love, grace given without judgment, and lifestyles based on Jesus' teachings we hope to be the presence of Christ in our community, work places, church, and families."
That mission drive includes Life Transitions, one aspect of which is the congregation's Job Seekers Network, which provides notifications of job openings, job training opportunities, job fairs and volunteer opportunities.
In addition, the Baptist World Alliance Global Impact Church provides time, space and resources for English literacy classes, Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and Financial Peace University.
There is a strong commitment to strengthening family. Its Parenting Class offers encouragement and guidance through the sharing of stories, providing support, prayer and fellowship. The Mom to Mom initiative includes instruction in parenting, small group discussion and the interaction of more experienced mothers with younger moms. Sessions are held to help those who face loss through miscarriage, abortion, stillbirth, SIDS or infant death.
The Student Ministry offers leadership development, intentional fellowship, service opportunities and retreat experiences, as well as sports and games.
"Here at Church on the Drive, we believe spiritual growth happens best in the environment of encouraging relationships where people are dedicated to God's purposes and committed to one another's spiritual growth."

To Dulcie and Neville Callam who lost their mother and mother-in law,  Cassetta Brown, on  November 26, 2017 .
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About the Baptist World Alliance
The Baptist World Alliance, founded in 1905, is a fellowship of 238 conventions and unions in 124 countries and territories comprising 47 million members in 177,000 churches. Its priorities are nurturing the passion for mission and evangelism; promoting worship, fellowship and unity; responding to people in need; defending human rights and justice; and advancing relevant theological reflection.
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