November 2023


Connecting: The Supreme Value of Relationships

For we never came with words of flattery, as you know, nor with a pretext for greed—God is witness. Nor did we seek glory from people, whether from you or from others, though we could have made demands as apostles of Christ. But we were gentle among you, like a nursing mother taking care of her own children. So, being affectionately desirous of you, we were ready to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you had become very dear to us (1 Thessalonians 2:5-8)

Our picture of the Apostle Paul is often a hard-driving, in-your-face, hard-core evangelist. He goes where no man has gone before. He appeared to be an intolerant, hard-nosed leader when he refused to take John Mark with him on a second mission trip because Mark abandoned Paul on the first trip (Acts 13:13). Paul was so adamant about not taking Mark that he and Barnabas had a huge fight and parted ways over Mark (Acts 15:37-40). He takes on the Jewish legalists and confronts their requirement of circumcision. He faces life and death challenges where he aggravates the local authorities to such an extent that he has to flee to the next city to escape imprisonment or even death.

When I read 1 Thessalonians 1-2, we see a side of Paul that is not my first impression of Paul. Sometimes I have had to read this a couple of times because this is not the Paul I am used to seeing. The language here just does not fit the profile I have of Paul. Read More

Pastor Brad Little, Regional Executive Director

Venture Church Network Midwest 

What if (Connecting)

Jesus is the perfect example for connecting with all people of all places, backgrounds, and beliefs. Jesus called disciples of radically different individuals to follow Him. Think through the churches that Paul wrote the epistles to. They all had different issues and different contexts. Yes, each of the churches has the same thing in common, that being placing Jesus as Lord and Savior in their lives.

Thinking through the care Jesus took to connect personally and intentionally with people, and the attention Paul takes to unify and care for the individual churches, how much more do we, as the body of Christ, need to be connected? Peter instructs believers in 1 Peter 5 to share in God’s glory together, care for, serve, lead, be humble to one another. Read More

Chuck Babbitt, Youth Pastor

Bloomer Baptist Church, Bloomer, WI

VCNMidwest Youth Ministries Director

The Final Quarter &

Your Church Budget

We’re in it – the final budgeting quarter of the year. Many pastors pay extra attention to the income statement this time of year because we want to know if we’ll be ending the year in the black. Spring slump, summer downturn, and fall resurgence behind us, this is the quarter we nervously bite our nails wondering if we’ll get to go another year.   


Pastor, I think there is something you can do about it. 


Case Statement

I had never heard the term “case statement” until my graduate classwork in nonprofit management. Until that point in ministry, I hadn’t even given much thought as to why I would need to do the necessary work of persuading church going Christians that they should financially support the church. I mean, that is, outside of the occasional obligatory sermon, “thou shalt give 10% so we can meet our church budget”.

Read More

Pastor Rob Buhl

First Baptist Church, Whitehall, WI

Pre-Registration is now open to reserve spots at Artic Advance for your youth group!


Tuesday, November 28, 9:00am (CT)

with an alternative repeat session

Wednesday, November 29, 3:00pm (CT)



The Purpose of ENGAGE is to address gospel and missional critical issues and challenge our thinking related to pastoral ministry, leadership and the purpose of our churches.

The Goal of ENGAGE is to continue to become gospel-centered, grace driven, biblically anchored churches passionately committed to fulfill the mission of Christ. 


VCN is excited to offer a specialized retirement plan option through GuideStone to pastors and staff of churches in the Venture Church Network family. Read More

Logos Bible Users

Learn how to use Logos for ENCOUNTERING God through His Word personally. Home PageReading PlansSearch, Highlighting and Workflows.

Church Cybersecurity Starts With The Human Firewall

An attack on church cybersecurity rarely comes at the right time, is rarely designed to be easily spotted, and is likely geared at exploiting human vulnerabilities, not firewalls or technological safeguards. At Lafayette, Indiana-based Faith Ministries, the threat arrived in a staff member’s email inbox a few minutes before an early-morning worship service one Sunday this spring. ChurchLaw&Tax

Pacific Church Network: Footsteps of Paul 2024

Click Here if you would like to learn more about what they will be doing.

An Israel Trip will be offered Oct. 2-13, 2025

(Flying out of ORD Chicago).

Cost: $4959.00

(Deposits due before Oct. 24, 2024 w/ final payment by Dec. 1, 2024)

Price does not include travel to ORD, in-country lunches, souvenirs, passport fees, travel insurance, or other personal expenses.

If you or anyone you know is interested, please feel free to contact Pastor Andrew Powell at for more information.  

An Invitation from Andrew Powell

Venture Church Network Midwest 



Tuesday, November 28,12:00 (CT)

Location: Creekside Bible Church, Marion, IA

Jay Jentink, Calvary Baptist Church Cedar Rapids, IA



Thursday, November 16, 2:00 (ET)

Meeting by Zoom

Allen Grover, Ganson Street Baptist Church, Jackson, MI


Central Minnesota

Monday, November 20, 10:00 (CT)

Leader: Brad Little

Location - River of Life Church, Hastings, MN

Contact: Dan Vesta


Southern Minnesota

To Be Decided

Location: Pizza Ranch,

Jackson, MN

Walt Moser, First Baptist Church, Luverne, MN



November 16, 11:00am (CT)

Location: To Be Determined

Wade Duroe, Crossroads Church, Chippewa Falls, WI


VCNMidwest Youth Pastor Collaboration

Thursday, November 9, 10:00 (CT)

Meeting by Zoom

Chuck Babbitt, Bloomer Baptist Church, Bloomer, WI


To Be Decided


Northern Minnesota/North Dakota

Venture Church Network Midwest

1410 44th Street, Marion, IA 52302

Dr. Brad Little

Regional Executive Director


Administrative Office

Gina Perry, Administrative Assistant


All articles and submissions are the view of the individual writer and are not necessarily the official position of Venture Church Network Midwest.