Church Update (October 2018-September 2019) – Pastors Report
I’m excited looking back at the last year about what the Lord has done in our midst. And I’m stirred to excitement by what He may have planned in the year ahead. Below is an update of Crystal Park Baptist Church Benoni‘s last year. It reflects our 4 core values: Teaching, Worship, Fellowship and Evangelism. I trust it gets you excited too?
In Christ and for His glory alone,
Church Update – Biblical Teaching
“We draw our belief from God’s Word.”
The Pulpit: Between October and December 2018 we finished going through Genesis – Beginnings. In January we began Philippians – Joy in Gospel Unity which we were still busy with at the end of September 2019. Mark has filled the pulpit complimented by Tshepo and Etienne. Other men in the church and the occasional visitor add further support. Online: There were 11,000 views of sermons preached this year. This excluded archived material from previous years. There were 4,500 downloads from our website. And 6,500 views on Facebook (remarkable in that we have only been streaming our sermons on Facebook for 2 months). Bible Studies: We have 7 weekly Bible studies. We have 4 monthly Bible studies. There are 2 weekly children’s ministries. Planning Center: So, 43% of our Planning Center database belong to a small group. Planning Center is our church management software. We have 252 on our database. this includes church members, regular attendees and visitors. Planning Center allows you to see the small groups our church and even RSVP that you will be going. Conferences and Visiting Preachers: We held and hosted many events this year. With Benoni Bible Church we hosted David McCrum on Biblical Leadership. Again with Benoni Bible Church we hosted Joel James on Biblical Counselling.
Leadership development: We have 3 elders, Mark, Warren and Etienne. Servant development: We have 3 deacons, Katleho, Tammi and Richard. They serve in men’s ministry, hospitality and as treasurer. Other leaders: We have 29 members co-leading our Bible studies.
Library and books: Our library continues to grow. We have 938 titles. Speak to Cat to check a book out, but note: books checked out must come back. We donate 60-80% of books we received to like-minded churches. Family Devotions: Regular reports of spiritual heads of homes leading family devotions. Corporate Scripture Reading: 6 men read in worship. They are Andy, Alex, Randy, Sandile, Sifiso and Chris. Corporate Prayer Leaders: 2 men lead prayer in worship, Christoff and Chris. Communion Leaders: 2 men lead communion in corporate worship, Jake and Sifiso.
Church Update – Fervent Worship
“We glorify God and enjoy Him together.”
Corporate Worship: Our corporate singing continues to be strong. We’ve selected some new songs and said goodbye to some old ones to gear us for even better corporate singing. There are 100 hymns and songs in our repertoire (dating from 450AD to 2019). Band: Our worship team continues to work through the book “Worship Matters” by Bob Kauflin. The team has grown to 3 worship leaders and 15 team members. Sound Team: We have 4 sound technicians.
Duty Roster: The priesthood of all believers is on display in our worship services. We have separate pools for preachers (4), worship leaders (3) and service co-ordinators (5). We have corporate prayer leaders (2), communion leaders (2) and Scripture readers (6). We have men who give thanks for the offering (6). We have door greeters (2), counters (6). We have designated medics (5), tea and coffee fellowship (10), dishwashers (7). There are men taking up the collection and distributing the elements (16). We have a team assigned to doing the notices (1) and a team assigned to media (3). Besides members leading Bible studies (3) and Sunday school (5) during the 10:30am service. 67% of our members have an assigned task on a Sunday morning with only 15% assigned to more than one service team. Rostering all this has become an onerous task. Planning Center: From December we’ll be using Planning Center Services to assist us in the task.
Mercy Ministry: We do need to be more intentional in taking care of holistic needs. There were 60 food parcels distributed amongst members over the past year. We also distribute a porridge to the homeless and school children. Richard D and Mirriam head the Mercy Ministry.
Giving: Praise the Lord for continual growth in giving. We give thanks for the diligent work of the finance committee (Richard R, Warren and Jake). Our income over the past 12 months has been over budget (we saw a 14% rise). Our expenses were on budget.
Prayer: <10 of our members attend the weekly prayer meeting before the service. We have started another weekly prayer meeting at 4:00pm on a Friday afternoons. Our quarterly prayer meetings draws 30+.
Church Update – Loving Fellowship
“Our members commit to our local church and our church commits to them.”
Attendance: Over the past 12 months (October 2018-September 2019) we have grown well. We have experienced an increase of 19% attendance year on year. Over 130 people attend on any Sunday morning with highs of 206 and lows of 109. We moved to 2 services (8:30am and 10:30am) from the 15th of September. Since then we have experienced an increase of 45% attendance year on year. Over 160 people attend on Sunday mornings (subtracting those at both services). We have experienced highs of 206 and lows of 126.
Member Care: Our membership has risen by 12 members. This brings our membership to 101. Additionally, we have 15 members on our supplementary register. Our average member attendance at Sunday morning services is 59%. We had 60 members in attendance and total attendance of 130. We need to figure out how to move the 70+ attendees into membership. Discipleship: There are some formalised discipleship relationships. We hope more intentional discipleships relationships will form over the next year. We offer new members the option of classes or one on one discipleship. Biblical Counselling: There is a growing number of trained counsellors (8*). So, our counselling ministry continues to mature. There is a real sense that our people are dealing with sin and situations in God-glorifying ways. We will formalise our counselling ministry over the next year.
Renovations: We’ve had our roof repaired. We’ve also painted and carpeted all the function rooms in the church. We’ve purchased and installed a large tent for our hospitality area.
Church Update – Passionate Evangelism
“Reaching Benoni and beyond with the message of the Gospel is our mission.”
Schools Outreach: Over the past year we’ve had many evangelism opportunities. Schools are a great opportunity to reach the children in our suburb. We preach weekly at Jahari Christian Academy and Crystal Park High School. We are often invited to preach at Crystal Park Primary School. From time to time we preach at Noorderlig Gekombineerde Skool. Clinic Outreach: We preach to patients in the mornings and run a monthly soup kitchen. First Responders: We host the weekly Community Police Forum meeting. We also host patrollers meetings and community meetings from time to time.
Baptisms: We baptised 9 people into membership this year. Our ratio of baptisms to membership remains at around 50%.
Visitor Care: We have around 10 first time visitors every Sunday morning. Planning Center: Mark and Tshepo have been improving our capturing of visitor information. We are doing a good job following up new visitors. Hospitality: Tammi has grown the pool of woman serving in this area.
I’m sure you can see why I’m excited? The Lord has bought us so far. At the AGM on the 24th October 2019 we’ll be talking about where He may be leading us forward.