Published July 10, 2014
Shortly after the creation of Baptist Village by the Georgia Baptist Convention it was felt that Georgia Baptist Churches and individuals should be given an opportunity to make a special offering annually for the support of the ministry. Thus, the Senior Adult Ministries Day Offering was created allowing those moved by the Spirit of God to “go the extra mile” and enhance the ministry to senior adults. One Sunday out of the year was to be designated as “Senior Adult Ministries Day” and churches and individuals were encouraged to make a special offering to Baptist Village. In the late 1960s Georgia Baptists expanded ministry to senior adults with the creation of what is now called Georgia Baptist Retirement Communities. Since then the Senior Adult Ministries Day Offering has been equally divided between Baptist Village Retirement Communities and the Georgia Baptist Retirement Communities. The third Sunday in July was chosen for this special day and offering Sunday.
Why go the extra mile? Why make an offering to Baptist Village? Because Baptist Village is indeed a unique place and a biblical ministry. The final charge our resurrected Lord gave to Peter was direct, “Simon, if you love me take care of my sheep.” (see John 21:15-17) That is the purpose of Baptist Village: To take care of those who have cared for us.
A multitude of testimonies attest to the ministry of Baptist Village. A couple of examples may be in order to confirm the reality. Some time ago I entered a Dollar General Store in Waycross. Upon engaging in conversation with the clerk the question surfaced as to why I was in Waycross. I responded by stating that I was attending meetings at Baptist Village. The clerk looked straight at me and said, “That is a wonderful place. My mother lived there for four years before she died. They did a great job. They took excellent care of Mother and even prepared me for what was to come. I cannot say enough about Baptist Village. It’s just wonderful.” Baptist Village was a place of ministry to this lady and her family.
Another example is a letter received. It said, “Our family wanted to take this opportunity to personally applaud the various departments in the Baptist Village Nursing facility at Waycross for making our mother’s stay such an outstanding one until she passed away . . .. She always stated that she was happy and felt at home when asked by her family members and friends. We were particularly impressed with the nursing staff and the social and activities services personnel. In many cases they went beyond ‘the call of duty’ for our mother.” These are not isolated or unusual testimonies. Baptist Village is a place with a unique ministry.
This ministry does not just happen by accident; rather it is the corporate culture of Baptist Village springing from the theological and spiritual foundation of the institution. It is a culture that is taught. It is a culture that is part of the hearts of the leadership and associates. Of course exceptions may be found but the overwhelming experience is that Baptist Village has a culture of ministry reflective of the creation of the Village which was based on the Christian faith. If there is ever a worthwhile place to make a special offering it is Baptist Village. We ask that you prayerfully consider joining us in ministry by participating in the Senior Adult Ministries Day Offering.
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