Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for International Missions.

This year we celebrate the generosity of Southern Baptists in exceeding our 2021 goal by giving over $203 million to missionaries. To think that the first year Lottie started with $2,000 to send two missionaries, now look at what Lottie’s legacy has become!

Lottie Moon surrendered her life to God’s will, and her legacy lives on today. We get to come together each year to champion the work that God is doing among people and places with little to no access to the gospel, and sacrificially give as Lottie encouraged the church many years ago.

Lottie Moon was sent as a Southern Baptist missionary to China from 1873 to 1912. She saw firsthand the world’s greatest problem – LOSTNESS. Meeting so many people who had never heard the gospel compelled her to write letters to American churches describing the need for a greater missionary presence. She pleaded for increased prayer and financial support to send and sustain more missionaries. This challenge became known as the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering®. Every year, Southern Baptist churches collect an offering to send and support missionaries to be steadfastly present among those who have never heard the gospel.

Cookies open doors for gospel conversations.

The people in China were suspicious of missionary Lottie Moon. Lottie turned to a favorite Christmas activity to build relationships with her new neighbors — baking cookies. Children flocked around her to try the sweet treats. Soon, mothers within the community invited Lottie into their homes where she told them about Jesus.

How will you share the love of Christ this holiday season?

It might start with a plate of cookies or another shared tradition. Click on this LINK to get Lottie’s recipe.

100% OF YOUR GIFTS TO THE LOTTIE MOON CHRISTMAS OFFERING ENABLE GOSPEL TRANSFORMATION AMONG THE UNREACHED.

First Baptist Church – Moriarty Lottie Moon Christmas Offering goal for 2022 is $3,500.

Deacon Ministry & Deacon Qualifications

Deacon Ministry

Acts 6:3 CSB – select from among you seven men of good reputation, full of the Spirit and wisdom, whom we can appoint to this duty

Acts 6 establishes the pattern with the apostles and the Seven, where we see deacons fulfilling the role of servant. The deacon ministry is to do whatever is necessary to allow the overseer/ pastor to accomplish His God-given calling of shepherding and teaching the church. Deacons do not form a council or board, and neither are they a governing body. Just as the apostles delegated administrative responsibilities to the Seven, so the pastors delegate certain responsibilities to the deacons so that the pastors can focus their efforts elsewhere. 

As a result, each local church is free to define the servanthood tasks of deacons based on their particular needs. Duties that deacons are responsible for at FBC Moriarty include

  • Widows Ministry: Every widow in the church meeting scriptural qualifications will be assigned a deacon who will  serve as her primary point of contact for matters for which she may need assistance. They will check in from time to time and solicit help from within the church as needed for any ministry related needs.
  • Lords Supper: Deacons are responsible for preparing and administering the elements for communion to both the congregation and to the homebound.
  • Benevolence: Similar to what took place in Acts 6:1–6 with the daily distribution to the widows, the deacons may be involved in administrating funds or other assistance to the needy.
  • Service: Deacons are responsible for various activities throughout the year to serve and uplift or encourage individuals such as prisoners, children, students, as well as the church body as a whole.
  • Hospital And Home Visits: Deacons join the pastor and assist the pastor as needed by making visitations to members who are home bound, those in the hospital, and other visits as needed to help, encourage, pray for, and minister to our church members.
  • Offerings: Deacons are responsible for assisting in receiving worship offerings and for performing the initial counts.
  • Facilities: Deacons are responsible for locking the building for scheduled church events during their assigned week “on call”.
  • Prayer Ministry: Deacons will at times lead in prayer for the congregation and for the pastor and intentionally schedule times of prayer for the congregation and community as a whole.

Whereas the Bible charges pastors with the tasks of teaching and leading the church, a deacon’s role is more service-oriented. That is, they are to care for the physical or temporal concerns of the church. By handling such matters, deacons free up the pastor to focus on shepherding the spiritual needs of the congregation.

Although deacons are not the congregation’s spiritual leaders, their character is of utmost importance, which is why deacons should be examined and held to the biblical qualifications laid down in 1 Timothy 3.

Deacon Qualifications

There are only two church offices established in the Scriptures – Pastor and Deacon

 The qualifications for Pastor are given in 1 Timothy 3:1-7.

This saying is trustworthy: “If anyone aspires to be an overseer,[a] he desires a noble work.” An overseer, therefore, must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, self-controlled, sensible, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not an excessive drinker, not a bully but gentle, not quarrelsome, not greedy. He must manage his own household competently and have his children under control with all dignity. (If anyone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he take care of God’s church?) He must not be a new convert, or he might become conceited and incur the same condemnation as the devil. Furthermore, he must have a good reputation among outsiders, so that he does not fall into disgrace and the devil’s trap.

The qualifications for Deacon are given in 1 Timothy 3:8-12.

8Deacons, likewise, should be worthy of respect, not hypocritical, not drinking a lot of wine, not greedy for money, holding the mystery of the faith with a clear conscience. 10 They must also be tested first; if they prove blameless, then they can serve as deacons. 11 Wives, likewise, should be worthy of respect, not slanderers, self-controlled, faithful in everything. 12 Deacons are to be husbands of one wife, managing their children and their own households competently.

The blessings for Deacons that serve well are given in               1 Timothy 3:13.

13 For those who have served well as deacons acquire a good standing for themselves and great boldness in the faith that is in Christ Jesus.

Please prayerfully consider men you believe exhibit the deacon qualifications in their lives and be prepared to nominate them as Deacons of First Baptist Church – Moriarty. Nomination forms will be available Sunday, November 20 through November 27, 2022.

Current Active Deacons of FBC  (no need to be re-nominated):

  • Mike Aultman
  • Bob Crow
  • Tom Jack
  • Roger Lenard
  • Bill Richard
  • Tom Walmsley
  • Sid Ware
  • Birchie West

There’s Still Room

We will be collecting the Mission New Mexico State Mission Offering throughout September and October. Our goal for First Baptist – Moriarty is $3,500.00

NM State Goal: $440,000

2022 Offering Allocations

  • Church Planting/People Groups – $154,000
  • Collegiate Ministries – $66,000
  • Hunger Funds – $83,600
  • Inlow and Sivells Camps
  • Capital Improvements – $110,000
  • Minister and Family Retreat – $26,400

DONATE HERE

The Financial Fuel for Reaching Every Person in Every Town, Every City, Every State, and Every Nation.

The SBC cooperates for missions and ministry in North America and around the world. No matter how big or small a church is, they can all feel a sense of ownership in taking the Gospel to the ends of the earth. We are truly better together through the Cooperative Program.

The Cooperative Program is Southern Baptists’ unified plan of giving through which cooperating Southern Baptist churches give a percentage of their undesignated receipts in support of their respective state convention and the Southern Baptist Convention missions and ministries. Some facts concerning the Cooperative Programs are as follows:

REGULAR CHURCH GIVING

Total reported undesignated receipts given in Southern Baptist churches in 2019–2020
reported by the churches on the 2020 Annual Church Profile, April 2021
$9,531,225,749
Total Cooperative Program dollars given by Southern Baptist churches in fiscal 2019-2020
reported to the Executive Committee by the cooperating state Baptist conventions, May 2021
$455,553,027
Cooperative Program Allocation Budget gifts received for SBC causes
reported by the Executive Committee via Baptist Press, October 2021
$192,271,436
Average percentage of undesignated receipts churches gave through the Cooperative Program in 2020
reported by the SBC Executive Committee, 2019-2020 fiscal year
4.78 percent

Additional information about the Cooperative Program of the Southern Baptist Convention may be found at https://www.sbc.net/missions/the-cooperative-program/

George and Mattie Higgins

July 2022 Update

Using Gifts

That has been the theme of the past few weeks and this month has been the bomb! George and I were able to help lead 2 children’s camps and had a great time. The camps were primarily made up of children that have been involved with the evangelical church’s children’s work. The theme was really cool! As for the first week, we worked through one of the children’s songs that they sing.

Moj Bog je veći od planine – My God is bigger than the mountains
Snažniji od vojske – Stronger than the Army
Mudriji od svakog čovjeka – Wiser than any man
Moj Bog je brži od rakete – My God is faster than a rocket
Vidi dalje nego orao – See’s farther than an eagle
Veći je od cijelog svemira – is bigger than the whole world
On ljubi toplije od sunca – He loves warmer than the sun
Vjernije od prijatelja – more faithful than friends
Stvarniji od istine je on – He is more real than the truth
Moj Bog on zna sve što je prošlo – My God knows everything that has passed
Zna sve što će biti – knows everything that will be
I sve on meni zna- and knows everything about me.

I loved this concept, even though I had the song stuck in my head for 2 weeks after! We got to spend the week playing games, throwing water balloons, making crafts, and learning about who God is! We also were able to work with a short-term team from America that is in a nearby city who had very little language, and it was very affirming to see how far we had come. We were even able to translate a little bit for the team.

The second week of Camp had older kids and less of them. They were really great kids and we got to build good relationships with them. We went through the book of Daniel, played water balloon volleyball, made tie-dye shirts, and did string Art. (George interjecting here: I’ll let you guess whose awesome idea it was for the arts and crafts, cause you know it weren’t me! They did turn out really great!)

Thank you for praying for these camps. They went really well, and we are so happy for the language practice that we got and the fun and encouraging environment we could provide for them.

We were also able to do two things this month that will lead to ministry opportunities in the Fall! We got the opportunity to go the Sarajevo for a weekend and attend the first day of a Practically Speaking English camp. This is a camp that allows locals to come and practice their English with Americans and also share the gospel with them. George and I got to see how the curriculum goes and were able to work with some locals but just for one day. We will be doing this camp in Mostar in the fall and are very excited for this opportunity!

I was also able to attend a bible study that has come from some contacts with campus crusade. George was able to make some contacts as well, but had to stay at camp while I went to Bible Study. He did get an invite to a local Soccer game though, which in his words, made him “All things to all men.” Well maybe Paul’s words. He went and nobody scored, haha.

The only downside to Camp was that one of the kids and one of the leaders brought COVID with them. We thought that I (Mattie) was the only one to catch it from them, but George came up sick a couple days ago. So, you could say it’s been a little crazy sorry for the delay!

Because of the lack of events planned over the next month (the city pretty much empties out through August) and the lateness of this update we will skip July and send out the next update at the end of August.

TLDR version: Camps were awesome! We have an opportunity for a bible study to start in the fall with some college students, and are super excited for an English course that we will do in October. BUT, we got Covid (just minor symptoms though)

Prayer Points

  • George to fully quickly recover (Mattie is already back to normal)
  • Upcoming language test on July 18.
  • Following up with contacts from this summer.
  • Our IMB Croat team, we and teammates have had to deal with different family and friend struggles and heartache over the last couple weeks. Please be in prayer for the families of our team and missionaries trying to love and support family and friends from afar.

Thank you, all of you, for your support. Your prayers provide a vital leg to the job we’ve been called to do. As we continue to go, your prayers are coveted dearly. Thank you!

Vacation Bible School – 2022

G’day, mate! Get ready for the trip of a lifetime as we zoom off to the Land Down Under! Like a boomerang, we are returning kids to what the Bible says about the value of life. We’ll discover how precious each and every one of us is to God. From the tiniest to the oldest, each person is made in the image of God, wonderfully designed to know him and to live for him! Out of his great love, God offers us eternal life through faith in his son, Jesus. Grab your tickets and your sunnies and get ready for fun in the sun at Zoomerang!

Join us July 5th-9th, from 9 am to Noon at First Baptist | The People Church (behind circle K) for an awesome adventure. To register, scan the QR code! See you there, mate! – Beth Aultman

Prayer list for VBS

• Pray for God to multiply this outreach and pray for the moments when a salvation invitation is given. Pray for the invitation to be given clearly and ask God to already be preparing the hearts of those who will hear the good news that they may respond in saving faith.
• Pray that the Gospel will be preached boldly and that God will enable even the most skeptical to believe in Jesus and put their trust in Him.
• Pray that kids will learn and believe God created them in His own image. Gen. 1:27
• Ask God to help kids and parents to learn that they are fearfully and wonderfully made. Psalm 139:14
• Ask God to help kids believe that Jesus is the resurrection and the life. John 11:25
• Pray that leaders will effectively communicate God’s love to the children they teach.
• Pray that the VBS Celebration provides a witnessing opportunity with parents and the community.
• Pray that our VBS will continue to bear fruit and glorify God. John 15:8

Dr. Claude Cone Celebration

On Sunday, June 5th, First Baptist | The People Church in Moriarty held a celebration after the Morning Worship Service to honor and express appreciation for Dr. Claude Cone, who served as our Interim Pastor for over nine months while the church was without a Lead Pastor. Dr. Cone significantly impacted the church by bringing inspirational messages from the Word of God, while advising the church leadership, making hospital visits, administering the Lord’s Supper to the homebound and performing a memorial service for one of our members who had been promoted. Dr. Cone’s message to the congregation to complete his interim period was one entitled, “The Sheep and Their Shepherd” with 1 Timothy 5:17-19 as the scripture reference. This message which may be heard at https://thepeoplechurch.org/resources/messages challenged the congregation to follow and support the new pastor by “Love Him As Your Pastor”, “Lift Him In Prayer”, “Listen As He Preaches”, “Let Him Lead In Peace”, and “Lighten His Load By Participation”. John Holmes will preach his first sermon as Lead Pastor of the church on Sunday, June 12, 2022.

Children’s Summer Intern

Please join with our Children’s Department in welcoming Kaitlyn Calhoon as a summer intern in the Children’s Department. Kaitlyn is a delightful young lady whose desire upon completing her undergraduate degree in Child & Family Services, is to attend Seminary for Children’s Ministry. Kaitlyn’s home church is First Baptist Estancia and she comes highly recommended by her Pastor, Jonathan Richard. Kaitlyn will split her time between FBC Moriarty and FBC Estancia serving as an intern to both churches. I believe Kaitlyn’s studies so far, work experiences as well as her personal testimony and work ethic will greatly benefit our church and community during this time. She will begin in late May and be with us through Mid-August. Vacation Bible School will be a big part of what she will participate in, filling in for vacationing Sunday School teachers, and ETC volunteers and some organizational, administrative work. Compensation for this internship is covered in part through the Children’s Ministry Budget as well as an individual donation. We look forward to Kaitlyn’s time with us.


Beth Aultman, Children’s Ministry Director

George and Mattie Higgins

March 2022 Update

Provision and Prospective

Hello everyone! Back again with another update, it’s the Higgins’s! I tell you, February flew by. I feel like I say that a lot these days, looking back at our previous updates. Every month since we’ve been here has been a mix of “Wow, we’ve been here for so long already!” And “Wait, is it already the end of the month?” February doesn’t need any particular help on that score, being a couple days short of a full month as it is.

In February we participated in New Hope Trauma Healing Facilitator Training. It’s a Biblical Counseling program used by some of our colleagues to share the Gospel in storying form while also helping people who are struggling with trauma to heal. It’s not learning to be counselors as much as it is learning to listen well and ask good questions.

Once again we are workin’ through language as our primary role right now. We somewhat successfully wrapped our heads around the difference between complete and incomplete verbs, a whole mess of adjectival endings, and the twisted differences between case endings in Croatian. It’s continually coming along slowly and we are understanding and speaking more and more as time goes on. Mattie has been catching herself understanding all the subjects and verbs in a sentence but not getting the objects nailed down.

In the midst of that, we got to move the church! We’ve been asking for the past few months for all of you to be praying with us about a new space, and God answered! God has been blessing and providing people to do His work here in M***** and BiH (B***** and H**********), and we simply didn’t have enough space! Our team leaders’ former language teacher and her husband had a space available and they were willing to rent it to us for a great price. Our team leaders have been praying for them to come to know Jesus for years, and now they live right upstairs!

Looking back on February, a common thread that comes to mind is His provision for His work. I think of the parable of the ten talents in Matthew 25 and the parable of the minas in Luke 19. The master gave each of his servants a different amount, according to their ability, and left them to engage in his work, and when he came back, he accepted the first two servants joyfully, as they had worked with what they had. Just as the master gave those servants talents and minas, The Master has given His servants here talents, skills, space, provision, opportunities, relationships, hard-work, perseverance, and more to engage in His work. This month has been a reminder for me that God will provide what we need to do His work.

It’s surreal to think that an actual war has broken out on the European continent. We live in a country who had a war similar to this one in the 90’s, and the people here understand it in a way that we never will. I have been grateful to hear their perspective. (For everyone who reached out to say they were praying for us and were concerned that we might be in danger, thank you so much! Ukraine is 3 countries away from us, so things are quiet around here.) Do please join us in praying for people in both Ukraine and Russia as they grapple with war, and the emotions and situations that arise from war. God is great and we can trust in Him to turn even these things to the good of those who love Him, though we may not be able to fathom how.

I was talking to my drum student about the lyrics to “This is Amazing Grace”, and as I reflected on the lyrics, “Who brings our chaos back into order, Who makes the orphan a son and Daughter, the King of Glory, the King of Glory. Who rules the nations with truth and justice, shines like the sun in all of its brilliance, the King of Glory, the King above all Kings.” News such as war can threaten to overrun our calm, to ruin our peace, but when our peace is built on the foundation of God and His Son, the house may shake a bit, but the walls will hold. God brings chaos back into order, and one day, the Nations will all bow before Jesus as King, and in that inevitable eternity, injustice and deceit will never raise their ugly heads to trouble God’s people.

We have coworkers all over the continent working with refugees, giving supplies, and sharing the hope of Jesus. If you want to support that work financially here is the link to the giving page, specifically for the Ukraine. https://www.imb.org/ukraine

Prayer Points

  • God’s Peace in Ukraine.
  • Reaching out into the community around our new Church space!
  • Connections with more prayer partners for the work here in BiH.
  • Partnerships here in M*****.
  • Summer Opportunities and planning.
  • Language

Thank you, all of you, for your support. Your prayers provide a vital leg to the job we’ve been called to do. As we continue to go, your prayers are coveted dearly. Thank you!

BRUTAL FACTS

  • 3,400,000 people live in our Eastern Europe country
  • 0.02% of people are Evangelical Christians: **680 people**
  • 15 Evangelical churches: Only 4 would be considered healthy

Introducing John Holmes

Called as Lead Pastor!

Sunday, February 20, 2022

Ministry Objective

I possess a burden to preach, teach, evangelize, and make disciples in a lost and dying world desperately needing Jesus. I believe evangelism and discipleship involve urgent matters of life and death, as God “[snatches] them out of the fire” (Jude 1:23). Not only does our Lord command it, but He uses His faithful servants while superintending the entire process. I believe hell exists as a real place of everlasting punishment separated from God, and He wants none to perish! As stewards of the Good News, we have a message of Hope! I hope to encourage believers to glorify God, serve Him, and love Him with their entire heart, mind, body, and soul. The Baptist Convention of New Mexico (BCNM) says, “Over 83% of New Mexicans do not attend a Gospel-teaching church.” I am praying that the life-changing power of the Gospel will spread in Moriarty, Edgewood, the East Mountains, across New Mexico, and unto the ends of the earth (Acts 1:8).

Personal Information

I was born in 1977, in San Antonio, Texas (Brook Army Medical Center, Fort Sam Houston)

Married: Angela Holmes in December, 1997

Children: Megan, Kayla, Emily, Joshua, Sarah

Education:

Ph.D. Student | Biblical Studies (Biblical Counseling) | Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary | Kansas City

M.Div. | Biblical Counseling Emphasis |  Dec. 2020 |  Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary | Fort Worth

M.S. | National Security Strategic Studies | May 2015 | U.S. National War College | Washington, DC.

M.S. | Computer Science (Information Assurance & Cryptography) | Aug. 2006 | University Of Maryland

B.S.  | Computer Science | Dec. 1999 | University Of Maryland

Conversion Experience                                  

I came to know Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior because God graciously used my mother and grandmother not to let the days pass as a young boy without talking to me about Jesus Christ. They would often tell me about the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ as the ‘Good News’ (1 Cor. 15). They explained how the Bible promises eternal life for those who “know Jesus” (Ro. 6:23). I learned that God said I had a problem—slavery to sin (Ro. 6:20). My sin demanded justice and an adequate penalty. Only Jesus’ perfect life constituted a perfect offering to God for my sins. Out of love, Jesus took the penalty and died on my behalf. Christ’s death settled the guilty account for my sins and, in fact, for the entire world (1 Jn. 2:2). So, based on the authority of God’s Word and an inner conviction by the Holy Spirit that what I heard was right, I came to believe Jesus had done the most important thing for me – He died so I could live (2 Cor. 5:15). Jesus saved me. What about you, dear friend, what do you believe? If Jesus is speaking to you today, do not wait; respond this very hour!

Call to Pastoral Ministry

As a 20-year veteran of the U.S. Intelligence Community and senior executive at the National Security Agency (NSA), I had an enjoyable and well-loved career. However, my preparation for pastoral ministry began with an overwhelming conviction that God had been calling me to leave the affairs of Government and serve Him in a different and full-time capacity. In November 2016, by His Word and His Spirit and the lives of other Christian brothers, God called me to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This surrendering of my life prompted reconsideration of secular career goals in light of Kingdom goals. In 2017, Mount Airy Baptist Church (MABC), affiliating with the Southern Baptist Convention and the Baptist Convention of Maryland and Delaware, recognized God’s calling and issued a license to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. In 2018, I relocated to Fort Worth to attend seminary. Serving God in the local church, loving His people, and seeking the lost by proclaiming the Good News of Jesus Christ is my calling. 

Ministry Experience

My ministry since returning from overseas service in 2011 has been that of a faithful layperson who loves Jesus (deacon, finance, nursery, youth, Sunday school teacher, various ministries). Wanting to attend seminary without delay after surrendering to God’s calling upon my life, I have not pastored a church during this time. Ordained as a deacon and licensed to preach by an SBC church already, I will receive ordination into the pastoral ministry by my home church, Birchman Baptist in Fort Worth, whenever the Lord, through His people, call me to serve as an under-shepherd of His flock.

Denominational Support

Raised Southern Baptist, I firmly believe that Southern Baptist churches should give to the Cooperative Program and other missions and love offerings collected throughout the year. Through the pooling of resources, cooperating churches collectively accomplish more for the sake of the Great Commission than individually. In addition to funding missions within America and overseas, future pastors also benefit from support to SBC seminaries. I have benefited from Cooperative giving from 2017 to today. So, thank you, FBC Moriarty, for helping this pastor’s theological studies!

Philosophy of Ministry

I desire to see God exalted in all things. My goal is to encourage others to cultivate a strong, personal relationship with Jesus Christ inside and outside the church. Whether the church is gathered or scattered during the week, I desire to lovingly point people to the feet of Jesus so that they abide in Him and live a faith-filled and godly life. Church members, and ideally the entire church, bear the responsibility to reflect the character of God. Coming alongside others may involve prayer, counseling, exhorting, teaching, preaching, evangelizing, making hospital or home visits, admonishing in love, observing the ordinances, or other forms of ministry. I pray God will use my ministry to encourage anyone and everyone whom God brings across my path, day or night, with His divine truth(s).

Doctrinal and Denominational Commitment

Holy Scripture testifies to its divine origin, authority, and sufficiency to instruct on all matters of righteousness and godly living for all people. The Bible is the inspired and inerrant Word of God and the sole authority for faith and practice to which all Christians should submit (2 Tim. 3:16-17, 2 Pet. 1:3, 2 Cor. 9:8, Num. 23:19). I also affirm the Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy, Baptist Faith and Message 2000, and the Danvers Statement on Biblical Manhood and Biblical Womanhood. Many resources exist for helping a person navigate this chaotic world, but only God’s Wisdom, in His Holy Bible, offers genuine and lasting change.