These are just a few of many stories about how God is at work during the COVID-19 pandemic. To share your story, visit alsbom.org/goodnews.
First Baptist Chickasaw: Lead Pastor Reid Guy began his ministry there in August 2019 when the church was very near to closing its doors. During the quarantine, the church has begun livestreaming services, and the response has been overwhelming. Many more are watching than had been previously attending, and FBC has reconnected with a good number of missing members. They baptized a young lady who heard the Gospel through their ministry on Facebook. When asked how he was doing, Pastor Reid replied, “Brother, I’m drinking from a fire hydrant!” and says that they will continue webcasting the Gospel even after the pandemic is over. Only God can use a virus to breathe new life into a dying church!
Lakewood Baptist Church, Phenix City: The church’s attendance has increased to five times its normal size during live streaming worship, which will continue after the quarantine has passed. On a recent Sunday, the church had its largest offering during the seven years of Pastor M.R. Hamilton’s ministry at Lakewood. Brother M.R. shared that the church has been using Google Classroom for Sunday School which has been well received as evidenced by increased participation.
Cottage Hill Baptist Church, Pleasant Grove: Church attendance is growing with increased online attendance during the past three Sundays of 35, 45 and 61. New members have joined, and Pastor Jim Parker expects an increase in in-person attendance after the quarantine ends. Giving is actually up from before COVID-19, and the church is being blessed in other ways as well.
Hodgesville Baptist Church, Dothan: Pastor Mark Redmond notes that the older members of the congregation don’t have Facebook and only two have email. Therefore, he sends his sermon outline each week by USPS mail to everyone in the church. He encourages them to read it at 11 a.m. Sunday so that they can feel the unity of doing so at the same time. Since the church family couldn’t celebrate Easter in the traditional way, Mark has been telling people that Easter isn’t just a day on the calendar, but it’s an experience with the risen Jesus. All Christians have had an Easter experience when the stone was rolled away from their hearts. “When was your day?” he asks.
Coosada Baptist Church, Coosada: Pastor Jim Graham reports, “I think the best news is that we’ve reached new people. For example, one of our church members was able to get his boss to join our online service, and they’ve done so each week. Personally I’ve had two new couples join our weeknight small group.”