A Worthy Church Model for Christian Growth Not Just Church Growth
By Don Koenig - 2007?
Church growth seminar attendance proves that church growth is the number one interest of most Christian leaders. However, Christian growth really should be their number one concern. Due to at least a score of moves over the last 35 years I have visited and been a member of many churches, denominations and movements. I have gone to the largest churches in the country and the smallest. I have been with the Pentecostals and with those who say the gifts ceased with the holy canon of scripture. I have gone to amillennial churches, premillennial churches, and postmillennial churches. I have belonged to churches with many different forms of government, some were ruled by a hierarchy established by the denomination and others were ruled by the local congregation. I have attended purpose driven churches and churches whose real purpose for existence was very hard to put a finger on. I could go on and on with this but one should get the point that I have witnessed many approaches and models in various churches.
My many moves over the years have twice brought me to a church that I believe is one of the most perfect church models for other churches to emulate that I know of. It is a worthy church model for Christian growth and not just church growth. I think it is time for church leaders to forget about attending church growth seminars that are just designed to draw large numbers of people and instead put in the same time and effort to learn how to achieve Christian growth in their congregations. Christian growth will make the members more functional in the body of Christ. When the members in the "Body" are functional and doing the will of God through their God given gifts for service, the end result cannot help but spread the gospel to the world. Christian growth will produce Church growth not only church growth.
The church I will write about as a worthy model for Christian growth is not a large church by big city standards. It is really just a medium sized church that is growing larger in a small city. Average Sunday attendance is just under 200 people which is near double the attendance it had about seven years ago when I first attended there. That is pretty good growth in numbers but the real story is in the Christian growth of its members as evidenced by their many good works for Christ. The church is in an area of the country that most probably do not even know exists. Even so, the community where this church is located knows this church exists. The positive impact this church has had is well known in the local community and in heaven.
I am not suggesting a small church should try to copy all the programs that I will write about in the next paragraphs. Unless your church is already a fairly large church, you most likely will not have sufficient spiritually gifted people or the physical talents to carry out all the programs. In addition, the programs at this church will not be the exact same programs that are needed in your unique community or church. Church leaders can examine good church models that bring Christian growth and glory to Christ and still be wise enough to be pliable in the Potter's hands. I believe the model I will write about is a good church model to emulate to bring about Christian growth and church growth but one should also understand it took strong leadership and over twenty years for this church to become what I feel is a model for others to emulate. Models are glued together one piece at a time. If a chosen piece does not fit, the builder should take it apart and find a more suitable piece. Be prepared to use much glue for your own model for Christian growth at your local church. That glue can only be found in-between the covers of your Bible.
To build a church that promotes Christian growth as well as church growth you might not go to that next prepackaged church growth seminar. Perhaps it would be wiser to study a church model in practice that proves it promotes Christian growth as well as church growth by its good works. I think some church leaders should consider coming to the border town of Nogales Arizona and visiting the leadership and congregation of the First Baptist Church of Nogales Arizona for the purpose of studying a church model that I believe is one of the best you will find anywhere in the country. The deeds of this church have impressed me enough to say, “First Baptist Church of Nogales is a worthy church model for Christian growth."
I know the name First Baptist Church of Nogales is not very imaginative. Senior Pastor David Cañada knows that as well, but he is not going to change it. He recently told me about a boy named Hitler who would not change his name out of respect for his godly relatives. Likewise, Reverend David Cañada is not going to change the well-established name of First Baptist Church of Nogales out of respect for the work many have done to make this church name to be known as a beacon for Christ in the community. Nor will Dave be part of the modern popular façade that have been taking the denominational name off their sign so seekers in the community are misled into believing that the church is interdenominational or ecumentical while it really still holds to the tenets of their denomination.
Pastor David Cañada is proud to be a pastor in the Conservative Baptist Association. Being not ashamed to display his denomination should not imply that Dave thinks his denomination has a lock on Christian truth or Christian membership. When asked by one of his children if they were Baptists or Christians, he replied, "We are Christians who attend a Baptist Church." Pastor Dave will make it clear to anyone that he believes other Christian denominations also have members in the body of Christ.
A good Church model for Christian growth requires a strong committed leader
David M. Cañada has been Senior Pastor of First Baptist Nogales for over 25 years. With Pastor Cañada’s speaking and organizational skills, he could easily have moved on to much larger churches in a big city. For several reasons Dave has chosen not to do that. David has not joined the growing number of pastors that have become job shoppers. The number one reason he has stayed all these years is that Dave loves the people in his church and is very concerned about the effect his leaving could have on the church. In addition, unless God tells him differently he sees no reason to leave.
Dave is well aware that his leadership put the church on the path that now produces such amazing ministries and Christians. Two or three times Dave has had the guts to put his job on the line over the 25 years to fight a contingent in the church that wanted to take the church in a direction where he could not go. I have heard similar comments from other Godly pastors who stayed at one church for most of their ministry. The road to leading a church over one's whole ministry is not paved with gold - it is a very difficult road. Only pastors who seek God in prayer, have commitment, vision, biblical understanding and guts to fight factions that wish to take the church off the path God is telling them to walk on, will stay and survive long-term. The hirelings working for the money will take the easy way out and will cut and run when things get tough. These same pastors often will repeat the process every few years in another church. Meanwhile, the faction that ran them off will take control of the church they departed and that church will reap the consequences of what too often turns out to be the path to folly.
Pastor David Cañada also knows the pitfalls of the big city and he simply did not want to raise his family there. David has a lovely wife named Kristen, and four mostly grown children who all are on a path to serve Christ. Dave's decision to raise them in a small city seems to have been a very wise choice. No doubt, the choice to live in a small city also meant Dave had to forgo getting the bigger salaries he could have obtained elsewhere. Dave and Kris gave up some creature comforts by staying at First Baptist Nogales Arizona but Dave will be the first to tell you he does not consider himself poor.
Dave's lovely wife Kristen has the gift of hospitality and she makes everyone in the church feel at home and welcomed. Kristen also leads the woman of the church. I said Kris has a gift of hospitality and she does, but Dave also takes special interest in everyone who attends this church and he is not shy about inviting new people over for dinner. Kris will always accommodate a couple of unexpected guests or even a youth group with large appetites. When Dave and Kris were younger, I am told they often did everything including sweeping the floors and cleaning the bathrooms. Now that the church is larger, Dave wisely motivates others to use the spiritual gifts God gave them to get many of the ministries of the church accomplished.
The pastor of any church must have leadership abilities and spiritual strengths
Dave Cañada has so many spiritual strengths it is hard to tell you which one is his strongest. Dave is foremost a shepherd of his flock. He also is a highly sought after Christian counselor due to his wisdom and his understanding of the scriptures and because of his vast experience counseling people with unique problems. David Cañada is also an excellent teacher, innovator, and motivator that brings excellence out of others. When Dave talks, everyone listens because he not only talks with wisdom he talks with passion. When one listens to what he says, it soon becomes obvious that Dave really cares about what is going on in his church. After the normal church announcements, Dave will come and emphasize with great flare why the upcoming functions are so important. He keeps everyone well informed about what is taking place in the church.
When Pastor Dave teaches from the pulpit, I have seen none sleeping. (I tend to do that with some but Dave holds my attention). He speaks with great skill and scholarship and brings his points across with a passion you will not hear from most. Dave will be laughing in one sentence about some nonsense that is going on in the world or in the churches and will be choking back tears in the next when he realizes how so many who call themselves Christians are missing the weightier matters of following Christ. This passion is not a learned trait. Dave actually gets emotionally involved in the topics that he teaches. Sometimes he will say something and then only fully realize what truth God said through him. This sensitivity to what comes out of his mouth is easily read by the astute in his facial and vocal expressions. You can read his heart like a book, but do not think for a minute that Dave is a simple man. Dave is a deep thinker and deep thinking is what Dave Cañada does best. This is one of the most complex personalities you will ever run across and that is also what makes him such an extremely interesting person. When Dave talks to you he speaks from his heart, he does not speak using the normal Christian clichés of pastors.
You absolutely could never know what Dave will say each Sunday from the Pulpit. I do not believe David even knows what will come out of his mouth because the Holy Spirit obviously has input in Dave's sermons. Dave is not the type of pastor who could have multiple services and say almost the same thing in each one of them. Dave is not reading from a fixed canned sermon when he teaches. He may at times teach on well known topics from notes but the fresh information you receive will make you wonder why you never seen these things this way before. I guess you could say Dave is an intellectual. The conversations I have had with Dave tell me that he is not only well informed but that he thinks things through and forms strong opinions on many issues. Being with David and talking with him is never boring. It is becoming very rare to find people like Dave who can think for themselves and talk on many topics outside of sound bite trite responses that astute people know were just repeated from talking heads on TV.
Dave is always looking for additional ways his church can serve Christ and the community. Presently he is exploring how local pastors can work together in the area to make a real difference to the community. He also feels strongly that patterns of correct thinking are established early in life and this is why this church has developed many highly successful outreaches to very young children.
I am sure if David reads this article, he is totally embarrassed by now. I could go on and talk about all the programs formed under Dave's leadership and to some extent, I will do that in the rest of the article. However, this article is not about Pastor Dave Cañada it is about a worthy church model for Christian growth for others to emulate. Nobody is going to be David Cañada but someone can be found for your local church who has strong leadership abilities and other God given gifts. You cannot have a good church program for Christian growth without having a strong leader who is well grounded in the word of God and able to communicate Christian truths. You also cannot have Christian growth without love. A pastor that does not show love in outward expressions for his congregation will see little if any real Christian growth. Those that beat up their flock will attract those who like to be degraded and soon that pastor will only have a congregation of spiritual dwarfs.
Although nobody is going to emulate Dave Cañada other churches can emulate the church model that developed under his leadership. One reason I gave such a long profile on this pastor is because I believe effective leaders in Christianity must have strong leadership abilities, love, commitment and passion if they expect other Christians to follow them. A true leader must lead first by example. David is a fine example of this type of leader.
I will now lightly touch on some of the ministries and a few of the giants of this church who make the church model work so well. If I spoke on all the less visible giants behind the scenes this article would be extremely long and I am sure I would not do proper justice to many.
Associate Pastors will become part of the Christian growth model in many churches
In any fair sized church there is simply too much to do for one leader. One thing a good leader should be able to do is to to pick assistants or associates when necessary to help in the leadership duties. First Baptist Nogales Arizona has two very committed associate pastors. Commitment and longevity in associate pastors requires that you give them authority along with their leadership responsibilities and that the church also pays them a living salary unless it is only a part time position. I will give a short example of some of duties of the two associates pastors at this church. Each associate should have unique talents that are needed in the church for Christian growth. You will see that combination in play here.
It would be appropriate to start with the right arm of the senior pastor. David's right arm is Associate Pastor Gene Willey. Gene came to this church about 1998 as the youth pastor. Gene Willey is a giant of this church in many ways. Physically he could play linebacker on a pro football team but Gene is a soft-spoken unassuming man who keeps a low profile even with his bulk. Gene teaches and is the pastor of the youth of the church but that is not all that Gene does. Pastor Gene also oversees the music ministry, media ministry, many youth programs, children's church, pioneer clubs, and he sits on the deacon's board. Gene is also a fine musician who plays many instruments and he sings in the worship service. Gene oversees the various Sunday schools, care groups, and educational programs of the church. He also physically leads many outings and recreational programs with the youth of the church and does many other things too numerous to mention. If all that is not enough in his "spare time" Gene completed the program at Phoenix Seminary and has now been ordained as the "Reverend Gene Willey". Gene's wife Pamela Willey is the director of the Sonshine Kindergarten and preschool at the church, and she also partakes and leads in other ministries of the church. The Sonshine Christian Preschool and Kindergarten program is significant enough of a ministry to be addressed by itself. I will speak of this unique ministry to the community later in this article.
Pastor Cañada’s newest left arm is Associate Pastor Manuel Lòpez. Manuel is the newest Pastor at the church and He fills a gap that no one else in the church can fill. Nogales is on the border of Mexico so there is a large segment of the population in the area that does not speak or comprehend English well enough to attend English speaking services at the church. Pastor Lõpez is the person who reaches, pastors, and counsels these Spanish speaking people. Some of these people actually live in Mexico. In a very real sense, Manuel Lòpez is a pastor of a church within a church. Manuel leads a Spanish Sunday school service and a Spanish church service on Sunday evenings. He also teaches frequent seminars and evangelistic programs to the church and the community. Manuel is also continuing his formal education toward a doctorate.
Pastor Cañada has two good arms but a strong leader must also have legs to stand on. These legs of the pastor are more appropriately called "pillars of the church". I will mention a few of the more visible pillars as an example for the reader and at the same time give honor to a few visible pillars of this church that are truly worthy of that honor. I cannot write on all the giants/pillars of the church that are working in the background because of space limitations and because I do not know enough about all the facets of their ministries to even do them justice. Some of the members of this church are missionaries or do other ministries for Christ outside of this local assembly. They are also giants of this church even if they might not be seen as visible pillars of this local assembly. The reader should also be aware that the visible pillars in your church might not look anything like the visible pillars at First Baptist Nogales. I will speak of these visible pillars in the context of their ministry in the rest of this article.
The Sunday morning program is the most visible part of any church
I will now speak about some of the various facets of the Sunday morning service at First Baptist Church Nogales:
The Sunday morning Sunday School starts at 9:30. There are programs for the kids and youth of many different ages. There are three separate nursery programs for infants and toddlers. The Adult Sunday school is only broken up into two groups. One is an English Bible Study and the other is Spanish. Reverend David Slagg leads the English study. Dave is an ordained minister who once had his own church but he concluded his real calling was teaching. Dave now has various occupations. He has been teaching the adult Sunday school at this church at least since when I first attended in 1999. With Dave Slagg in charge, you know you are going to be fed some in-depth meat from the Bible. This is not one of those Sunday school classes that reads out of magazines from lessons prepared for them by their denomination. The lessons have been prepared by Dave's own hard study of the Bible using his own time. This class is well attended but it is still small enough to have group discussion and Dave as a highly experienced teacher is very good at facilitating these group discussions.
The other Adult Study is in Spanish and is very well attended, it is now taught by Associate Pastor Manuel Lòpez. It was taught by Marcos Romero and he still fills in when needed. Marcos is also a pillar of the Church and a dynamic speaker and personality. Marcos is the general manager of a Spanish language Christian radio station in Nogales Arizona. I am told that this radio station is a dynamic ministry to Southern Arizona and the million or so people within broadcast range in Mexico. Several people from the church do volunteer work at his radio station to help get the gospel out to those who live in Mexico and southern Arizona.
About 60 percent of the people who attend the worship service on Sunday morning also attend a Sunday school class and this high percentage reflects the appetite for the word of God in this church. In the English Sunday school class, I have observed that most of the people in the class are able to converse about passages of the Bible as if they have actually read and studied the Bible. I have not found this Bible literacy to be true in most other churches that I have attended or visited. In fact, most church members even in Evangelical churches are now biblically illiterate.
The point I hope you will get out of this Sunday school model at First Baptist Nogales is that teachers of the Bible should be the most qualified people in the church to teach. It really is not necessary to break up Bible studies into small groups just to have small groups, especially if you do not have biblically literate people to teach them. Some of the best teachers I have had, taught very large classes or audiences. Good teachers attract those who wish to learn. Small care groups for intimacy and for fellowship is best done in people's homes.
Another point is that I think Bible studies should study the Bible and not just some prepackaged lesson made by the denomination and put in a magazine. This is a sure way to dumb down Christianity and to help your church down the path to biblical illiteracy.
The worship service of First Baptist Nogales Arizona is an outstanding model
The worship service actually begins at 10:45 AM and do not expect to stay only an hour. It will be closer to two hours before you get back to your car. The dress is casual you rarely see a tie except on the Senior Pastor. The worship part of the service starts with music by the worship team. All the music and prayer of the worship service is alternately led by Pastor Gene Willey and Federico Milner with oversight and direction of Pastor Gene Willey. The worship service is about the best I have seen anywhere regardless of church size. I cannot say enough about Federico Milner. He is one of the pillars of this church that pastor David Cañada has stood on since the mid 1990's. Fred is a music teacher and a real cowboy (The Milner's own a huge ranch in Mexico). Fred along with his very dynamic wife Julie lead so many ministries in the church that I simply cannot comprehend how they find the time to do it all along with their other job responsibilities and while raising a large family. Fred and Gene are musical geniuses who seem to be able to play most of the musical instruments in existence. They are usually present each week, but the rest of the worship team is rotated. Julie Milner among her many other ministries excels in leading the youth of the church in dance and music. There are now about 30 members on the Church worship team.
Fred and Gene open with music and song while the congregation is still taking their seats. (In Mexican culture people are expected to arrive late. This trait is not going to be changed by the church so the church has learned to adjust their program for it). After the opening music, the normal announcements of the week will be made. Those announcements will be followed by the informative and passionate announcements of Pastor Cañada. Dave's announcements may go on for 15 minutes or more on occasion. By the time Dave is finished telling about church events, ministries, and prayer needs, most of the habitually late in the congregation will have been seated. Now the more formal worship in music will start.
This is a mostly contemporary service with music on a screen using Power Point. The worship is done with great reverence to the Lord. It is not a performance just for the audience as you see in some seeker-friendly churches. The majority of the people in the church are fairly young, so a mostly contemporary service is quite appropriate. The church participates in the songs and the worship service goes on much longer than you might expect in a Baptist Church. Occasionally songs are done in both English and Spanish, which is also appropriate since most people who attend are bilingual and are of Hispanic heritage.
After the worship in song, Pastor Cañada will speak on a biblical topic for about 45 minutes (he is translated into Spanish by a church volunteer that one can hear by using headphones). When Pastor Dave speaks on any small part of the Bible, enough of the rest of the Bible will be added that you cannot help to get a very broad education in biblical understanding. There is no watered down gospel preached from Dave Cañada’s pulpit. Sin is still the problem of mankind and the blood of Jesus given at the cross to pay for our sins is the only solution. You will not see emotional altar calls at the end of the service since Dave has seen too many of these emotional decisions and pressured decisions come to nothing. Dave wants people to count the cost of making a decision to make Jesus Savior and Lord of their lives. He wants them to know, for them to choose Jesus, they also will be choosing the consequences of following Jesus. Dave does not preach an easy Christianity where you make an emotional decision and then think all is done. For at the point of salvation your work for service only begins and true service for Christ always brings self-denial, self-sacrifice, suffering and even persecution.
The service ends with song and prayer led by Fred or Gene. After the service, Pastor Dave and Kris are always at the door to speak to everyone who departs.
Not many churches will have the musical talent found at this church but that is okay. The point is to make the worship part of the service relevant to the people of the congregation. If you have people who grew up on old hymns, use them. However, if you have a young congregation that listens to mostly contemporary Christian music, don't expect the young people to get all excited about singing the old hymns of the Church. Just thank God that they are listening to Christian radio instead of the alternative. If there are words in some contemporary songs you do not like, don't use those songs. There are plenty of good contemporary songs that are biblically sound. All things in the service should be done in reverence to the Lord. The music also should not bore large segments of the congregation to distraction. The church should not sing songs just to sing songs--we are to sing them to the Lord as true worship to Him. Thus, He always should be the focus. Good doctrinal songs should also be used. There are some great doctrinal songs that should be sung regardless of the age group in the pews. On the other hand, if few can understand the words of some of the more obscure doctrinal songs written in Old English, what is the real point in singing them?
Any fair sized church will have some musical talent within the congregation. As a leader, you should find ways to attract and motivate those with these musical talents to use them for the Lord. Getting the youth involved in musical programs is a sure way to insure that in the not too distant future you will have plenty of musical talent in your church.
The home care group model is the very heart of First Baptist Nogales
There are home groups all over the area and there is at least one group most days of the week. Two of the care groups are in Spanish language. The majority of the adults in this church take part in a home group. Small groups are where one gets to know people on a more intimate level. You cannot really get to know people in a formal church service. Small groups are also used to disciple new Christians and to provide an informal place outside of the church walls to reach neighbors who are receptive to the gospel or seeking a home church. Under David Cañada’s leadership, these groups were in place long before they became popular through the instruction of mega church growth seminars. The youth also have small groups, Christian clubs, and fun programs of their own. Your church should also have places for the youth to make Christian friends and fellowship and have fun or they will seek a non-Christian alternative. That is just human nature 101.
Model of Ministering to the community at First Baptist Nogales
High on Dave's list of outreaches to the community are the various outreaches of the church to the children of the community. Dave is highly aware that most people who make decisions to follow Christ do so before they reach adulthood. In that end to reach young people, the church makes various grand efforts through the year. The Summer Vacation Bible School and Teen Summer Blast led by Dave and Gene is one whole-hearted effort. This program actually provides a strong platform to reach kids for Christ through fun. Another very strong program is Light Night. The purpose of this program is to substitute the paganism of Halloween and its darkness with a great night of light and fun for kids of all ages. In other words, Dave believes the Church should reclaim the once Christian holiday that honored saints, but now has become corrupted by the force of darkness in the world. Scores of people from the church get involved in this program to make it a night not to miss for many hundreds of kids and adults in the Nogales community. The church provides free candy and all sorts of wild and wonderful events. It simply is better entertainment for kids and more creative than any carnival I have seen. Integrated in this night of fun and entertainment are Christian music, gospel puppet shows and other Christian messages. Since adults accompany kids, this is also a strong evangelical outreach to adults in the community.
Even if the kids do not understand the gospel message, they will always remember that they had fun at First Baptist Nogales and when they grow up that just might influence them to visit the church worship service. In addition, many adults in the community who do not even go to this church now trust their children in the hands of the teachers at the church preschool and grade school.
There are various other programs to the young as well. The pioneer clubs are very popular and instrumental in shaping the moral character of the youth. The character of the youth at First Baptist Nogales was put to the test a number of years ago, when five of them came before school to pray around the flagpole. They were heckled by other students, and then pelted continuously for twenty minutes with rocks and food and even coins. They never stopped praying, and never let go of each other's hands, even though the other students physically tried to pull them apart. They held fast until the school authorities showed up and chased off the hecklers. One girl was seen at the local clinic for bruises and the whole situation was written about in the local paper. The youth were triumphant, and even collected the coins they were hit with to put in the church offering plate!
The foremost ministry to very young children and to the community of working parents in this area is the Sonshine Christian Preschool and Kindergarten (It is now a Christian grade school as well).
The Sonshine Christian School - a model to reach the very young
The church has had a preschool for quite some time. The school does not cost the church any money. The parents who use the school pay for the entire educational project and their employees. At this writing there are approximately 100 kids enrolled in the school and it employs about a dozen people. Pastor Gene's wife Pamela Willey is now director of the school and she is receiving high praises for her work and leadership. The school educates the kids in fun ways and lays the foundation for Christian truth and morality in very young minds. Twenty-five children had to be turned away the last season I was there because there was not sufficient physical space. Therefore, the church is now considering building a new facility for the school. The school is so popular in this mostly Roman Catholic area that certain leaders of the community are saying they would provide support to expand the school to other grades. A school is something your church might also look into because it sets foundations for receiving Christ in young minds and provides a needed service to the community. It certainly is a better alternative for kids then are secular day care centers and public grade schools.
The outreach to migrant workers in Mexico - an outreach to the poor model
Another passionate program of Dave and First Baptist Nogales is an outreach to three different migrant worker camps near Imuris Mexico. These migrant workers are mostly Indians who are the poorest of the Mexican poor. They come to work in the produce industry of Mexico in order to make scant wages to support their families. Since the workers are very poor and come from a warmer climate, they often do not even have the basic necessities of life like warm clothes and blankets. Each month a team from the church goes to these camps to give the workers necessities of life, sing songs, and to present the gospel. The workers in these camps are migrants so there are new people with new needs each month. In addition, the leadership at the camps often changes and they have to be convinced to allow the workers to receive help or to be presented the gospel. It is a continual challenge that could not be done without leadership support from some members of the church that also have some missionary experience and influence in Mexico.
Servants of the church model - deacons, deaconesses, trustees etc.
If you are a Baptist, deaconess might not even be in your vocabulary. We can debate the issue if there were deaconesses in the early church. Nevertheless, by whatever name you call your women leaders, all good churches have women leaders of the programs for women. This outstanding church is certainly no exception. Kristen Cañada leads the deaconesses. The deaconesses lead a variety of programs for women such as seminars, retreats, women's fellowship breakfasts, works of charity, wedding showers, etc.
The church has two men deacons that are elected to office for a specific term and there is a limit of two terms. Therefore, it is not long before new leaders emerge with fresh ideas. The deacons have their own focuses in the ministry of the church. The deacons also lead the ministries to men.
Like any incorporated church, there also is a board of trustees who are responsible for the financial affairs and assets of the church and grounds. This church has outstanding people of the community on the board who know how to manage the physical aspects of the church.
I am not going to forget the church secretary! Everyone knows that the secretary in many churches really runs most of the daily affairs in the church. They also keep the pastors with their usual ADHD traits on track. Without a good secretary pastors tend to overlook, overbook, get off schedule and miss a lot of the fine detail. That is why a good church secretary in any good church model is paramount. The church secretary is not just a clerk; he or she is the pastor's assistant. In this church, their secretary is also one of the pillars of this church. If you wish to know more about any ministry in the church you will probably first talk to the church secretary..
First Baptist Church Nogales is a church model worthy to emulate
Some of the major ministries are listed above but this church has many more ministries and programs. Some examples are: The Christmas ministries and programs with its living nativity, resurrection week services including a Passover Seder service, various music programs, and special support programs for missionaries. (This church gives over 10 percent of its budget to missions each year). The church also has many additional programs and ministries that I have not mentioned.
The ministries at this church would rival any mega church in a large city. All the programs and ministries and the people behind them add up to a worthy church model for Christian growth and not just church growth. It is a church model that is truly worthy for other churches to emulate. For further information about this outstanding church contact First Baptist Church Nogales Arizona at 520-281-1677 - Or email email@example.com
By the way, nobody from the church in any way asked me to write this article. I wrote it as a tribute to their hard work for Christ and because I want Christian leaders to know there are other better working models for Christian growth and church growth than the models offered at most mega-church, church growth seminars. I have moved again and I no longer attend this church.
Back to Don's philosophy page