REPORT OF THE BOARD OF CHURCH EXTENSION

TO THE 102ND ANNUAL CONFERENCE OF THE

BIBLE FELLOWSHIP CHURCH


    "Now to Him who is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen". Ephesians 3:20,21

    It can be said that at the nine Board meetings and the many committee meetings in the past year the thoughts of this Scripture passage permeated the meetings.  Certainly there have been difficulties and disappointments.  A review of the year, however, reveals that God has "done exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think", and to Him there is to be glory in the church.

    WIDER HORIZONS immediately comes to mind.  Since last Annual Conference members of the Board have presented this program to boards of elders of the Bible Fellowship Churches.  The program was climaxed in April with the report banquet.  More than 250 people attended representing over 40 churches.  As a denomination goals were established for 55 new churches and a total denominational membership in excess of 14,000 by the year 2000.  These goals were beyond the expectation of the Board.  Thanking God for this, we look forward to His blessing in meeting these goals as our denomination works toward their achievement.

    God's provision comes in unexpected situations which sometimes bring hardship. This happened when the home in which Ronald Erb and his family were living was destroyed by fire.  First, we are thankful that no one was injured.  We are also thankful for the response of the people of the Bible Fellowship Church as over $8,000 was received in special offerings to meet needs created by this fire.

    God's provision has been evident in providing men to serve as pastors of missions and churches.  A.L.  Seifert accepted that call to serve as organizing pastor of the newest mission, Mt. Pocono, Pa.  Herbert K. Lea resigned as organizing pastor of Wappingers Falls, NY to go to the Central Africa Republic as a missionary.  Bryon Widger is now pastoring this congregation.  Calls have been extended to men to launch Project Beachhead.

    Disappointments have also been present, one of which is the termination of the effort in Eastwick (Phila.) PA.  After a concerted effort of 6 years sufficient progress to warrant continuation of this mission was lacking.  It is encouraging to report, however, that several of the people from Eastwick are presently involved at Emmanual Bible Fellowship Church in Philadelphia.

    Two missions have made significant progress bringing glory to God in the church.  They are Kutztown, Pa. and Newark, DE.  Both have developed to the stage of being authorized to form a charter membership roll and take the additional steps necessary to be recognized as churches by the Annual Conference.  Such recognition is anticipated.

    Increased giving and careful management have enabled us to operate within income limits and reduce our operating budgets deficit.  The Board is grateful for this, but at the same time regrets that this budget balancing has been in some measure at the expense of the pastors and congregations under its care.  Shortfalls in desired appropriations necessitated some diversion of time and energy from ministry to supplemental employment, led to some men receiving less than the recommended minimum salary and worked some financial hardship on churches and missions.

    We thank the Lord and His people for faithful and growing support both from within and outside of the Bible Fellowship Church.  We ask our constituency to remember that church planting evangelism is costly and that to reach the goals that the churches have set for the Church Extension Department will require strong increases in support.

    Under WIDER HORIZONS it is the responsibility of the Board to announce its intermediate goals for planting the 39 new congregations which the churches have asked us to form and to recommend annualized total membership goals for this Conference to adopt.

    To start new churches under the Department, our intermediate goals may be defined in five year increments:

    1986-90 11

    1991-95 13

     1996-2000 15

    Annual goals are: 1986-2, 1987-2, 1988-3, 1989-2, 1990-2, 1991-3, 1992-2, 1993-3, 1994-3, 1995-2, 1996-3, 1997-3, 1998-3, 1999-3, 2000-3

    The churches have projected 16 new daughter congregations during WIDER HORIZONS.  Ideally, these might begin at a rate of 1 per year with the extra one coming in any of the 15 years.  Five year goals for these are:

    1986-90 5

    1991-95 5

     1996-2000 6

    A flat growth rate of 6% per year in total membership would slightly surpass the goal of 135% growth by 2000 which the churches have set.  The realities of the situation, however, seem to indicate that it is more reasonable to project goals which reflect a graduated or accelerating growth rate.  Inertia will need to be overcome, new strategies, initiatives and programs will need to be formulated and put into effect and we may expect that there will be an outreach momentum that will develop during the WIDER HORIZONS years.  Were we to adopt uniform 6% growth goals from the start we should be likely to fall well behind these goals for the first few years, which would be discouraging.  We, therefore, propose graduated goals for adoption in a recommendation below.

    The following churches, missions, and pastors are presently under the direction of the Board of Church Extension:

    Camden, DE              James G. Koch

    Eastern Union County,NJ Dennis W. Spinney

    Edison, NJ 

    Finesville, NJ          D. Thomas Phillips

    Irvington, NJ           Ronald C. Erb

    Kutztown, PA            Randall A. Grossman

    Mt. Pocono, PA          A.L.Seifert

    Newark, DE              William G. Schlonecker

    Newark, NJ              Delbert R. Baker II

    New Fairfield, CT       Dean A. Stortz

    Poughquag, NY           James A. Wickstead

    Walnutport, PA          David W. Chappell

    Wappingers Falls, NY    Bryon Widger

    Whaley Lake (Pawling)NY Robert S. Commerford

    We express our thankfulness to the Lord for the faithful ministry of these brethren along with the leadership of the Director of Church Extension, Daniel G. Ziegler.  We are grateful for the prayer support and financial contributions of the Bible Fellowship Church throughout the past year.  May God continue "to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think"

so that the Department of Church Extension may contribute to the growth of the Bible Fellowship Church.

    The Board of Church Extension recommends that the 102nd Annual Conference adopt the following:

    WHEREAS, the One Hundredth Annual Conference adopted WIDER HORIZONS 1985-2000 as a plan of action for the Bible Fellowship Church, and

    WHEREAS, the One Hundredth Annual Conference approved preliminary denominational goals for WIDER HORIZONS, which it commended to the particular churches along with some suggested particular church goals, and

    WHEREAS, the particular churches have reported their responses and goals at a WIDER HORIZONS banquet, which was held on Friday evening, April 19,1985, therefore,

    RESOLVED, that we the One Hundred Second Annual Conference, recognize, endorse and adopt the following goals which the particular churches have set:

    1.  To increase the total membership of the Bible Fellowship Church by December 31, 2000 by approximately 135% to 14,293 members.

    2.  To see 16 new congregations form as daughter churches through the impetus and sponsorship of particular churches between now and the end of the year 2000.

    3.  To direct the Board of Church Extension to plan to plant 39 additional new congregations during the WIDER HORIZONS years, 1986-2000, and further,

    RESOLVED, that we commit ourselves, by faith and in dependence upon the power and grace of our Lord to pray, plan, labor and evangelize and to support the Church Extension Department toward fulfillment of these goals, to the glory of God.


    2. RESOLVED, that the following membership goals for WIDER HORIZONS be adopted:

YEAR INCREASE % INCREASE TOTAL MEMBERSHIP

1986 6,200

1987 124 2% 6,324

1988 189 3% 6,513

1989 229 3.5% 6,742

1990 269 4% 7,011

1991 316 4.5% 7,327

1992 366 5% 7,693

1993 423 5.5% 8,116

1994 487 6% 8,603

1995 603 7% 9,206

1996 736 8% 9,942

1997 895 9% 10,837

1998 1,029 9.5% 11,866

1999 1,128 9.5% 12,994

2000 1,299 10% 14,293

    3. RESOLVED, that the following be added to Duties of the Board of Church Extension:

         II. The Board shall promote the program of       Church Extension and develop a broadening        financial base for its ministry. FIRST      READING (see pages 34-36, 1983 Yearbook)

    4. RESOLVED, that the Faith and Order be changed to read (page 115, words changed are underlined)

       SECOND READING

       4. Board of Church Extension

         Election: The Board of Church Extension          shall be composed of the Director of Church       Extension by virtue of his office and five       ordained ministers and five laymen.

         Classes shall be formed as follows:

          Class I - Two ministers and two laymen

          Class II - Two ministers and two laymen

          Class III - One minister and one layman

and further,

    RESOLVED, that the Annual Conference at which this change is adopted for Second Reading elect to the Board of Church Extension one additional minister and one additional layman for three year terms and one additional layman for a two year term.

    5. WHEREAS, the Board of Church Extension is of the opinion that the Kutztown, Pennsylvania Mission meets the standards and qualifications of a church as specified in Article XVIII of the Faith and Order of the Bible Fellowship Church;

    therefore, be it

    RESOLVED, that the Kutztown, Pennsylvania Mission be recognized as a church and that its delegate be received into the membership of the 102nd Annual Conference of the Bible Fellowship Church.

    6. WHEREAS, the Board of Church Extension is of the opinion that the Newark, Delaware Mission meets the standards and qualifications of a church as specified in Article XVIII of the Faith and Order of the Bible Fellowship Church'

    therefore, be it

    RESOLVED, that the Newark, Delaware Mission be recognized as a church and that its delegate be received into the membership of the 102nd Annual Conference of the Bible Fellowship Church.

    7.  WHEREAS, the Board of Church Extension on September 6, 1985, elected Daniel G. Ziegler to a three-year term as Director of Church Extension effective October 14, 1985, therefore be it

    RESOLVED, that the election of Daniel G. Ziegler to a three-year term as Director of Church Extension effective October 14, 1985, be ratified.

    8. RESOLVED, that the budget for the Board of Church Extension for 1986-87 be adopted.


BOARD OF CHURCH EXTENSION

LeRoy S. Heller, Chairman; Bruce A. Ellingson, Secretary; Clayton E. Weber, Treasurer; Robert W. Smock, Clyde E. Snyder, Dana E. Weller, Daniel G. Ziegler, Warren L. Zimmerman