At the start of 2022 we made a bold commitment to Advance the Gospel without Hindrance in northeast Birmingham. I specifically prayed for God to send us one family from the next generation who could then help us reach more families in our neighborhood.
We are excited to announce that Banks Academy will be relocating to Huffman Baptist Church over the summer and will open school on our campus the first of August! Remember, I prayed for one family. And God said, “Yeah, your prayer is a bit too small!” Instead of one family, he is sending us dozens of families among the students, faculty, and staff of Banks Academy.
In early January, Bill Sears (our interim executive pastor) and I met with Danny Brister, the executive director of Elevate Birmingham, one of our ministry partners currently occupying the old daycare offices in the C Building. Danny is an exceptional young leader in the African American community, and I wanted to hear his thoughts about how to reach young families. Little did I know where that conversation would lead!
Over the past two months, Richard, Bill, and I have met with Danny and a few other young, African American leaders. We have prayed together. Laughed together. And dreamed together about advancing the gospel! One day, Danny made a casual comment about the “hugeness” of our campus. He said it was large enough to house a school. Then he said, “You know Banks Academy is looking for more space.” To which Bill said, “Set up a meeting!”
For those of you who may not know, Banks Academy is a private Christian high school that serves 80 students in grades 9-12. Founded in 2015, they have been meeting on the original Lakewood Baptist Church campus with additional classrooms on the current Lakewood Baptist campus. I encourage you to learn more about Banks Academy by visiting their website at https://banksacademy.org/
After our first meeting, we sensed a kindred spirit with a common desire to advance the gospel to the next generation! Subsequent meetings confirmed our initial impressions. If we were starting a Christian school from scratch, I’m not sure we could improve upon the Banks model.
Pray & Go
What an amazing time we had at our second Pray & Go outreach. The fellowship was fantastic. The food was incredible. And the opportunity to pray for our neighbors was a blessing.
As an added blessing, our friends with the Huffman Neighborhood Association have taken notice. They posted this on their Facebook page. I also received a prayer request from one of our neighbors. God is at work!
We will hold our next Pray & Go on April 3rd following the morning service. Those who are unable to walk will work on a project in preparation for our Easter Egg Hunt, scheduled on Saturday, April 9th.
Sunday School Room Reassignments
I want to thank all of our Sunday School leadership for their amazing cooperative sprit. As of March 6 all of our adult Sunday School classes will be meeting on the second floor. Linda Word’s classroom is in the “O” building next to the choir room. Everyone else will meet in the the A Building. Here are the new classroom assignments:
- Linda Word Class – 203
- Kathy Spenser Class – 211
- Armstrong, Tanner, Worthington Class – 212
- Ed Wright Class – 213
- Auston Young Class – 214
- Jim Dawson Class -215
- Linda Smith Class – 221
- Jack Green Class – 222
We believe this will enhance our fellowship and create a stronger sense of community. Over the past several weeks, our on-campus attendance has increased. Even though we have had as many as 90 people attending each week, it seems smaller when we are spread out over two floors. Plan to arrive a little early on Sunday morning and enjoy some coffee and conversation with friends.
It’s that time again. Time to move your clock forward at 2:00 AM on Sunday, March 13. So, set your alarm. Change your clocks. Then get back to sleep! I’ve always wondered why we lose the hour in the middle of the night. Wouldn’t it be better to spring forward sometime Sunday afternoon? I would gladly give up an hour of leisure time if I could keep that hour of sleep! Oh, well. Don’t forget, or you’ll be late for church!