Jenks – Baptist Church Planters
April 3, 2020
When white cranberry juice hit the market a number of years ago, I wondered to myself, “How did they genetically cause this change in cranberries which are obviously supposed to be red?” Then I learned from a cranberry farmer in our church that the berries are white until later in the fall when temperatures change and the berries further ripen. The white juice is the juice that comes from the same cranberries that are not yet fully ripe. You may ask what this has to do with the Jenks working at facilitating churches to fulfill the Great Commission. Or what it has to do with COVID-19 and churches. Or finally, you might wonder if this has something to do with Jon becoming the next president of Baptist Church Planters. Well, we have two applications to suggest.
The Church under COVID-19 does not look the same as normal. It may even seem pale in comparison but make no mistake. God’s Church is robustly powered by Jesus Christ. In persecution and affliction, the Spirit guides and strengthens it so that it will fully ripen into bountiful fruit. Expect the Church to come out of the COVID-19 season with much fruit by being fruitful in the same biblical ways with a different look right now.
In a similar way, some of you have prayed and given and encouraged us from the very beginning three years ago. You have been faithful partners alongside Jen and I. Our goal was to facilitate churches to fulfill the Great Commission. We did this primarily through different types of intentional discipleship. Out of this God produced much fruit – white cranberry juice. He has multiplied Leadership Journey churches from 5 churches and 2 retreats to 6 retreats being planned for this fall with probably over 20 churches being involved. We began without a revitalization process, and now we have plans for 10 churches to be involved by 2021. God has enabled us to rework the BCP candidate process and training, to provide other training for existing missionaries, and to speak in dozens of churches located in 11 different states as well as many conferences and camp settings. We have counseled many pastors and deacon teams. We have been a part of BCP’s launch of Intentional Transitional Ministry, a ministry to churches seeking a lead pastor. This is led by Scott Owen. Recently, Chip Wood at BCP was able to launch Teacher Journey Training which will enable churches to multiply teachers so they can reproduce within their own church or be commissioned to reproduce in a church plant. We have participated in what seems like countless online meetings. We have watched God provide for us in many ways through you with all the support we needed such that every paycheck was paid in full as planned. We have been stretched with sorrow, some failure, new work patterns, and our spiritual needs. Now God has placed the new role of president of Baptist Church Planters before us after a patient, rigorous, prayerful process by all involved. Steve Little is retiring and now helping us in this transition with a full changing of the guard planned for September.
God is ripening our ministry. It is still a cranberry; we are still facilitating churches to fulfill the Great Commission. But now it will have the richness of color that fuller ministry can bring. We have been helping existing churches to grow and send missionaries in order that they might, as churches, help churches be revitalized and / or plant churches. Now as president we will be able to focus the whole of BCP to partner with these growing churches and others that God provides to send missionaries and their core teams to plant new churches. This sending was the planned intent of the intentional discipleship, but now we get to stir up churches and BCP’s current church plants and revitalizations to accomplish this. I will still oversee revitalization launches as well as Leadership Journey retreats and recruitment. Both ministries will need to grow more trainers and coordinators, but this is a good biblical pressure. I never set out to be BCP president, but God has coalesced BCP’s processes with our shared vision such that we are excited to begin.
As a BCP vice president, we have been paid through a missions status in which God has used you as key providers. We will remain in this missions status through September 30. Our BCP president position will be paid from BCP’s general fund beginning in October. But make no mistake, all of this salary comes from missions support given to the mission through gifts and the fees that our missionaries pay out of missions gifts given on their behalf. I have two immediate thoughts for you as individual and church partners that could help you continue to produce fruit to your account through your partnership with us at BCP.
First, please continue to partner with us as we transition and have moving expenses. If you remain generous as partners in this way until October, our pay, our normal ministry expenses and our moving expenses could be covered. This would help the BCP general fund cover the normal president costs and not be stretched by these transitional costs. BCP helped us transition the first time. Can we work together to help BCP this time?
Second, you partnered with us when we were white cranberries facilitating churches, so why not enjoy even more fruit to your account as we now seek to produce full ripened cranberry juice. We look forward to seeing the new wave of fruit that God has planned from what has begun to be produced. Please consider how you might remain partners with BCP in this. Allow me to list three of ways that your generosity could produce fruit in this new opportunity.
- The BCP president and wife need partners who will pray specifically for them. You know us best, and we know you know how to advocate for us because you have been doing this. We want and need to keep communicating with you in this way.
- We will also need partners who consistently provide for the president’s ministry expense fund. This enables us to travel to churches that cannot fully provide for these costs, and it would allow us to travel some as a couple which requires additional resources. It would also allow us to provide needed resources for those we are stirring up.
- Or would you consider continuing to partner with BCP monthly toward gap initiatives? You filled a gap with BCP when you launched us into the ministry to “churches needing to be strengthened” to fulfill the Great Commission. And now you could help fill the next gap by launching with BCP the next church plant or missionary that helps move the Great Commission forward.
We look forward to communicating more specifically about how to partner in these endeavors in the future.
Thank you for praying and caring for us as a family. We are all being shaped by the changes of covid-19 and by this ministry and location change for our family. Our two college students are home and a joy to do life with as we stay mostly home bound. Rob, Alyssa, and Alayna are well, though we are sad about the distance that will be between us when we move. Our children experienced grandparents from a distance and enjoyed great personal impact that was made through this, so we are not downcast. God often brings additional “grandparents” from His Church to add to all our lives, so we will pray for this. We are so thankful for the spring break that we enjoyed all together on the beach in Florida before all of this upheaval. God will be our portion, so we have all we need for life, be it easy blessing or the blessing of trial.
Please pray as we seek to sell our current home and purchase a new one and move by July. Pray as we transition two households because we need to move Jen’s parents with us. Pray as we seek to witness and transition many relationships and ministries. Pray for wisdom and for provision for God’s Church and for us as we all navigate the covid-19 storm. We are so thankful for you and for all our family who have loved on us with prayer, encouraging words and wisdom as we sought God’s will. Feel free to communicate with us as you pray with us.
Here to serve,
Jon and Jen Jenks
President-elect and first lady
Baptist Church Planters
36830 Royalton Rd
Grafton, OH 44044
March 19, 2020
The Lord has given us a tremendous winter season with many retreats to serve guests. We are thankful for His work in lives and for the abundance of snow for campers to enjoy tubing, broomball, snow games, and snowshoeing.
This spring has been a different story. We have had to cancel five retreats so far because of the coronavirus, but it is looking like many more may have to be canceled. We are asking the Lord to allow our summer program to run as normal. Please ask Him to allow this according to His will.
Also attached is information about the upcoming “Rubber Legs Rendezvous” which will be held May 9, at camp. This is an event in which friends of camp walk or bike for four hours to help raise money to make a significant improvement to the camp. Please encourage several families from your church to participate. We are dependent on your involvement. The money raised this year will go towards paying for the new 4-plex building like our “Lakeview” cabins. If we are not able to meet at camp for this event, perhaps families can do this on their own around their neighborhood.
Thank you for partnering with us in the gospel.
Camping for Christ,
The Weber Family in Belgium
March 13, 2020
13 Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit”- 14 yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. 15 Instead, you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.”
James 4:13-15 ESV
Thank you for your continued prayers for our family in the past 6 months during our time of ministry transition. We have been so busy serving in our community and preparing for a new church planting project in Sint-Truiden. Sometime we really should tell some of the amazing God-at-work stories. So many things have been falling into place. In fact, we were so looking forward to a milestone gathering on Sunday, March 15th. And then we received the news that Belgian authorities decided to take drastic measures to combat the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
And everything changed!
Maybe you have heard about these serious measures in Belgium related to suspending community activities such as school, sports, fine arts and a host of others, including church gatherings, until April 3rd! All of these precautions are being implemented across Belgium to help prevent the spread of the virus.
How are we doing in this situation? Very good at this point. Even though our lives have been significantly disrupted, we certainly see how the LORD could open up many doors for God-honoring ministry in the coming weeks. Even though the kids would love to see the next 3 weeks as a COVID-19 Vacation, we are sure that their teachers will be communicating electronically with instruction and tasks.
Even though corporate church gatherings cannot be organized during the coming weeks, we can continue to see friends, who are healthy, and serve together as the LORD gives opportunities to demonstrate Christ’s love to neighbors, friends and those around us in need. We will continue to invest time and energy at Team Hope, the food bank in Sint-Truiden where we have been so blessed in the past 18 months as we have volunteered and served so many.
So, as some responsibilities diminish in the coming weeks due to all the restrictions, we are confident that the LORD will present us with many new opportunities that we had never imagined or thought possible.
Thank you for your continued prayers as we weather this storm by the LORD’s grace and strength. We are certainly disappointed by the sudden changes to our plans. Yet after a year of dramatic changes, we are convinced that the LORD is good and we have every reason to trust Him and His timing.
Please continue to pray for the church plant in Sint-Truiden as the nucleus develops and prepares for training events – when the COVID-19 crisis is over – hopefully in April after Easter. But as we wait, we will certainly redeem the time and take advantage of every opportunity to show Christ’s love and speak Christ’s truth to the people of Sint-Truiden who need to awaken out of their slumber and hear the voice of God calling them to Himself.
While these events are NOT anything like what we expected for the coming weeks, we know that we will be blessed with amazing opportunities. We will keep you posted on how the LORD guides, provides and protects. We pray for the courage to walk by faith through these open doors!
The Mayhaks in Australia
Dear friends and partners,
Thank you for praying for us as we’ve transitioned into the new year after moving into a new house to minister in a new church and begin a new routine!
And while I’m thinking of it, here’s our new address, in use now until our 2020 furlough which will begin in August—
Alan and Tara Mayhak
4 Albert Street
Belmont, NSW 2280
Prayer Requests for the month include:
Alan’s preparation and preaching at Calvary Baptist and One Redeemer Church in the book of Romans the next several weeks.
His befriending of several men at Belmont Bible Fellowship Church who need ongoing contact and discipleship accountability after being in Biblical Counseling.
For connection with our new neighbors — Geoff/Cheree, Brin/Ella, Theo/wife, Adam/Erin, Drew and mother Diana — all of which seem to be unchurched.
Tara as she assesses her piano students — both their playing ability and how she can minister to them spiritually as they begin the new year. She’s teaching two days/week.
Jeff and Anna seem to be on track to leave Washington State with their two little girls in June to serve with Ethnos 360 (NTM) in Goroka, PNG. Praise the Lord that their support is being raised.
Kegan and Susan are doing well in San Diego serving in their church, caring for their three little girls, and blessing other Marine families as they have the opportunity. His deployment is coming in June/July.
Caleb is surviving Indiana winter and still working in his Carpentry Apprenticeship. He turns 25 at the beginning of March; we’ve bought him a ticket to go see Susan. He’s excited about that!
We like our new house and location and the two churches are doing well. We miss our friends at Life Church, but we’re making new friends and enjoying the fellowship in Belmont.
Have a good month!
The Parks in Spain
“The Legacy of a Woman” for time and eternity…
was the theme of the recent ladies retreat held in Toledo. As God began to move, He gave direction, built a team, provided a venue, worked through rough spots making for a blessed time of renewal and for some an introduction to the claims of Christ on their lives. From the beginning, women pulled together to make the ladies feel warmly accepted providing for even the extra touches to make our time delightful.
The first night we sought to span the generations learning from the Word and song about the wonderful heritage we have in Jesus Christ. The sessions were varied with numerous speakers, audiovisuals, and skits. After lunch, on Saturday six different workshops were offered considering how we could leave a legacy as women using the everyday things of our life: food, crafts, conversations, music, finances, and a clear testimony of the Gospel.
In talking with ladies during the retreat, we asked what had stood out to them and would they come to something again if we asked. There was an overwhelming “yes” and many interesting comments. One unsaved woman said it had given her much food for thought. A believer remarked that it had made her rethink her priorities in life. On one level or another, God was speaking to us all.
Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence. He shall cover you with his feathers, and under His wings shall you trust; His truth shall be your shield and buckler. You shall not be afraid for the terror by night, nor for the arrow that flieth by day, Nor for the pestilence that walks in darkness, nor for the destruction that wastes at noonday. A thousand shall fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right hand, but it shall not come near you….
He shall give His angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways.
Two weeks later…
the news media was broadcasting that the Coronavirus (Covid-19) was in Spain and there was a large number from an Evangelical church in Torrejon among the most serious in Madrid. We had a nice group of ladies from a church in Torrejon at the conference. Once again we were on our knees praying for God’s deliverance of our ladies as the incubation period for the virus could mean we would hear of the spread of the disease among our numbers.
As updates on the situation were announced, it was found the media had been mistaken concerning the church and as far as we knew there were no infectious ladies at the retreat. Oh, the wonderful timing of the Lord and His sovereign direction and protection.
You have probably heard much information over the news of our situation here in Europe. For now, all our brethren are unaffected. There are literally thousands in quarantine in their homes and in the hospitals around Spain. The virus has muted and is now affecting small children as well. The schools are closing and public events are being cancelled by the government. They have given all public organizations a protocol that we as a church have in place to protect the most vulnerable among us. In two weeks they are going to update the plan, giving us updates on the situation daily.
Travel plans for the next few weeks are being canceled or postponed until further notice. People are asked not to go to the hospital if they suspect they have the virus, but to call the hotline, for medical information, and wait for the medical personal to come to them. Health measures are on the TV all day long and people do nothing else but talk about our present circumstances. Some say it is too little too late, but actually, I think they are doing everything they know how to do with a situation that is in constant flux.
What can you do? Join us in prayer that we would walk wisely and use every opportunity to be a positive blessing to those with whom we come in contact. God is still on His Throne and He is never caught by surprise. How very grateful we are that although we had no idea what was coming, God has planned our path thus far and we can trust Him for whatever lies ahead.