BCMs ASSIST IN TRANSITIONS TO COLLEGE

By Ben Maddox
Collegiate Ministry Specialist, Tennessee Tech University, Cookeville

Graduating from high school is an exciting moment for students!  They have spent 13 years working toward this goal.  The next step for many graduates is to head off to college.  For these students, there is a great anticipation for this next chapter of life.  Students look forward to making new friendships, memories, and academic adventures.  For parents and youth ministers, this is a proud, yet somewhat nervous time of expectancy of wondering how their students will live their college lives.  A common question for many is: Will my child grow in his or her faith in Jesus Christ during these college days? [Read more…]

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WHY COLLEGIATE MINISTRY IS SO IMPORTANT

By Stacy Murphree
Collegiate Ministry Specialist, Austin Peay State University, Clarksville

Stacy Murphree

Currently there are more than 20 million college students in the United States. More than 345,000 of those attend college and universities here in our own state, creating a tremendous opportunity for Tennessee Baptists to reach this collegiate generation. In his book, Reaching the Campus Tribes, Benson Hines shares the necessity of viewing our college campuses and universities as missions fields in our own community. In reference to collegiate ministry, he elaborates on the great William Carey quote to say, “We should expect great things from the God who loves these college students even more than we do. And we should attempt great things for the God who has placed these missions fields before us.” Here are five reminders of the importance of attempting great things for God as we reach college students today. [Read more…]

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THE LOCAL BCM: A MISSIONS FIELD NEAR YOU

Editor’s note: You can listen to Bill Choate discuss Baptist Collegiate Ministries during Episode 8 of Radio B&R, the official news podcast of the Tennessee Baptist Mission Board. That podcast can be found at baptistandreflector.org/tag/radio-br.  Also, check back on May 5 & 8 for additional columns on Baptist collegiate ministry.

By Lonnie Wilkey
Editor, Baptist and Reflector

Bill Choate

BRENTWOOD — The 2016-17 college year is drawing to an end for about 345,000 students attending colleges and universities in Tennessee this year.

Though each institution is different and the student bodies on each campus are unique and diverse, there are basically only two types of college students, observed Bill Choate, director of Baptist Collegiate Ministries for the Tennessee Baptist Mission Board.

While that seems “kind of simplistic,” Choate explained his rationale. [Read more…]

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‘GO AND DO’ EVANGELISM NEEDED FOR MILLENNIALS

Editor’s note: You can listen to Benjie Shaw discuss ministry to millennials during Episode 6 of Radio B&R, the official news podcast of the Tennessee Baptist Mission Board.

By Benjie Shaw,
BCM Director, University Of Tennessee Health Science Center

Benjie Shaw

Benjie Shaw

I couldn’t help but fake a smile and cringe. After spending two Wednesday nights sharing about millennials with a local church, a lay leader approached me with a great idea for reaching out to millennials in the church’s neighborhood. Somehow, after listening to me share that millennials were disinterested in “churchy” things, that they probably won’t walk in to a church sponsored event, especially one located in a church, and that relationships with them generally must begin on their turf, his great idea was to show a Christian movie in the church’s coffee shop and put up invitation flyers in the neighborhood to attract young adults. [Read more…]

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TENNESSEE BCMS REACH INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS

By Thom Thorton
Campus Ministry Specialist, Vanderbilt University, Nashville

Thom Thornton

Thom Thornton

The final words from Jesus to us before the ascension, as recorded in Acts 1:8 commands us, “you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (HCSB) For centuries, our primary missions initiative has been to go and to take the message of Christ to the ends of the earth. While this is a beautiful calling, what if we could also take the gospel to the ends of the earth without ever leaving our own community?

College campuses across our state have seen a rapid increase in the number of international students enrolled in both undergraduate and graduate programs. At Vanderbilt, the international student population has grown by almost 25 percent in the last 10 years. Currently, we have 1,810 international students at Vanderbilt University from 117 countries. This represents almost 15 percent of the total student enrollment at Vanderbilt University. [Read more…]

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IF YOU COULD ASK GOD ONE QUESTION …

By Randy C. Davis
TBC Executive Director

Randy C. Davis

Randy C. Davis

There are a millions of spiritually lost people in Tennessee.

That is an obvious statement, but that reality grabbed me again in recent weeks. This time, the faceless mass got personal as spiritual lostness introduced itself with a person’s name.

In preparing for our annual Summit, we sent thousands of cards to our Baptist Collegiate Ministry leaders containing a single question: “If you could ask God one question, what would you ask?” We asked BCM leaders to use the cards to survey students on their respective campuses. We had no idea how the question would be received, but the response was astounding. Nearly 2,000 cards came back individually signed, and as I read through the responses, several truths hit me. [Read more…]

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SMALL MEMPHIS CHURCH GIVES OVER AND ABOVE CP

By Benjie Shaw,
BCM Director, University Of Tennessee Health Science Center

Benjie Shaw

Benjie Shaw

My introduction to McLean Baptist Church in Midtown Memphis was unremarkable. McLean was one of the many churches across the state the Tennessee Baptist Convention wished to recognize for uninterrupted contributions through the Cooperative Program since its inception in 1926. As a TBC staffer in Memphis, I had several churches with whom I was to make contact and, if possible, arrange a Sunday morning presentation to thank the church for their commitment to the Cooperative Program.

Being new to my position with Baptist Collegiate Ministries in Memphis, I was eager to make new contacts in the area and to express my gratitude to churches who contribute to the Cooperative Program. You see, Baptist Collegiate Ministries across the state of Tennessee are one of the myriad of ministries that receive funding from the Cooperative Program. While the details of each BCM’s funding vary somewhat, the vast majority of BCMs across the state receive funds for staffing and facilities from the Cooperative Program and the Golden Offering for Tennessee Missions. Making contact with a church that had such a rich history of Cooperative Program giving that also called Midtown Memphis home was a tremendous opportunity. [Read more…]

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TBC STAFFER SEES JESUS AMID DEVASTATION

By Libby Eaton
Information Specialist, TBC

Libby Eaton

Libby Eaton

I saw Jesus today.  Literally.  He laughed, He sang, He cried, and He worked.  Hard.

I was with 31 students from Belmont University and Tennessee Tech University. These students decided they would be the hands and feet of Jesus during their fall break from school. We all traveled to Baton Rouge, La., to serve as disaster relief volunteers for the victims of the devastating flood there on Aug. 12.

We left Tennessee Oct. 7 and headed to Walker, La., a suburb of Baton Rouge. Though they arrived at all hours of the night (and early morning) all of the students were present for breakfast at 7:00 a.m. in the fellowship hall of our host church, Judson Baptist Church in Walker. [Read more…]

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BCM STUDENTS USE FALL BREAK TO MINISTER

By Lonnie Wilkey
Editor, Baptist and Reflector

Leann Yuill, a student from Tennessee Tech University in Cookeville, was one of almost 70 Baptist Collegiate Ministry students from across the state who spent their fall break helping flood victims in the greater Baton Rouge, La., area. — Photo by David LaMar

Leann Yuill, a student from Tennessee Tech University in Cookeville, was one of almost 70 Baptist Collegiate Ministry students from across the state who spent their fall break helping flood victims in the greater Baton Rouge, La., area.
— Photo by David LaMar

BATON ROUGE, La. — Nearly 70 Baptist Collegiate Ministries students from three Tennessee campuses (University of Tennessee-Knoxville; Belmont University, Nashville; and Tennessee Tech University, Cookeville) used their fall break to help flood victims in Louisiana.

In addition, a team from Walters State Community College in Morristown did disaster relief work in West Virginia. [Read more…]

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BUILDING A BRIDGE FROM HIGH SCHOOL TO COLLEGE

Morgan Owen
BCM Specialist, TBC

Morgan Owen

Morgan Owen

The phone call was one that, as a campus minister, you love to receive. Reed Tallman from Immanuel Baptist Church, Elizabethton, contacted me in July 2015 to pass along contact information on a student coming to the University of Tennessee at Martin.  The importance of the call was vital for Tallman because the student from his youth ministry, Roger Clark, lived more than 400 miles away from Martin. Tallman knew that this transition to college would be a huge step for Clark and he wanted to do all he could to build a bridge from the high school campus to the college campus for Roger. [Read more…]

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