Dear Praying Friends,
Thank you for your faithful support of our ministry.
It has been exciting to see all that the Lord has done to build His church in Lawrence since our last prayer letter. Over the last month and a half we have had more visitors than we have ever had since we started Community Baptist Church. We are excited to see the Lord bring these guests to our church. Please pray for wisdom for me as I follow up with these visitors. Some of these guests are believers. However, there are some who still need to trust Christ for salvation. Please pray they will come to Christ soon.
In my last letter, I mentioned that we hoped to be able to purchase the church building in which we have been meeting since we started Community Baptist Church. The main purpose of this update is to share the exciting opportunity the Lord has given us for this to happen in the near future.
When the Lord led us to the city of Lawrence, we knew that we would need to find a place to meet. After spending some time searching, I was informed about the building in which we currently meet.
The previous owner of the building was a Spanish-speaking, independent, Methodist church that had been praying that they would be able to sell the building to an English-speaking church, as they were constructing a new building.
At our first meeting I hoped to discuss the potential to rent the building from them, while they were trying to sell the building. I found out that they were not interested in renting. They had received a lucrative offer from a developer who intended to turn the property into apartments. They turned down the offer because they had been praying for an English-speaking ministry to be started in the building. They gave me a price that was far less than the previous offer. They were very generous, and although their asking price was low, I was still a poor church-planter.
This is where Lifeline Baptist Church in Haverhill, MA stepped in. Pastor DiGiacomo had heard about the opportunity and Lifeline agreed to purchase the property and rent the building to us for the cost of the mortgage and insurance with plans for us to purchase the building for the remainder of the mortgage in the future. Our monthly rent for a 5,000 sq. ft. church building has been less than the average cost of a 1,000 sq. ft. store front. It has been amazing to see how the Lord provides.
April of 2022 will mark two years that we have been meeting in this building. Since starting our church we have had a consistent meeting place that is centrally located, easily recognized by the community, and meets our needs very well (this is a huge blessing as many church planters have been put out of their meeting places as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic).
We have been praying that the Lord would provide the down-payment that would be needed to purchase this building. Purchasing this building would lower our monthly payment by 32%. From the time we started the church, our support has subsidized the cost of the rent of this building. Purchasing this building would put the church in a position to cover all of its own expenses. This would bring Community Baptist Church one step closer to autonomy.
The purchase of this building would also free up the financial commitments of Lifeline Baptist Church to continue to help church planters and struggling churches in the greater Boston area in a similar way.
We are praying and are confident that the Lord can provide the remaining funds needed to purchase this building in 2023.
Through the careful stewardship of Community Baptist Church, and a generous donation from a family in one of our supporting churches, the Lord has provided $40,000 dollars of the estimated $120,000 needed for a down-payment to purchase this building.
After discussing this with our pastor, we believe the best solution is to seek help in raising the remaining, needed funds.
There is always an awkwardness to asking people who have been so generous to give, to consider giving more. You have faithfully supported our ministry financially and we are eternally grateful for your investment.
Paul addressed the church at Philippi this way in Philippians 4:16-20:
“For even in Thessalonica ye sent once and again unto my necessity. Not because I desire a gift: but I desire fruit that may abound to your account. But I have all, and abound: I am full, having received of Epaphroditus the things which were sent from you, an odour of a sweet smell, a sacrifice acceptable, wellpleasing to God. But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Now unto God and our Father be glory for ever and ever. Amen.”
As I write this letter, I am humbled by your generosity and faithfulness to give to the work of the Lord here in Lawrence. I am amazed at all that the Lord has done and is doing to build His church in Lawrence, the fruit of which abounds to your account. I am confident that God will provide for all our needs according to His riches in glory for His glory.
Would you please prayerfully consider how the Lord might have you to give to this exciting opportunity He has given us? If you have additional questions about this opportunity, please, do not hesitate to reach out to me. My phone number is: (978)-609-3577.
I say with Paul, “. . . I have all, and abound: I am full, having received of [you] the things which were sent from you, an odor of a sweet smell, a sacrifice acceptable, wellpleasing to God.”
Thank you again for your faithful prayers and support for our family and Community Baptist Church.