We receive requests for support from missionaries on almost a weekly basis, and we praise the Lord that so many have answered God's call to the mission field, rejoicing in your willingness to go. We desire to be a help to you in any way that we can, while at the same time we acknowledge our inability to support every good cause. We trust that God will bless and enable every gospel-preaching evangelist to successfully preach the gospel in the place where God sends, that God will send every called and equipped evangelist to preach in the place He has prepared, and that God will send preachers to every end of the earth. Truly the feet of those who preach the gospel are "beautiful upon the mountain."
As we cannot support every potential work for Christ, we have determined to identify those we will consider supporting. We believe that this will save you time and prevent the unfortunate conversations that can be necessary when pastors do not clearly communicate their standards. With that in mind, please observe the following:
We are delighted to support local church missions. It is our conviction that God has ordained churches as opposed to individuals or para-church organizations, to establish other New Testament churches. For this reason, we have written a clear philosophy of Local Church missions, which is available on our website under the "Ministries" tab. We can also e-mail it to you upon request. Before requesting a meeting and/or asking to speak to our pastor, please read through our Mission's Philosophy and be sure you can agree to it.
Before we schedule a meeting, we need to know about you. Please send us an e-mail to include your personal testimony, statement of faith, sending church information and a brief statement of why you believe God has called you to your particular mission field.
Assuming that your statement of faith includes all the "fundamentals" that Independent Baptists generally hold in common, we want to be clear on two issues that have become an issue with us.
First, our church practices "close" communion. We require that those who come to the table with us be baptized members in good standing of a New Testament Baptist Church of like faith and practice with ours. This has been our practice for many years now.
We understand that more than a few who seek missions support from us disagree with this stand, and practice a "closed" communion position instead. Nearly half of the missionaries we support hold this same "closed" position and do not approach this issue as a "separating" issue. However, more than a few churches who are "closed" in their communion do in fact treat this as a separating issue. Unfortunately, many such churches are dishonest about this fact. They separate from churches that are "close" in their communion when it comes time to give support. But when it comes time to receivesupport, they treat this as if it were a non-issue. We believe this to be disingenuous. Cooperation that only goes in one direction is not cooperation at all.
If your sending church practices "closed" communion, we will be happy to allow you to present your ministry in our church, so long as your sending church would do the same for us. If however, your sending church separates from churches that are "close" in their communion, please do not ask us to schedule you for a meeting. If, as a matter of policy, your sending church would not consider supporting a missionary that is sent from a church that practices "close" communion, then we will not consider supporting you.
Secondly, as a church, we believe that Christians should maintain Biblical standards of dress. As a matter of conviction, we believe that God requires both modesty and gender distinctions in the way we dress.
"In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety..." (I Timothy 2:9)
"The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman's garment." (Deuteronomy 22:5)
Naturally we want the missionaries we support to share our convictions regarding dress standards. If you share these convictions, we will be happy to consider your ministry.
Probably the main controversy that surrounds this position centers on the question of a lady wearing pants. It is our conviction that a faithful understanding of the Scriptural standard of gender distinction means that ladies must not wear pants. We do not require ladies to "give up their pants" in order to join our church. We certainly do have ladies who are members of our church but do not share our conviction on this. However, those who serve in leadership in our church also share our conviction on this issue. We certainly cannot consider a missionary who disagrees.
Naturally, you are encouraged to call Pastor Mallinak with any questions. If you would like to present your ministry in our church, and you feel that none of the things mentioned above will prevent that, please email us your information listed above and call us so that we can schedule a time!
Berean Baptist Church I 3846 Jackson Avenue, Ogden, Utah 84403 I 801.399.3855