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Photo: Children attend the first service at Bay City FWB Church in Mobile, AL. Tim Riggs pastors.





DURING THE MONTH OF APRIL 2007 several new missionaries celebrated their first services. Despite cold, snowy weather, Tom Jones and the Keystone FWB Church in Greensburg, Pennsylvania (pictured above), had 31 people at their first official service. Two people were saved during the service. One was the granddaughter of the Jones’ neighbor whom they met while shoveling snow from the driveway.

Jeff Cates and 22 others attended the first service at Canyon Country FWB Church in Canyon, Texas (pictured, right). Texas also had cold, snowy weather, but it didn’t prevent the congregation from meeting. Cowboy coffee, muffins, and fellowship soon warmed everyone in attendance.

After distributing 1,500 flyers and 5,000 postcards, running three large ads in the local newspaper, and praying fervently, Tim Riggs held the opening service at Bay City FWB Church in Mobile, Alabama. Thirty-four people attended the service and one person was saved on the special day.

Larry Reynolds is planting a new church in Meridian, Mississippi. Thanks to the generosity of the Mississippi State Mission Board, money was provided to purchase land and build meeting facilities. In early April, members of Cotton Heights FWB Church met in the fellowship hall of their new building. At the end of the service, 20 people came forward to commit to establishing the new church.

After conducting several preview services in Collinsville, Illinois, on Easter Sunday, Stephen Gray and members of the new church celebrated their grand opening with 81 people in attendance. One person was saved during the service. Twenty-two people were first time guests.



The congregation tried a different approach to invite visitors to church. They held a gasoline buy-down. The church paid 50 cents on every gallon of gas purchased at a nearby station (pictured above). The event created a lot of publicity for the church. Those already attending the church pumped gas, washed windows, and gave out free water and cards containing information about the church. Seven people from the event visited on grand opening Sunday.





David and Charity Sexton are joint project missionaries with the state of Virginia and the Home Missions Department. They plan to establish a church in Suffolk. David has been the youth pastor at Gateway FWB Church in Virginia Beach, Virginia, for seven years and presently serves as assistant pastor. The Sextons have faithfully served the church for 15 years. David has a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Education and Administration. David and Charity have four children: Austen, Devan, Chassity and Cailey.



Associate home missionaries Jason and Holly Weaver will work with veteran church planter Mark Thomas to establish a church in Pueblo, Colorado. After attending Southeastern Free Will Baptist College and Gateway Christian College, Jason has a Bachelor’s degree in Bible and Pastoral Theology. Forty-five percent of the population of Pueblo claims no religion affiliation. No Free Will Baptist church exists in Pueblo at this time.




Kenneth and Shirley Cooper are joint project / associate missionaries with the Home Missions Department and the state of West Virginia. They will plant a church in Glenville, West Virginia. The city, located in the exact center of the state, lies in Gilmer County. It is the home of Glenville State College. Cooper has pastored in Ohio and West Virginia and brings a wealth of knowledge to this church plant.



Jeremy and Jill Lightsey are joint project home missionaries with the state of Texas and the Home Missions Department. The Lightseys will start a church in the San Antonio area. Jeremy is a graduate of Hillsdale FWB College with a Bachelor’s degree in Theology/Pastoral Training. San Antonio is the seventh largest city in the nation, the second fastest growing city among the nation’s top ten, and has the third largest population increase in the nation since 2000. Jeremy and Jill have two daughters named Adria and Hope.



For more information about the missionaries or mission fields above, or to earn more about the ministry of the Free Will Baptist Home Missions Department visit

©2007 ONE Magazine, National Association of Free Will Baptists