The Cincinnati Area Baptist Association exists to address lostness through pastors. CABA decided at its Annual Meeting October 2017 to no longer fund church planters in order to appropriate funds (about $100/mo.) into services that would benefit them rather than fund them. Here are several services that CABA is blessed to provide to church planters.
1. CABA has employed a Network & Fellowship Coordinator, a Church Coach, and a Block Party Ministry Coordinator to augment the work of the Director of Missional Leadership. At the present time, the association’s ministry works through nearly 30 pastors and church leaders across the Cincinnati Area to benefit church planters and existing churches alike. Treating church planters the same as pastors in the association means being available to them for networking, coaching, and providing services to them as needs arise. Connecting to these quality resources is at no cost to planters. Financial support of CABA by the church plants is voluntary and appreciated.
2. Prayer is always a priority for planters and pastors. CABA has an active prayer ministry with several dedicated prayer warriors ready to pray at a moment’s notice. Other prayer needs may be broader and may be shared, when requested, through CABA’s communications channels.
3. Planters appreciate half-price rentals on trailers, tents, and food machines as part of CABA’s Block Party Ministry. The Trailer REservation SyStem (TRESS) is available to make reservations at www.CincinnatiBaptist.com and click on TRESS on the toolbar to get started. Included as a benefit is repairs at no cost to the planter. A delivery and pick-up service valued at $50.00 and mileage for the driver normally charged to churches is offered free to all SBC plants and charged to CABA instead.
4. Church planters and their spouses are provided with free biblical counseling from licensed counselors with doctorates or masters in biblical counseling. This is billed at $100 per hour-long session directly to CABA with no charges to the planter.
5. A free logo service is available to church plants to assist with their branding and image communication. A professional graphic designer(s) are available to work with the planter to convey the image that best represents their ministry. A fee of $100 per logo is charged to CABA instead.
6. Networks – planters are invited to gather with CABA pastors for training, support, and fellowship. Networks are convened according to geography or covo / bivio status. Regional conveners are paid $100 per month by the association to facilitate peer learning, prayerful support, and fellowship. The Cincinnati Area has been divided into zones because a planter’s time is valuable and this association is physically large, covering nine counties. Each meeting usually includes a meal provided by CABA.
7. Coaching – World-class coaching is available to help CABA planters break through barriers by developing strategy, structures, staffing, budget, and measures to enable the plant to achieve and sustain vitality. Coaching helps planters break through barriers by sticking to a plan rather than managing for the exception. Coaching also includes mystery guest and facilities assessment for free. The Coach is provided free to each planter and on a retainer of $1,000 per month by CABA.
8. Fellowships are conducted at least quarterly to involve planters and sometimes their wives and children. Fellowships are planned for just the wives, too. The idea is to provide a break in different venues that a planter and his family may not be able to do on their own. Sporting events, park experiences, family fun nights, and other gatherings are typical of the fellowships provided to planters to give them, their wives, and families a sense of connectedness.
9. CABA helps church planters keep planting more new churches. New churches are more likely to start a new church than a church that is five or more years old. CABA prioritizes an unfunded church multiplication approach through missionary teams of church members, bi-vocational members, and going multi-site. The whole association has become a church planting support system, including raising up indigenous church leaders, including new pastors.
10. Funding for one-shot evangelism blitzes, mailings, and other community engagement is available.
11. CABA’s Church Planting Teams Council stands ready to support any church that plants a new church on its own. That means the Council supports new church planting efforts started by a Southern Baptist church-related plant that is already underway in the Cincinnati Area. Information is provided to help prioritize next steps whether it is among a group like them or whether they must cross-cultures to work among some other group. This group is comprised of a pastor, a planter, and a family specialist. The Council provides a safe environment for strategy plan feedback, strategic funding for survey projects, evangelistic blitzes, and family helps such as parental workshops or marital counseling.
12. New churches reach a point in which they are self-sustaining. At this point, usually when it is about three years after launching, churches are invited to enter a credentialing process to be received as a voting member of the Cincinnati Area Baptist Association. A guide titled, “A Closer Look” is available to planters as early as possible to help them understand how they can become part of CABA’s missional community. The free guide addresses issues like tax-exempt status, which can save a church plant hundreds of dollars and many hours.
13. CABA has found that No Place Left is a highly effective evangelism/discipleship training module that can start new small groups and churches. This training has been offered three times per year and an NPL Intensive offers advanced training for those who have gone through the initial training. This commitment includes six weeks of follow-up coaching after the initial NPL training.
14. CABA supports church plants by helping them avoid dependency in their additional new church plants as their funding runs out. CABA’s commitment to church planting takes a long-term view. CABA is dedicated to rapid multiplication to be used of the Holy Spirit to win more lost and connect with more needs than a one-and-done experience. CABA provides coaching for laity, bi-vocational, and multi-site church planting. And CABA can guide individuals to participate with NAMB, too.
This association of SBC churches praises God for the church planters who are part of NAMB’s SEND City effort. We facilitate each chuch’s mission work among the lost through the funds provided by churches and plants. We always recommend giving 7% to the Cooperative Program (State Convention of Baptists in Ohio) and 3% to associational causes (Cincinnati Area Baptist Association) from the church’s undesignated receipts. The two entities are funded separately.
Checks written to SCBO go to 9000 Antares Ave., Columbus, OH 43240.
Checks written to CABA go to P. O. Box 54885, Cincinnati, OH 54254.
CABA is committed to doing everything possible for church planters to praise God through its relationship. It’s certainly not “us and them.” Planters are considered very much a part of CABA’s network of developing churches to the glory of God.