In my last prayer letter, I made reference to the fact that I took the pastorate at Roe Valley Baptist Church in Limavady. One of our supporting churches contacted us and thought that we had returned to the States to pastor a church there, so i wanted to just clarify a little bit about what is going on in the church in Limavady and our goals for the ministry here.
Roe Valley Baptist Church was started 7 years ago by Ronnie Smith, a missionary with Macedonia World Baptist Mission, who recently returned to the States to be the assistant pastor in his home church. Several months ago, Bro. Smith mentioned to me that he believed God was leading him to return home and was trying to find another man to take over the church and help it grow to where it could be strong enough to support its own pastor. As the time for his departure approached, the church had not yet found a man to step in as the pastor and lead it forward.
After praying and seeking the Lord’s will in the matter, I felt that God would have me become the missionary pastor after Bro. Smith left because of the following reasons:
1. The church is still a relatively small work and needs help to grow stronger.
2. The church could not support it’s own pastor and would struggle without leadership.
3. The church has a nice place to meet and potential to grow and become a strong indigenous church.
I expressed my willingness to help the church out until they are strong enough to support their own pastor, and the church accepted me as the missionary pastor. I receive no salary or income from the church. The offerings that come in just barely cover the rent and utilities of the building. I do not plan to stay on permanently as their pastor. I am also working to help the church we have started in Londonderry to become indigenous at the same time. I am hoping that soon the church in Limavady will grow to where it can support it’s own pastor and that God will raise up a young man that we can train to take over as the permanent pastor of the church.
I hope that explains a little more about the situation here. I am a church-planter and have no intention of being the permanent pastor of any of these churches here, but until the churches can pay a pastor’s salary and until a man is trained to take over the churches, I will remain in leadership as the missionary pastor.