August 27, 2014


COLORADO SPRINGS (BP) -- With a clear, simple purpose statement of "Make Disciples," what does a church do when it outgrows its landlocked facilities in a part of town facing significant demographic changes?

A multi-faceted ministry

Circle Drive Baptist Church in Colorado Springs already assists a neighboring Baptist church that ministers in the heart language of many of the area's newer residents. The congregation hosts another people group who meet in its facilities. Circle Drive has adopted an unreached, unengaged people group in West Africa in partnership with the International Mission Board's Embrace initiative. And it maintains ongoing missions partnerships in the Philippines, Southeast Asia and Romania. Church members have been on mission trips to 17 nations (including the United States) since 2002. Circle Drive additionally is heavily invested in missions and ministries across Pikes Peak Baptist Association and throughout the state of Colorado.

Others before self

Two years ago, the church where pastor Mike Routt serves voted to purchase 20 acres in a highly visible, fast-growing section of Colorado Springs. The land, already paid for, is within a mile of a new development where 6,000 new homes will be built in the next few years. This is a church where the 20 people who started the congregation in 1954 took food each week from their own meager larders to share with their poorly paid pastor.

They were (and are) more interested in doing for others than doing for themselves. So they responded unanimously last fall when Routt, who currently serves as vice chairman of the SBC Executive Committee, suggested they rise to the "1% CP Challenge" voiced by EC President Frank Page to increase the percentage of their budget for Southern Baptist missions and ministries.

"Our church is in the midst of a $10.5 million capital fundraising campaign for a total campus relocation," Routt said. "So why increase our CP giving 1 percent at this time in our church's history?

"The needs of others remain of greater importance to our people than their own," Routt said. "Through our giving to CP, we support thousands of IMB and NAMB missionaries; we support thousands of students who are preparing for the Gospel ministry in our six SBC seminaries; we support religious liberty through the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission; and we support the work of our own state convention in saturating Colorado with the Gospel. Our church also supports strongly the Cooperative Program because of partnership with other churches of our denomination across America."

The Cooperative Program is the way Southern Baptist churches combine their missions dollars for maximum impact around the world.

"[Circle Drive] did it enthusiastically," Routt said. "People are excited. We're wanting to expand; we want to have a greater impact in the Kingdom of God, and the Cooperative Program helps us have that Kingdom impact. Read More

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First Person
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Seminary dean Terri Stovall gives examples of the many ways women are serving in the Kingdom of God.



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