American Baptist Churches of Ohio Region Profile may be downloaded HERE.
Who We Are: The American Baptist Churches of Ohio (ABC Ohio) is one of 33 American Baptist Regions in the United States. This Region is comprised of approximately 260 congregations, 20% of which are ethnic minority, including African American, Hispanic American, Japanese American, Romanian and Burmese.
ABC Ohio congregations are also diverse in location, size, and ministry focus. Since its establishment in 1826 as the Ohio Baptist Convention, the Region has addressed mission needs both within Ohio and beyond. The Region office is centrally located in Granville, Ohio.
Mission Statement: The American Baptist Churches of Ohio is an expression of the Body of Christ in this world, called to provide a network of resources, support, and fellowship, and to enable member congregations to implement shared ministries in faithful witness to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Our Vision: Our ministry mission is to “Rise Up and Build Healthy Congregations that Impact the World for Christ.” Every ministry is designed to strengthen the local church or meet the needs of people beyond the local church context through shared ministries.
The Board: The Board of Regional Ministries is comprised of twenty people including five officers who are elected by delegates to the ABC Ohio Annual Gathering in October. The Board of Regional Ministries is responsible for establishing the overall policies and fiscal guidelines for the Region in accordance with its mission statement.
The Staff: The Executive Minister for ABC Ohio is responsible for implementing the policies of the Region, managing its fiscal resources, overseeing all staff, and serving as representative of the Region. Other members of the team include three Regional Ministers and a Director of Core Services. Staff priorities include congregational development consulting and coaching, providing pastoral care to pastors and their families, offering crisis counseling to pastors and congregations, assisting congregational search committees, offering conflict management advice and care, celebrating key moments with congregations, promoting shared mission, reviewing resources, and providing training.
ARMS: Associate Regional Ministers are volunteers who provide specialty ministry leadership in key areas of ABC Ohio’s ministries, including pastoral care, youth ministries, and other ministries. ARMS extend the ministry effectiveness of ABC Ohio and support the Regional Ministers in their various ministries.
Committees: Board members, staff, and other volunteers also carry out ministry through service on various committees and task forces in the Region. Current committees include the Finance Committee, Personnel Committee and the State Advisory Committee on Ordination.
Ministry Events: American Baptist Churches of Ohio offer annual events in the areas of growth and ministry development. These include the Church Leadership Conference, Youth Conference, Women’s Conference, Women’s Spiritual Growth Retreat, Summer Workshops and the Annual Gathering.
Region Ministry Support: Churches, pastors and leaders are provided support in many areas including Christian education, spiritual formation, governance, leadership, prayer, church structure and more. This support takes many forms including:
- Interim Assistance - helping churches secure qualified interim pastors
- Pastoral Search Assistance - coaching and guidance during the search process
- Ordination - support through the entire ordination process
- Leadership Academies - three-year intensive leadership development programs which include the ABC Ohio Leadership Academy at FBC Sunbury and the Urban Leadership Academy at Omega Baptist Church
- Peer support network - pastor and spouse support through monthly associational gatherings, communities of practice and Ministers Council events
- Pastoral Care - care provided during times of personal, church and family crises
- Scholarships for ABC Ohio seminary students - provided through the Ohio Baptist Education Society and American Baptist Women’s Ministries
- Building on Common Ground Grants - enabling churches to create new Evangelism and Outreach ministries in ABC Ohio churches.
- Website support - the abc-ohio.org website provides support through downloads, reports, videos news and information about American Baptist Churches of Ohio
Shared Ministry Support: American Baptist Churches of Ohio works with and supports many ministries both here in Ohio and nationally.
- Christian Centers and Neighborhood Action Programs - in-state support of Neighborhood Ministries near Youngstown, Ohio and the Dayton Christian Center in Dayton, Ohio.
- Camping ministry - Camp Kirkwood and Camp Koinonia are owned, operated and staffed by American Baptist groups in Ohio
- Seminaries and Colleges - supporting a network of 10 ABC seminaries and 17 ABC-related colleges
A downloadable version of this profile may be found HERE.