Envisioning Men's Ministry
AUGUST 4-5, 2023, 6 p.m.
Pastors and Any Men Passionate about Doing Ministry Together
2880 Stagecoach Rd. W; Palmerton, PA
Relaxing 100 Acres in the Heart of the Pocono Mountains
To reconnect with Friends and Dream about
the Future of American Baptist Men's Ministry
COST: $20 Per Person - Deadline for Registration 7/31/2023
Scan the QR Code to Register
Click to Download a Re-Envisioning Men's Ministry Flyer
Click to Download a Hard Copy Registration Form
Mail Paper Forms To:
First Baptist Church of Bethlehem
3235 Linden Street
Bethlehem, PA 18017
Re-envisioning Men's Ministry
REV. DAN MCDOWELL
ABCOPAD SOUTHEAST GEOGRAPHIC PASTORAL SERVANT
PASTOR, GRACECROSSING COMMUNITY CHURCH, PHOENIXVILLE
My personal spiritual journey can be inextricably linked to the sudden death of my father when I was just 5 years old. His influence, his absence, and his family legacy led me to a place where the American Baptist churches I grew up in became, in a very real sense, my extended family. I came of age looking up to the men in my congregation (including my paternal grandfather) as father-figures.
For that reason alone, men’s ministry has always been a vital part of my spiritual journey. But the Lord poured gasoline on my fire while I was leading a small struggling church in upstate New York. Through a series of Spirit-led events, the men of my church were captivated by the Promise Keepers movement. Over time, the entire congregation was revitalized as those men’s faith caught fire and they stepped up into leadership.
Over the years, the American Baptist Men of Pennsylvania and Delaware (ABMOPAD) have devoted significant attention to disaster relief projects and to a yearly conference focusing on discipleship and equipping men for ministry. Those events are a treasured legacy of ministry in our region, but the time has come to evaluate our priorities for the future. As you may have heard, the 2023 ABMOPAD Men’s Conference at Shippensburg in July has been canceled due to dwindling attendance and a lack of leadership manpower to support the event.
ABMOPAD President Rob McQue, ABMOPAD Chaplain Rev. Eric Kraihainzel, and several ABCOPAD staff members have met in the aftermath of that decision to explore steps going forward. We are calling for a “Vision Retreat” for the eastern side of the region to be held at Camp Ichthus in the Poconos (2880 Stagecoach Road in Palmerton, PA) on Friday, August 4 – Saturday, August 5. This retreat is aimed with an entirely different goal than the men’s gatherings held previously.
We are asking the pastors of American Baptist Churches in central and eastern Pennsylvania and Delaware to identify and invite leadership caliber men to join together for a time of prayer, inspiration, discussion, and vision casting for ABMOPAD ministry going forward. Expenses for this retreat are being largely underwritten by the generosity of ABCOPAD and the First Baptist Church of Bethlehem, so it will only cost $20.00 per man, including food and lodging.
We are hoping to launch a similar event for the western half of ABCOPAD sometime this fall or winter.