BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (ABP) — The Cooperative Baptist Fellowship commissioned two career missionary couples and seven other short-term missionaries during a celebration of missions at its general assembly June 25.
Jade and Shelah Acker of Birmingham, Ala., will serve in West Africa. Dianne and Shane McNary of Arkadelphia, Ark., will work among Romany peoples in Slovakia.
Seven two-year Global Service Corps personnel will work in locations ranging from Los Angeles and New York to Berlin and Brussels.
The 11, commissioned during a worship service on the second evening of the three-day assembly, brings the total of CBF Global Missions field personnel to 146. CBF global missions workers are concentrated among “unreached” people groups — those least exposed to the gospel — as well as marginalized and neglected people.
Janee Angel of Effingham, Ill., will work in Brussels, Belgium; Penny Mann of Wilmington, N.C., will work in Pec, Hungary; and Lindsay McClintock of Tyler, Tex., will work in Berlin, Germany.
Jesse Loper of Oklahoma City, Okla., will work in the “Hell's Kitchen” section of New York City, and Amy Armstrong, a graduate of Gardner-Webb University and Beeson Divinity School, will work in Los Angeles. Becky and Doug Shenton, from Fredrick, Md., were called to serve among Iranians and Afghans in New Jersey.
Each candidate or couple was introduced by a video vignette. Afterward, a representative from a supportive church offered a blessing, and a representative from one of the CBF mission teams welcomed the new personnel. The commissioning service concluded with prayer as participants laid hands on the missionaries.
Earlier, missionary speakers and short videos emphasized needs associated with the AIDS crisis in sub-Saharan Africa, opportunities in Southeast Asia, and success stories from CBF's rural poverty initiative designed to impact the 20 poorest counties in America.
CBF now has 146 field personnel in its worldwide mission force.
Amy Derrick, CBF associate coordinator for Global Service Corps, envoys and student missions, preached the commissioning sermon. She said all Christians are called, though not as dramatically as some in the Bible.
“Burning bush or not, we are all called,” she said. “We are called to relationship, called to what God has uniquely gifted us to be, called beyond ourselves, called to love, and called to be the presence of Christ. We really are on holy ground because God is calling each of us. How will we respond? We may run, we may spectate or we may choose to commit.”