FCBC 2025 Vision
Fort Caroline Baptist Church has a rich heritage of serving our community for forty-two years. From humble beginnings with eight families to hundreds of families today, God has blessed this church. Yet over time our passion for the lost has faded and our focus has turned inward. Despite our loving members and active ministries a penetrating and honest assessment recently revealed that our church is no longer growing. This sad reality is seen in stagnant worship attendance and declining baptisms. It is tragic that when our community is more spiritually lost than ever our church is not united in reaching these young families for Christ. The significant issues of evangelism, strategy, leadership, and facilities hindering our reach and impact can and must change.
How will FCBC foster revitalization?
Over the next five years, we will become one church passionately united and focused on reaching the spiritually lost in our community through the Gospel of Jesus.
Just as our nation galvanized and sacrificed during World War II for a cause greater than any individual, we will come together for the great cause of saving souls. The Gospel is for all people. We will share it with everyone, but like missionaries, we will seek to reach the largest demographic in our community. God has placed us in a community where 65% of our neighbors are under the age of 44. Over 80% of our neighbors are not churched. This breaks God’s heart, and it breaks ours, too. God has uniquely gifted us to reach the 28-43 year old parent who is open spiritually, but not churched. These parents are dual income professionals from diverse backgrounds and ethnicities. They need Jesus and they need a church that will help them grow in Jesus.
First, to become one church for the lost we see our church uniting to…
1. Celebrate and mentor those who have been transformed by the love of Jesus.
· We envision 2,025 people equipped to B.L.E.S.S. their neighbors. B.L.E.S.S. is not a program; it is a natural approach to prayer and evangelism for Christ-followers of all ages. Begin with prayer. Listen with care. Eat together. Serve your neighbor in love. Share your story. Imagine 2,025 people having at least two gospel conversation each year for five years. That equals 20,250 people who will hear the life-transforming message of Jesus! Lives, families, our church, and our community will be transformed.
· We envision 250 baptisms. We see 50 people each year choosing to publically declare their faith in Jesus through baptism. We will celebrate their new faith with them, and we will help them grow in Jesus.
· We envision Multigenerational, single style worship that is compelling to a new generation that desires to be loved and mentored by the older generations. One of the drawbacks of offering two styles of worship is we have segregated our members by age. We are not functioning as one church for the lost. We essentially have two separate congregations. The older generation is primarily at the early service, while most of the young families are at the later services. This is not how the family of God should function. The Bible commands the older adults to mentor the younger adults. The younger people of our church and community are longing for vital relationships with people older than themselves. They need and want our church to be an extended family to them. Our senior adults want to make a difference for Jesus. They want to be included in the mission of reaching others for Jesus. We envision our older members gladly sacrificing fifteen minutes of their preferred music each Sunday for an eternal impact of reaching the younger generation for Christ. Imagine looking around a Sunday morning worship service at FCBC and seeing a room full of people of all ages praising Jesus together. Imagine grandparents worshipping with their children and grandchildren. Imagine a growing vibrant church that lives on for generations.
Second, to become one church for the lost we see our church coming together to…
2. Expand our reach and impact in Jacksonville.
· We envision Investing 10,000 hours and $100,000 through community partners. We will help people in our community reach higher for the life they deserve. We will work with organizations in our community who are helping people in need. We will partner rather than pioneer. Whether it is rescuing women from human trafficking, feeding the hungry, serving the homeless, assisting veterans, or helping orphans, we will demonstrate that we are interested in what we can give to our community, not what we can take.
· We envision Building a new worship center and expanded kid’s wing. Our current worship center was not designed for the church we are today. The lack of a common gathering space, the low ceiling, the small restrooms, narrow hallways, and the curb appeal limit our effectiveness in providing a place to worship and spend time together. A common theme we hear from people outside our church is that we look like a small traditional church. We see a worship center that is designed for modern worship needs, that is open and inviting, and that is cost-effective to construct and maintain. The seating capacity will be slightly larger than our current facility because we value relationships over crowds. We envision expanding our kid’s wing due to the increased numbers of children and families we will reach.
· We envision Going Multisite and launching 2 church plants. Once we have constructed a worship center we will be out of room on our nine acres. We see this as an opportunity rather than a problem. By launching another worship site in our city, and by planting two new churches in the next five years we will expand our reach in Jacksonville. We can replicate the same intimate, yet vibrant, church life model that makes FCBC unique. We envision hundreds of new people being reached for Christ as we reach beyond the limits of our property.
We Invite You to Join Us Into This Vision
This is a God-sized vision! It will be impossible to fulfill without two essential components. We need an outpouring of God’s power in our lives, and we need a God-honoring unity among our members. Jesus prayed for our unity when he prayed to the Father, “I am in them and you are in me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that you sent me and that you love them as much as you love me.”
Our Pastor and leaders invite you into this vision!
We will see our vision of ONE CHURCH For The Lost become a reality by the grace of God and for the glory of God. We will give our prayers, time, and money to make it happen.
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