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Area leaders set goals for 2014
In the pulpit
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It’s another new year, and our county’s spiritual leaders are busy implementing goals to move their churches forward.
Pastor John E. Morse of the Pleasant Grove African Methodist Episcopal Church in Hinesville said the church’s theme for 2014 is, “Follow up and follow through.”  
“My goals are to increase spiritual growth and increase direct community involvement,” he said.  
Mike Buckley, pastor of the Westside Baptist Church in Hinesville since September 2012, stated that his goal is to see improvement in people’s relationship with God.
“I want to make sure people have the proper relationship with God. My job is to be a shepherd for the sheep,” he said. “I have to ensure the sheep are healthy. When I stand before God, He is not going to be concerned about the numbers, but whether the sheep are healthy.”
According to Pastor S. Dyann Robertson of the Thebes AME in Midway, her church plans to get out into the community.  
“We plan to visit the nursing home, the elderly and the sick and shut-in more,” she said. “Additionally, we intend to have more activities for the young people, and to go out and recapture former members.”
Pastor Tom Gardner of A New Beginning Church in Ludowici said his church’s directive focuses on the three powerful words, “I Am Persuaded.” Once a person is persuaded, he said, there is no stopping them; persuasion takes us past believing.
“This year, we are persuaded that we can double our efforts to reach the nearly 17,000 people in Long County,” he said. “Long County is our mission field. We would like to give to legitimate needs and outreach up to $40,000. Our goal is to better people’s lives, i.e., their church life, work life and home life. All of this can be accomplished by bringing people into a relationship with Jesus Christ, with love and goodness.”
Apostle Daisy Edwards of AGAPE Christian Fellowship of Hinesville said she plans to build upon her ministers’ training classes.  
“We are reaching out to new ministers to join us. We also plan to get our youth more involved in community outreach such as visiting the nursing home,” she said. “I would also love to fellowship more with other churches in the community. God wants us to come together.”
Dr. C. L. Anderson, who is pastor at Good Shepherd Missionary Baptist Church in Allenhurst, Greater Zachariah Baptist Church in Glennville and St. Luke Baptist Church, already has had a busy year.
“Prayerfully, we will bond more together as a church family, showing even more love and doing greater things in 2014,” he said. “We began our 21-day Daniel Fast on Jan. 5 and our consecration services on Jan. 6–9. We are trusting God to lead and guide us so that we can become more healthy and spiritual so that our lights may shine just a little brighter in 2014.”
“We are continuing our visits to the Coastal Manor Nursing Home in Ludowici and Glennville nursing home. Our combined churches’ leadership training is growing and we are making plans for the leadership retreat at the conclusion of the training in May. I also intend to start a jailhouse ministry in 2014,” Anderson added.

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