CLIO, MI – The First Baptist Church of Clio was started in the 1950’s, and has a long history of ministry in the state of Michigan. The church had reached an attendance of 500 or more over the years, and sponsored the starting of many of the churches of northern Michigan. It was a church that had a long historical legacy, but over time First Baptist lost it’s way. Time has a way of doing that if we aren’t careful.
Two years ago, FBC Clio had fallen to just 20 people on a typical Sunday. The remaining members had come to the point where it looked like they would not be able to afford to keep the doors open much longer. Longtime member, Tom Yost said, “When we first joined First Baptist in the 70’s, the church was vibrant, but over the years it has aged and not gracefully.” At that time, this last remnant made a bold choice, and voted to become a legacy church. That meant that the leadership would turn over control of the church to a group made of representatives of the association and Baptist State Convention of Michigan (BSCM).
That group led the church through an 18 month process of preparing itself to become a church replant. A church replant is when an existing church seeks a do-over of sorts in order to find new life and bring in new families. Genesee Baptist Association Director of Missions, Jim Marcus says, “By doing this, they were not just gaining the resources of the association, but also from the North American Mission Board (NAMB), and the Baptist State Convention of Michigan (BSCM).”
Now, First Baptist Clio has called a new pastor, John Bordeau, who was also selected by NAMB as a church replanter. Bordeau says, “I see this awesome support system (GBA, NAMB and BSCM), and they want to see a church grow. They want to see people come to Christ, and I absolutely love that heart that I have found here.” So now, FBC Clio is launching into a new chapter of its long history, and building on the legacy that was already there. Longtime member Yost says, “We have this beacon right in the center of Clio, and if we could have that light shine that would be fantastic.”
The 2016 goal for the “Sharing the Light” State Mission Offering is $90,000. Please consider your gifts to the offering to help support more churches like FBC Clio. For more information and resources to promote the offering, visit bscm.org/smo.