At CSU, we highly value the importance of the local church. For 20 years, Project Jerusalem, a ministry of Baptist Bible Seminary, planted local churches and trained many local church leaders. We’re happy to say, with the legacy of 10 churches planted, Project Jerusalem fulfilled its mission in Northeast Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
Project Jerusalem History
Project Jerusalem was organized by then-BBS dean Dr. Howard Bixby and Dr. Rich McGhee. The ministry grew under 20 years of visionary leadership by Dr. Ken Davis, who recently retired from his role as a full-time professor.
Project Jerusalem was a unique training strategy of Baptist Bible Seminary that partnered BBS students with churches and missions agencies to plant new churches in this region. Students gained practical, hands-on training for launching and growing a new church. As 10 new churches were planted, BBS students received excellent training and mentoring from faculty and church leaders.
Exciting news about a Project Jerusalem Alumnus
Dan Nichols, a CSU alumnus, current CSU doctoral student, adjunct faculty member and ABWE missionary led in planting one of those Project Jerusalem churches – Restored Church. Now, Nichols is executive director of the newly established Northeast Collaborative, a resourcing network of churches planned to launch later this year.
The organization will “collaborate with pastors and churches to multiply healthy plants, campuses, and revitalizations in Northeast America” according to their website. They want to empower people to lead and launch healthy churches, which is something CSU is happy to get behind.
Partnerships in Church Planting
Collaboration is a major part of this new organization. Already, several Clarks Summit University alumni and retired BBS professors, such as Bixby and Davis, are working together to make the empowering partnership concept a success. Many alumni are volunteering because they believe in this collaborative concept, and CSU alumna Marissa (Gall) Miller is on staff as administrative assistant.
Although Project Jerusalem fulfilled its mission to establish church-planting churches in this region, BBS plans to continue supporting church-planting and revitalizing efforts by collaborating with NEC, which will cover an even greater geographic area. One avenue for collaboration is the plan to make scholarship funds available for qualified pastors whom NEC identifies as church-planters who would benefit greatly from a BBS education. With completely online degrees available through BBS, the programs would allow these church-planters and revitalizers to continue in their ministries while gaining the theological education they need to minister most effectively for Christ.
More about the Northeast Collaborative
We’re thankful God has used the seminary’s Project Jerusalem to grow His church over the past 20 years. Anyone who has followed and loved the mission of Project Jerusalem will want to learn more about NEC here.