Your GRR is pleased to offer the matching grant opportunities for both mission and interns during 2015.  Prayerfully discern if one of these might be appropriate for your church: Mission Grant | Intern Grant


Russell Zehr LicensingGraymont and El Paso First Baptist Churches License Russell Zehr

Russell Zehr, a student at Northern Baptist Seminary and Worship Coordinator at El Paso First Baptist Church was licensed for Gospel ministry on Sunday, January 11 during a joint worship service of the two churches hosted by his home church, Graymont FBC. Pastors Patrick Embley (Graymont) and Tim Smith (El Paso) preached. Russell Jackson, retired ABC pastor shared the benediction. Russell Zehr led a combined choir of the two churches.

Russell Zehr participated in the music ministries of Peoria First Baptist Church during the time he completed his bachelors degree in music at Bradley University. He has shared his musical gifts with both Area III and GRR annual gatherings.

In an e-mail to Richard Ricks, GRR Associate Minister with Areas I and III, Russell shared, "It's been an amazing journey so far and I am very excited to see what God has in store for my future. I can't help but think of all the people from Graymont, Peoria and El Paso who have helped and encouraged me in my walk of faith. I am extremely thankful for people like Tim Smith, Patrick Embley, Cheri Grizzard, Tom Bayes, and Russell Jackson..."


Alternative Ministerial Education

Read this summary to start exploring if this track of study, practice, and networking may be what God would have you start in this new year. Churches, is this something that you could recommend to one of those of your congregation that you sense God is calling into pastoral ministry?


Area III: Discipleship Summit

Saturday, March 7, 2015 hosted by Bloomington FBC (register online | register by mail)

Find additional areas' meetings information.

Ruth Haley BartonPursuing God's Will Together
Summit Presenter: Ruth Haley Barton

Ruth has been a student, a practitioner, a teacher and a leader in the area of Christian spirituality and spiritual formation for twenty years. 

Ruth holds a Doctor of Divinity from Northern Theological Seminary (Lombard, IL), along with a Bachelor of Arts from Wheaton College (IL) and Master's studies at Loyola University Chicago Institute for Pastoral Studies.   She's also a student of family systems theory as it relates to congregational life (Lombard Mennonite Peace Center)...read full biography.

Medical Insurance Information and Options for Pastors / Churches

Since MMBB discontinued offering medical insurance through CIGNA and the piecemeal implementation of the Affordable Care Act, there has been a lot of confusion, misinformation, and continuing evolution in the field of medical insurance.  While not claiming to be experts in this, we share this information with the hope that you might find it helpful. (read more...)

Could Your Church - or Pastor - Survive a Tax Audit?

Could your church or non-profit organization survive an IRS audit? Many clergy and churches are asking this question today be-cause financial accountability in churches and religious organizations is such an important and timely topic. Many clergy are finding themselves facing IRS audits. It is imperative that those responsible for your organization’s finances have the information they need to protect your exempt status and your right to accept donations. (2 Brochures available: Importance of Church Accounting and Church Accountability. These are made available from Summit Tax Accounting (formerly Patterson Accounting).

Speakers' Presentations: GRR Annual 2014 Assembly

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Brian Romanowski on Gifford Habitat Rebuild

Don Ng (Friday & Saturday Worship)