What is FUEL?

This two-year, faith-raising initiative will allow us to make major capital improvements in new and existing communities to see lives transformed by Jesus. We want to invest in improved kids’ space at each of our campuses, create funds for a permanent Bainbridge location and a campus launch north of Binghamton, upgrade technology for our online campus, fund our ongoing mission, and pay down our existing mortgage debt.

And God Is Still Moving

In Berean’s 50 years we have grown from a Bible study with a couple dozen people to a movement of hundreds of people. In the last decade our church family has tripled in size, baptized nearly 400 people, launched over two dozen connect groups, and started two new campuses in Cincinnatus & Bainbridge. Greene and beyond is being transformed one community, one family, and one person at a time. We believe that God has placed us here, right now, for this purpose. We don’t want to become complacent and let this fire die out. Instead, we want to pour fuel on this burning hot fire and energize the transformation that God is bringing to our region.

One of our fastest-growing populations at Berean is kids. This exciting growth is highlighting the need to invest in our current and future facilities. Our desire is to create space that is attractive, safe, and capable of supporting even more growth.

As our region grows more and more thirsty for transformation, we want to be positioned to make inroads into communities to meet this need. Strategically placing campuses that serve as mission and community centers will allow us to reach more people with the gospel than ever before.

Modern technology makes it easier than ever before to connect with people near and far and one of our dreams is to take full advantage of this - from resources that enhance our worship gatherings to equipment that allows us to better communicate the message of Jesus to the world around us.

As we continue to adapt our methods, one thing remains the same: our mission. Berean Bible Church exists to make more and better Jesus followers. We want to place ourselves in the best possible position to embrace whatever challenges lie ahead and carry out this mission with excellence.

Our Goal: 2.75 Million Dollars
30% Complete (success)
100% Participation
100% Complete (success)

This is a vision only God can turn into reality.

But we trust a God who is able to do immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine. We’re asking every Berean to engage in a spiritual decision-making process that will lead to a financial commitment above and beyond your regular giving.

Biblical generosity isn’t about equal giving, it’s about equal sacrifice in proportion to the resources God has given you. It’s a journey that starts by asking “What can I afford to give?” but grows your faith by asking “What does God want to give through me?”

Giving is a journey that everyone is on. 

The Giving Ladder is a tool designed to help you assess your next step in this journey. It’s not focused on amounts or percentages. Rather, it’s focused on the attitudes of our hearts – because generosity says more about your heart than your wallet. And because everyone’s journey as a follower of Jesus is unique, everyone’s journey as a giver is unique. But no matter what your journey looks like, it’s ultimately a process of trusting God. Our prayer is that God will meet you on this journey and grow your faith in new and exciting ways.

Take Your Next Step on the Giving Ladder

As we enter this exciting new season at Berean, we want you to prayerfully consider your next step in your financial generosity. For some, that might mean giving for the first time. For others, that might mean giving a larger gift than you’ve given before
or stepping out in faith to give sacrificially. Our hope in this season is not simply to see funds raised to fuel ministry, but to see the faith of Bereans grow and be rewarded in new and exciting ways.

Emerging Giver

Someone who has never given to Berean before but is willing to take that step.

Next Step Choose to make your first gift to Berean.

Occasional Giver

Someone who gives to Berean but doesn’t necessarily have an intentional plan for regular giving.

Next Step Include a giving category in your budget. Set up automated giving at bbctransform.org/give.

Consistent Giver

Someone who has chosen to make giving a consistent part of their life.

Next Step Identify areas where you can sacrifice to increase generosity.

Sacrificial Giver

Someone who is going beyond “What am I supposed to give?” to “What am I not giving and why?”

Next Steps Choose to cap spending and saving in order to allocate more funds for giving.

Legacy Giver

Someone who is orienting their entire life around the question, “How much can I give away to grow the Kingdom of God?”

Next Steps Be strategic with finances, retirement, estate planning, etc. Share your giving journey with others to encourage them.

Frequently Asked Questions

One fund combines the capital projects and the projected budget for the next two years into one fund. This allows flexibility for spending on priorities as the money comes in, based on needs and growth.
 In the last ten years, Berean has grown from a single church of 250 people to a multi-site church with four campuses and 800 people. With five worship gatherings each week, plus one online gathering, we are helping to make more & better Jesus followers across our region and beyond. As a growing church, we have identified a number of projects that could fuel greater transformation over the next two years. Instead of being comfortable and content with the people we’ve reached, we desire to invest in reaching more people for Jesus. After all, Jesus’ heart is to leave the ninety-nine sheep to pursue the one lost sheep. 
Our kids’ space, Bainbridge building project, and coaching will be our first project priorities in 2020. Next will be music team investments and online technology. Our Hillcrest launch fund and debt retirement will be our less urgent priorities for money given in 2021. 
Our current ministries will continue with even greater consistency and impact, knowing they will be funded for the next two years.
We could continue renting in Bainbridge and have rental options be the model for future campuses. We could also lower the age of our Sunday kids’ ministry so fewer kids are coming into our kids’ areas. While both options are possible long- term, neither are ideal. Rental campuses are relatively inexpensive, but require us to do “mobile” church, requiring a high amount of volunteer labor before and after worship gatherings. It limits our ability to have themed space conducive to worship, fellowship, and kids’ ministry, and to have a local meeting or office location in that community during the week or for special events. Additionally, when technology needs to be reset each week, it leads to more inconsistency and decreased quality. Lowering the age of our Sunday kids’ ministry would also lead to distracted parents trying to be part of the worship gathering and fewer kids being taught with age-appropriate mentoring. 
We believe that there is good debt and bad debt. God warns against co-signing but does not forbid debt. Some Scripture seems to encourage investment debt. Bad debt is on depreciating assets like a vehicle or household items. Good debt is on appreciating assets like property or facilities that grow in value and self-collateralize. If we had waited to build our new worship center until we had raised the needed funds, we likely still wouldn’t have the full amount and the construction cost would have risen each year with inflation, making the goal further out of reach. Like many homebuyers and business owners, we believe mortgage or investment debt can be essential, but we desire to pay down debt and limit the interest we pay.
When Berean began expansion construction in 2014, we took out a $1.5 million construction loan. A year later, we paid off $400,000 and converted the construction loan into a $1.1 million mortgage. Five years later, we owe about $750,000 on our mortgage. Our monthly mortgage payment is $8,651.45, less than 8% of our monthly income. If we keep paying our monthly payment, we will owe a balloon payment of $400,000 at the end of 2024. We would love to refinance our mortgage to fund the construction of a new Bainbridge property, striving to keep our monthly payments close to the current payment while aggressively paying down the principle on our debt.
We will tally the pledges and be able to determine the level of funding for our projects and budget over the next two years. An accurate count of projected giving is essential to having clarity about our budget and spending goals.
We will not call the police on you if you need to change your commitment! We understand that circumstances change and expect that some will need to adjust their pledge during the two years, while others may jump in to give and make up the difference.
December 8th will be a special Sunday to launch this fund. Starting that day, you can give online or in the regular offering bowls on Sundays. If you want to give before then, simply write “Fuel” on the check memo or online gift.
You may not be in a season of life where you have much to give, but we encourage everyone to choose an amount that would be sacrificial and bring you joy. If giving money is not an option, we still encourage you to give of your time and prayers. We need people willing to bathe these projects in prayer, and need people willing to roll up their sleeves and assist us with demolition, renovation, and finishing and painting.