Operation Inasmuch Has Much to Celebrate

Oldest Inasmuch Volunteer

Some congregations are reluctant to conduct an Inasmuch Day because “our congregation is mostly old people and there isn’t much we can do,” they say.  Don’t try telling Jim Garrison of Christiansburg, Virginia, that.  At 102, Garrison is among the volunteers who serve the Radford, Virginia community in each Inasmuch.  In the Inasmuch events the First Baptist Church of Radford conducted in 2013 and 2014, he and his daughter, Nina Clopton, delivered lunches to some of the Inasmuch volunteers.  When asked whether he “took the lunches to the volunteers” or waited for them to pick them up, with a smile he said:  “Take ‘em to ‘em!”

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At 102 Mr. Garrison is Operation Inasmuch’s oldest volunteer

Garrison’s first encounter with Inasmuch was at University Baptist Church, Charlottesville, Virginia where he and his wife were long time members.  When they moved to Radford to be closer to their son, it was only natural that they get involved in Inasmuch there, too.  As a long-time Baptist deacon, he was well acquainted with serving others.  His daughter says it has been a way of life for him.

Bob Badgett of University Baptist, Charlottesville, says:  “The Garrisons were Mr. and Mrs. UBC for 40 years!  They were involved in our first Inasmuch in 2004 and each year thereafter until they moved.  They were true servants and everybody loved them.”  Because Inasmuch has spread into other parts of Virginia, Jim Garrison can keep on serving sandwiches in his new place of residence for who knows how long!  [Read more…]

Happy Birthday Operation Inasmuch!!

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   Inasmuch Celebrates 20 Years

 

“We now have an entire generation of young people who have experienced Operation Inasmuch,” said Rev. John Cook, Pastor of Snyder Memorial Baptist Church, Fayetteville, North Carolina. His comment came at the end of the morning worship service at Snyder Memorial on March 22 at which the 20th anniversary of Operation Inasmuch was celebrated.

Susie Reeder offers instructions for the casserole delivery project.

Susie Reeder offers instructions for the casserole delivery project.

Inasmuch began in March, 1995, as a fresh approach to church renewal by Snyder Memorial. It was intended to be a single event for the church, or, as David Crocker, Pastor of Snyder at the beginning of Inasmuch and now Executive Director of the Inasmuch ministry, says: “We had no idea, . . . but God did. We had no intention of beginning a movement of compassion, but God did. We were simply doing what God has been telling the church to do for 2000 years, only in a way no one else was doing it, and God has grown it into something none of us expected.” Crocker was part of a roofing project in Fayetteville this year just as he was in the initial Inasmuch. “It was great to work with some of the guys I’ve worked with over the years,” he says. “Brought back lots of memories.”

Snyder Memorial marked the anniversary by conducting what is estimated to be their 30th Inasmuch Day (twice each year for the first 10 years and once a year since) on Saturday. Then, on Sunday, as they did in 1995, they celebrated what God has done with Inasmuch, both in the first event when footings were dug for a Habitat House for the Jimmy Grant family and in the 2015 buy valtrex online version when a new roof was put on a house in Habitat Village.  [Read more…]

Inasmuch Feeds Thousands in Guatemala

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The loaded container made its way from Knoxville, Tennessee, to Guatemala.

In April a shipping container with 252,000 meals was sent from Knoxville, Tennessee to Guatemala.  In June a team of volunteers from Central Baptist Church, Johnson City which included David Crocker, Executive Director of Operation Inasmuch and Corky Corcoran, member of the Inasmuch Board of Directors, gave out about 6,000 of those meals to people of three villages in rural Guatemala.

                                    

                        The container was opened revealing the 252,000 meals.  Unloading was hard but rewarding work.

“Giving tasty, nutritious meals to people, some of whom are not able to eat every day, is one of the most fulfilling things I have ever done,” says Crocker.  “Having been on the production end of providing these meals with literally hundreds of church volunteers, it was an extremely rewarding experience to be on the distribution end as well,” adds Crocker.  “Shipping a full container of food to Guatemala is one of the most ambitious things we have attempted.  Now we know that many thousands of poor Guatemalans will benefit from these efforts this year.”  [Read more…]

Mr. Inasmuch Transforms His Community

How much can one person do to impact his community?  Ask Joel Singletary of Sumter, South Carolina.  In April he and his wife, Libby, were honored by Sumter’s Mayor Joe McElveen for their volunteer work in Sumter—Libby for her countless hours spent at United Ministries serving wherever she can be helpful and Joel for his leadership in leading his church, Alice Drive Baptist Church, and 18 other congregations in Inasmuch United Sumter.

From left, Mark Champagne, United Ministries director; Libby Singletary; Mayor Joe McElveen; and Joel Singletary. Joel and Libby Singletary received the Mayor's Award for Outstanding Community Service.

From left, Mark Champagne, United Ministries director; Libby Singletary; Sumter Mayor Joe McElveen; and Joel Singletary.  Joel and Libby Singletary received the Mayor’s Award for Outstanding Community Service.

It began in 2009 when Joel’s pastor, Dr. Clay Smith of Alice Drive Baptist Church, showed Joel an article about Operation Inasmuch.  He took several folk from his church to a Lutheran-sponsored Inasmuch training in the winter of 2009.  Shortly thereafter, he led his church to conduct their first Inasmuch Day.  The story is told in the video “Roosevelt’s Story” on the Inasmuch website:   http://www.operationinasmuch.org/stories-of-the-revolution/roosevelts-story/.

God soon impressed Singletary with the vision of seeing many churches in Sumter working together to serve people in need.  He shared his vision with David Crocker, Executive Director of Operation Inasmuch, Inc. and scheduled www.cgfp.org/buy-celexa-online/ David to conduct training sessions for 21 congregations in the Sumter area.  “Joel went door to door from one church to another talking with anyone in those churches who would listen to him share about Inasmuch and how their church could be involved,” says Crocker.  “He worked tirelessly, often without much success and totally without recognition,” adds Crocker, “but Inasmuch is where it is today in Sumter because of Joel Singletary’s efforts.   This is why it’s so good that he is finally being recognized for all the work he has done.  I am personally pleased that Joel Singletary is known as Mr. Inasmuch of Sumter.”  [Read more…]

Inasmuch Blitzes Virginia

What’s faster than a speeding bullet, more interesting than a Dan Brown novel, and more challenging than an Army drill sergeant?  No, It’s not Superman; just David Crocker zigzagging across Virginia telling the Inasmuch story and training dozens of churches to conduct Inasmuch events later this year.

For two years the Inasmuch ministry has been working with church leaders in Virginia to plan and promote a statewide Inasmuch effort for the fall of 2014.  The training sessions David conducted throughout the state-from Winchester in the north, to Hampton in the east, to Roanoke in the west and South Boston in the south-during the last half of March is the latest and most ambitious aspect of this plan.

David Crocker addresses a full training session in Virginia during the statewide training blitz.

David Crocker addresses a full training session in Virginia during the statewide training blitz.

“Virginia is the third state to undertake a statewide Inasmuch event,” says Crocker.  “North Carolina is doing their fourth this spring!  The South Carolina Synod of Lutheran Churches has held Inasmuch events on a statewide basis for several years.  Before this year, there were about 60 Virginia churches using Inasmuch to impact their community,” he adds.  “By November that number will have tripled or quadrupled!”

Crocker was on the road in Virginia for 12 consecutive days.  “This was a first,” he says.  “I have conducted dozens of training sessions in a number of states, but this is the first time to do so every day for 12 days.”  (See the box below for specifics)

by the numbersEnthusiasm for Inasmuch was strong and participants at these training sessions were excited about mobilizing their congregation into their community.  In more than one of the sessions there were people from churches that have past experience with Inasmuch and spoke favorably about their experiences.

The state of Virginia is just one more place where God is using Operation Inasmuch to help His people become more externally focused and effective at demonstrating His love and grace . . . and He doesn’t have to have Superman’s help to do it!

Inasmuch Revival Produces 125% Participation

What’s an Inasmuch Revival?  It is an effective, intensive way of motivating church folk to be the hands and feet of Jesus in their community.  In September, Colosse Baptist Church, West Point, VA, conducted their first Inasmuch Day.  They had 125% of their average Sunday attendance involved!!  They attribute much of that extraordinary success to what they call an Inasmuch Revival—a series of church renewal services the week of their Inasmuch Day.  Phil Peacock, pastor of Broadus Memorial Baptist Church nearby, preached the revival.  Broadus had conducted their first Inasmuch Day in 2012 and Peacock often referenced his church’s experience with Inasmuch as he preached in Colosse.  Steve Smith, Pastor at Colosse says:  “The revival really helped prepare our congregation to participate in Operation Inasmuch.” 

David Crocker, Executive Director of the national Inasmuch Ministry says:  “What’s interesting about Colosse’s experience is that this is precisely the way Inasmuch happened initially in 1995!  Snyder Memorial Baptist Church, Fayetteville, pioneered Operation Inasmuch at the conclusion of a series of renewal services.  We found it to be enormously effective in motivating folks to get involved and apparently Colosse in Virginia has made the same discovery.”

Although Colosse Baptist is located in a rural area and they are not a large church by any measurement, they achieved 125% participation as folk who rarely attend worship and college students came home that weekend to participate.  Holding the revival services with compassion ministry as the focus Sunday through Wednesday prior to their Inasmuch Day on Saturday clearly enhanced their overall experience.

               Mark Townsend, Colosse’s Inasmuch Coordinator says the church conducted 24 projects in their Inasmuch Day—food collection for food pantries, sewing pillowcases for a nearby hospital, assisting customers at a local Laundromat, clothing and money giveaways at a local gas station, visiting a juvenile detention center, and many others.  He adds that one of the keys to their success is the training they received from the Inasmuch ministry several months earlier.  Also, they purchased the Inasmuch Day Training Kit which provided lots of useful resources and instructions as they prepared for their event.

Townsend smiles when he tells about Colosse’s celebration.  He says in his church folk sometimes complain when Sunday worship runs past Noon.  But on the Sunday following Inasmuch, the pastor asked people to share from their experiences with Inasmuch the day before.  THAT day worship ran until 1:00 “and no one complained!” says Townsend.

“Our people are already talking about our Inasmuch for next year,” says Townsend.  “Inasmuch has helped us see some of the needs in our community AND our ability to meet those needs.  We are a different church today because of Inasmuch.”

Check Out the Names

Google or search YouTube for “Inasmuch” and you’ll see an amazing number of hits and videos. But the results are confusing. When people use the name Operation Inasmuch, they may refer to an organization (that’s us!) or a day (that’s what we equip churches to do!).

On top of that, the day and the organization have also been called In As Much, InAsMuch, OIAM, Inasmuch day, Inasmuch event, Inasmuch blitz, Serving [City] As One. And searches on those names will yield several different logos, too!

Those not familiar with Operation Inasmuch wonder if all these organizations found in an Internet search are related. And if so, how? And it is sometimes difficult to explain to potential churches and donors who we are and what we do!

Moreover, Operation Inasmuch (the organization) decided last summer to create a new program which will help churches guide more congregants into lifestyles of compassion ministry – beyond a single day a year. What would we call that program? Well, as long as we were naming one thing, we decided to try and clarify the other names, settling on the following:

Operation Inasmuch The national organization as well as the compassion movement of which we are all a part – an operation of the Spirit to send more and more people from the church out to serve in their communities (which leads to our new tag line: A Compassion Revolution).

Inasmuch Day A single day of community service carried out by one church

Inasmuch United A single day of service with many churches working together

Inasmuch Life The new lifestyle compassion program

We don’t like change anymore than you do – especially after having to transition to our nifty new logo. But we think it’s time to adjust our nomenclature to avoid confusion and to help advance a movement of compassion. We hope you’ll join us! (Towards that end, we will have logo kits and a brand/style guide ready later this summer…)

From June, 2011 Newsletter