The following strategic plan aims for good stewardship of the Fishkill Baptist Church ministry. This plan focuses on foundational issues. A tactical plan will follow with actions we intend to take in light of the priorities listed in the strategic plan. To understand the process that led to this strategic plan and the reasons that have produced it, see the sheet entitled, “Key Questions about Our Strategic Planning.”
OUR STRATEGIC POSITION
The following are core distinctives that unite our activities.
1. WE ARE UPWARD FOCUSED Worship is the prime purpose of the church because it is our eternal purpose. Our main mission now is to make disciples, which means making more worshipers and making more mature worshipers as we depend on God to work through us.
2. WE ARE CHRIST-CENTERED AND GOSPEL-SATURATED We know God the Father through God the Son as God the Holy Spirit enlightens our hearts. Knowing Christ better is our never-ending pursuit. The gospel of salvation by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, is prominent in all we do. God’s love compels us to love him in return and then to love people inside and outside of our fellowship.
3. WE ARE BIBLE AND PRAYER DRIVEN God’s inspired Word is our source and standard for truth. We go beyond simply using the Bible; we ask God to use the whole Bible to make us holy. Prayer is our means of power for our mission. We especially value prayer by the gathered church.
4. WE ARE HEALTH CONSCIOUS We measure success by growth in spiritual vitality much more than by statistical increase. We are deeply concerned about the spiritual health of individuals, married couples, families, and the church as a whole. We reject isolation in the church and between churches. We embrace community and mutual accountability.
5. WE ARE HISTORICALLY ROOTED AND CULTURALLY ENGAGED We value a working knowledge of the rich doctrinal and devotional resources of our heritage. It helps keep us from falsehood and fads which promise progress but cannot deliver. We strive to understand and to respond to the philosophical and behavioral currents of our culture. We equip believers to bring gospel truth and grace to bear on the needs of our local community and our world.
OUR STRATEGIC PRIORITIES
In order to be healthy, we will commit our best time and resources to the following priorities over the next three years. These priorities emerge from the above statements. They also reflect the order of the four elements of devotion in Acts 2:42. The elements are the teaching (#1), the fellowship (#2-5), the bread (#6), the prayers (#7).
1. TEACH THE HISTORIC CHRISTAN FAITH IN A GOD-CENTERED WAY Teaching is fundamental; especially teaching the gospel the apostles proclaimed. We will teach the Bible in context, for the purpose of holiness, and we will make good use of historic resources. The Lord has specially gifted our church with people well versed in presenting, explaining and defending the faith. We will equip our people (especially youth) to identify falsehood and to speak to all (churched and unchurched people) with God’s grace and truth.
2. STRENGTHEN CONNECTIONS IN THE BODY THROUGH MUTUAL MINISTRY The early church devoted themselves to the fellowship and we must be similarly devoted. While church programs are often fine, we believe it is healthier to rely less on programs and more on facilitating person-to-person connections and service. We will do more to invite newcomers into the life of the church. We will seek to expand cooperative ministry with other local churches, particularly in the CB Northeast region and with our area CB cluster group. We plan to leverage technology better to introduce the beliefs and ministry of FBC, to evangelize, to disciple believers, and to reinforce bonds of fellowship.
3. IMPROVE LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT We will invest greater time and energy in leadership development. Developing healthy, trained leaders promotes long-term health.
4. BUILD FAMILY MINISTRY Families with young children are a strong segment of our demographic. We will seek fruitful ways to build healthy families.
5. INCREASE OUR LOCAL AND GLOBAL REACH We will develop ways of going out into the community to serve the community. We will also seek to offer help at our church to provide connection points between the community and our church family. We will seek to increase our congregation’s direct participation in world missions and in the life of the persecuted church.
6. ENHANCE OUR COMMUNION PRACTICE We will seek to adjust our practice of the Lord’s Table to reflect better the prominence of the breaking of the bread in Acts 2:42.
7. EXPAND OUR PRAYER CULTURE Devotion to prayer is fundamental for individuals and for the body. Corporate prayer is the most neglected aspect of church ministry in American evangelicalism. We will continue to draw more people into prayer, especially in ways that go beyond typical, limited associations. We will also seek to expand the role of prayer in our worship services.