New Orleans is extremely important to Louisiana & our efforts to reach & resource churches there should be of highest priority.
- 21% of the Population of Louisiana live in the New Orleans Baptist Association’s five parishes. (991,000 is the latest estimate)
- Includes Louisiana’s second largest & most diverse Parish – Jefferson
- Louisiana’s largest metro area, with over 1.2 Million living in the Governments statistical area.
- One of the United States’ most influential ports & tourism industries.
- And an often quoted fact: the North American Mission Board’s original charter mentions the necessity of reaching New Orleans.
How are we doing at reaching the Big Easy?
- Church to Population Ratio: 1/7,929
- % of the Population attending Worship in an SBC Church: Only 2.1%
- % Evangelical Population: 11%
- Unaffiliated Population (Nones): 432,270
The churches of New Orleans have endured much and are a strong lot that do great work reaching its population. And the story God has began writing through church planting over the last few years is historic and amazing.
- In 2012, New Orleans became a Send City in the North American Mission Board’s Send City Strategy & George Ross became the Send City Coordinator.
- In May 2013, we held the first Send City Strategy meeting at Celebration Church to coordinate strategy & try to open a door for church planting to make a difference in the area.
- Since that time, 21 new churches have been planted, resulting in 811 new commitments to Christ & 316 baptisms! And we’ve got at least 6 more in development for this year.
- Church Plants have gone from 4 in 2012, to 2 in 2013, 4 in 2014, 7 in 2015, & 8 going on 14 this year!
- Louisiana Baptists have now gone over $1 million of cooperative funding invested in New Orleans for Church Planting since the beginning of Send New Orleans in 2012. Not including NAMB or Georgia Barnette State Missions Offering grants for startup & building renovation cost.
- A wide door of opportunity has indeed opened for the next generation of churches to be planted in New Orleans.
From Lane Corley:
New Orleans is a tough place to minister and we have some incredible young families laboring to plant literally in some of Louisiana’s toughest neighborhoods. I’m inspired by their courage and hard work and pray for them by name on a weekly basis. I also thank God for George and Joy Ross. George has given all his energy and influence to enlisting his network across the south to support and sponsor church planting in New Orleans. I don’t know of another person who could have brought the number and type of churches together for this effort as George has. And as those who planted virtually alone, Heather and I have been a bit envious of the resources and fellowship that planters today have across the state, but especially in New Orleans, as Joy and George have pastored & coached the planter families with great care. I’m grateful for New Orleans Baptist Association leadership that have accommodated the Send City strategy & have opened their arms to church planters moving to the city with a vision to reach people. Since I started working for Louisiana Baptists in late 2013, the need to resource and plant churches in New Orleans has been emphasized and commended by leaders across our state. I’m glad that our budget reflects that. This year alone over $600,000 will go toward ministry in New Orleans Baptist Association, including ministry at the Port, compassion ministries across the city, and church health efforts through the Association. Grateful for the generosity of Louisiana Baptist churches and our state Missions Support Committee that have said Amen! to these efforts. I believe we’re well on our way to a church planting movement in New Orleans and Louisiana. Looking forward to the future!
Follow much of what is happening in church planting in New Orleans on the Send New Orleans Facebook page. And you can get info on our planters in New Orleans by checking out the Planter profiles at NAMB.net.