Now we’re cookin’

2016 Chili Cook Off BenefitTonight, beginning at 5PM and ending at 7PM, Central Baptist Church is hosting it’s second annual Chili Cook-Off. We’ll have eight different kinds of chili, a Bluegrass band, cornbread, desserts, and a whole lot of fun. If you want to come, there’s still time to buy tickets through Eventbrite. Tickets are $15 for adults and $7 for children 12 and under1.

The event benefits the Cedar’s of Lebanon campaign, which is attempting to raise a $2,020,000 endowment for Baptist Camp Lebanon by the year 2020. The camp is a very special place, and it’s a privilege to be part of its future.

One of the best aspects of this event, however, is how I’m not at it’s center. In many churches, if the pastor2 is not the one driving a project, it often does not gain enough momentum to be carried on to a successful completion. This is particularly true if the idea is a new thought which threatens to syphon energy from other favorite congregational projects.

The Chili cook off, however, was neither brain-stormed by me nor is it an adaptation of an previous congregational project3. Some people heard of the Cedars of Lebanon campaign, wanted to do something to support it, and let me know after they were determined to do it. It’s the type of thing which makes me very happy.

Not being at the center, however, does not mean I haven’t lent my support. I created the poster, with which I am very pleased, sold some tickets, and spread the word4. Tonight I’ll be taking pictures, and helping out where I can, but I’m not “in charge.” Really, it’s the way things should be.


  1. Eventbrite registration passes the fees on to the purchaser. This is because we want all moneys collected to go to the campaign. We hope you understand. 
  2. Or other staff member, if it’s a large church. 
  3. Traditionally, Central Baptist has actually resisted fund-raisers. A few have squeaked through, but not many. 
  4. My wife, on the other hand, currently has a delicious vegetarian chili cooking in two crock-pots and is making corn bread as I type. This is the type of person she is, and would be lending this type of support even if she wasn’t the “pastor’s wife.” I helped her by ineffectually opening some cans and getting things out of her way (including myself). 
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