by Jenniffer WARDELL
NORTH SALT LAKE—It’s a chance to learn about and support missionary work around the world.
Abundant Life Assembly of God is holding their annual Missions Banquet on Jan. 27 at 6 p.m. at Eldredge Manor in Bountiful. The featured speaker will be Sarah Roberts, a former member of the congregation who is currently involved in missionary efforts. The following morning, Abundant Life will also hold a special Missions Service at 10:30 a.m. at their church, located in North Salt Lake.
“Assemblies of God have over 2,500 full-time career missionaries,” said Abundant Life Missions Director Julie Laub. “These are people who devote their whole lives to this.”
Though the full contingent of missionaries are supported by Assemblies of God churches worldwide, Abundant Life members personally support 35 missionaries and/or ministries in 26 countries around the world. In addition, they also support 17 missionaries working throughout the U.S., and local congregants will sometimes go on short-term mission trips.
Though the missionaries work to spread the church’s message, that’s far from their only purpose out in the field. The missionaries are in charge of a variety of service programs and opportunities, including Convoy of Hope, working with those who are dealing with addiction or who have been rescued from sex trafficking. Children and teenagers are the focus of many of these efforts.
“There are a lot of programs where schools and orphanages are built,” said Laub.
The Mission Banquet is held annually to keep the congregation informed of the mission efforts and let them discuss their goals for the upcoming year. In addition, the banquet provides an opportunity for those who aren’t members of the congregation to learn more about career missionaries and what they do.
“Especially if you live in Utah, the whole missionary concept is so different from what we do,” said Abundant Life Pastor Alex Lucero.
Roberts, who currently lives in Tennessee but remains involved with Abundant Life’s missionary efforts, will share her experiences helping children in Africa.
“She worked on getting a whole container shipped over full of books,” said Lucero.
The Sunday meeting will also have a featured speaker, local missionary Daran Lemon. Lemon is a member of Chi Alpha, a Christian fellowship with locations at colleges all over the U.S.
“He does missionary outreach at UVU,” said Laub.
She added that, of the U.S. missionaries Abundant Life supports, 12 of them are located in Utah. The program also donates locally to efforts such as the Bountiful Food Bank and providing Bibles for the jail.
“We believe that Utah is a very unique mission field,” she said.
The cost for the banquet is $15 per person. Tickets will be sold Jan. 21 in the church foyer. Eldredge Manor is located at 564 W. 400 North in West Bountiful. Abundant Life is located at 410 N. Main Street in North Salt Lake.
For more information, or to purchase tickets, call Abundant Life at 801-292-8617. The church office holds daytime hours throughout the week.