In this episode, we welcome back to the podcast David Peterson, small-town pastor extraordinaire and new Bold Church Initiative board member. David leads a remarkable church (Mountainside Bible Chapel) in a small town in upstate New York and drops a ministry idea a minute in this practical discussion about how his church impacts the community of Schroon Lake, New York. Here are some steps that David has used to develop his church’s outward focus and to maximize its impact in Schroon Lake:
  1. Exemplify outward focus as the leader of the Church;
  2. Celebrate your successes;
  3. Exercise outward focus over time (just like lifting weights).
Here are some of the highlights/ministry ideas we discuss:
  • Mountainside is very intentional about contextualizes its ministry events to Schroon Lake.
  • A Paint & Sip Event (non-alcoholic by the way) for ladies in the community focuses on the artsy side of Schroon lake.
  • A Sportmen Banquet (hunting is huge in the Adirondacks) draws hundreds of sportsmen from around the region.
  • Mountainside hosts a Candidate Forum for everyone on the ballot. This is often the largest gathering attended by candidates in the region.
  • Counseling Ministry/ Grief Share/ Recovery program is intended to counteract the drug problem.
  • An amazing story about a nonbeliever and non-church member calling David Peterson her “pastor” during an intense online discussion and how this opened the door for further discussion about the Gospel.
  • Mountainside is working to plant small groups/churches in as many small towns in the Adirondacks as possible (there are 151 towns). These small groups will probably have “circuit-riding” preachers.
  • We’ve started asking a question (slightly adapted from podcaster Tim Ferriss): “If you had a billboard upon which you could display a message to the ‘Big C’ Church, what message would you display?” His answer, “Live in the real world.” 
  • David encourages pastors and especially pastors in small towns to be patient and to build their influence over time.
Click here for more information about David Peterson and Mountainside Bible Chapel.