The Chesapeake Connection :: August 2016 :: The Churh's Gender Gap; Denton Family Camp; Celebration of Ministry; Pastors and Spouses Retreat; Other District News and Upcoming Events


In his book, Why Men Hate Going to Church, David Murrow identifies gender gap issues which exists within many churches and create barriers that alienate a great segment of men from church. Murrow, a Presbyterian layman, speaks of the Sunday morning he, “looked around the sanctuary and counted noses. Just one-third of the adult attendees were men – most of whom were over fifty. . . with the tots dismissed for kids’ church, there was a handful of teenage boys, but almost no men between the ages of eighteen and thirty-five. There were no single men.” Murrow states that generally, today’s church has been designed around the needs and mindset of women not men. Murrow notes, “High achiever, alpha males, risk takers, and visionaries are in short supply. Fun-lovers and adventurers are also underrepresented in church.” Murrow remarks that this is in direct contrast to men of the Bible such as Moses, Elijah, David, Daniel, Peter and Paul.  He says, “They were lions, not lambs – take charge men who risked everything in service to God.” He goes on to say, “We need to understand what causes the gap and have the courage to remove the barriers that discourage and demoralize men.”
Murrow states, “If a church wants to reach men, its bread and butter must be challenging people to follow Christ. Challenge is men’s love language . . . What are the marks of a challenging church? It casts a specific vision of greatness before its people. Ministry is constantly pushed outward into the world. Challenging churches are constantly raising up leaders, to foster a culture of person-to-person challenge.” Murrow also notes, “The presence of a significant number of men offer a clear indicator of the spiritual health of the church.” He states that men are attracted to vision over relationships, quality church ministries, and the presence of other men in the congregation.  A gap in participation of men within church life, alongside a gap in personality are noted by Murrow. The gap in personality is identified as high level of passivity within the church that values tradition and stability over innovation and growth.

Key takeaways from Murrow include:  
  1. PROJECT-BASED MINISTRY: A church that wants to involve men will offer more project-based ministry opportunities.
  2. OUTDOOR MINISTRY: If you want to reach men, move as much of your church’s ministry as possible outdoors.
  3. STORIES OF SACRIFICE: Men need to understand the strength of the gospel – battle stories and stories of sacrifice speak to men.
  4. GREATNESS FOR GOD'S GLORY: Men’s hearts are captured by a shot at greatness – men can reflect God’s glory to the world.
  5. CLEAR MISSION STATEMENT: When men understand the mission of the church and become engaged their giving increases, and
  6. CUTTING EDGE FORMS: Men are puzzled by old-fashion ways and information conveyed through the use of technology often has a higher degree of believability. 
In the last third of the book, Murrow addresses the need for churches to have vision, focus and purpose. He also notes that men are attracted to dynamic, gutsy leadership. Murrow observes that if the church wants to engage strong men, pastors must deliver great leadership. Men also need dialogue of give and take, one point sermons, forthrightness, challenging teaching, the unexpected and great stories. Murrow speaks to the importance of men within the congregation becoming spiritual fathers to other men. Murrow does a superb job of helping the laywoman understand the need for the church to make changes that engage more men. On page 23, the author gives a list of females values and male value from the book Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus and asks the reader to identify which is more a true representation of Christian values. It becomes very clear through this exercise that the church has identified strongly with the female gender. 

The book provides great insight into the gender issues and why men can push back on church. The book is most relevant for the small declining and unhealthy church situations that is more dominated by women in leadership and focused on female characteristics. The sad issue is that many small churches consider the female list given on page 23 akin to Christian behavior. Churches, even the larger church, can take on feminine characteristics in their music and style of ministry.

Excerpts from an article written by Debbie Hoover for a course at Wesley Seminary. For the complete article, click here.


What an incredible year at IGNITE Camp! This summer was our greatest, most creative, most powerful and highest attended year of IGNITE Camp in the past decade! Over 300 students filled the campground in Denton, Maryland with an excitement and expectancy like never before. During both weeks, middle school and high school, the energy was contagious and the atmosphere was amazing. We saw students take next steps in their faith, 30+ acknowledge Christ as Savior and others set on a trajectory that their life has never been on. Our Chesapeake District team came together to give our students the time of their lives. It is always so amazing to see students come from all over Maryland, Delaware and DC for one common purpose; to lift up the name of Jesus. We are so grateful for every church who sends students to camp. We believe that it is during intentional times like IGNITE Camp where students put down markers when it comes to their faith journey. If you have any questions about future events or want to know more about getting your students involved in IGNITE, please reach out to Kenneth Wagner at or Brent Schott at, and they will get you all of the information that you need. - IGNITE Network 

Denton Family Camp

Denton Family Camp begins this Friday, July 29 and runs through Sunday, August 7. Click here to download the Denton Family Camp Newsletter and here to download a Camp Schedule. Denton Family Camp offers opportunities for REFRESHING the soul, RENEWING the mind, and READYING believers for service to God and their communities.

Worship Well Conference 2016 

Healing Place Church is hosting The WORSHIP WELL Conference for worship leaders, band members, technical and creative artists. WORSHIP WELL 2016 promises to bring encouragement, creativity and insight to each worship team role. Sion Alford, Executive Worship Pastor of Gateway Church in Southlake, Texas, will again lead the conference. Sion travels the globe ministering through Word and song to congregations and worship teams who desire an intimacy with God that goes beyond the music to a place of continual relationship with the Father.

WORSHIP WELL 2016 will be held Friday and Saturday, September 23-24, 2016 at Healing Place Church, 2106 Crain Highway, Waldorf, MD.  Space is limited so sign up TODAY! Registration is $69.00 per person. Register at:

Celebration of Ministry

Dr. Wayne Schmidt, General Superintendent of The Wesleyan Church, will be the keynote speaker for the Chesapeake District Celebration of Ministry. The event will be held at Lifepoint Church, 10395 Berry Road, Waldorf, Maryland, on Sunday, October 30 beginning at 6:00 pm.  Please plan to attend this exciting event to ordain four of our ministers and celebrate milestones of longer-term pastors.


Pastor George Bassey Sr. celebrates God’s grace on a daily basis; he has come to understand that the grace of God is truly amazing. As he reflects on this grace, Pastor Bassey is amazed that a little boy who survived the Nigerian civil war of the late 1960s, a war that took the lives of seven members of his own family, is now a Christian leader in USA. He is also amazed that as the first person in his family to graduate from high school, God has blessed him with a Bachelor’s degree, two master’s degrees, and God is not finished yet. Furthermore, Pastor Bassey is amazed that the Lord called him eight years ago to leave his lucrative IT career of almost 25 years, to lead a congregation that was in serious trouble. Finally, Pastor Bassey is amazed that God has chosen to bless him with a wonderful wife of 34 years (Grace, a Registered Nurse), and with three adult sons: Dr. George Bassey Jr. (his wife, Keren), Samuel and Godfrey - all who are wonderfully blessed. Now, that is an amazing grace of God!

Pastor Bassey holds a BS degree from Strayer University, an MBA degree from the University of the District of Columbia, and an MA in Ministerial Leadership from the Wesley Seminary at Indiana Wesleyan University. In his IT career, Pastor Bassey worked for various organizations, including Boroughs, Unisys, DynCorp, EDS, and Navy Federal Credit Union. Before he was called into fulltime ministry as senior pastor of National Wesleyan Church (NWC), a multinational and multicultural congregation which is located in Hyattsville, Maryland, Pastor Bassey served as a regional president for African Christian Fellowship, USA – an interdenominational Christian organization. He and his wife were introduced to NWC in 1991 by their oldest son’s babysitter; they soon became covenant members, and continued for 16 years before Pastor Bassey became the senior pastor.  

Pastor Bassey is grateful to God for the ongoing work of transformation in his life and in the lives of his dear people at NWC. The congregation whose future was in doubt in 2008, is now becoming vibrant, enjoying four Sunday worship services at two campuses with an average worship attendance of almost 300 people. Pastor Bassey enjoys spending time with his family, watching football, meeting new people at NWC, going on cruises and international vacations. He believes that the best of his life is defined and sustained by God’s amazing grace, and the best of NWC, are yet to come. He and his congregants believe that they exist to honor God by making more disciples for Him; and they are excited to serve God and their community. 

Pastor and Spouse Gathering

Save the date! The 2017 Pastor and Spouse Gathering for ministerial students, licensed ministers, and pastors will be held again at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Cambridge, Maryland on February 26-28, 2017. Note the event begins at 7:00 pm, Sunday evening with hotel registration beginning any time after lunch on February 26 and concludes before lunch on Tuesday, February 28. Our event speakers are Tom and Lisa Harding, pastor and spouse from the Alive Wesleyan Church in Central, South Carolina.

Dr. Gary McIntosh

How much does your church invest in evangelism? "If you are like most churches, you will be surprised to learn that it makes up less than 1%" of the overall budget. "This is unfortunate since money invested in this category is the most likely to bring new people to Christ and the church; to say nothing of additional giving units added to the church."

In the July 2016 issue of Growth Points, Dr. Gary McIntosh encourages churches to reconsider their evangelism and outreach allocations, making the necessary to reach the greatest number of people for Christ. "To help insure fruitful evangelism," Dr. McIntosh suggests that ten percent of total budget should be designated for outreach and evangelism to the church's immediate community - those within reasonable driving distance from the church. 

Click here to download a copy of the July 2016 issue of Growth Points and start making the investment necessary to make more disciples for Christ.   

EXPONENTIAL Announces Regional Venues

Exponential is pleased to announce that in addition to their East and West Conferences there will also be two Regional Conferences to help make their events more accessible to church leaders in local geographic areas. One of the Regional Conferences will be held in Washington, D.C. at the New Life Christian Church on September 12-13, 2016. These two-day events are designed to bring the full impact of the main stage from the Exponential East and West conferences closer to home. Plus, the Regional events offer numerous and innovative opportunities for leadership and launch teams to come together and be part of the same conversation as well as gather face-to-face with other church planters and learn from their peers. Join hundreds of leaders for inspiration, encouragement and equipping at Exponential’s Washington DC Regional church planting conference in Chantilly, Virginia. Register early as space is limited at these smaller, more intimate gatherings. CLICK HERE for more information.  

Orange Tour Fall 2016

Will what happens in your church THIS SUNDAY matter in someone's life ON MONDAY? At Orange Tour leaders will discover how to:
  • Design a strategic experience for Sunday.
  • Reach families who don't show up this Sunday.
  • Craft a message that lasts far beyond Sunday.
  • Help small group leaders stay connected to kids after Sunday.
  • And much more.
Orange Tour is expanding into more regions than ever before to make it easier than ever to get the entire church leadership team to an event. Getting the entire team on the same page is important. Experiencing fresh insight and new ideas together creates team synergy that is powerful and long lasting. 

Orange Tour is coming to Lancaster, Pennsylvania on September 27, 2016.  Click here for more information.
FLAME provides classes for credentialing in The Wesleyan church in an onsite, intensive setting. Each class last 2.5 days.  FLAME events are typically a week long (Monday-Friday), allowing a student to complete two courses (one the first half of the week and one the second half of the week).

Future FLAME dates and locations include: 
  • August 8-12, 2016 – Kingswood University- Sussex, NB
  • September 12-16, 2016 - Hayward Wesleyan Church - Hayward, WI
  • September 12-14, 2016 - EFM at New Life Church - La Plata, MD
  • October 3-7, 2016 – West Michigan – Location TBD
  • November 7-11, 2016 – Oakland, CA, Location TBD
  • February 20-24, 2017 - EFM at New Life Church - La Plata, MD
Go to for more information about the FLAME program.


Please mark your calendars with the following important dates:


Denton Family Camp
July 29-August 7, 2016
Building Committee Meeting
September 10, 2016
DBMD Meeting
September 13, 2016
DBA Meeting
September 20, 9:00 am
Celebration of Ministry
October 30, 6:00 pm
Building Committee Meeting
November 5, 2016
DBMD Meeting
November 8, 2016
DBA Meeting
November 15, 9:00 am
DBMD Meeting
January 10, 2017



The Chesapeake District exists to create and empower local churches to impact their communities for Christ.


By District Conference 2020, the Chesapeake District will reach 20,000 new converts and will average 20,000 in primary worship attendance.

The entire operation of the Chesapeake District will be focused to this vision.  Every church and every pastor will be mobilized to double or triple its influence through evangelism, church health and growth, community service, and multiplication.

Core Values

Communicating Christ-Likeness
Developing Effective Pastors and Leaders
Reaching Our Communities for Christ
Multiplying Healthy New Churches
Pursuing New People and Cultures
Nurturing Vibrant Student Ministries
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