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BGCT Family Gathering

In 2018, the BGCT Annual Meeting is in July instead of November, and it is called the Family Gathering. The dates are July 29-31, 2018. It will be in Arlington at the Convention Center. These are the dates that would normally be our July BSM Staff Retreat. We will have a couple of events while there for BSM staff. All full-time BSM Directors, Associates, Cross-Culture Workers, and BSM Assistants are required to attend this meeting.

01. Key Points
  • Date: July 29-31, 2018
  • Location: Arlington, TX
  • Required: All BSM Directors, Associate Directors, and BSM Assistants who are employees of the BGCT
  • Required meetings: Sunday 4:30-6:30pm, Monday 2:00-6:00pm, and Tuesday 8:30-10:00am

02. Planning 
  • So that we may plan adequately, we need you to complete this survey by July 2, 2018. It asks for final details about your time at the Family Gathering. Please fill this out promptly after thoroughly reading this information:
  • Do you know where your Texas Baptists name badge is (the one we gave you last year - there is a picture example in the survey)?  The survey link will give you the opportunity to tell us if you do or do not have one and we will get it ordered before the Family Gathering in July. We ask that you wear these any time you are at the Convention Center to help the attendees identify you as one of their missionaries to the college campuses in Texas.

03. Your Family is Invited
You are invited to bring your spouse and children with you to this event. We will cover your family's transportation and hotel room. You will need to cover their food and other expenses.

04. Who is required to attend?
All BSM Directors, Associate Directors, and BSM Assistants who are employees of the BGCT.  (CMI's are not employees - they will attend Collegiate Week at Falls Creek in Oklahoma August 5-9, 2018 for their training). 

05. Where will we stay? 
We have reservations at Hampton Inn and Suites in North Arlington. The Address is 2200 Brookhollow Plaza Dr, Arlington, TX 76006. It is less than a mile from the Arlington Convention Center.  We will make sure there is adequate space for your families.  If you have 3 or more children coming with you, we will provide either a King Suite that includes a Queen Sleeper Sofa and a rollaway or for larger families, 2 adjoining rooms that each have 2 queen beds. We are working to provide within the limited number of rooms available. Please let us know (, if your plans change regarding rooms needed or nights needed so that we can let the hotel know and not be billed for extra rooms/extra nights.

06. What is our purpose for being there? 
We want to show gratitude to Texas Baptist churches and the leadership of Texas Baptists for all that they invest - money, prayer, engaging support - to enable us to minister to students across the state. Without our presence at this kind of gathering, the breadth and depth of BSM gets lost in the hundreds of other things going on. You will have the opportunity to build relationships with pastors and church leaders who want to engage with you to reach the students in their community. Also, with our new emphasis on HUB & SUB campuses, you will have the opportunity to meet some church leaders in the community of your SUB campuses that you have not met before. So Why? Gratitude, Presence, and Relationship Building.

07. What is the schedule? What am I required to attend? 
You can find the full schedule for the Family Gathering at ask that you choose worship and workshops that interest you. The choices are up to you. While we want you to be present part of the time at the convention hall, we know that if your family is with you they are also a priority for your time. There are three things we will do together as a BSM Family and request that you attend all of these. We are working for at least two of them to be "family friendly" events.  
  • Sunday Evening - 4:30 to 6:30pm - Light supper reception in the Hall of Fame Room at the Sheraton Hotel (Address: 1500 Convention Center Drive). There will be mac and cheese and table activities to engage the children while the short program goes on. The purpose of this time will be to honor Bruce's Retirement as well as Robbi Francovich as they retire. We will also do service awards and name the second recipient of the Rick Spencer Servant Leadership Award. Finally, we will have an opportunity to welcome and commission Mark Jones as our new State Director. I know that sounds like a lot but we will work to keep it short and succinct in presentation.
  • Monday Afternoon - 2:00 to 6:00pm - An afternoon of recreation at Epic Waters Indoor Water Park in Grand Prairie (For more information about Epic Waters, go to They have everything from 9 slides to a lazy river tube to a surfing wave pool. They provide life jackets, tubes, surfboards, etc. THEY DO NOT PROVIDE TOWELS SO YOU WILL NEED TO BRING YOUR OWN. If you decide not to do the water part of the event, there will be an area for cards, dominoes, corn hole, giant jenga and just good fellowship. Supper will be there at the park and will be either a hamburger or hot dog, chips and a drink. The park is built to be conducive to fun for the littles, the teens, the young directors and the rest of us who are still young at heart. It will be a great opportunity for families to play together. Included at the top and bottom of this email, is the link to a survey that will ask a few more questions about our time in Arlington. One of these questions will be to let us know whether you will participate in the water part of the afternoon. We want to be good stewards of our funds and there is a considerable difference in the entrance fee/supper ticket for swimmers and non-water participants. Please let us know. We will hand out the tickets on Sunday evening, that way you can come over anytime on Monday when it is good for your family - the passes are good for all day on Monday so families are welcome to come early and enjoy the park for longer.
  • Tuesday Morning - 8:30 to 10:00am - BSM Staff Meeting. On Tuesday morning, we will have a short staff meeting (1.5 hours tops). This will be our only time together to talk about our work. This meeting will our only BSM event that is not "family friendly." We will meet at the UTA Baptist Student Center (414 South West Street, Arlington, TX 76010) at 8:30am and will conclude by 10:00am

08. Do I need to work in the Exhibit Hall?
Not everyone will need to work the booth. We will need several of you to schedule a time to be in the Exhibit Hall at the Collegiate Ministry Exhibit. This will be an opportunity to show hospitality to those who are attending and share with them some of the great stories about your work. So, sign up when taking the survey; the link at the top and bottom of the email. Also, have a story of how God is moving on your campus ready to tell anyone who comes by and will listen.

09. Is childcare available during the sessions? 
Yes, and the deadline to sign up is July 1st (information about this can be found at School-age children will have the option of doing an M-Fuge experience during the days we are at the family gathering. You can read more about this one the Family Gathering Website. We will not be able to pay for childcare

10. When can we leave? 
We want everyone to stay through the evening worship service on Tuesday. So, we ask that you not leave until Wednesday morning.  

11. Travel Guidelines
As you plan your travel for the Family Gathering, we ask that you follow these guidelines:
  1. Because so many families are coming this year, we are not going to make carpool assignments. We need you to make the decision about how your family travels and carpool when possible if not bringing your family.
  2. Where possible, travel together. Think about your route to Arlington. Are there others who are coming that are in your path? If so give them a call and please share a ride. If you need information about how to contact someone, please call our office and we will be glad to provide that information.
  3. If you are traveling more than 200 miles one way, please compare the total cost of renting a vehicle (rental, taxes, and gasoline) with the cost of mileage ($0.54 per mile). For some of you, renting will provide a large savings to our budget.
12. Rooming List
Here's the rooming info as of 06/29/2018. The final list will come a week or so before the meeting.

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