Charter bus opportunity looms for Triad
Record year-end giving has given Triad Baptist the opportunity to update its vehicle fleet with its first charter-style bus.
Built on a bus frame with all-steel construction, the 37-passenger 2017 Transit-Liner® C2 commercial vehicle by Thomas Built Buses features fully reclining seats with three-point seatbelts, a TV/DVD system with overhead monitors, overhead and rear storage, and air suspension.
A demo model, the new bus has 6,500 miles.
Executive Administrator Dennis Roberts said that several adult groups had talked about the advantages of a charter-style bus before for the church’s six-vehicle fleet but the item wasn’t on the end-of-year offering wish list.
Then members gave $142,000 — the most ever — in the “Give1More challenge” when Lead Pastor Rob Decker encouraged members to give one percent more than end-of-year giving campaigns in previous Decembers. (Triad has never had a set end-of-year offering goal but giving has typically ranged from $70,000 to about $85,000.)
And then Carolina Thomas, the church’s supplier of vehicles from Thomas Built Buses, e-mailed Roberts Dec. 27 to tell him about the bus for sale at a nearly $50,000 discount, and with a three-year, 50,000-mile warranty.
With $40,900 from the year-end offering, liquidation of Triad’s money market account, tapping Faithful Friends’ charter budget for 2018, money from the capital line item of the transportation budget and sale of a 2002 Ford 26-passenger shuttle, the church could buy the bus debt-free for $148,900 — why Roberts said Triad is asking members to vote on the purchase.
See the ballot and vote. The vote closes Feb. 7.
“The blessings of God continue at Triad,” said Roberts.
Added Decker, “In everything we do, we try to be wise stewards of the resources God has given us and believe this debt-free arrangement continues our philosophy while, at the same time, giving our transportation ministry even more flexibility to accommodate longer trips with the addition of our first over-the-road, charter-style bus.”
If members approve the purchase, the bus would become the newest vehicle of the church’s six-vehicle fleet which ranges from a 15-passenger van to a 44-seat bus.
Dan Parsons, director of The Faithful Friends, welcomed news about the new bus opportunity and possible benefits to the ministry which takes about two trips a year requiring bus transportation.
“We have been talking about it a long time,” Parsons said of charter-style transportation, “and I put money into the budget this year for a charter because of a long trip we plan to take to the Amish Country.
“Every time we take the bus somewhere, even if for short distances, it can be uncomfortable for our members,” he said. “They have back trouble, leg problems and other health issues that are made worse by the ride.
“The newer buses ride a lot better but don’t have a lot of leg room and can’t accommodate as many people so our options are to take a smaller, more comfortable vehicle and have some people drive,” he said, “or to take two of the smaller, more comfortable vehicles, and find two drivers.
“While it will certainly benefit our group, I know the charter-style bus will be available and enjoyed by all adult groups.”
If approved, the bus would join a lengthy list of projects supported through the Give1More campaign, Decker said.
The church will use the money to:
- Improve lighting controls for the Worship Center/Gym.
- Install a permanent sound system Kids Street Children’s Ministry can use in the Activity Center for Awana and Upward Sports.
- Extend vinyl flooring to replace carpeting in the Youth Room and hallways.
- Build a picnic shelter near the soccer field and disc golf course along the Triad trail greenway.
- Initial planning fees for a new sanctuary.
Overseas and local projects already supported in part through Give1More:
- Construction of a hangar allowing Mike Clark to fly year round and reach more villages in Alaska.
- A roof for a new church begun by Andrew Self in Argentina.
- Hurricane Irma aid to victims in the Dominican Republic through the “Ramon Santana Relief” fund of Wes Smith.
- A new church plant for Bible Open Air Mission in Orissa, India, and training program for pastors to serve in Andrah, Pradesh, India.
- Repairs to a radio tower knocked down in a storm for “Hope Radio” broadcasts by Adam and Faith Drake in Togo, West Africa.
- A generator/backup battery system for Ryan and Stephanie Buczak to fix power fluctuations damaging appliances and equipment in Togo, and shipment of airplane parts for his aviation ministry.
- Money to help Koffi Wodome finish a health shelter in Togo that meets medical needs in the community.
- Development of a church plant and baseball and soccer sports complex in South Africa by Rodney Poplin.
- Replacement vehicles for James Nash in Caracao, Brasil, and Wayne and Sue Fair in Papua, New Guinea.
- Language training and relocation costs for James Fletcher in Costa Rica.
- Purchasing land for another church plant by Aaron Cochrell in Peru.
- Electricity for the goat farm of Daryl and Leah Burnette in Mozambique which will also give 60 community homes power for the first time.
- Ultrasound equipment for the Greensboro Pregnancy Center.