In the days leading up to Easter Sunday, many Oklahoma Baptist churches organized various outreach events to share the Gospel and invite people to attend church.

In southeast Oklahoma, Valliant, Trinity held its second annual Easter Egg Hunt outreach event, which drew more than 110 guests and church volunteers.

In Valliant, like in all areas of Oklahoma, reaching people for Jesus in the “Buckle of the Bible Belt” can prove challenging, according to Valliant, Trinity’s Pastor Bradley O’Dell.

“Many people in Oklahoma have the impression that they already know Jesus and think they are saved,” said O’Dell, who has served at Valliant, Trinity for nearly 11 years, “so reaching them for Christ or getting them to see the importance of plugging into church can be difficult. That is why outreach events provide such a great opportunity to share with them about the Gospel and about our church.”

O’Dell was saved at a young age and called to ministry as a youth. “I grew up in church, and when I was 14 or 15, the Lord began to call me to ministry,” he said. “Right after I graduated high school, I finally surrendered to that call. I went on to study at the University of Central Oklahoma and then attended Southwestern Seminary for my M.Div.”

O’Dell is married to Crystal, and they have three children. He has pastored two churches, including Findley, First and Valliant, Trinity. He has served as a volunteer in Disaster Relief and has served on the board of directors for Oklahoma Baptists.

O’Dell believes the Cooperative Program (CP) is vital for churches of all sizes. “Even though we are a small church, we know our CP giving makes a significant impact in missions and ministry in the state around the world,” he said.