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McCormick discusses being a Christian female in sports broadcasting

May 3 2016 by Roman Gabriel III, BR Sports Q&A

Female sports broadcaster Lindsay McCormick has hosted live events ranging from Super Bowl XLIX to one of the most anticipated boxing matches ever, Mayweather vs. Pacquiao. She’s covered basketball, Sunday night football and even the AKC Eukanuba National Championship Dog Show.
 
McCormick graduated from Auburn University in Auburn, Ala. She is a great example of how trusting God, believing in your talents, chasing your passion and being committed to your goals can catapult you to success.
 
Q: How did you become interested in sports?
 
A: I grew up in a sports family, and I’m sure everybody says that. My family is full of huge sports fans. They’re obsessed. It’s really hard to comprehend how much we love sports.
 
My mom sends me play-by-play suggestions when I’m on the air covering a boxing match. My grandfather was a defensive end for the University of Illinois, and was drafted by the Washington Redskins. He was later involved with NASCAR. My brother got involved with Talladega (Speedway). I had to learn to love sports if I wanted to have anything in common with my dad, my brother and my grandpa.

 
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Lindsay McCormick, a sports broadcaster, discusses a variety of topics with Roman Gabriel III during Super Bowl XLIX media days earlier this year.

Q: When did you realize sports broadcasting was what you wanted to do in life?
 
A: I really didn’t know how God was going to use it in my future, but I knew I had a passion for sports. And I knew from a very young age that I wanted to be a broadcaster of some sort – whether it was news, entertainment or sports. I really didn’t put the two together until I got to college at Auburn.
 
Q: Tell us about your first real break into sports.
 
A: I was working for the school newspaper and TV station, and our sports director had to go out of town one weekend. He said, “Lindsay you know a lot about sports will you fill in for me on the sidelines at the Auburn game?”
 
I enjoyed it so much, that when he came back I would not let them take me off the sidelines.
 
I just told him, “Now I’m your partner, your co-host. This is what I’m going to be doing for the rest of my career at Auburn!”
 
Later that year, I worked the Auburn versus Louisiana State University game. ESPN was on the sidelines while I was working. I asked if they were hiring. They were, so they put me through the process. I started as an intern. Someone saw my audition tape, and the rest is kind of history.
 
Q: Women make up 50 percent of the NFL Super Bowl audience. What is happening with so many women getting involved passionately in sports?
 
A: I was telling my mom that when I went to the Super Bowl this last February, normally it’s guys that contact me or comment on my picks in dealing with their fantasy football team. Like, “Who should I draft this year?” But this time it was almost all women.
 
They would say, “My fantasy team did good this year. I took your advice.” It’s been really cool to see what women are doing in following sports today.
 
Q: You have worked for many sports networks, including ESPN. How has ESPN’s 24-hour presence changed the mindset of today’s players?
 
A: It’s about being flashy now. Back in the day it was all about perfecting fundamentals and about winning. Guys like (Panthers quarterback) Cam Newton understand that it’s more than a game.
He understands the entertainment value of football is not just about a game anymore.
 
It’s bigger than just winning or losing. You’re affecting other people’s lives.
 
Q: With the advent of Title IX protections years ago, that has opened the door for so many young ladies into sports. What are your thoughts about being in the broadcasting business regarding opportunities for women?
 
A: When I started about nine years ago, you had your staples in the business, such as Suzy Kolber (ESPN) and Pam Oliver (Fox Sports). There were a handful of women in the industry.
 
They had to work really, really hard to prove themselves. I feel like we still have to work to prove ourselves in this industry, but now you look around and see new women breaking into sports all the time.
 
It’s cool. I like it. I’m not one of those women who feels competitive towards other women. I want us all to succeed. There is a place for everyone to succeed.
 
Q: What would you tell young ladies that are out there or students who are trying to break into the sports business?
 
A: Don’t let criticism go to your heart. Do not take criticism personally.
 
There are going to be people on TV that don’t like you, and some who love you.
 
As long as you’re true to who you are, as long as I know that I am making God happy, my dad happy, that my family is proud of me. At the end of the day that’s all that matters to me.
 
Q: You are very visible on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. That can get interesting. How does that play out for you in this day of social networking?
 
A: I don’t care if I have people that don’t like me because of my fantasy picks for the NFL that weekend, or if I have haters on Twitter. As long as I know that I’m being true to myself. I can sleep well at night knowing that I’m serving God, and being useful to Him.
 
Q: You have had the opportunity to cover just about every sport: college and professional football, basketball, boxing and others. Is there a sport that you haven’t covered that you would like to cover?
 
A: Wimbledon (tennis) would be fun, maybe World Series baseball. I have been on sports shows where baseball was a topic, but never covered it directly. So I think baseball would be something I would like to cover.
 
Visit LindsayMcCormick.com.
 
(EDITOR’S NOTE – Roman Gabriel III is an evangelist and motivational speaker. Visit the Faith Family Sports website: fspn.net. Hear his Sold Out Sports Talk Radio program on American Family Radio in 200 cities nationally or streaming live at afr.net. Visit his website: soldouttv.com; Facebook: Roman Gabriel III; connect on Twitter: @romangabriel3rd. Contact at (910) 431-6483 or email: soldoutrg3@gmail.com.)

5/3/2016 12:14:19 PM by Roman Gabriel III, BR Sports Q&A | with 0 comments



Committee on Nominations chooses nominees for 2016 SBC entities

May 3 2016 by Baptist Press

Nominees to serve on the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) Executive Committee, the four denominational boards – International Mission Board, North American Mission Board, LifeWay Christian Resources, and GuideStone Financial Resources – the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, the six seminaries and the Committee on Order of Business have been selected by the 2016 SBC Committee on Nominations.
 
Nominees will serve if elected by the messengers to the 2016 SBC Annual Meeting June 14-15 in St. Louis.
 
EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE (82 members): 23 nominations considered, 11 new members, 12 renominations.
 
Nominees with terms to expire in 2020 replacing members ineligible for re-election are Richard A. “Rick” Wheeler, lead missional strategist, Jacksonville Baptist Association and member of Mandarin Baptist Church, Jacksonville, Fla., replacing Tom Biles, Tampa, Fla.; Larry Q. Allen, pastor, Warren Woods Baptist Church, Warren, Mich., replacing Robert O. “Rob” Freshour, South Lyon, Mich.; Hoyt A. Savage, pastor, Foothills Southern Baptist Church, Las Vegas, replacing John Mark Simmons, Henderson, Nev.; Jeremy D. Westbrook, pastor, Living Hope Church, Marysville, Ohio, replacing Charles R. Chambers, Perrysburg, Ohio; Stacy S. Bramlett, layperson and member of First Baptist Church, Collierville, Tenn., replacing Phil Harper, Murfreesboro, Tenn.; H. Robert Showers, layperson and member of Gateway Community Church, South Riding, Va., replacing G. Harris Warner Jr., Roanoke, Va.
 
Also nominated for a term to expire in 2020 is Daniel E. Carr, pastor, Canaan Baptist Church, St. Louis, replacing John H. Moore, Branson, Mo., who declined to serve a second term.
 
Nominated for terms to expire in 2019 are Chad Garrison, pastor, Calvary Baptist Church, Lake Havasu, Ariz., replacing Tim Brasher, Scottsdale, Ariz., who resigned; Harry C. “Archie” Mason, pastor, Central Baptist Church, Jonesboro, Ark., replacing Clay Hallmark, Marion, Ark., who resigned; and Janice McAlister, layperson and member of Crestwood Baptist Church, Crestwood, Ky., replacing Bill D. Whittaker, Glasgow, Ky., who resigned.
 
Nominated for a term to expire in 2018 is Stephen L. Goss, layperson and member of First Baptist Church, Bentonville, Ark., replacing Andy Wilson, Springdale, Ark., who resigned.
 
Nominated for second terms are James W. “Jim” Averett, Birmingham, Ala.; Michael A. “Adam” Hollingsworth, Tallahassee, Fla.; Kenneth W. “Ken” Alford, Valdosta, Ga.; John E. Smith, Munfordville, Ky.; Charles “Glynn” Rhinehart, Youngsville, La.; David A. Hall, Baltimore; Bobby L. Kirk, Doddsville, Miss.; Stanley J. Welch, Asheville, N.C.; Ralph “Dale” Jenkins, Airway Heights, Wash.; Shane B. Hall, Oklahoma City; Tom Tucker, Fort Mill, S.C., and Bedford F. “Buddy” Hanson, Mills, Wyo.
 
GUIDESTONE FINANCIAL RESOURCES (45 trustees): 13 nominations considered, six new trustees, seven renominations.
 
Nominees with terms to expire in 2020 replacing trustees ineligible for re-election include Robert J. Bachman, layperson and member of Arapahoe Road Baptist Church, Centennial, Colo., replacing Robert L. “Bob” Bender, Colorado Springs, Colo.; John Hoychick Jr., layperson and member of First Baptist Church, Rayville, La., replacing J. Dudley May, Baton Rouge, La.; and Kevin B. Cummings, pastor, Fincastle Baptist Church, Fincastle, Va., replacing Don Davidson, Alexandria, Va.
 
Also nominated for a term to expire in 2020 is Randall Thomas Blackmon, pastor, Faith Baptist Fellowship, Cambridge, Md., replacing Sebastian Traeger, Washington, D.C., who resigned.
 
Nominated for a term to expire in 2019 is Randall T. Hahn, pastor, Colonial Heights Baptist Church, Colonial Heights, Va., replacing Kenneth C. Price, Beaverdam, Va., who resigned.
 
Nominated for a term to expire in 2018 is David M. Rainwater, layperson and member of Immanuel Baptist Church, Little Rock, Ark., replacing William H. “Buddy” Sutton, Little Rock, Ark., deceased.
 
Nominated for second terms are Rob L. Zinn, Highland, Calif.; Donald L. Sharp, Chicago; Barry C. Corbett, Kosciusko, Miss.; John R. Morris, Vilas, N.C.; Steven D. Bryant, Redmond, Ore.; Robert L. “Bob” Sorrell, Collierville, Tenn., and M. Douglas “Doug” Adkins, Dallas.
 
INTERNATIONAL MISSION BOARD (82 trustees): 20 nominations considered, 10 new trustees, 10 renominations.
 
Nominees with terms to expire in 2020 replacing trustees ineligible for re-election include John M. Gray, layperson and member of First Baptist Church, Jacksonville, Fla., replacing Richard A. Powell, Fort Myers, Fla.; Jenna L. Cobb, layperson and member of First Baptist Church, Melbourne, Fla., replacing Marvin Pittman, Bartow, Fla.; Derek G. Spain, pastor, Hebron Baptist Church, Dacula, Ga., replacing Roger L. Henderson, Augusta, Ga.; Max R. “Ray” Deeter, pastor, Grace Baptist Church, Evansville, Ind., replacing Mary H. Fullhart, Muncie, Ind.; Joel G. Williams, pastor, First Baptist Church, St. Francisville, La., replacing Jay S. Collins, Haughton, La.; James Robert “Rob” Futral, Jr., pastor, Broadmoor Baptist Church, Madison, Miss., replacing Vickie H. Mascagni, Clinton, Miss.; Edward “David” Coombs Jr., administrative pastor, Bellevue Baptist Church, Cordova, Tenn., replacing Roger P. Freeman, Nashville; Kim M. Ponder, layperson and member of First Baptist Church, Farwell, Texas, replacing Byron V. McWilliams, Odessa, Texas; and Thurman R. Hayes, pastor, First Baptist Church, Suffolk, Va., replacing Ronald K. Wade, Williamsburg, Va.
 
Also nominated for a term to expire in 2020 is David W. Fleming, pastor, Champion Forest Baptist Church, Houston, Texas, replacing John M. Meador, Euless, Texas, who declined to serve a second term.
 
Nominated for second terms are Kenneth J. Burnham, Oxford, Ala.; Richard L. Richie, Somerville, Ala.; Cindy Snead, Phoenix, Ariz.; Susan M. Bryant, Waddy, Ky.; William M. Payne, Syracuse, N.Y.; Robert N. “Bobbi” Ashford, Coats, N.C.; Cheryl L. Wright, Shawnee, Okla.; Tracy Mackall, Enoree, S.C.; Jaye B. Martin, Houston, and Seth N. Polk, Cross Lanes, W.Va.
 
NORTH AMERICAN MISSION BOARD (57 trustees): 13 nominations considered, eight new trustees, five renominations.
 
Nominees with terms to expire in 2020 replacing trustees ineligible for re-election include George L. Falldine, layperson and member of Second Baptist Church, Warner Robins, Ga., replacing Ferrel K. Wiley, Columbus, Ga.; John “Sammy” Simmons, pastor, Immanuel Baptist Church, Benton, Ill., replacing Robert E. “Bob” Dickerson, Marion, Ill.; Frederick “Scott” Leachman, layperson and member of First Baptist Church, Ruston, La., replacing Sandra M. “Sissy” Franks, Deville, La.; Mark S. Gilbert, layperson and member of Calvary Baptist Church, Winston-Salem, N.C., replacing Bruce L. Franklin, Henderson, N.C.; Grant Gaines, pastor, Calvary Baptist Church, Jackson, Tenn., replacing Chuck Herring, Collierville, Tenn.; and Eric J. Thomas, pastor, First Baptist Church, Norfolk, Va., replacing Joey T. Anthony, Phenix, Va.
 
Also nominated for a term to expire in 2020 is Gerald “Duane” Murray, layperson and member of Hope Baptist Church, Las Vegas, replacing Barry K. Anderson, Henderson, Nev., who declined to serve a second term.
 
Nominated for a term to expire in 2019 is Randall D. Spurgeon, pastor, Ansted Baptist Church, Ansted, W.Va., replacing Greg A. Varndell, Parkersburg, W.Va., who resigned.
 
Nominated for a second term are Andy W. Childs, Toccoa, Ga.; Jimmy L. “Jay” Watkins, Valdosta, Ga.; David Washington Jr., Canton, Mich.; Larry D. Robertson, Clarksville, Tenn., and Gary M. Jenkins Sr., Powhatan, Va.
 
LIFEWAY CHRISTIAN RESOURCES (56 trustees): 13 nominations considered, eight new trustees, five renominations.
 
Nominees with terms to expire in 2020 replacing trustees ineligible for re-election include Clayton K. Speed, pastor, First Baptist Church, Hartselle, Ala., replacing Charles C. “Craig” Carlisle, Rainbow City, Ala.; William “Thomas” Hammond Jr., pastor, First Baptist Church, Alpharetta, Ga., replacing Terry L. Braswell Sr., Douglasville, Ga.; Daniel S. “Dan” Cho, pastor, Antioch Baptist Church, Watertown, Mass., replacing Kathleen A. “Kathy” Todd, Brunswick, Maine; Luther D. McDaniel, layperson and member of First Baptist Church, Hendersonville, Tenn., replacing Jeanne Davis, Sevierville, Tenn.; and Bob Pearle, pastor, Birchman Baptist Church, Fort Worth, Texas, replacing Johnny F. Dickerson, Mansfield, Texas.
 
Also nominated for terms to expire in 2020 are Jose L. Ruiz, layperson and member of Fellowship at Greenwood, Greenwood, Mo., replacing Jay D. Swope, Nixa, Mo., who resigned; and Yana Conner, women’s ministry director, Oaks Church, Raleigh, N.C., replacing Jesse W. Messer, Asheville, N.C., deceased.
 
Nominated for a term to expire in 2018 is Madeline Harris, layperson and member of Ezekiel Baptist Church, Philadelphia, replacing Sandra Peoples, Stewartstown, Pa., who resigned.
 
Nominated for second terms are Kent Dacus, Riverside, Calif.; Robert M. “Bob” Simpson, Severn, Md.; Kenneth A. Bledsoe, Aberdeen, N.J.; Mildred A. “Millie” Burkett, Gresham, Ore., and Michael J. “Mike” Osborne, Colonial Heights, Va.
 
SOUTHERN SEMINARY (44 trustees): 12 nominations considered, six new trustees, six renominations.
 
Nominees with terms to expire in 2021 replacing trustees ineligible for re-election include Timothy A. McCoy, pastor, Ingleside Baptist Church, Macon, Ga., replacing Philip W. West, Valdosta, Ga.; William D. “Bill” Sones, layperson and member of First Baptist Church, Brookhaven, Miss., replacing Philip Gunn, Clinton, Miss.; Joe D. Ligon, pastor, First Baptist Church, Marlow, Okla., replacing E. Todd Fisher, Shawnee, Okla.; Joshua W. Powell, pastor, Lake Murray Baptist Church, Lexington, S.C., replacing L. Perrin Powell Jr., Boiling Springs, S.C.; Alan “Keith” Daniels, layperson and member of MacArthur Boulevard Baptist Church, Irving, Texas, replacing Paul B. Taylor, Mauriceville, Texas; Will H. Langford, pastor, Great Bridge Baptist Church, Chesapeake, Va., replacing Brian D. Autry, Midlothian, Va.
 
Nominated for second terms are Edwin J. Hayes, Cullman, Ala.; John A. Montgomery, Redlands, Calif.; Nina J. Wilson, Machesney Park, Ill.; David P. Bruce, Candler, N.C.; Joshua R. “Josh” Albertsen, Fisherville, Ky., and Jeremiah W. “Jeremy” Rhoden, Louisville, Ky.
 
SOUTHWESTERN SEMINARY (40 trustees): eight nominations considered, three new trustees, five renominations.
 
Nominees with terms to expire in 2021 replacing trustees ineligible for re-election include Thomas R. “Tom” James, pastor, Eastwood Baptist Church, Bowling Green, Ky., replacing Lyman “Hutch” Hutcheson, Paducah, Ky.; and Danny Roberts, executive pastor, North Richland Hills Baptist Church, North Richland Hills, Texas, replacing Tony Mathews, Garland, Texas.
 
Also nominated for a term to expire in 2021 is Jonathan D. Richard, pastor, First Baptist Church, Estancia, N.M., replacing Robert E. “Bob” Myers, Albuquerque, N.M., who resigned.
 
Nominated for a second term are Danny L. Johnson, Bryant, Ark.; Charles E. “Eddie” Miller, Spanish Springs, Nev.; Matthew A. Kirkland, Christiansburg, Va.; Johnny A. Kelly, Martinsburg, W.Va.;, and Kevin M. Ueckert, Georgetown, Texas.
 
NEW ORLEANS SEMINARY (40 trustees): nine nominations considered, six new trustees, three renominations.
 
Nominees with terms to expire in 2021 replacing trustees ineligible for re-election include Robert D. Hutchinson, pastor, Faith Baptist Church, Harrisonville, Mo., replacing Donald L. “Don” Currence, Ozark, Mo.; Timothy J. Whitener, layperson and member of Calvary Baptist Church, Winston-Salem, N.C., replacing Steven A. Jirgal, Monroe, N.C.; Allan D. Thompson, director of missions, Mountain State Baptist Association and member of Immanuel Baptist Church, Princeton, W.Va., replacing Caudle J. “C.J.” Adkins, Huntington, W.Va.; and Gary B. Shows, executive pastor, Temple Baptist Church, Hattiesburg, Miss., replacing Dean Stewart, Purvis, Miss.
 
Nominated for a term to expire in 2018 is Tony Lambert, pastor, Riverside Church, Denver, Colo., replacing Mitchell A. “Mitch” Hamilton, Aurora, Colo., who resigned.
 
Nominated for a term to expire in 2017 is Larry D. White, director of missions, Faulkner Baptist Association and member of Central Baptist Church, Conway, Ark., replacing Gary L. Hollingsworth, Little Rock, Ark., who resigned.
 
Nominated for second terms are Ralph C. Prince, Paducah, Ky.; Leland Crawford, Minden, La., and Jerry W. Price, Monroe, La.
 
SOUTHEASTERN SEMINARY (30 trustees): six nominations considered; three new trustees; three renominations.
 
Nominees with terms to expire in 2021 replacing trustees ineligible for re-election include T. Bret Golson, pastor, Leaf River Baptist Church, Collins, Miss., replacing J. Stacy Davidson, Jackson, Miss.; Carlos F. Goodrich, layperson and member of Center Grove Baptist Church, Clemmons, N.C., replacing Christopher J. “Chris” Griggs, Denver, N.C.; and Timothy C. Dale, layperson and member of Christ Community Church, Wilson, N.C., replacing Henry G. Williamson Jr., Winston-Salem, N.C.
 
Nominated for second terms are Jerry A. Smith, Andover, Kan.; Jason Allen, Independence, Mo., and Laura Small, Beaverton, Ore.
 
MIDWESTERN SEMINARY (35 trustees): six nominations considered, three new trustees, three renominations.
 
Nominees with terms to expire in 2021 replacing trustees ineligible for re-election include David Meany, layperson and member of First Baptist Church, Collierville, Tenn., replacing Kevin L. Shrum, Nashville; Emmanuel P. Fontaine, pastor, Grace and Faith Church, Somerville, Mass., replacing Donald L. “Don” Paxton, Abingdon, Va.
 
Also nominated for a term to expire in 2021 is James B. Sineath Jr., layperson and member of First Baptist Church, Melbourne, Fla., replacing Dennis J. Brown, Niceville, Fla., who declined to serve a second term.
 
Nominated for second terms are Charles W. Campbell, Springfield, Ill.; Margaret N. Godwin-Opara, Wichita, Kan., and John Mathena, Oklahoma City, Okla.
 
GOLDEN GATE SEMINARY (39 trustees): six nominations considered, two new trustees, four renominations.
 
Nominees with terms to expire in 2021 replacing trustees ineligible for re-election include Steven N. Davidson, pastor, First Baptist Church, Sellersburg, Ind., replacing Gregory P. “Greg” Byman, Fort Wayne, Ind.; Stephen C.M. Long, pastor, Tender Mercy Baptist Church, Bosque Farms, N.M., replacing Joseph L. Bunce, Albuquerque, N.M.
 
Nominated for second terms are C. Keith Goeking, St. Joseph, Mo.; Cathy D. Moore, Bradford, Tenn.; Terry M. Turner, Mesquite, Texas, and Philip W. Kell, Fresno, Calif.
 
ETHICS & RELIGIOUS LIBERTY COMMISSION (34 trustees): nine nominations considered, five new trustees, four renominations.
 
Nominees with terms to expire in 2020 replacing trustees ineligible for re-election include Lori A. Bova, layperson and member of Taylor Baptist Church, Hobbs, N.M., replacing Walter D. Bradley, Clovis, N.M.; Alan E. Gayle, pastor, Fairfield Baptist Church, Eugene, Ore., replacing Franklin R. Johnson, Ellensburg, Wash.; Preston T. White, layperson and member of Immanuel Baptist Church, Princeton, W.Va., replacing Chris Slaughter, Cross Lanes, W.Va.; and Kelly Hancock, layperson and member of North Richland Hills Baptist Church, North Richland Hills, Texas, replacing Kenda L. Bartlett, Washington.
 
Nominated for a term to expire in 2018 is David E. Prince, pastor, Ashland Avenue Baptist Church, Lexington, Ky., replacing Lynn O. Traylor, Buckner, Ky., who resigned.
 
Nominated for second terms are Roberta L. “Bobbi” Gilchrist, Sierra Vista, Ariz.; Ryan E. Gatti, Bossier City, La.; Brian M. Corrick, Nanjemoy, Md., and Ronald J. Libey, Gwinn, Mich.
 
COMMITTEE ON ORDER OF BUSINESS (7 members): two nominations considered, two new members.
 
Nominees with terms to expire in 2019 replacing members ineligible for re-election include Brad Jurkovich, pastor, First Baptist Church, Bossier City, La., replacing Ron L. Crow, Diamond, Mo.; and Keith Sanders, pastor, First Baptist Church, Keller, Texas, replacing Cathy A. McAdoo, Elko, Nev.
 

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5/3/2016 12:01:06 PM by Baptist Press | with 0 comments



Heritage Awards honor some of N.C. Baptists’ best

May 3 2016 by N.C. Baptist Foundation

Each year North Carolina Baptist entities honor people who have contributed to the individual organizations in unique ways. The N.C. Baptist Heritage Awards Banquet was held April 26 at the Joseph S. Koury Convention Center in Greensboro. The annual event is co-sponsored by the Baptist State Convention of N.C. and the N.C. Baptist Foundation. Here are the organizations and their winners:

 

Baptist Children’s Homes of N.C. Inc.

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Betty H. Greene

Betty H. Greene: Betty Greene of Boone can’t remember a time when she wasn’t a part of the Baptist Children’s Homes of North Carolina (BCH).  Little Betty Hollar loved to ride in her daddy’s truck. Nothing brought her more joy than accompanying him down the mountain with a truck load of food – apples, potatoes, produce and canned items – to Mills Home in Thomasville. It was the beginning of a life-long love affair between her and BCH.
 
When Betty married Dale Greene and they began their family and grew their business, her passion for children and BCH grew even stronger.
 
From her days in the Cradle Roll department at Mt. Vernon Baptist Church, and being baptized at age nine, Greene has worked tirelessly in missions. She has led every age group in WMU – serving as director for many years – as well as leading Mission Friends and Girls in Action.
Whether serving on the Crisis Pregnancy Board or taking part in a missions opportunity in Turkey, Greene gravitates to children. Her task in Turkey was to care for missionaries’ children. Many of them had never interacted with strangers but Greene quickly embraced them and won their hearts. Greene’s own five children, Gwen, Tony, Tim, Pam and Jeff, live nearby where she delights in them and their families.
 
Greene is a marvelous example of how one woman can make a difference in the lives of many. She is an exemplary trustee of Baptist Children’s Homes.

 

Baptist State Convention of North Carolina (BSC)

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H. Kenneth Holland

H. Kenneth Holland: Ken Holland, 87, is still living out his life’s mission statement, even since his “retiring” at age 62: “My goal has been to be faithful to the Lord Jesus Christ in all the days of my life in ways that are consistent with my age and my gifting.”
 
Holland continues to train, equip and mentor pastors seeking to plant churches all across North Carolina.
 
Holland fell in love with the Carolinas while pastoring his first church – a church plant near Greer, S.C. Holland and his wife Dorothy retired to the mountains of North Carolina in 1992 after more than 30 years in ministry, which included stints as a pastor, director of missions and church planting consultant with the Home Mission Board (North American Mission Board) and the Florida Baptist Convention.
 
After “retiring,” Holland was approached by BSC to serve as a contract worker to assist with church planting efforts in the state. Holland has now worked with the BSC for nearly 25 years, which includes two stints as interim leader for the convention’s church planting team.
 
During his tenure in North Carolina, Holland has travelled throughout the state to work with church planters. In recent years, he has focused on assisting church planters in the mountains close to his home. He still leads trainings for all English language church planters in the state.
A native of Wimauma, Fla., he answered a call to ministry after embarking on a career in retail sales. He graduated from Stetson University and later earned his master of divinity from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary.
 
Holland has been married to his wife Dorothy for 67 years, and he considers her his partner in ministry. The Hollands reside in Zirconia, and they have one adult son, Harvey K. Holland Jr.

 

Biblical Recorder

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Greg T. Mathis

Greg T. Mathis: Greg Mathis has served as the senior pastor of Mud Creek Baptist Church in Hendersonville since 1980. In that time, Mud Creek has grown from a small rural church to a regional fellowship of more than 4,000 members. Both he and his wife Deborah are native North Carolinians. They have three children and four grandchildren.
 
Mathis is greatly beloved by his congregation, highly respected by his staff and revered by fellow Baptists. He is a graduate of Gardner-Webb University and Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. For 35 years he has taught the Bible and evangelism at Fruitland Baptist Bible College. The school honored him with the J.C. Canipe Teaching Award in 1997. He has led his church to support the ministry of the Biblical Recorder, and he has been a great personal encourager to the organization. The church carries one of the Recorder’s largest group subscription plans.
 
History will record that Mathis was a strategic peacemaker and strategic influencer in the BSC. Twice elected as the convention’s president from 1995-1997, he intentionally reached across the aisle to befriend many who differed with him on various Baptist issues.
 
He has written eight books and is the recipient of many awards including The Order of the Long Leaf Pine Award in 2000 by Gov. James B. “Jim” Hunt. Both Gardner-Webb and North Greenville University have granted him honorary doctorates. Campbell University gave him the Reavis Scholar Award in 1998. He has served many roles in denominational life including two terms on the Executive Committee of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC).

 

Campbell University

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Jack F. Coffey

Jack F. Coffey: “You were born for just such a time as this,” Jack Coffey quoted Esther 4:14 to college graduates at Campbell University’s 1993 spring commencement. “What a time – a time of crisis, but also a time of change and a time of challenge.”
 
They were words of inspiration that still ring true, just as they did 23 years ago. Coffey, the former minister who served nearly three decades at New Hope Baptist Church in Raleigh, has inspired generations both from the pulpit and through his philanthropy and service in higher education.
 
An alumnus of Mars Hill College (University), Wake Forest College (University), Duke University Divinity School and Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, Coffey spent 41 years as a pastor in North Carolina and northern Virginia and another 11 years as interim pastor before his retirement in 2007. He served on major committees for the SBC and BSC in the 1970s and ’80s, and he was inducted into North Carolina’s Order of the Long Leaf Pine by then Gov. Jim Hunt in 1995.
 
His legacy will live on through Campbell University, where he was a three-time trustee and recipient of an honorary doctorate of divinity. In 2013, Campbell Law School in Raleigh dedicated its chapel to him and his late wife, Sarah Buie Coffey. Coffey was also instrumental in the construction of Campbell’s Butler Chapel, serving as chairman of the chapel’s campaign committee. At 88, Coffey continues to serve on Campbell’s Presidential Advisory Committee and continues to provide leadership in Campbell’s mission of faith, learning and service.

 

Chowan University

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Ray Felton

Ray Felton: The size of Ray Felton’s heart has little to do with his grand stature, but instead stems from his generous nature and the way he genuinely cares about his employees, friends and family. Felton is a man who gives back, renowned as a man of service with a heart for the community.
 
Married with three children and four grandchildren, Ray Felton of Eure, N.C., along with his son Brock, owns and operates Metal Tech in Murfreesboro. He and his business are major supporters of the annual Hertford-Gates Relay for Life and Felton has served as a N.C. ambassador for the American Cancer Society.
 
In addition to Metal Tech’s lead corporate sponsorship of Chowan University Athletics, Felton is also an avid patron of fine arts and music at Chowan University, where he serves on the Board of Trustees. In recognition of their outstanding community service, selfless volunteerism and benevolent interest in others, Ray and Judy Felton were the 2007 recipients of Chowan’s Community Service Award.
 
The compassionate couple supports area schools, churches, 4-H programs and fire, police and rescue departments. They are sponsors of All4Kids Hunting programs, the Gates County Wounded Warrior Turkey Hunt, the Josh Lane Juvenile Diabetes Golf Tournament, the Jefcoat Museum, the N.C. Watermelon Festival, Gates County Ducks Unlimited, and the National Wild Turkey Federation. They host regular Bloodmobile drives, support Muscular Dystrophy, the American Heart Association, the Helene Knight Scholarship, Committee for Education Excellence-Gates County Schools, and Partners for Education-Hertford County Schools. Felton also serves as a member of the Gates County Board of Education. The Feltons attend Eure Baptist Church.

 

Gardner-Webb University

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Emmett Harvey Rogers Jr.

Emmett Harvey Rogers Jr.: Emmett Harvey Rogers Jr. had begun a promising career as an automobile dealer when he sensed a call to ministry as a member of First Baptist Church in Shelby, N.C. Though he was past the traditional age of attending college, Rogers earned his bachelor’s degree at Gardner-Webb University and later graduated with a master of divinity and a doctor of ministry from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary.
 
He has pastored three Baptist churches in North Carolina, including Forestville Baptist Church in Wake Forest, Fallston Baptist Church in Fallston and Mooresville First Baptist Church. Always demonstrating what one friend called “a caring concern for others,” he currently serves as a board member for Lake Norman Regional Medical Center in Mooresville. He has also served with the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina, concentrating on Baptist Hospital, Baptist Children’s Homes and Baptist Retirement Homes of North Carolina. In addition, he is a member of the Mooresville Chamber of Commerce. He has held significant leadership positions with the BSC and South Yadkin Baptist Association.
 
Rogers remains devoted to Gardner-Webb, teaching as an adjunct professor and serving on the university’s Board of Ministers as well as the Board of Trustees. In December 2012 he received an honorary doctorate from GWU’s School of Divinity.

 

Mars Hill University

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Ronald F. Martin

Ronald F. Martin: Ron Martin of Morganton, N.C., has flunked retirement.

“When I retired,” he shares, “I thought I had certain traits and qualities that would be beneficial for nonprofit organizations. I can’t be still.” Truer words could not be spoken.
 
Since “retirement” from Shadowline in 2003, Martin’s faith has informed his service to innumerable organizations in his community including Burke County United Way, Blue Ridge Health Care Foundation, Exploring Joara Foundation, Burke Council on Alcoholism and Chemical Dependency, South Mountain Children’s Home and Family Service and First Baptist Church.  In recognition of his commitment to his hometown, Ron was selected by the Morganton Rotary as the Man of the Year in 2010.
 
Western Piedmont Community College, where Martin is the former president of the Board of Directors, has benefited greatly from his tireless efforts. The same can be said of Mars Hill University. As a three-term trustee, Ron has served as chair of the Board of Trustees, a member of the campaign cabinet, and as chair of the Trusteeship Committee. In this latter role he has been the individual most instrumental in identifying, recruiting and selecting new university trustees.
 
Last August Martin was awarded North Carolina’s highest civilian recognition, the Order of the Long Leaf Pine. Martin is far from ready to curb his busy schedule.  On the contrary, his goal is “to leave here tired,” which means he will continue to impact the lives he encounters.

 

Meredith College

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Justus “Jud” Ammons

Justus “Jud” Ammons: Jud Ammons grew up on a farm in the North Carolina mountains, where his work sharecropping and plowing gardens showed early signs of the entrepreneur he would become. At N.C. State University, he worked several jobs and his senior year he worked as an engineer for the State of North Carolina.
 
After graduation, he served in the U.S. Air Force, then worked as a department head with CP&L. However, when he started Ammons Construction Company, Ammons set his foot on a path that would change the face of Raleigh, and enrich the quality of communities far and wide.
Since that day, he has built, owned, and operated major subdivisions, day care facilities, golf course communities, industrial parks, and shopping centers across North Carolina. He has always gone above and beyond to create quality communities.
 
Ammons work on the Raleigh City Task Force inspired him to build Eagle Chase Subdivision to provide attractive, affordable housing, and recreational amenities in Southeast Raleigh. To increase investment and jobs, he developed EastPark, one of the largest industrial, business, and office parks in the Triangle.
 
Encouraged by seniors in his church, Ammons developed Springmoor Retirement Community, and has operated it for more than 30 years. Springmoor is an integral part of Greystone, where Ammons pioneered the concept of a planned urban development incorporating amenities that allow residents to live, work, play, worship, and go to school in a cohesive community.
He is a founder of Greystone Baptist Church and has served as deacon, Sunday School teacher, and trustee.
 
Last year a gift to Meredith College from the Jud Ammons family, in honor of his late wife, Meredith alumna Jo Ellen Ammons, will renovate the iconic Johnson Hall and add the Jo Ellen Ammons Welcome Center that will welcome prospective and current students.

 

North Carolina Baptist Foundation

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Jack A. and Joan D. Cooper

Jack A. and Joan D. Cooper: Jack and Joan Cooper are wonderful models in Christian stewardship. Jack is in his second term on the Board of Directors of the North Carolina Baptist Foundation where he has served on the Executive Committee and continues to serve on the Investment Committee. Joan has served two terms as Trustee for the Baptist Children’s Homes. They are both active members of Corinth Baptist Church in Elizabeth City, where Jack has served as Deacon, Sunday School teacher and trustee. Joan has served her church as Sunday School teacher and Director of Woman’s Missionary Union.
 
Before their retirement, they were both engaged in the work of the J.A. Cooper Insurance Agency and State Farm Insurance, while at the same time providing for their children Gary and Dawn.
 
Somehow Jack, with Joan’s support, also found time to serve their community as president of the Rotary and Ruritan Clubs, director of the First Citizens Bank, and board member of the Elizabeth City Foundation. Today they also have four grandchildren to keep them busy.
 
Under Joan’s leadership, the Corinth Baptist Church WMU Scholarship Fund was established to provide funds for church youth to continue their education beyond high school. Through Jack’s leadership, the church also established a Missions Endowment to provide resources for members engaged in mission opportunities.
 
The Coopers have also set up a Charitable Remainder Unitrust that will ultimately benefit Baptist Children’s Homes of NC, as well as provide the Cooper Family Scholarship at Wake Forest Health Services.
 
The North Carolina Baptist Foundation is honored to recognize Jack and Joan Cooper as our 2016 Heritage Award recipients.

 

North Carolina Baptist Men/Baptists on Mission

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Bobby & Betty Branson

Bobby & Betty Branson: The world has been touched by the faithful service of volunteers like Bobby and Betty Branson.  In 2000, they began working with NCBM/Baptists on Mission through the Mobile Dental Bus Ministry. Betty wrote most of the manuals and served as the hostess and assistant to the dentists. Bobby provided the bus maintenance, sterilized the equipment and they both kept the bus stocked with supplies.
 
They were a part of dental mission teams that transported the portable dental equipment to Vermont, Kentucky and Tennessee so they could minister to those in need. Bobby continues to support the ministry in any way possible.
 
As members of mission teams from Ephesus Baptist in Raleigh, the Branson’s were participants in mission trips to West Virginia, New York, Spain and Brazil. They were happy to use their vacation time to travel the world to share their faith and provide medical care in Jesus’ name. In 1991, they became charter members of Westwood Baptist Church in Cary. They were married for 60 years before her unexpected death on Dec. 20, 2015. They are the parents of two sons, one of whom preceded them in death on Aug. 15, 2015, and one daughter, in addition to four grandchildren and one great grandson.
 
Bobby joined the Marine Corps and served his country in Korea from 1951 to 1954. He worked for the United States Postal Service from 1964 until his retirement in 1991. Betty was a registered nurse and retired from Rex Hospital in 1993.
 
With servant hearts full of grace and generated by love, Bobby and Betty Branson served as the hands and feet of Jesus – not for money, fame, or personal gain but simply to give a helping hand to others. It is an honor for NCBM to recognize Bobby and Betty Branson as our 2016 Heritage Award recipients.

 

North Carolina Baptist Hospital, Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center

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William C. “Bill” Warden Jr.

William C. “Bill” Warden Jr.: Bill Warden is a Christian servant leader. Through his 18 years of service to North Carolina Baptist Hospital (NCBH) and Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center, Warden has embodied the directive of Acts 20:35 – In all things I have shown you that by so toiling one must help the weak, remembering the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ Since 1922, NCBH has been a beacon of hope to the sick of North Carolina, particularly Baptists, and Bill Warden has given of his time, energy and talents to help ensure that the healing ministries of the Hospital and the Medical Center have endured and thrived.
 
Warden was first appointed as a Trustee of North Carolina Baptist Hospital in 1995 and has served five terms. He currently is chairman of the Board of the Hospital and previously served in that capacity in 2009 and 2010.  He was instrumental in the integration of the Hospital and Wake Forest University Health Sciences (the Wake Forest School of Medicine) in 2010. Warden served as chairman of the Board of the Medical Center in 2011-2012. Warden is a member of the Wilkesboro Baptist Church, where he has served as deacon. His commitment to health care is not limited to North Carolina Baptist Hospital and Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center. He has served on the Board of Wilkes Regional Medical Center for nine years.
 
Warden’s family includes his wife, Carol, their three children and two grandchildren.

 

Woman’s Missionary Union of N.C.

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Beatrice “Bea” McRae

Beatrice “Bea” McRae: Bea McRae’s heart, even from her youth, has been devoted to missions and ministry. She has served in nearly every leadership position the church and Woman’s Missionary Union (WMU) has, from Mission Action Chairman to WMU Director to Sunday School and Vacation Bible School, utilizing her zeal and enthusiasm to encourage others to become involved. As a member of First Baptist Church in Lumberton, she assisted in organizing a new mission, which became constituted as a new church.
 
WMU-NC tapped into her commitment, nominating her to serve on the Executive Board and she eventually became first vice-president and then president. This service included serving as a vice-president of national WMU, where she served in various capacities including Chair of the Centennial Committee for the Centennial Celebration held in Richmond, Va. She has led conferences at Ridgecrest and Glorieta Conference Centers, and written articles for Royal Service, Contempo, and Dimension magazines, for the WMU Planning Guide and WMU Year Book.
 
She has served on the General Board of the Baptist State Convention in various capacities including the NC/Togo Partnership Steering Committee. She was present at the Bridge Dedication and Pharmacy Dedication service at the conclusion of the NC/Togo Partnership. McRae is an amazing leader, very thorough in planning events and ministries. She is passionate about missions and supports WMU wholeheartedly with her spiritual and monetary gifts. Believing that “missions is a life style, not a trip,” she continues to be involved in missions at her church, association and state levels.
 
She and Horace have two children and four grandchildren.

5/3/2016 11:39:28 AM by N.C. Baptist Foundation | with 0 comments



NOBTS helps police in missing student case

May 3 2016 by Diana Chandler, Baptist Press

New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary (NOBTS) is assisting police in the disappearance of John W. Russell, a 39-year-old master of divinity student reported missing April 25th.
 
Russell was last seen April 21 at NOBTS around 7:45 p.m., and last had contact with his mother April 22, NOBTS Director of Public Relations Gary Myers confirmed to Baptist Press.

 
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NOPD photo
John W. Russell

NOBTS informed the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD) of Russell’s disappearance after receiving a call from his mother April 25th, Myers said.
 
NOBTS President Chuck Kelley said, “At this time we are assisting the authorities in every appropriate way to find John Russell, and we are praying for his safe return to his family.”
 
Russell, a commuter student, is described in news reports as 5’9” tall, 190 pounds, with brown hair and blue eyes. According to New Orleans police, he was last seen wearing a long sleeve blue shirt and jeans, and drives a gray 2007 Chevy Silverado with Louisiana license plate C30-9240.
 
In Facebook and Twitter posts, Russell is described as the son of Jan (Hays) Russell of Memphis suburb Collierville, Tenn.
 
Various friends and family members have asked the public to pray for Russell’s safe return.
 
“Pray, pray, pray,” Melinda Cox Hall of Collierville posted on Facebook, identifying herself as Russell’s cousin. “Many of you know his family. … He is loved!”
 
“He’s such a wonderful man,” read another post.
 
“This is a Collierville family and friend of many here,” posted another Collierville resident. “Please share to friends in the NOLA area.”
 
Russell’s disappearance coincided with the annual New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, an April 22–May 1 music, cultural and educational event that draws hundreds of thousands of visitors and has an economic impact of more than $300 million, according to the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival Foundation.
 
Anyone with information on Russell’s location is asked to call the NOPD at (504) 658-6030.
 
(EDITOR’S NOTE – Diana Chandler is Baptist Press’ general assignment writer/editor.)

5/3/2016 11:34:06 AM by Diana Chandler, Baptist Press | with 0 comments



2016 SBC program schedule released

May 3 2016 by Baptist Press

The schedule for this year’s Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) annual meeting program has been released by the SBC Executive Committee in a special pre-convention issue of SBC LIFE.
 
See schedule below.
 
TUESDAY MORNING, JUNE 14, 2016
8:15 Opening Worship – Julio Arriola, Convention music director; global worship pastor, Cross Church, Northwest Arkansas
 
8:25 Welcome and Call to Order – Ronnie Floyd, SBC president; senior pastor, Cross Church, Northwest Arkansas
 
Announcement of Committee on Committees, Credentials Committee, Tellers and Resolutions Committee
 
8:30 Scripture – David Prince, pastor of preaching and vision, Ashland Avenue Baptist Church, Lexington, Ky.
 
Prayer – Sean Boone, lead pastor, New Beginning Christian Fellowship, St. Louis, Mo.
 
8:35 Registration Report and Constitution of Convention – Jim Wells, SBC registration secretary; Crossway Baptist Church, Springfield, Mo.
 
8:38 Committee on Order of Business Report (First) – Andrew Hebert, chairman; lead pastor, Taylor Memorial Baptist Church, Hobbs, N.M.
 
8:43 Appreciation of St. Louis Volunteers – Ronnie Floyd
 
8:45 Welcome to St. Louis – Joe Costephens, pastor, First Baptist Church, Ferguson, Mo.; Kenny Petty, church planting strategist, PlantMidwest; senior pastor, The Gate Church, St. Louis
 
8:50 Response from SBC – Nick Floyd, teaching pastor and staff leader, Cross Church, Northwest Arkansas
 
8:55 Crossover Report – Joel Southerland, executive director of evangelism, North American Mission Board, Alpharetta, Ga.; Jim Breeden, executive director of missions, St. Louis Metro Baptist Association, Bridgeton, Mo.
 
9:00 Honoring America and Recognition of Veterans – Ronnie Floyd
 
The Pledge of Allegiance
 
The National Anthem: “The Star-Spangled Banner” – Cross Church Choir and Singers, Northwest Arkansas
 
9:15 Worship – Julio Arriola
 
9:20 Introduction of Past Presidents – Ronnie Floyd
 
9:32 Introduction of the President and Family – O. S. and Susie Hawkins, president and CEO, GuideStone Financial Resources, Dallas, Texas
 
9:37 Prayer for the President – Tom Elliff, International Mission Board president 2011–2014; SBC president 1997–1999
 
9:40 Worship – Julio Arriola
 
9:52 President’s Address – Ronnie Floyd
 
10:45 Worship – Julio Arriola
 
10:52 Panel: A National Conversation on Racial Unity in America – Ronnie Floyd leads a discussion with pastors including: Dr. Jerry Young, president, National Baptist Convention, U.S.A.; pastor, New Hope Baptist Church, Jackson, Miss.; Marshall Blalock, pastor, First Baptist Church, Charleston, S.C.
 
11:47 Closing Prayer – Byron Day, pastor, Emmanuel Baptist Church, Laurel, Md.
 
TUESDAY AFTERNOON, JUNE 14, 2016
1:15 Opening Worship – Julio Arriola, Convention music director; global worship pastor, Cross Church, Northwest Arkansas
 
1:25 Scripture – Jose Abella, lead pastor, Providence Road Church, Miami, Fla.
 
Prayer – Won Kwak, lead pastor, Maranatha Grace Fort Lee, Englewood Cliffs, N.J.
 
1:30 Introduction of New Motions (First) – Ronnie Floyd, SBC president; senior pastor, Cross Church, Northwest Arkansas
 
1:45 Executive Committee Report (Part 1) – Frank S. Page, president and CEO, SBC Executive Committee, Nashville, Tenn.
 
2:20 Worship – Julio Arriola
 
2:25 Election of Officers (First) – Ronnie Floyd
 
2:35 Committee on Committees Report – William (Willy) Rice, chairman; pastor, Calvary Baptist Church, Clearwater, Fla.
 
2:45 Committee on Nominations Report – Paul Chitwood, chairman; executive director, Kentucky Baptist Convention, Louisville, Ky.
 
2:55 Introduction of New Motions (Last Opportunity) – Ronnie Floyd
 
3:10 Election of Officers (Second)
 
3:17 GuideStone Report – O. S. Hawkins, president and CEO, GuideStone Financial Resources, Dallas, Texas
 
3:25 Executive Committee Report (Part 2) – Frank S. Page
 
4:05 Election of Officers (Third)
 
Election of Officers (Fourth)
 
4:13 Committee on Resolutions Report – Stephen Rummage, chairman; senior pastor, Bell Shoals Baptist Church, Brandon, Fla.
 
4:43 Committee on Order of Business Report (Second) – Andrew Hebert, chairman; lead pastor, Taylor Memorial Baptist Church, Hobbs, N.M.
 
Election of 2017 Convention Preacher, Alternate Preacher and Music Director
 
4:48 Election of Officers (Fifth)
 
4:53 Closing Prayer – Anthony Jordan, executive director-treasurer, Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma, Oklahoma City, Okla.
 
TUESDAY EVENING, JUNE 14, 2016
6:30 Worship – Cross Church Choir and Singers led by Julio Arriola with special guests Keith and Kristyn Getty
 
6:45 A National Call to Prayer for Spiritual Leadership, Revived Churches and Nationwide & Global Awakening – Ronnie Floyd and other pastors
 
WEDNESDAY MORNING, JUNE 15, 2016
8:15 Opening Worship – Julio Arriola, Convention music director; global worship pastor, Cross Church, Northwest Arkansas
 
8:25 Scripture – Clint Pressley, senior pastor, Hickory Grove Baptist Church, Charlotte, N.C.
 
Prayer – Darron Edwards, senior pastor, United Believers Community Baptist Church, Kansas City, Mo.
 
8:30 Committee on Order of Business Report (Third) – Andrew Hebert, chairman; lead pastor, Taylor Memorial Baptist Church, Hobbs, N.M.
 
8:45 The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission Presentation – Russell Moore, president, Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, Nashville, Tenn.
 
9:00 The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission Report – Russell Moore
 
9:08 LifeWay Christian Resources Report – Thom S. Rainer, president and CEO, LifeWay Christian Resources, Nashville, Tenn.
 
9:16 LifeWay Christian Resources Presentation – Thom S. Rainer
 
9:31 Worship – Julio Arriola
 
9:36 Seminary Presentation and Reports – Daniel L. Akin, president, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, Wake Forest, N.C.; Charles S. Kelley Jr., president, New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, New Orleans, La.; Jeff Iorg, president, Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary, Mill Valley, Calif.; Jason K. Allen, president, Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Kansas City, Mo.; Paige Patterson, president, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Fort Worth, Texas; R. Albert Mohler Jr., president, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, Ky.
 
10:24 Prayer for Seminary Leaders – Danny Wood, senior pastor, Shades Mountain Baptist Church, Birmingham, Ala.
 
10:27 Previously Scheduled Business – Ronnie Floyd, SBC president; senior pastor, Cross Church, Northwest Arkansas
 
10:39 Worship – Julio Arriola
 
10:48 Convention Sermon – Ted Traylor, pastor, Olive Baptist Church, Pensacola, Fla.
 
11:23 Worship – Julio Arriola
 
11:28 Woman’s Missionary Union Report – Wanda Lee, executive director/treasurer, Woman’s Missionary Union, Birmingham, Ala.
 
11:36 North American Mission Board Report – Kevin Ezell, president, North American Mission Board, Alpharetta, Ga.
 
11:44 International Mission Board Report – David Platt, president, International Mission Board, Richmond, Va.
 
11:52 Closing Prayer – Nathan Lorick, director of evangelism, Southern Baptists of Texas Convention, Grapevine, Texas
 
WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON, JUNE 15, 2016
2:15 Opening Worship – Julio Arriola, Convention music director; global worship pastor, Cross Church, Northwest Arkansas
 
2:25 Scripture – Ronnie Parrott, special assistant to the Southern Baptist Convention President, Cross Church, Northwest Arkansas
 
Prayer – Claude Thomas, president, C3Global; Keystone Church, Keller, Texas
 
2:30 Previously Scheduled Business – Ronnie Floyd, SBC president; senior pastor, Cross Church, Northwest Arkansas
 
2:35 Presentation of Officers – Frank S. Page, president and CEO, SBC Executive Committee, Nashville, Tenn.
 
2:45 Panel: Pastors and The Church in American Politics Today
 
3:10 Worship – Julio Arriola
 
3:15 Panel Discussion with SBC Entity Presidents and Messenger Questions from the Floor
 
4:05 Worship – Julio Arriola
 
4:10 Joint Mission Presentation – Kevin Ezell, president, North American Mission Board, Alpharetta, Ga.; David Platt, president, International Mission Board, Richmond, Va.
 
5:00 Grateful for the Present & Looking to the Future: Closing Words and Introduction of the New President – Ronnie Floyd
 
5:10 St. Louis Hand-off to Phoenix
 
5:15 Closing Prayer
 
(EDITOR’S NOTE – The schedule for this year’s Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting program has been released by the SBC Executive Committee in a special pre-convention issue of SBC LIFE.)

 

Related Stories:

Committee on Nominations chooses nominees for 2016 SBC entities
Racial unity, prayer, missions, culture at SBC in June

5/3/2016 11:26:32 AM by Baptist Press | with 0 comments



Female military draft proposal critiqued

May 3 2016 by David Roach, Baptist Press

The House Armed Services Committee’s recommendation that women be required to register for the draft has provoked reactions from an array of evangelicals, including Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary first lady Dorothy Patterson and Southern Baptist Theological Seminary President R. Albert Mohler Jr.
 
Though mandatory female registration for the Selective Service is still a long way from becoming law, the House committee’s 32-30 approval of the idea April 27 led Patterson to note military service for wives and mothers “has never been the norm.”
 
Women generally should not participate in “military maneuvers ... not because a woman does not have the giftedness and intellectual prowess to do the job, but because her assignment in managing the home and helping her husband and nurturing her children is not only one of great magnitude but also one of overwhelming importance to the nation,” said Patterson, professor of theology in women’s studies at Southwestern.

 
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Photo from archive.defense.gov by Sgt. Jeremy J. Fowler

“Contemporary efforts to eradicate the differences between the sexes and reverse divinely designed roles are causing havoc with the responsibilities women have to family and home,” Patterson said. “Women have been persuaded that they are needed more everywhere but in their own homes.”
 
Ironically, the proposal to include women in any future draft was offered by a congressman who opposes the idea, Rep. Duncan Hunter.
 
A California Republican and former Marine who served combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, Hunter proposed the measure “to prompt discussion about how the Pentagon’s decision in December to rescind gender restrictions on military service failed to consider whether the exclusion on drafting women also should be lifted,” The Associated Press reported.
 
Five Republicans joined Democrats in supporting Hunter’s proposal, which was attached as an amendment to the annual defense reauthorization bill. To become law, the amendment would have to gain approval from the full House and the Senate.
 
Patterson noted that some have appealed to the Old Testament judge Deborah to justify women in combat. But she rejected that argument as “twisting the scriptures.”
 
“Deborah has been called a warrior by some in the modern arena, but she described herself as ‘a mother in Israel,’ whether a descriptor of her national role or a reference to her own children,” Patterson said. “She also identified herself as ‘the wife of Lapidoth.’ She did deliver God’s words to Barak, the army commander, but she did not participate in the military operation or conduct the campaign. Without doubt she played a vital role in the deliverance of Israel from the Canaanites, but she did so within God-given boundaries.”
 
Mohler said the committee vote to approve female conscription illustrates the rapid pace of secularization in America.
 
“We are now in a secular society that seems to have lost not only its sanity, but also to have lost any ability to make a moral argument against women serving in combat,” Mohler said May 2 on his daily podcast The Briefing.
 
“Successive generations of feminist ideology and political correctness have rendered even Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives, at least some of them in this case, ... from recognizing or making or having the courage to stand by an argument that in some sense men and women are different, and that in any sense it is morally wrong to put women in combat positions,” Mohler said.
 
In just “a matter of weeks and months,” Mohler said, fighting on the front lines of a war has gone from being considered a prohibited activity for women, to a right for women, and now potentially a duty for all women.
 
Kathy Steele, professor of psychology and counseling at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, said the issue of women in combat requires nuanced analysis. Because women possess a broad array of personality traits, it would be inappropriate to impose a blanket requirement that all of them serve in combat, she said.
 
“In our culture we sometimes think being feminine or masculine is an either-or, but actually the traits our culture assigns to masculinity or femininity have levels of intensity or variety,” Steele said in written comments. “In the same way God has given us unique physical traits, and personality traits, so we also have variation in the specific traits our culture assigns to gender.”
 
For example, Steele said, some in American culture may expect men to be more logical than women and women to be more nurturing than men. But women can be logical and men nurturing.
 
“God loves diversity and variety, and it is important that we recognize the richness of His diversity in how He has made each one us. While I would not feel comfortable myself in a combat role, there may be women who do,” Steele said.
 
In 1998, the Southern Baptist Convention adopted a resolution that “warn[ed] against and oppose[d] the training and assigning of females to military combat service.” For the full text of the resolution, visit sbc.net/resolutions/1089/resolution-on-women-in-combat.
 
(EDITOR’S NOTE – David Roach is chief national correspondent for Baptist Press, the Southern Baptist Convention’s news service.)

5/3/2016 11:21:29 AM by David Roach, Baptist Press | with 0 comments



N.C. Missions Conference: ‘Be forgiven, offer redemption’

May 2 2016 by Seth Brown, BR Content Editor

Bright yellow shirts, hats and vests dotted the sprawling campus of Hickory Grove Baptist Church in Charlotte as North Carolina Baptist Men (NCBM) staff and volunteers readied for their annual event. The Baptist State Convention of North Carolina’s auxiliary organization, which is also called Baptists on Mission, hosted the 2016 N.C. Missions Conference on Friday and Saturday, April 15-16, to encourage and equip Christians to live on mission.
 
More than 1,300 North Carolina Baptists heard speakers from across the world in a full schedule of events that focused on the theme, “Rescued and Redeemed.”

 
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BR photo by Dianna L. Cagle
Richard Brunson, right, president of Baptists on Mission (also known as North Carolina Baptist Men) presents Bob Stewart, center, with the 2016 Volunteer of the Year award. Visit photo gallery.

Headlining plenary sessions were Bob Goff, author and speaker; Bryan Loritts, lead pastor of Abundant Life Christian Fellowship in Mountain View, Calif.; and Gary Chapman, author and senior associate pastor of Calvary Baptist Church in Winston-Salem, N.C.
 
The conference featured TED-style “theme testimonies” from speaker and author Rebekah Lyons; Meredith Brunson, missionary and daughter of NCBM director Richard Brunson; and Cheryl Allen, founder and director of Door of Hope ministry in South Africa; and others.
 
Grammy award winning artist Laura Story led musical worship for the event.
 
A volunteer dinner kicked off the two-day meeting, featuring reports from more than 20 NCBM mission project leaders. The updates highlighted global disaster relief incidents, North American church planting efforts, mobile medical clinics, Southeast Asian orphan ministries, U.S. college ministries and many more.
 
Main session speakers emphasized the need for Christians to remember their dependence on God for rescue and redemption, even as they pour out their lives for others.
 
“God does not just use people to accomplish tasks, but God uses tasks to accomplish people,” said Loritts.
 
He spoke from the book of James about the necessity for patience in ministry, referring to the process by which a pearl is formed through an oyster’s attempt to resolve the annoyance of a sand grain.
 
“You don’t get pearls unless you first go through life’s irritating, exacerbating and frustrating grains of sand,” Loritts said. “God is relentlessly trying to turn your life into a pearl.”

 
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BR photo by Dianna L. Cagle
Author Rebekah Lyons shares about her “crippling” panic attacks and how finding her identity in God helped her through difficult times. Visit photo gallery.

Lyons recounted a period in her life when she battled debilitating anxiety. Shortly after her family moved to Manhattan, she began to experience panic attacks, something she’d never encountered before.
 
“It was crippling,” she said. “The thing about despair is that you start to believe it will never change. I took on that identity, and I embraced it. I martyred-up for it.”
 
She found momentary relief from the anxiety in productivity, friends and family – all good things – until one night she came to a breaking point. Her head shot off the pillow during the pre-dawn hours of the night. In an all-too-familiar experience, she struggled for breath as her heart raced uncontrollably. Broken prayers escaped through gasps for air.
 
“The living God came upon me and I found my voice and I said ‘Rescue me. Deliver me. I cannot do that without you,’” Lyons remembered. “In that split second, my body broke and mid-panic attack, my body fell upon the bed.”
 
God had answered her persistent prayers. She asked the crowd, “How many in this room need a rescuer?”
 
Goff offered similar encouragement in his talk, “Just receive forgiveness. Be forgiven.”
 
His presentation, laced with humor, centered on a line from Phillipians 2:3, “consider others as more important than yourselves.” Repeating on numerous occasions the guiding principle of his life, “Love everybody always,” Goff expanded on the idea.
 
He pressed attendees to love others in practical but unnatural ways.
 
“Find people that you just don’t feel right about, you just don’t understand them,” he said. “And then start by getting to know their name. Even in your church there’s one that’s just a little odd.
 
“Love them and it’ll change everything. They’ll feel like they just met heaven.”
 
Goff continued, “If following Jesus doesn’t lead you to the poor, the hurting and the creepy people, you’re not following Jesus! You’re being popular. Stop it!”
 
Chapman’s talk resembled his most popular book, The Five Love Languages, but he said the two were unrelated. He outlined five “languages of apology,” based on another book he co-authored.
 
He explained different elements of remorse people expect to hear in order to accept an apology as genuine and meaningful. The essentials were expressing regret, accepting responsibility, making restitution, genuine repenting and requesting forgiveness.
 
Hands-on service opportunities were offered during the conference, along with many breakout sessions that highlighted and expanded on specific aspects of ministry.
 
NCBM honored Robert (Bob) Stewart, member of First Baptist Church in Durham, as the 2016 Volunteer of the Year. Richard Brunson said Stewart was “instrumental in beginning our new Health Screening Ministry and getting the new Health Screening Bus.”
 
In addition, he helped implement the International Indigenous Community Development (IICD) program in Guatemala, including the Good Shepherd Children’s Home and medical center. Stewart has also worked in many other places around the world.
 
Visit baptistsonmission.org.

5/2/2016 3:07:52 PM by Seth Brown, BR Content Editor | with 0 comments



WMU-NC jumps ‘Both Feet In’

May 2 2016 by Dianna L. Cagle, BR Production Editor

From early on, Amy Pardue Boone credits her parents as well as church leaders with her interest in missions.
 
The new executive director-treasurer of Woman’s Missionary Union of North Carolina (WMU-NC) discussed the importance of missions at her first Missions Extravaganza April 1-3 at Ridgecrest Conference Center in Black Mountain.
 
“I come with great respect for the legacy of WMU North Carolina,” said Boone. “I know the very long history that you have, and I am very humbled to now be a part of that legacy, and I have great respect for the staff that you currently have and the ministries they are involved in. My goal is to come alongside them and encourage them.”

 
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BR photo by Dianna L. Cagle
University of North Carolina fans cheer their team during the semifinals of the NCAA basketball tournament. The group was catching the game after one of the Woman’s Missionary Union of N.C. general sessions. See photo gallery.

The theme for the 125th annual meeting of WMU-NC – Both Feet In: A Journey to Surrender, Sacrifice and Service – was taken from a book title, written by Bud Fray, who served in Africa for 28 years with his wife Jane. He was the missionary speaker for the weekend event.
 
Fray shared about surrender, sacrifice and service through three sessions over the weekend.
 
“Nobody took (Jesus’) life from Him,” he said. “He gave it willingly. He willingly laid down His life for our sin. He saved you on purpose, and He saved you for a purpose.”
 
God didn’t just save people to take them to heaven, Fray stressed.
 
“He did save you for somebody else to find heaven … through you,” Fray said. “You’re not exempt if you are a disciple.”
 
Next, believers should offer themselves as a sacrifice to God. He urged ladies to surrender their all to God.
 
“Hearts are hungry around the world,” Fray said. “Our world is the most winnable in history. There are opportunities that we’ve never had. We have to walk in obedient love.”
 
Caroline Jones, a N.C. native who now lives in Birmingham, Ala., provided the theme interpretation in the general sessions.
 
Jones, who formerly served WMU-NC in a variety of capacities including president, discussed faith, family, failure and fear.
 
“When God calls us, He equips us to respond, but He lets us make the decision about whether or not to respond,” Jones said.
 
She learned what surrender meant at Ridgecrest Conference Center in 1976. That was when her heart opened to “desire to be part of whatever God is doing wherever He is doing it.”
 
Jones advised the women not to say “no” to God.
 
“Read the Old Testament,” she said. “We have to trust Him with all that we are, all that we have, all that we love and jump in with both feet. Our faith has to include trusting God to be true to His Word and has to be real enough to pulse His strength through our veins when we feel faint of heart.”
 
Most people’s excuse of busy-ness keeping them from getting involved in missions is a poor one, Boone said during Sunday morning’s service. “They make time for whatever they want to do,” she said.
 
Fifty percent of N.C. Baptist churches have some WMU-NC organization, she said. Calling it a “sad statistic,” she pledged to travel the state hailing WMU-NC as “one of the best-kept secrets.”
 
She promised to highlight the ministry of Camp Mundo Vista as well.
 
“I know that numbers have been down lately,” Boone said.
 
She cited societal trends away from sending children to camp. She also credited not having as many age-level groups like Girls in Action with the lower numbers.
 
While she considers raising money as one of her jobs, Boone said she doesn’t want to be bound by not having money.
 
“The money that we do have, we are going to spend it as faithfully as we can spend it, and we are going to ask God to bless it like the loaves and fishes and ask that it will go farther than it could have gone on our own power,” she said.
 
She stressed the need to make WMU-NC relevant to the next generation while “not in any way compromising our message or what we believe.”
 
The WMU-NC staff is smaller than it has been in the past. That means the ones who are working are carrying the load for two or three positions.
 
“That is a difficult thing to ask of them,” she said.
 
In her president’s report April 2, Dee Dee Moody highlighted some key events in 2015 including the centennial commemoration of Fannie E.S. Heck at Historic Oakwood Cemetery in Raleigh. This year, WMU-NC worked with the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina (BSC) to provide gift baskets for returning missionaries who had taken the voluntary retirement incentive offered by the International Mission Board. The BSC provide a meal at Calvary Baptist Church in Winston-Salem for the missionaries.
 
She raved over the generosity of the women who gave around $21,000 in a matter of weeks to help put together baskets for the missionaries.
 
She also highlighted the Tar Heel Talk magazine as now being available online.
 
With 34 new age-level groups since Missions Extravaganza 2015, Moody shared that there are incentives for new starts, including discounted curriculum.
 
Officers elected were Dee Dee Moody, president; Deborah Taylor, vice president; Mary Ellen Bowman, vice president of development; Barbara Hill, recording secretary; and Beth McDonald, assistant recording secretary.
 
Approved members-at-large include: Mary Anne Croom and Claire Presley, Region 1; Becky Johnson Wroten, Mary Ann Hayes and Patricia Hagans, Region 3; Cathy Callahan, Region 4; Tiffany Brown Seaford, Region 5; Gail Reynolds, Region 6; and Ann Weaver, Region 7.
 
Ladies approved a $953,122 budget. Mary Ellen Bowman, chairman of finance committee and vice president for development, emphasized the need for giving more than ever now that the executive director-treasurer position has been filled.
 
 The largest amount of the budget ($435,234) supports the administrative expenses (meetings, office expenses and payroll).
 
Last year’s budget was not met, Bowman said, so “We’re going to have to dig deeper.”
 
Bowman highlighted some of the ministries that occur at Camp Mundo Vista and invited women to bring their church groups for retreats.
 
“Our camp needs you,” she said. “If you want to see God; if you want to hear God; if you want to taste Him, smell Him, touch Him, be a part of the prison retreat. For those three days they have love, total, unconditional love. … Your feet are exactly where you are on mission every single day.”
 
Kenny Lamm, BSC worship consultant, led the music with worshipASIA band.
 
Some recent staff changes include:

  • Jenn B* has been added to WMU-NC staff as communications coordinator.

  • Carrieanna Lohr will be the summer camp director for Camp Mundo Vista.

  • Andi Wilson has been named associate for leadership development.

The ladies also collected items to fill Buckets of Hope for Baptist Global Response. Next year’s meeting is March 24-25, 2017, at First Baptist Church in Greensboro.
 
More than 600 women participated in the weekend event.
 
*Name changed

5/2/2016 3:03:32 PM by Dianna L. Cagle, BR Production Editor | with 0 comments



Minister with lingering pain gets Mother’s Day Offering blessing

May 2 2016 by N.C. Baptist Hospital/Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center

A former high school football player, Pastor Steve Ashley is no stranger to pain. But when the leg crushed in a teenage weight-lifting accident was still acting up 25 years later, with everything from troublesome circulation to painful ulcers, it was time to take action.
 
A surgery to correct the circulation problems resulted in what he calls, “100 percent perfection.”

 
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Credence Pictures photo by Randy Durham
Steve and Sami Ashley are thankful for N.C. Baptists giving to the Mother’s Day Offering to help patients at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center with bills.

But, a new challenge, an infection months into the healing process, landed him in Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center for a week of costly treatment. A minister and father of five with a nurse for a wife, he knew his family was facing a mountain of medical bills. He also knew just what to do: ask, first, in prayer.
 
“I was concerned, not worried,” he said. “I knew that God would take care of it. I didn’t know how but I put my faith and trust in Him and had peace about it. We were praying for God to give us direction, crying out to Him for help, and the next day we received a letter in the mail saying our bill was paid in full by the Mother’s Day Offering.
 
“We had no idea it was coming. We trusted that the financial burden would be made lighter and the peace of God that passeth all understanding got us through it.”
 
Since 1924 North Carolina Baptists have given to the Mother’s Day Offering to “extend the healing ministry of Jesus Christ, especially to the needy.”
 
Pastor Ashley, who serves as associate pastor of Bald Mountain Baptist Church in West Jefferson, knows he need look no further than his Bible to understand what happened: Nothing is impossible with God.
 
“We go through these things, we pray to God believing he will heal us,” he points out. “We have to trust even when it doesn’t make sense. Even though we’re going through trials and pain, He will direct our path.”
 
Pastor Ashley understands the power of blessings, but, with a twist: Instead of praying to be blessed, he encourages people to pray to be a blessing to others. “Giving to the Mother’s Day Offering makes you a blessing,” he says.
 
“Thank you, N.C. Baptists, from the bottom of my heart, for being the hands and feet of Jesus Christ and sharing His love in my time of need, for being the answer to our prayers.”
 
Visit mothersdayoffering.org for more information about the offering.

5/2/2016 2:59:53 PM by N.C. Baptist Hospital/Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center | with 0 comments



House documents strike at abortion clinic claims

May 2 2016 by Tom Strode, Baptist Press

Denials by Planned Parenthood (PPFA) and its allies of profiteering in the fetal tissue business have received a blow from congressional investigators.
 
A House of Representatives panel offered evidence at an April 20 hearing that abortion clinics profit from trade in body parts of babies in apparent violation of federal law. The House Select Investigative Panel on Infant Lives released documents from a fetal tissue procurement business that appeared to contradict claims that clinics do not make a profit when selling organs and tissue from aborted babies.
 
The panel’s hearing on fetal tissue pricing was the latest step in an investigation prompted by the release last year of undercover videos showing Planned Parenthood officials discussing the sale of organs from aborted children. The videos, recorded by hidden camera, featured Planned Parenthood executives acknowledging their willingness to manipulate the abortion procedure to preserve organs for sale and use.
 
The House panel barely referred to Planned Parenthood – the country’s leading abortion provider – during the hearing, but its role in the investigation was not lost on its defenders or critics.
 
The House’s investigation “has demonstrated what the video testimony showed to be true, that Planned Parenthood and other groups have made a profit from the sale of infant body parts,” said Russell Moore, president of the Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission.
 
“Planned Parenthood is not a health care provider; they are pirates and grave-robbers of defenseless infants who have no grave,” Moore said. “No culture can call itself humane while it tolerates such wickedness. I pray that our lawmakers would see this gross injustice and act on the side of human rights.”
 
The hearing focused on whether payments for baby parts made to abortion clinics and tissue procurement companies – which act as middlemen on behalf of researchers – violate a 1993 law. That measure prohibits payments beyond reasonable costs for such activities as processing, storage and transportation of human fetal tissue.
 
Documents made available by the panel from a tissue procurement business included:

  • A marketing brochure distributed at an abortion trade association meeting that said a clinic could help with biomedical research in a way that is “financially profitable;”

  • Exhibits showing technicians employed by the procurement company work within clinics to identify and procure body parts of unborn children being aborted;

  • A list of body parts researchers can order;

  • A screen grab of the company’s website that shows the step-by-step process from a researcher ordering specific tissue, to a technician gaining pre-abortion consent from the woman for use of the body part, to a technician shipping the tissue to the procurement company paying the clinic per tissue;

  • Lists of payments by researchers to the procurement company, including purchases of fetal brains of 5 to 24 weeks’ gestation for $715 apiece.

Based on the exhibits outlining the work of procurement technicians in abortion clinics, panel investigators concluded in a white paper released at the hearing that “all possible management guidance, tasks, and responsibilities are undertaken by the [procurement business] procurement tech employee and that no tasks are performed by the abortion clinic. Thus, the costs of tissue acquisition are entirely born by entities other [than] the abortion clinic.”
 
Since the abortion clinic “has no reasonable costs to be reimbursed, it raises an inference that it sold the human fetal tissue for a profit,” panel investigators reported.
 
Democrats on the panel disputed the trustworthiness of the documents presented by the Republican majority. Some assailed the committee’s existence while seeking to discredit the Center for Medical Progress (CMP), which produced the secret videos of Planned Parenthood officials.
 
Rep. Diana DeGette, D.-Colo., called the documents “misleading and, moreover, the conclusions that are drawn” false.
 
Rep. Jackie Speier, D.-Calif., said the panel is “the very definition of a kangaroo court, a mock court that disregards the rules of law and justice to validate a predetermined conclusion.”
 
Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of the pro-life Susan B. Anthony List, described the Democrats’ strategy as “a desperate attempt to detract attention from the evidence that abortion facilities like Planned Parenthood participate in an elaborate human fetal tissue procurement network designed to harvest, package and profit from the sale of parts from aborted children. The Democrats’ refusal to cooperate in this investigation speaks volumes about their dedication to abortion ideology.”
 
The panel’s chair – Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R.-Tenn. – defended the documents, telling Democrats they were produced by the panel’s “regular investigatory work. We have had things that have come to us from whistleblowers, from subpoenas from former employees, citizens that have filed FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) requests, the panel’s whistleblower portal, as I said, and also an Internet search archive search engine.”
 
Rep. Joseph Pitts of Pennsylvania joined other Republican panel members in decrying the fetal trade. “[F]or crying out loud, this is the Amazon.com of baby body parts,” he said. “There is a market for baby body parts, and you get what you pay for. This is absolutely repulsive.”
 
Among witnesses at the hearing were four former federal attorneys, three who seemed to be in basic agreement in their analyses of the documents the panel provided.
 
One, Kenneth Sukhia of Tallahassee, Fla., said after reviewing the exhibits and the videos, “[I]t strikes me as odd that there would not be an aggressive and meaningful investigation [by the Department of Justice] into the allegation that indeed human baby parts are being sold for profit.”
 
The panel redacted the name of the tissue procurement business connected to the documents, but a Democratic member of the panel named StemExpress as the company. In addition to videos of Planned Parenthood officials, CMP also released undercover footage of StemExpress officials discussing their work. It also showed video of a former employee of StemExpress discussing her experience procuring baby organs at a Planned Parenthood clinic.
 
While Planned Parenthood and its Democratic allies have charged CMP with fraud, CMP has not only released edited versions of the videos but has posted at its website what it calls full footage of the conversations between PPFA officials and people posing as representatives of a biologics firm. A digital, forensics analysis in September reported the videos “are authentic.” Coalfire Systems Inc., which has some Fortune 500 companies among its clients, said the videos “show no evidence of manipulation or editing.”
 
PPFA and its affiliates received $553.7 million in government grants and reimbursements, according to its latest annual financial report (2014-15). Planned Parenthood affiliates performed 323,999 abortions during 2013-14, the most recent year for which statistics are available.
 
President Barack Obama vetoed legislation in January that would have cut nearly 90 percent of federal funds for Planned Parenthood in the next year.
 
(EDITOR’S NOTE – Tom Strode is Washington bureau chief for Baptist Press, the Southern Baptist Convention’s news service.)
 

Related Stories:

Veto override on PPFA defunding fails in House
Planned Parenthood by the numbers

5/2/2016 2:53:24 PM by Tom Strode, Baptist Press | with 0 comments



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