MEMPHIS, Tenn. — David Rogers, son of the legendary preacher and Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) president Adrian Rogers, is resigning after 19 years as an SBC missionary to Spain.
Rogers, a blogger who has written extensively about his disagreement with SBC International Mission Board (IMB) policies against praying in tongues, said Baptist politics had nothing to do with the decision, which is based solely on health issues involving a family member.
Rogers said he will remain in the Memphis, Tenn., area to work full-time with the Adrian Rogers Pastor Training Institute, where he has been editing training materials in Spanish and English on a temporary basis for several months.
At the institute, founded in 2003, Rogers works alongside his brother Steve and sits at the desk formerly used by his father while he was pastor of Memphis’ Bellevue Baptist Church for 32 years before retiring in 2005.
Rogers said part of his work will be dedicated to building the Adrian Rogers Legacy Library, a project by the family to electronically index and cross-reference notes and transcripts of more than 6,000 sermons the elder Rogers preached during a ministry spanning more than 50 years before his death in 2005.
Rogers and his wife, Kelly, have been on stateside appointment and leave of absence for two years. He said they had planned to return to Spain a year ago but decided to remain in the United States for family reasons.
He described the decision to leave the IMB as “painful” and said he would continue to support and pray for missionary colleagues still on the field.
Three years ago Rogers wrote IMB trustees objecting to a new policy banning missionaries who admit to a “private prayer language” in their devotional lives. He said he could not speak for his late father, but he voiced concern that the “conservative resurgence” that the elder Rogers helped launch in 1979 was “in danger of being commandeered in a new, more extreme direction.”
Rogers told an Associated Baptist Press reporter July 16 his opinions about IMB policies or SBC politics had nothing to do with his resignation, and he hoped media would not ask personal questions that intrude into a private family decision.
(EDITOR’S NOTE — Allen is senior writer for Associated Baptist Press.)