April 15, 2010 Print Edition

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Youth Evangelism Conference challenges teens to activate their faith

ORLANDO (FBC)—More than 500 students were challenged to activate their faith by loving and following God, serving Him boldly, and being a doer not just a hearer of His word during the 2010 Youth Evangelism Conference.

Wade Morris, author and founder of expository Bible study The Journey was the keynote speaker for the March 26-27 conference at First Baptist Church in Orlando. The event, previously held in August, but switched to March to accommodate students’ spring break schedules, was sponsored by the Florida Baptist Convention’s Personal Evangelism Department and underwritten by Florida Baptist gifts through the Cooperative Program.

Reaching people for Jesus outside the church walls

LEESBURG (FBW/FBC)—Florida pastors Ted Traylor, Charles Roesel and Cliff Lea, and past Southern Baptist Convention president Frank Page urged participants at the 2010 National Ministry Conference to reach beyond the four walls of the church by wedding evangelism and ministry to win hurting people to faith in Jesus Christ. The national conference March 18-20 at First Baptist Church of Leesburg drew 244 to hear 40 speakers and conference leaders.

Spiritual concerns of GCR progress report get little attention

NASHVILLE (FBW)—As Southern Baptists debate a Feb. 22 preliminary report of its Great Commission Resurgence Task Force, little attention is being paid to what Chairman Ronnie Floyd calls Southern Baptists’ “number one need”—a “return to God in deep repentance” and to “experience a fresh wave of [the Holy] Spirit.”

Editorial: GCR—What’s God got to do with it?

As strange as it may seem, sometimes news writing can be a spiritually convicting experience.

This issue of Florida Baptist Witness features a special report on the Great Commission Resurgence Task Force “progress report.” The package of articles is a collaborative effort with the Southern Baptist TEXAN and Illinois Baptist newspapers, offering an in-depth analysis of the initial recommendations of the GCRTF released in February. Florida Baptists will benefit greatly from carefully considering these articles as the GCRTF is expected to release its final report May 3.

Cooperative Program: A Sacred Effort

EDITOR’S NOTE: April 11 is Cooperative Program Sunday in the churches of the Southern Baptist Convention. This article is adapted in large part from the video, “Cooperative Program: A Sacred Effort.”

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)—From the founding of the convention in 1845, Southern Baptists have united around a mission of “eliciting, combining, and directing the energies of the whole denomination in one sacred effort, for the propagation of the Gospel.” NASHVILLE, Tenn. (BP)—From the founding of the convention in 1845, Southern Baptists have united around a mission of “eliciting, combining, and directing the energies of the whole denomination in one sacred effort, for the propagation of the Gospel.”

Point of View: First Person—Will you be a Cooperative Program champion?

I was talking to a pastor recently whose church had made serious cuts in its Cooperative Program support. As he gave his rationale for what was happening, he said: “I have so many people who have moved here from churches of other denominations. They have no knowledge of or commitment to the Cooperative Program.”

Point of View: BF&M commentary 28—The Family, Part 2

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the final article in a series of commentaries examining and explaining the Baptist Faith and Message 2000, the Southern Baptist Convention’s confession of faith.

Point of View: Dave Says

Dave Says is a column featuring the financial advice of nationally syndicated radio host Dave Ramsey, the Dave Says column is filled with timely, relevant questions and answers taken from actual calls on Ramsey's radio program, The Dave Ramsey Show.

Point of View: SBC Orlando needs ‘missional messengers’

It will be here before you know it. The Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting is June 15-16 in Orlando. I want to encourage you to please make plans to attend this year’s meeting, and be involved. I hope we’ll all be missional messengers.

Point of View: Literary Witness—How fiction can point to Christ

A woman who is a neighbor of one of my colleagues home schools her three kids. She does a great job—except for one thing: She won’t let them read novels. At worst, they might be trashy; at best, she says, they’re a waste of time.

Women of Compassion group focuses on disadvantaged children

LAKELAND (FBCH)—Frequent laughter and a few tears punctuated a day ending with hugs and a strong commitment from more than 70 women from across the state who pledged March 5 to reach out and help more hurting children in Florida and throughout the developing world in the name of Jesus.

Women of Compassion, a group comprised of women that have contributed $1,000 or more to the Women of Compassion Giving Society of the Florida Baptist Children’s Homes, met to talk about how they will continue to work to unite women around key goals and objectives.

Sullivan tells BCF students to be ‘uncommon for Christ’

GRACEVILLE (BCF)—In a stirring sermon to students March 2 at The Baptist College of Florida in Graceville, John Sullivan, executive director-treasurer of the Florida Baptist Convention challenged them to go out of their way in “Being Uncommon for Christ.”

Basing his sermon on Acts 4:31-33, Sullivan said there are three things that make believers uncommon: their prayer life, their fellowship, and their relationship with the Holy Spirit.

Child protection expert speaks to community through Orange Park church

ORANGE PARK (FBW)—When seven-year old Somer Thompson was kidnapped and murdered on the way home from school in October, First Baptist Church in Orange Park had already earned its stripes as the “go-to” church for her elementary school. So when the church invited an expert in child protection to speak, the entire community paid attention.

The church recently hosted Ken Wooden, founder and president emeritus of Child Lures Protection, to lead a seminar for parents on protecting their children from predators and educating children on recognizing danger.

Baptist associations offer help to displaced Haitians in island communities & in Miami

MIAMI (FBW)—Florida Baptist associations continue to meet needs of Haitians displaced in the January earthquake. Associational leaders say the need for food and medical care remains, but the desperation of the first few days after the quake has passed.

While thousands of Buckets of Hope remain in transit to Haiti, storehouses of food purchased by funds donated to Baptist missions in Haiti are being used to feed communities mostly untouched by relief agencies.

SBC leaders disagree on whether new GCR vision is really new

NASHVILLE (FBW)—The first “Component” of the Great Commission Resurgence Task Force’s interim “progress report“ calls Southern Baptists to rally around a missional vision focused on the Great Commission and to “create a new and healthy culture within the Southern Baptist Convention.”

Special Reports