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Issue Date: 2008-02-28
Volume: 187
Number: 5


Saved by grace

Ninety seconds of sheer terror.
SBC Executive Committee adds $100,000 to Union recovery

The Southern Baptist Convention’s Executive Committee voted Feb. 18 to give $100,000 to help Union University rebuild from the devastating tornado that wrecked the campus almost two weeks earlier.

The vote came on the first evening of the group’s two-day meeting in Nashville, Tenn.

SBC president calls for Union offering
Frank Page, president of the Southern Baptist Convention, asked Southern Baptists to support Union University with their prayers and a rare special offering after the Baptist-affiliated school suffered extensive damage from the Feb. 5 tornado.
One disaster, many responders to refinery blast

Georgia Baptists were among the first responders to the sugar refinery disaster and served in a variety of volunteer roles, says Ministry Resource Consultant Ted Kandler of Savannah.
Pastor heads into the woods to find himself – and a surprise

On his first night, alone in the dark forest along the Appalachian Trail in Virginia last fall, Luke Ponder found himself dodging around his tent, fending off a hungry black bear with just shouts and the beam of his flashlight.
Literacy workshops available in March
Several upcoming literacy workshops are available through GBC Language Missions.
Refinery explosion gives congregation door to ministry
Port Wentworth church grieves with community

At first he saw the large plume of smoke rising in the air like a mushroom cloud. Then he saw a large fireball signifying a second explosion.
House, vehicles gone but pastor thanks God

A concrete slab is all that remains of Arkansas pastor Kyle Blanton’s home after an EF-4 tornado leveled the parsonage as he and his family huddled together inside.
Sunday School class' ministry leads to Boys' Home grant

A Clarkston-based boys’ home is getting a new kitchen thanks to the ingenuity of a Georgia Baptist couple.
Guideposts magazine co-founder dead at 101

Ruth Stafford Peale, the co-founder of the inspirational magazine Guideposts and widow of author and minister Norman Vincent Peale, died Feb. 6 at her home in Pawling, N.Y., the Guideposts organization announced.
Evangelism close to home
Final two conferences to be held in Villa Rica and Augusta

With the theme, “Go to All,” the first two of four regional evangelism conferences have done just that.
Washington St. coach walking by faith

Tony Bennett asks a lot of questions.
Missionaries live in a missions 'field of dreams' in Iowa

Iowa conjures up images of a Midwestern state of green cornfields, big-time pig and dairy farming, small towns, and the fictional setting for wonderful movies like The Music Man and Field of Dreams.
Georgia Baptists join with others in support of pro-life measure

Georgia Baptists gathered at the Capitol with other pro-life advocates Feb. 19 – the fourth Tuesday in a row to do so – in a continuing show of solidarity for House Resolution 536.
Jordan tallied 27 Christian expulsions in '07

Jordan has increased pressure on foreign Christians living in the kingdom, expelling many long-time residents over the past 13 months in what local churches see as an attack on their legitimacy.
Online site tackles self-destructive behaviors

In spite of depression and obsessive-compulsive disorder that have nagged her since she was a teenager, 20-year-old Krissee is determined to keep the self-destructive manifestations of both conditions in check.
Georgia Baptist colleges revisit preparations for inclement weather

In light of the recent tornado damage to Union University, leaders at the three Georgia Baptist schools gave another look at what to do should rough weather bear down on their campuses.
Philippine villages get BOOST

The setting looks idyllic. A lush tropical island, crowned by rugged volcanic mountains, rises out of the sparkling blue waters of the Pacific Ocean.

Baptist News Summary

Welch gives invocation at Daytona 500
Bobby Welch continued one of the Daytona 500’s founding traditions by voicing the invocation prayer at the 50th running of the NASCAR race Feb. 17.
Missionaries open home to displaced Kenyans
Since the Dec. 27 disputed elections in Kenya, more than 600,000 men, women, and children have been displaced as violence rocked the country. International Mission Board missionaries have joined the ranks of many Kenyans who have opened their homes to family and friends fleeing the violence.
Names in the News
SBC groups pitch in for Union
Joining with other SBC entities, more than $50,000 has been raised for Union University’s tornado recovery through fundraising efforts initiated by Criswell College in Dallas.
IRS probes Drake over endorsement
The Internal Revenue Service is questioning a Southern Baptist pastor in California who endorsed Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee, his lawyer said.
Former Georgia Baptist Lewis dies at 64
Betty Jo Lewis, wife of Larry Lewis, former president of the Southern Baptist Home Mission Board, died Feb. 10 at the MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. She was 64.
Billy Graham recovering from surgery
Evangelist Billy Graham returned home Feb. 19 after undergoing a procedure to relieve pressure in his brain.
Advocate for Chinese Christians receives ERLC award
Bob Fu, a leading advocate for the persecuted church in his native China, received a Southern Baptist religious freedom award during a ceremony at the Library of Congress Feb. 7.

Religious Newsbriefs

Archbishop says Sharia 'unavoidable' in UK laws due to influx of Muslims in Britain
Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams has triggered a storm of controversy by suggesting that Britain should adopt some aspects of Islam’s tough Sharia law into its legal system.
Orthodox Jews unveil 'kosher' phone service
In a move designed to increase its market share of religious customers, Israel’s leading telephone company has introduced a “kosher” phone service that will prohibit outgoing calls to unsavory businesses, including ones that promote pornography.
List says North Korea still worst persecutor
The Democratic People’s Republic of North Korea once again tops a list of countries where Christians suffer the most intense persecution. North Korea received 90 of a possible 100 points to lead the annual “World Watch List” compiled by Open Doors USA, a California-based ministry to persecuted Christians around the world.
Gunman murders Pakistani pastor then uses cell phone to call victim’s family
A masked gunman murdered a pastor Jan. 17 in Peshawar, capital of Pakistan’s North West Frontier province.

People and Places

Ministerial Moves

Cooperative Program Stories

A healthy sense of focus

Bruce Knighton has been at the church since the beginning – back when worship was in the funeral home.

Bible Study

Living 3:16 – It's All About Love

John 3:16; 1 John 3:16-20; 4:15-18; 5:2-5
Related Sunday School Lesson, Bible Studies for Life, Mar. 16
Living 3:16 – Where God is at Home

1 Corinthians 3:9-17; 6:12-13, 18-20
Related Sunday School Lesson, Bible Studies for Life, Mar. 9


The Open Door

A couple of weeks ago associational missionaries from across Georgia got together for their annual meeting at Norman Park Baptist Conference Center.
Parents must screen outside influences on their children
Finding peace in the storm

“Mom, get the prayer chain going at church. We’re in the middle of a tornado and…oh no, the ceiling’s falling in…I gotta go!”… [Click] …
An expressed concern for the wimps to the right

I have not read Bernard Goldberg’s book, Crazies to the Left of Me, Wimps to the Right, but the title intrigues me. In this volume Goldberg supposedly gives “hard-hitting observations and no-nonsense advice for saving America from the lunatics on the Left and the sellouts on the Right.”
Ambassadors for Christ

Our Bible is full of truth from God. It speaks about the nature of God, His purposes, and His ways. It also has much to say about our lives and what our relationship with God should look like.


Tolerance, reasonableness regarding the NBC

Thank you for your analysis of the New Baptist Covenant Celebration. Much of what you said is accurate and fair.
Truth and error

For a proper perspective on “Jimmy Carter aglow over New Baptist Covenant Celebration” and it’s emphasis on unity (i.e. “Unity is more important than doctrine”), I offer a single quote: “It is better to be divided by the truth than united in error.” ~ Dr. Adrian Rogers
Notes from a Biblicist

I wish to thank The Christian Index for being a voice for Southern Baptists. I especially appreciate J. Gerald Harris’ insight into current issues. However, I have to take exception to his Feb. 14 message on mud-slinging when he says, “In Baptist life, we have a controversy between the Calvinists and Arminians.”