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Issue Date: 2005-05-12
Volume: 184
Number: 10


Georgia baptisms increased 5.9% in 2004
Annual Church Profile shows significant gains across key categories

Georgia Baptists baptized nearly 6 percent more individuals in 2004 than in the previous year, sharply reversing a 3-year decline. Churches reported 36,134 baptisms - an increase of 2,023 - in the 2004 church year that ran from October 2003 through September 2004.
New church provides solid foundation for young family
Congregation is one of 72 launched in 2004

Jason Stewart never felt comfortable attending traditional churches. There was just something about the suits and dresses and large crowds that didn't foster, for him, a worship experience.
Decatur pastor among leaders exhorting men to 'be the man'

RIDGECREST, N.C. (BP) - At a time when society's definition of masculinity drives too many men to a fruitless quest for a misguided worldly ideal, nearly 200 men took aim at the spiritual ideal during the third annual "Be the Man" conference at LifeWay Ridgecrest Conference Center April 8-9.
Revival wave hits East Georgia with powerful impact

Georgia Baptists' wave of revivals hit the eastern part of the state with a blessed fury in April with major crusades in Augusta and Swainsboro. Greg Laurie, the guest evangelist for the Augusta Harvest Crusade, has been called the next generation's Billy Graham.
Is Bush an evangelical?

WASHINGTON - The influence of evangelicals is almost everywhere - from places of political power like Congress and the Supreme Court to cultural status markers like the New York Times' best-seller list, where titles such as The Purpose Driven Life reside.
Georgia Baptist pastor's son escapes certain death in Iraq

Our men and women serving in the United States military continuously deserve our respect and our prayers, particularly those serving in harm's way. One United States Marine, whose name cannot be mentioned for security reasons, recently returned from Iraq where he served his second tour of duty amidst the fire and furor of a country that is emerging from the darkness of Sadam Hussein's reign of terror.
Revival Report
Georgia Baptist communicators honored for outstanding work in their field
Index honored for design, editorial, interpretive reporting
Communicators employed by the Georgia Baptist Convention received national honors in the annual Wilmer C. Fields Awards Competition held in Denver in late April.

Georgia Newsbriefs

Warning to churches: Psalm 91 witnessing bandanas for U.S. troops are copyrighted
Georgia Baptist churches considering sending Psalm 91 witnessing bandanas to troops stationed overseas are cautioned that the product is copyrighted and cannot be reproduced. The items, which have grown in popularity since the war in Iraq began two years ago, can be purchased by visiting or by calling (866) 823-8501.
Georgia Baptist Historical Commission names Crosby new vice chairman
The Georgia Baptist Historical Commission voted in a new vice chairman at its spring meeting April 8. In addition, the group discussed its museum to be housed at the new Georgia Baptist Convention building currently under construction off Sugarloaf Parkway in Gwinnett County.
Turner named ministry resource consultant in Northeast
Clay Turner has been named ministry resource consultant for the Northeast Georgia Region. He will begin his new ministry on July 1.
Medical workers needed for GBC-sponsored aid trip to Indonesia
Disaster Relief Ministries of the Georgia Baptist Convention is seeking volunteers for upcoming trips to aid tsunami survivors.

Baptist News Summary

Retired Ministers Retreat set at Glorieta Sept. 19-23
More than 400 retirees and their spouses are expected to attend the seventh annual Retired Ministers Retreat at Glorieta Conference Center, Glorieta, New Mexico, Sept. 19-23.
Prominent Southern Baptist pulpits in transition
(RNS) Two former presidents of the Southern Baptist Convention are in the midst of transitions that will lead to retirement.
Olive Baptist Church establishes faculty mission grant at NOBTS
NEW ORLEANS (BP) - Akin to seminary President Chuck Kelley's belief that missions involvement will enrich the teaching of every professor, a new grant from a Florida church will help send NOBTS faculty members on international mission trips.
Day of prayer and fasting May 15 to focus on peoples of India
RICHMOND, Va. (BP) — One-sixth percent of the world’s population lives in India – 1,109 distinct people groups who are 79.8 percent Hindu and 12.5 percent Muslim.
Averett Univ. stance on separation from Va. association not disclosed
RICHMOND, Va. (BP) - Trustees of Averett University have acknowledged Virginia Baptists' approval of a jointly developed statement that would dissolve century-and-a-half-old ties between the university and the Baptist General Association of Virginia.
Name in the News

Religious Newsbriefs

Church of Latter-Day Saints renews pledge to stop baptizing deceased Jews by proxy
(RNS) Seven years after its original vow to end the practice of baptizing deceased Jews by proxy, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has renewed its promise after the practice was discovered to have continued.
Pat Robertson, P. Diddy and others featured in ad to stop poverty and AIDS
WASHINGTON(RNS) An unusual combination of stars, ranging from religious broadcaster Pat Robertson to hip-hop music mogul Sean "P. Diddy" Combs, is behind a new public service announcement trying to stop AIDS and poverty.
Canadian hospital removes Bibles to stop spread of germs despite protests
(RNS) A Canadian hospital has sparked the ire of some citizens and public officials for its decision to take Bibles out of its patients' rooms to help stem the spread of germs.
Religious groups oppose asylum restrictions that bill would create
(RNS) A coalition of Christian and Jewish groups is opposing proposed legislation it says would turn away victims of religious persecution seeking safety in the U.S.

People and Places

Special Events
Ministerial Moves

Cooperative Program Stories

Making missions local, regional, international

Eight years ago Eddy Rushing went on his first mission trip. As a pastor, he traveled to India with fellow church members. He returned with a passion for missions, wanting to involve more people in his church in mission work.

Bible Study

Decide to obey God

Genesis 22 contains one of the greatest stories in the entire world of literature. It is a story of intense human drama and victorious faith. All who read it are challenged to trust and obey our faithful God.
Leave a Godly Legacy

As we advance in years we tend to become concerned about what we will leave to our children and grandchildren. We certainly want to leave them financially secure and with happy memories. However, the most important thing that we can leave the generations that will follow us is a godly legacy.


Oprah: Talk Show Host! Entrepreneur! Philanthropist! Preacher?

Oprah Winfrey is a remarkable woman! She was born in Kosciusko, Miss., on Jan. 29, 1954, and was supposed to be named after the biblical character Orpah, the sister-in-law of Ruth, but has been known as Oprah almost from birth. Although her maternal grandmother taught her many of the stories from the Bible, her early years were tumultuous. She was sexually abused by male relatives and severely damaged by the experience.
The Angel Stadium Declaration

LAKE FOREST, Calif. (BP) - On April 17, more than 30,000 members of the Saddleback family gathered in Angel Stadium to celebrate our congregation's 25th anniversary. But we did more than just rejoice in the way God fulfilled the original vision He gave me for the congregation in 1980. I also shared a new vision God has placed on my heart, one for mobilizing all God's people - all over the world - to tackle the giant obstacles that keep people in spiritual darkness.
The Open Door

The Jennifer Wilbanks' story that has been so prevalently communicated through the media has caused me to think about the pressures that are common to weddings and what to do about them. It is ironic that Jennifer's effort to run away from the approaching wedding thrust her into a national spotlight beyond comprehension. Her picture was plastered on every television screen and every newspaper in the country. At once, within a few short hours there was scarcely anyone in the country who was not aware of the "runaway bride."
Children naturally push the limits of adults' power


Bad Picture Choice

I was truly disappointed when I saw on the front page of our state's Southern Baptist newspaper a picture depicting Awana. The Awana program is not a Southern Baptist ministry. The Awana ministry does not promote Southern Baptist Missionaries but does promote Awana missionaries, who just happen to be their own salespeople. I know that there are Southern Baptist ministries that are promoted on church's website that you could have used in the article instead.
English-speaking German church to hold reunion in SC

Former members and attendees of Faith Baptist Church, an English-speaking Southern Baptist Church in Kaiserslautern, Germany, are invited to attend a reunion July 1-3 in Columbia, South Carolina. I attended this church in 1970-74 while stationed there in the U.S. Air Force and would like for as many individuals as possible who have been associated with the church to be aware of this reunion.
Opposed to Awana Program

I am involved in the Royal Ambassador ministry and have been since I was an RA as a boy more than 30 years ago. My RA leader made a profound impact on me in my life and was instrumental in my hearing the Lord's call to go into full-time Christian ministry.