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Issue Date: 2006-12-21
Volume: 185
Number: 26

News

Philanthropy expert says conservatives are more generous

Syracuse University professor Arthur C. Brooks is about to become the darling of the religious right in America – and it’s making him nervous.
Revival Reports
Evangelizing until his last breath
Sammy Gilbreath making every moment count while living with heart condition

Anyone who knows Sammy Gilbreath will tell you the Harley-riding, skydiving ball of fire for the Lord epitomizes the aggressive, try-anything go-getter.
Barna study shows Americans not familiar with religious leaders

If Britney Spears, Denzel Washington, and James Dobson were in a lineup, most Americans would know the first two but draw a blank on the evangelical leader.
Warren welcomes Obama, Brownback to Saddleback's AIDS summit

The promise of partnership was evident at the second annual Global Summit on AIDS and the Church as politicians from both parties gathered at Saddleback Church in Southern California to show their support of the evangelical church rising up to help stop the pandemic.
Piercing the hopelessness of West Africa's Songhai people

Pregnant Songhai women approach the cinderblock tin-roofed clinic of Kanazi for routine checkups. They come one by one. When Sally Womble reminds them to return next month for another exam, she often hears the response, “Inshallah” (“if God wills”).
Live nativity by members of Blackshear Place Baptist Church in Flowery Branch
His 'dream come true' carries nativity to the big screen

Ironically, production of The Nativity Story, this Christmas season’s hit about the birth of Jesus, took about as long as the period of time the movie portrays – from just before Christ’s immaculate conception to just after His miraculous birth.
Earning his wings gave others the chance to soar

Among the tinsel and lights and brightly colored ornaments hanging on Terry Baker’s Christmas tree is a pewter angel. It’s only been placed on the tree the last few years, but it’s no ordinary angel.
GBC annual meetings to return to smaller venues
Graham rally may come to Gwinnett in ‘08

Reflecting a return to more peaceful Convention meetings following nearly two decades of contested gatherings over the future of the denomination, Georgia Baptist Convention annual meetings are returning to smaller auditoriums.
Muslim dissent crushed . . . by Muslims

Have you ever wondered why Muslims did not speak out against the Muslim terrorists of Sept. 11, 2001 and why Muslim terrorists continue to wreak havoc without being condemned by those who are faithful to the Islamic religion?
NBC backs off on previous edits of Veggie Tales
After initially requiring that all references to biblical or evangelical messages be edited out of the popular children’s show VeggieTales, NBC has cut back on its editing requests in episodes it has aired this fall, according to the show’s creator, Phil Vischer.

Baptist News Summary

Southern Baptists respond to typhoon
Southern Baptist workers are responding to the human suffering caused by Typhoon Durian, which tore through the Philippines Nov. 30.
BGCT exec plans for accountability
In the wake of revelations that a vast majority of $1.3 million in church-starting funds for the Rio Grande Valley from 1999-2005 was obtained under false pretenses, the Baptist General Convention of Texas’ executive board was presented with a five-point plan to improve oversight and accountability.
Names in the news
Openness to private prayer language echoed at meeting
More than 100 people from a variety of backgrounds gave host pastors Dwight McKissic of Texas and Wade Burleson of Oklahoma reason to be encouraged after a year in which both have been the center of controversy on denominational trustee boards.

People and Places

Obituaries
Ordinations
Ministerial Moves

Cooperative Program Stories

Serving those in need of a Savior
Rome couple serving in St. Lucia

He wore a bandana tied around his forehead and a large fake diamond in one ear. When he smiled, his gold tooth shined. He offered bead necklaces for sale to Doug and Rebecca McHenry, missionaries in St. Lucia.

Bible Study

Salvation for All

Luke 2:25-38
Related Sunday School Lesson, Family Bible Series, Dec. 31
Why am I here?

Genesis 1, 2:1-3
Related Sunday School Lesson, Bible Studies for Life, Jan. 7, 2007

Columns

Have a very "holy" Christmas!

Christmas has become so secularized that it is little more than a cosmic birthday party in most circles. To avoid being swallowed up by the superficial tinsel and trappings of the holiday, most of us tack on our own religious version of Christmas and appease our consciences by at least giving lip service to the real significance of the season.
Season of self-denial

A letter from Lottie Moon, missionary to China, was published in the Foreign Mission Journal in 1887 urging Southern Baptist women to take seriously their role in reaching the world for Christ. In today’s busy church life, we sometimes forget her call to prayer, sacrificial giving, and self-denial. As we begin our celebration of Christmas, let’s remember the words of Lottie herself:
2006 year-end tax tips

Think it’s too early to start your tax preparation? A recent flurry of tax legislation and expiring tax credits and deductions that Congress may retroactively extend at year’s end calls for early preparation despite a later filing date (April 18, 2007).
Noise and roughness inherent in young boys

The Open Door

Is there anything quite as wonderful as hearing your grandchildren call out your name? I think not. God has blessed Janice and me with six precious grandchildren ages six and younger. When we all get together at our house the noise level raises by several decibels and I love it.

Letters

Thank you from the family of Stan Wilkins

There will never be enough words to express our sincerest appreciation and thanks to each and every person who helped to support and carry us through this terrible experience of the loss of our husband, our father, and our friend, Stan Wilkins. This outpouring of love and support will never be forgotten and forever will be cherished in our hearts. From the countless number of cards, emails, phone calls, food, prayers, and visits, this outpouring of love that came has brought comfort and strength to our family during this difficult time.
Distracted from the real battle

Editor’s Note: The following letter was written in response to an error in the Dec. 7 issue of The Index. Stephen Anthony is pastor of Peavine Baptist Church of Rock Spring. Peavine Baptist Church is experiencing record growth in baptisms, members submitting to the call of full-time ministry, and mission giving.
Clarification
In a Letter to the Editor in the Dec. 7 issue of The Index, Jeff Greer of Ringgold was mistakenly identified as a pastor. The Index regrets the error.
Final comment on Calvinism

The ultimate question is this: did God ‘predestine’ The Index to stop printing our comments on the Calvinism debate or was it their choice?”