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Issue Date: 2007-06-07
Volume: 186
Number: 12

News

Children’s Home president announces retirement for end of 2007
Kenneth Dobbs has served with Georgia Baptist ministry since 1984

Although times and challenges in serving children have changed during his time with Georgia Baptist Children’s Homes and Family Ministries, Kenneth Dobbs said the mission has remained the same.
Herod the Great’s tomb reportedly found

Archeologists at Hebrew University of Jerusalem say they have found the tomb of Herod the Great, the ruthless ruler who is mentioned in the Gospel of Matthew as governing Judea during the time of Christ’s birth and who also led a massive expansion of the Second Temple.
Georgia Baptists join in memorial celebration honoring troops

Nearly 100,000 gathered at Stone Mountain over Memorial Day weekend to pay tribute to active duty and veteran U.S. troops and their families.
Spiritual interest on the rise among Hispanics, says study

Two Southern Baptist Hispanic leaders see evidence of a spiritual hunger and high receptivity to the gospel among Hispanics in a recent study by the Pew Research Center.
Hispanics plan grand celebration as part of SBC convention gathering
The 2007 National Hispanic Celebration will take place at 6 p.m. Sunday, June 10 at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center, Ballroom B. The evening will begin with a mini-worship celebration of praise led by the New Beacon Hills Baptist Church praise team from San Antonio.
The battle after the battle: troops struggle following wartime service

“What’s your problem? Just park the truck!”
Southern Baptists seek revival as evangelism sputters

For the last two years, the annual meetings of Southern Baptists have emphasized baptisms and evangelism. This weekend in San Antonio, the focus will be on revival. But officials continue to hope for a reverse in declining baptism rates and lukewarm increases in church membership.
Churches establishing graveyard tradition in modern way

Just outside Fredericksburg (Va.) United Methodist Church, an arc-shaped wall hugs the church’s quiet meditation garden and outdoor fountain. A closer look at the wall reveals 360 niches and the names of deceased members of the congregation.

The columbarium, which holds urns containing ashes of the dead, was installed two years ago and is part of a growing trend of churches that are reverting back to the old church graveyard tradition in a modern way.

New museum blends creationism with the gospel

Ken Ham stood outside his $27 million Creation Museum before its official opening on May 28 and declared its mission is not just to counter evolution.
Families choosing time together over church
A growing number of families would rather spend their increasingly limited free time together than at church, a study by Leadership magazine found.
Overall impact on wellness by religion often beyond the grasp of science

A blossoming body of research is showing that religion can have an impressive impact on health, but scientists are also finding limits in their ability to study this benefit, says a leading authority on the subject.
Let's hear it for the boys
Georgia Baptist laymen reaching their peers

While serving in the Middle East, Air Force pilot Jordan Lee did his job to make things more secure for his wife and two children back home in Warner Robins.
Government rescinds Cuban travel fine against Baptist group

A moderate Baptist group will not have to pay a fine related to alleged violations by members of affiliated churches who traveled to Cuba, the Treasury Department has decided.

In 2006, the Washington-based Alliance of Baptists received a notice that it could be fined $34,000 because the itineraries of five churches that used its travel license “did not reflect a program of full-time religious activity.”

Living like superheroes, working like bees in Jones County churches

“Superheroes” – that is what William Beaver, minister of education and family ministry at Haddock Baptist Church, wants the children of his church to become. He insists that he wants the boys and girls of the Jones County church to be able to conquer the “supervillian” (Satan) in the strength of the Holy Spirit.
Is Camel Method leading thirsty world to oasis of truth?

In his book, The Camel – How Muslims are Coming to Faith in Christ!, Kevin Greeson reveals an old Muslim proverb, declaring, “… Allah has one hundred names. And … he has revealed 99 of his names to the sons of men that they may know and worship him. But one name, the one-hundredth name, he has told only to the camel. And, the camel, he is not talking.”
Billy Graham library dedicated in N.C.
A crowd of 1,500 people, including three former presidents, gathered in Charlotte, N.C., May 31 to dedicate the Billy Graham Library, something the evangelist called “just a building” and an instrument to share the gospel.
Study says family breakdowns worry youth most
Family breakdowns leave a void that many youth today are looking to fill with spirituality, a pastor told the Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune in conjunction with a study that found the issue that most concerns young people today is the lack of a harmonious home.
Oscar Romo, SBC language missions pioneer, to be honored June 10 in San Antonio

In 1965 when Oscar Romo came to the Atlanta-based Home Mission Board (now North American Mission Board), the Southern Baptist Convention was a rather bland-looking denomination, ethnically speaking. It was more like soft white bread stripped of its character rather than hearty multi-grain bursting with flavor and fiber.

Georgia Newsbriefs

First historical documents display through Ten Commandments GA up for viewing
The first “Foundations of American Law and Government Display,” which includes a copy of the Ten Commandments, is now available for viewing at the renovated train depot in the city of Odum.

Baptist News Summary

Nominations given for 1st and 2nd vice president of SBC
Two nominations have been given for separate positions at the upcoming Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting.
Names in the News
John Avant, vice president of evangelization at the North American Mission Board, has accepted the pastorate of First Baptist Church of West Monroe, La. Avant came to the NAMB post in January 2005 from the pastorate of New Hope Baptist Church in Fayetteville. He accepted the Louisiana pastorate in early May.
Huckabee withdraws from 'New Baptist Covenant'
Mike Huckabee, Republican presidential candidate, former governor of Arkansas, and a Southern Baptist, has withdrawn from the New Baptist Covenant Celebration planned for next January in Atlanta in protest of former President Jimmy Carter’s labeling of the Bush administration’s foreign policy as “the worst in history.”
Martha Myers sculpture dedicated at Samford to honor missions legacy
A life-size bronze statue of the late medical missionary Martha Myers has been unveiled at the library of Samford University in Birmingham, Ala.
NAMB commissions 83 missionaries, chaplains to 25 states, Canada, Puerto Rico
In its first-ever missionary commissioning in Illinois, the North American Mission Board commissioned 83 new missionaries and SBC-endorsed chaplains during Sunday morning services May 20 at First Baptist Church in O’Fallon.
Various weather events keep Southern Baptist disaster relief crews busy
The deadly tornado that leveled Greensburg, Kan. The forest fires in Florida and Georgia. Serious flooding in New England and New Jersey. Weary Southern Baptist disaster relief volunteers all over the United States have been working overtime.

Three weeks after an F-5 tornado killed 12 and obliterated tiny Greensburg, Kan., Southern Baptist disaster relief workers remained on the scene, feeding uprooted townspeople and relief volunteers who had been there since May 5.

Summer missionaries increased during Southern commissioning emphasis
Southern Seminary’s annual Great Commission Week included the commissioning of one its largest groups for summer missions.

Religious Newsbriefs

Turkish court vetoes election of Islamic president following protests of Christian murders
Eleven days after three Christians were sadistically murdered in southeastern Turkey, as many as 1 million people flooded the streets of Istanbul April 29 to protest parliament’s election of a Muslim as the country’s president.
More than half of British are Christian, only ten percent attend church weekly
An in-depth survey by a British charity indicates that 53 percent of Britain’s adults claim to be Christian, but only one in 10 regularly attends weekly church services.
Survey says clergy have highest job satisfaction
Members of the clergy rank highest in job satisfaction, according to a report released April 17 by the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago. More than 87 percent of clergy said they were satisfied with their jobs, followed by firefighters (80 percent) and physical therapists (78 percent).
Popular Christian author Max Lucado leaving pastorate due to health concerns
Max Lucado, a popular Christian author, is stepping aside as senior pastor of Oak Hills Church in San Antonio following a diagnosis of atrial fibrillation, a disorder the American Heart Association says affects more than 2 million Americans and if left untreated could lead to a stroke.

People and Places

Honors
Ministerial Moves

Cooperative Program Stories

Griffin church among those carving a niche with baptism focus

It’s been no secret plan that has brought Carver Road Church in Griffin to the top of the baptisms list for intermediate sized churches. It’s prayer and an unending commitment to evangelism that has brought people to the door of the church to hear the message about the cross, says pastor Tom Summers.

Bible Study

Renew Your Devotion Today

Deut. 29:10-15; 30:1-3, 6, 11-14, 19-20
Related Sunday School Lesson, Bible Studies for Life, June 24

Remember The Lord Is God

Deut. 8:1-14, 17-18
Related Sunday School Lesson, Bible Studies for Life, June 17

Columns

Filling the pulpit or filling the pew?

There is much symbolism in the church of the Lord Jesus Christ. The two ordinances of the Baptist church, baptism and the Lord’s Supper, are beautifully symbolic. The cross that is displayed in so many churches is emblematic of the atoning death of our blessed Redeemer. The church spire originated in the 12th century as a symbol of heavenly aspiration.
Respect for dad impresses kids

Who needs long-term care insurance?

Due to better health-care options, medical technology, and more healthful lifestyle choices, Americans are living longer, more productive lives. But as life expectancy increases, more seniors are reaching the stage in life where they need home health-care assistance or to move into a care facility. Because these services are generally not covered by either traditional health insurance or Medicare, and you must meet stringent financial limitations to qualify for Medicaid, many baby boomers are now purchasing long-term care insurance.
The Open Door

As you receive this edition of The Christian Index, Southern Baptists will be gathering in San Antonio, Texas for the annual meeting of the Convention. Dr. Frank Page has served Southern Baptists well during the past year as he has literally traveled the world visiting mission stations, encouraging missionaries, being on the frontlines with our Disaster Relief personnel, attending multiplied meeting after meeting, writing, and speaking prolifically as he has held high Southern Baptists’ devotion to the Bible, to missions and evangelism, and to the Cooperative Program.