Mark Kelly & David Roach

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New Baptist Covenant extols racial justice

ATLANTA (BP) -- A theologically and ethnically diverse coalition of Baptists gathered around the theme of racial justice and reconciliation at the New Baptist Covenant Summit Sept. 14-16 convened by former President Jimmy Carter. The group's dwindling attendance -- down more than 97 percent from its 2008 inaugural gathering of what Baptist Press estimated as 9,000 attendees -- led the Institute on Religion and Democracy (IRD) to wonder about the coalition's future prospects for survival.