Stella Anderson

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Church’s annual potato harvest: missions, service & fellowship

HARRISON, Ark. (BP)–Spending a hot summer afternoon in an Arkansas potato field may seem like a hard and dirty task, but for members of Woodland Heights Baptist Church in Harrison, Ark., it has become an annual opportunity to sow seeds of kindness. For more than 20 years, members of the north Arkansas church have planted […]

Young vocalist on Grammy stage with gospel music’s Kirk Franklin

TEXARKANA, Ark. (BP)–Ashley Guilbert had little knowledge of gospel soul singer Kirk Franklin just a few months ago, let alone ever dream of performing with him. But now the 22-year-old Arkansan is singing backup for the popular artist, including a performance at the 41st Grammy Awards. “I’ve always wanted to sing, but if anyone would […]

Ministers affirm hope as key to dealing with stress & burnout

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (BP)–Dec. 1, 1995, is a day Len Turner will never forget. It was the day his world came tumbling down around him. As pastor of a leading Southern Baptist church in south Georgia, the 48-year-old pastor seemed to be on top of the world. Under his leadership, the congregation was seeing hundreds […]

Florida Baptists respond to havoc and ruin left by Hurricane Georges

KEY WEST, Fla. (BP)–The White Street Baptist church van pulled up alongside one of Key West’s wind-beaten shorelines — strewn with trash, seaweed, branches, leaves and wreckage of fishing boats in the sand. Pastor Rafeal Melian left the van and strolled to the water’s edge waving his arms in the air, an effort to motion […]

Class helps kids comprehend their decisions for Christ

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (BP)–When 8-year-old Sarah Schmidt began asking questions about salvation and baptism, her mother, Beth Schmidt, enrolled her in a new Christians’ class designed especially for children at Deermeadows Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Fla. Since the class was begun, nearly 90 percent of these children have made professions of faith and have been baptized. […]

Teens take up cross to model Jesus’ love to their neighbors

INTERLACHEN, Fla. (BP)–When was the last time you saw a group of teenage girls tug a wooden cross around your community? In a number of Florida communities, the answer is, in the past few months. Nearly 600 Florida Baptist Acteens, representing more than 70 churches, have displayed a six-foot cross along beaches, across lakes and […]

Pastor ‘puckers with porker,’ celebrates answer to prayer

MALONE, Fla. (BP)–Locking lips with a pig most likelywould not be on anyone’s top 10 list of things to do, butfor one Baptist pastor, it was an answer to prayer. Gary French, pastor of Friendship Baptist Church,Malone, Fla., came face-to-face with a pink piglet as aresult of months of prayer for his church and its […]

College students give spark to declining congregation

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (BP)–In 1981, Haywood Cates Baptist Church was a thriving congregation with more than 400 members. The predominately Anglo congregation in Tallahassee, Fla., packed out two worship services each Sunday and was reaching the state’s capital city with the gospel message. Then, for more than 15 years, the church suffered from an ailment all […]

Gangs no longer urban problem; churches urged to get involved

HOLLYWOOD, Fla. (BP)–Once considered a dilemma for urban and crime-filled cities like Los Angeles and Chicago, the growth of youth street gangs has become an increasing problem throughout the country. In recent years, the epidemic has crept into cities, towns, communities and suburbs, bringing with it violent crimes and scattering fear among residents and businesses. […]