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Ind. Baptists called to ‘lift Him up’

PLAINFIELD, Ind. (BP) — Gathering around the theme “lift Him up,” messengers to the State Convention of Baptists in Indiana voted to continue for a second straight year forwarding a record percentage of Cooperative Program receipts to Southern Baptist Convention causes.

Fall Creek Baptist Church in Indianapolis acted as host to the Oct. 12-13 gathering, though the meeting was held at The Palms Conference Center in nearby Plainfield, Ind., in order to accommodate needs for seating and exhibition space. Some 204 registered messengers and 69 visitors represented 129 churches and church plants.

The theme was drawn from John 12:32, where Jesus stated, “If I am lifted up, I will draw all people to Myself.” Four major addresses touched on various components of the theme: the annual sermon by Russ Lievers, pastor of First Southern Baptist Church in Clarksville, Ind.; SCBI executive director Cecil Seagle’s report; the convention message by Kevin Ezell, president of the North American Mission Board; and the president’s address by Darin Garton, pastor of Oak Creek Community Church in Mishawaka, Ind.

The 2016 convention budget of $4,058,824 anticipates $2,392,010 in CP receipts from churches, $857,000 from NAMB and $64,000 from LifeWay Christian Resources.

The convention will forward 39.5 percent of CP receipts to SBC national and international missions and ministries, a percentage first adopted at the 2014 SCBI annual meeting to mark the largest percentage of CP receipts ever forwarded out of state. The convention will use 60.5 percent of CP receipts for in-state missions and ministries. The budget includes no shared expenses with the SBC.

Messengers re-elected to a second term the convention’s entire slate of officers, led by Garton as president. Other officers included: first vice president, Bob Parnell, pastor of Black Oak Baptist Church in Gary, Ind.; second vice president, Roger Kinion, pastor of Calvary Baptist Church in Greenfield, Ind.; and recording secretary, Sara Burk, a member of Grace Baptist Church in Evansville, Ind.

A resolution of appreciation expressed thanks to Fall Creek and its pastor, John Newland, for hosting the annual meeting.

The 2016 annual meeting will be held Oct. 10-11 at The Palms Conference Center in Plainfield.

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