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Indiana Baptists to sell offices, rebuild

INDIANAPOLIS (BP) — The State Convention of Baptists in Indiana will sell its office building and use the money to retire debt and build a new facility on the Highland Lakes Camp property, Executive Board chairman Ray Deeter announced at the convention’s annual meeting.

The current facility at 900 N. High School Road in Indianapolis will be replaced by a mission and ministry center on the camp property, Deeter, pastor of Grace Baptist Church in Evansville, told messengers.

Also during the convention, messengers voted to challenge each affiliated church to increase its Cooperative Program giving by 1 percentage point, approving a recommendation from the Executive Board.

The convention’s 55th annual meeting, Oct. 14-15, was held at Northside Baptist Church in Indianapolis -– which will celebrate its 50th anniversary this December

Messengers approved a 2014 budget of $3,961,424, anticipating $2,530,133 in CP giving from the convention’s churches. Indiana Baptists will give 39 percent of CP receipts to national and international missions, an increase from the 37.5 percent allocation this year.

Speakers included Southern Baptist Convention President Fred Luter and Hanover Baptist Church pastor J.D. Traylor, who preached the annual sermon. Other speakers were SCBI Executive Director Cecil Seagle; SCBI President Randy Forsythe, pastor of Grace Baptist Church in Portage; and Indiana Gov. Mike Pence via video.

Attendance included 185 messengers and 94 visitors, many of whom classified the meeting as the “most spiritual” they had ever attended, the SCBI reported.

Moments of prayer were woven between preaching, reports and worship. Messengers heard an interview via Skype with an Indiana couple serving as International Mission Board missionaries, who offered gratitude to Indiana churches for supporting the CP, which the couple said is a key means of support for their outreach in a country where the Gospel is rarely heard.

Messengers prayed for all IMB missionaries and approved a mission partnership with a people group identified to messengers as the “M” people of Brazil.

Current officers were reelected: Forsythe as president; David Trimble, pastor of First Baptist Church in New Haven, first vice president; Bob Parnell, pastor of Black Oak Baptist Church in Gary, second vice president; and Sandy Irick, a member of Vann Avenue Baptist Church in Evansville, recording secretary.

Wayne Gullion, pastor of Waynedale Baptist Church in Fort Wayne, will lead the 2014 Pastors’ Conference, followed in 2015 by Mitch Whidden, pastor of Barrington Ridge Baptist Church in Hobart.
Compiled from a report by the Southern Baptist Convention of Indiana.

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