NEW ORLEANS (BP)–A 3 p.m. Wednesday session of the Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting will replace the Wednesday evening session, SBC officials have announced.
The SBC annual meeting, slated June 12-13 in New Orleans, will conclude after the 3 p.m. session, around 6 p.m. or thereafter.
“We believe messengers will appreciate the flexibility this schedule will provide, whether in opportunities for fellowship with Baptist friends that night or a chance to return home on a Wednesday evening flight,” said Jerry Johnson, chairman of the Committee on Order of Business.
The 3 p.m. Wednesday session will feature an address by James Dobson, founder of the national Focus on the Family ministry.
Otherwise, the two-day SBC schedule is unchanged, with no reduction in the overall time allotted for the annual meeting, Johnson said.
The traditional seminary alumni and friends luncheons, for example, may still be held at the noon hour on Wednesday, provided they conclude in time for the 3 p.m. session, he said.
Among other features highlighted by Johnson concerning this year’s meeting:
— This year’s convention theme will be “Until He Comes…Go!” based on Jesus’ command in Luke 19:13, “Occupy till I come.”
— Fred Luter, pastor of Franklin Avenue Baptist Church in New Orleans, will be the first African American in the history of the SBC to preach the annual convention sermon. Luter’s message is scheduled Tuesday evening.
— “Mission presentations in each session will feature churches which have gone on mission trips, including testimony from converts and SBC career missionaries,” said Johnson, of Louisville, Ky.
“SBC President James Merritt has cast an evangelistic and missionary vision for Southern Baptists,” the committee chairman said. This year’s “Until He Comes…Go!” theme “reflects Dr. Merritt’s passion for the biblical priority of missions and evangelism. Our desire is to challenge every Southern Baptist to be a direct participant in missions,” Johnson said.
(BP) photo posted in the BP Photo Library at http://www.bpnews.net. Photo title: LOUISIANA SUPERDOME.