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Northwest convention starts year of jubilee

TACOMA, Wash. (BP)–Southern Baptists in the Northwestern United States began a year-long celebration of its 50th anniversary with a dramatic display of its mission impact around the world.
The theme, “Northwest Jubilee, 50 Years on Mission,” was presented to 444 messengers and 62 guests at the Nov. 11-12 annual meeting at the Tacoma Convention Center.
Jubilee features included a telephone conversation with Northwesterners Dan and Lisa Olsen in Cairo, Egypt, where they are in language training for their work as SBC representatives in Morocco.
The program also included a video from Honk Kong where two other SBC representatives from the Northwest, Scott and Debbie Smith, have been working since 1976. A third missionary with Northwest roots, Margaret Waldrop, spoke several times in various meetings at the convention of the work she and her husband, Leo Waldrop, have done as SBC representatives for 28 years, first in Curacao and now in the Netherlands Antilles.
The year-long 50th anniversary of the convention, formed in April 1948, will climax at the annual meeting next year in Spokane, Wash., Nov. 17-19, with a commissioning service conducted by the North American Mission Board for about 60 missionaries. This will be the first time a commissioning service will take place in the Northwest.
Messengers representing the two-state convention’s 421 congregations and 80,000 members approved a budget of $4.4 million for 1998, about 6 percent above this year. Cooperative Program receipts are projected at $2.3 million, with 31 percent going for missions and ministries through the Southern Baptist Convention nationally and internationally, excluding Northwest convention building debt payments. The percentage is the same as last year.
Don Reeves, pastor at Grant Avenue Baptist Church, Corvallis, Ore., was elected president by acclamation. He succeeds Terry Little, pastor at Crossover Baptist Church in Spokane, Wash., who served two years.
Dwight Huffman, pastor of Kennewick (Wash.) Baptist Church, was elected first vice president in a ballot with the current second vice president, Steve Schenewerk, pastor of Community Baptist Church, Winston, Ore. Schenewerk was then re-elected second vice president.
Resolutions included asserting “our undeniable responsibility to promote and strengthen biblical standards of moral and ethical health in our communities by: committing ourselves and our churches to live by these standards, and to exercise our responsibility as citizens to vote for candidates and legislation who support these standards for the family and the sanctity of life.”

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  • Donald J. Sorensen