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SBC DIGEST: Lifeway Black church conference marks 30th year July 17-21; Timothy George to be ETS president

Lifeway Black church conference marks 30th year July 17-21
By Diana Chandler/Baptist Press

RIDGECREST, N.C. (BP) – “ReImagine” will be the theme as the Black Church Leadership and Family Conference (BCLFC) marks its 30th anniversary July 17-21 at Ridgecrest Conference Center in Ridgecrest, N.C.

Educational seminars, Bible study, worship, preaching, spiritual renewal and recreation comprise the event hosted by Lifeway Christian Resources with the support of several Southern Baptist Convention entities.

The conference has thrived for 30 years by reinventing itself to address contemporary church concerns and needs, conference convener Mark Croston said at Lifeway.com.

“Many conferences have come and gone over the course of this 30 years,” said Croston, Lifeway’s national director of Black church partnerships. “But this conference remains because we keep on reinventing ourselves, we keep on thinking about what’s new and innovative, and what are the real needs of the church.

“As we move out of the pandemic and into this new paradigm many are trying to get everything back like it was. The problem is you cannot get it back in the box,” he said. “This is a season to reimagine what the church needs to be to win this generation with the Gospel.”

Nightly preachers are, July 17-20, William Branch, assistant professor of Preaching and Bible, undergraduate chapel coordinator for The College at Southeastern, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary; Richard Blackaby, president, Blackaby Ministries International; Peter Wherry, pastor, Mayfield Memorial Missionary Baptist Church, Charlotte, N.C.; and James Gaillard, senior pastor, Word Tabernacle Church, Rocky Mount, N.C.

Morning Bible teachers are, July 18-21, Eric Beckham, pastor, Zion Baptist Church, Marietta, Ga.; Richard Gaines, pastor, Consolidated Baptist Church, Lexington, Ky.; David Sutton, pastor, Bread of Life Missionary Baptist Church, Chicago; and Mark Lavarin, pastor elect, First Calvary Baptist Church, Durham, N.C.

Monica Francis, executive minister, Wake-Eden Community Baptist Church, Bronx, N.Y.; and Diann Ash, Greenforest Community Baptist Church, Decatur, Ga., will minister to women during Woman2Woman sessions July 18 and 19. 

Jasper Paul Taylor, senior pastor elect, Broadview Missionary Baptist Church, Broadview, Ill.; and Charles Salem III, pastor, New Destiny Christian Church, Quincy, Fla., are slated as Man2Man speakers.

Numerous leaders from a broad spectrum of Southern Baptist life will lead seminars, meetings and special events. Children will be automatically enrolled in daycare and Fuge camp activities designed for age groups.

More information and registration are available here and in the social media toolkit.

Timothy George to serve as president of Evangelical Theological Society in Its 75th Year

By Kristen Padilla/Beeson Divinity School

Samford University’s Beeson Divinity School’s founding dean, Timothy George, is this year’s president of the Evangelical Theological Society (ETS), which is made up of more than 4,000 scholars, teachers, pastors, students and others dedicated to the oral exchange and written expression of theological thought and research.

ETS will mark its 75th annual meeting in San Antonio, Texas, on Nov. 14-16. As president, George will give a presidential address during the meeting. This year’s theme is “Theological Anthropology.”

“There is no one more deserving of the role of ETS president than our own Dr. George,” said Douglas A. Sweeney, dean of Beeson Divinity. “He has contributed to evangelical theological reflection for almost half a century. He has also been a faithful servant of the ETS for most of those years. We could not be prouder that one of our own is playing this crucial national role.”

Prior to George, there has only been one Beeson Divinity faculty member to serve as ETS president—Paul House, professor of Old Testament, who served in 2012.

“I think of Beeson as being an ETS kind of a place,” George said. “I was very honored when they invited me to take this role, and I think it fits with who Beeson is as a theological school, committed to the gospel but also welcoming diverse Christian traditions.”

George, who now serves as the school’s distinguished professor of divinity after retiring as dean in 2019, started attending the ETS annual meetings in the early 1980s.

“When I first started going to ETS there were only a handful of Southern Baptists who were there,” he said. “But now Southern Baptists are thick on the ground. We play a much more vibrant role in the society.”

Read the full story here.

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