News Articles

SBC DIGEST: ‘Road to Anaheim’ videos launched; Missions scholarship honors George Liele; NOBTS receives $850,000 gift

‘Road to Anaheim’ video series launched

By BP Staff

NASHVILLE (BP) – As the 2022 SBC Annual Meeting in Anaheim approaches, Southern Baptists can learn what to expect and how to prepare through a weekly video series titled “The Road to Anaheim,” which launched today (Jan. 28).

Hosted by Jonathan Howe, SBC Executive Committee vice president for communications, the series will seek to answer common questions Southern Baptists may have about the upcoming annual meeting, taking place June 12-15 at the Anaheim Convention Center. It will be the first time the SBC annual meeting has been held in California in more than 40 years.

Topics covered will include information about southern California, items of interest surrounding the convention center, the annual meeting itself and more.

The video series is presented by California Baptist University. New installments will be released each Friday.

The 2021 SBC Annual Meeting in Nashville was the largest since 1995, with more than 15,000 messengers, not including guests and Music City Center staff.

More information and updates related to the annual meeting can be found at Baptist Press.

George Liele Foreign Missions Scholarship established

By BCM/D Staff

The African American Fellowship (AAF) of the Baptist Convention of Maryland/Delaware (BCM/D) is establishing a new scholarship to aid African American missionaries and churches in their efforts with international missions. The scholarship is named in honor of George Liele, an African American and emancipated slave who became the founding pastor of First Bryan Baptist Church and First African Baptist Church in Savannah, Ga. Liele later would become a missionary to Jamaica.

In February 2020, the Southern Baptist Convention Executive Committee designated the first Sunday in February as “George Liele Church Planting, Evangelism and Missions Day.” Robert Anderson, the pastor of Colonial Baptist Church in Randallstown, Md., made the motion to add the calendar date at the SBC’s 2019 Annual Meeting in Birmingham. In response to the day of recognition, the AAF of the BCM/D encourages African American churches to take a special offering during February in honor of Liele’s ministry. This year, the gifts will support the George Liele Foreign Missions Scholarship.

Marshal L. Ausberry, past president of the National African American Fellowship and past first vice president of the SBC, will be the guest speaker at the AAF of the BCM/D’s Missions Awareness Meeting on Feb. 4.

The meeting, which also kicks off Black History Month, will be educational, providing information about Liele, African American foreign missions, and the new scholarship. Nathaniel Thomas, current AAF of the BCM/D president, said the organization seeks to intentionally emphasize the mobilization of African Americans in the area of international missions. Registration for the meeting is available here.

Anderson, in previous interviews with BaptistLIFE, expressed hope that teaching about Liele in conjunction with international missions will help African Americans consider the need for missions.

“Hopefully, it will be motivating to get more African Americans to go to Maui, Tanzania, Europe, Asia – to look beyond their own country,” he said. “There’s a whole world to reach!

“… If George Liele can do what he did in the midst of slavery and all of those evils and still preach the Gospel and lead people to Christ and make disciples, what excuse do we have?”

NOBTS apologetics program receives $850,000 gift

By NOBTS Staff

NEW ORLEANS (BP) – A gift to the apologetics program at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and Leavell College will expand its work in equipping believers to defend the faith.

The donation of $850,000 comes from the Milburn and Nancy Calhoun Foundation and from the Calhoun children, Kathleen Calhoun Nettleton, who passed away earlier this year, and David Calhoun, a professor of philosophy at Gonzaga University, Spokane, Washington, and a frequent speaker at the yearly NOBTS apologetics conference, Defend.

David Calhoun pointed to his parents’ legacy of service and commitment to Christ as the inspiration for the gift.

“My dad was the first in his family to go to college. He knew the value of an education, specifically theological education,” David Calhoun said. “That grew out of his sense of the importance of training the next generation, and the next generation of pastors and leaders in the church.”

Milburn Calhoun was a medical doctor and a publisher. New Orleans’ Pelican Publishing Company was owned and operated by the Calhoun family for many years. Taking on the role of publisher while working full-time as a family practitioner was a natural fit with his father’s love of reading and exploring ideas, the younger Calhoun said.

Two foundations founded and directed by the Calhoun family have worked to benefit various medical services and resources as well as institutions such as the Louisiana Baptist Children’s Home.

Pointing back to his father’s humble beginnings, Calhoun said his father taught him the importance of giving back.

“It was clear to [my father], from that start, that as God blesses, we find ways to give,” he said.

The Calhoun family donation provides support for apologetics in three ways: 1) The Calhoun Family Endowment for Christian Apologetics, to support the activities and work of NOBTS Apologetics by providing funding for events, guest speakers, workshops and conferences. 2) The Calhoun Ph.D. Fellowship for Apologetics and Philosophy, supporting a Ph.D. in Christian Apologetics student 3) The Calhoun Defend the Faith Scholarship, supporting a master’s level student in apologetics.

“Christian apologetics is an essential part of Christian witness,” said Jamie Dew, president of NOBTS and Leavell College. “NOBTS has always been exceptionally strong in this important ministry, but gifts of this nature make it possible for us to do this work even better. We are grateful to God for this generous gift and look forward to seeing how God will use it.”

Read the full story here.

    About the Author

  • BP Staff