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Southeastern trustees endorse nomination of Paige Patterson for SBC presidency

WAKE FOREST, N.C. (BP)–Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary’s board of trustees approved a resolution April 21 by acclamation endorsing the nomination of Paige Patterson for the presidency of the Southern Baptist Convention.
In early February, James Merritt, pastor of First Baptist Church, Snellville, Ga., announced he will nominate Patterson, president of Southeastern Seminary, Wake Forest, N.C., as a candidate for presidency of the SBC at the annual convention June 9-11 in Salt Lake City.
Southeastern trustees voted to go on record with the following resolution:
“Once in a generation or so an individual comes among us who is peculiarly qualified to advance the interest of the Kingdom of God. Thus Mordecai challenged Queen Esther of old with those words of destiny, ‘Thou art come to the Kingdom for such a time as this.’
“Such words appropriately describe what we, the trustees of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, believe to be true of our president, Dr. Paige Patterson, who will allow his nomination for the office of the presidency of the Southern Baptist Convention which convenes in Salt Lake City this summer.
“Some may ask, ‘Why Paige Patterson for this office now?’ We simply reply, ‘Why not?’
“We have found Dr. Patterson to be an outstanding leader, possessed of a rare combination of wit, vision, creativity, and an uncommon ability to see important matters through to successful completion.
“In his more than five years of his dynamic leadership in our institution, he has infused his administration, faculty and student body with such keen enthusiasm for missions and evangelism as to stimulate a spiritual awakening in our seminary which in turn has reached up and down the eastern seaboard of the United States.
“We are confident that Dr. Patterson can bring these same qualities to the work of our beloved Southern Baptist Convention. Therefore, we commend him to our brethren and heartily endorse his candidacy for the presidency of our convention.”
Dale Thompson, chairman of Southeastern’s board of trustees, said Patterson’s visionary leadership is just what the Southern Baptist Convention needs.
“We’re enthusiastic about the ministry that President Patterson has here at the seminary, and we’re also enthusiastic about what could take place if the Southern Baptist Convention were to elect him as their president, because we believe that he can bring the same zeal and energy and vision to the convention as he has to the seminary,” Thompson said.
Patterson, who has served as president of Southeastern since 1992, said if the SBC chooses him to be president, his two primary objectives would be to provide all the help he can to assist the North American Mission Board and the International Mission Board in each leading churches to baptize 500,000 people during the year 2000.

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  • Lee Weeks