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Utah-Idaho Baptists look to ‘Times of Refreshing’

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SALT LAKE CITY (BP)–With Acts 3:19 as their focal verse, Utah-Idaho Baptists gathered around the theme “Times of Refreshing” for their 42nd annual meeting at Southeast Baptist Church in Salt Lake City Oct. 23-24.

During the business sessions, 151 messengers representing 27 Idaho churches and 31 Utah churches voted to re-elect Rodger Russell, pastor of Holladay Baptist Church in Holladay, Utah, as president.

Paul Thompson, pastor of Eastside Baptist Church in Twin Falls, Idaho, and Dan Ozuna, pastor of Iglesia Bautista Agua Viva in Boise, Idaho, were nominated for first vice president. The run-off vote went to Thompson. Ozuna was nominated for second vice president and was elected by acclamation. Ruth Burch, a member of Layton Hills Baptist in Layton, Utah, was re-elected recording secretary by acclamation.

From an anticipated $842,684 in Cooperative Program giving from Utah-Idaho churches in the coming year, messengers approved a half-percent-of-budget increase, to 21.5 percent, to be forwarded to national and international missions and ministries of the SBC. The convention’s overall budget approved for 2007 is $2,321,180, up 4.3 percent over the current budget.

Messengers resolved to continue their prayers for members of the U.S. military and all government leaders, and they resolved to raise up a new generation of Utah-Idaho Southern Baptist Convention leaders by cultivating the student population within their churches.

A three-year partnership agreement between Utah-Idaho Baptists and the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma was signed by the UISBC’s Russell and the BGCO’s president, Bob Green.

Five churches from Idaho were to the convention: NorthStar Baptist Church in Coeur d’Alene; Northridge Fellowship in Jerome; The Country Church in Moore; Mountain View Baptist Church in Pine; and Bellevue Community Church in Bellevue. One church, meanwhile, was added from Utah: Logan Chinese Baptist Church in Logan.

Guest speaker Johnny Johnson, a senior ministry consultant with special focus on Baptist churches for Peacemaker Ministries, told messengers that “reconciliation begins with repentance and through repentance we as God’s people come back to acceptable worship.”

“God the Father says, ‘Worship Me and lead My people to join you, and I will give you the details for your work assignment,’” Johnson, a graduate of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, said.

Johnson also explained the four components of the Peacemaker’s Pledge: glorify God, get the log out of your own eye, gently restore and be reconciled.

Next year’s annual meeting will be Oct. 23-24 at First Baptist Church in Burley, Idaho.

    About the Author

  • Bill Pepper