Church with woman pastor expects further rebuke from Georgia Baptists

A church denied voting rights in the Georgia Baptist Convention because it is led by a woman pastor could face further sanctions, Pastor Julie Pennington-Russell reports in the church newsletter.

Oklahoma Baptist foundation loses money in Madoff scandal

At least one Baptist group lost money as part of Bernard Madoff's alleged $50 billion Ponzi scheme. The Baptist Foundation of Oklahoma said it lost $1.4 million, less than 1 percent of its assets, when third-party money managers invested in two of Madoff's allegedly fraudulent hedge funds.

Website seeks to rally support for women's ordination

A former Baptist General Convention of Texas employee and her husband of 47 years have started a website urging Baptist women to speak up for their rights to be ordained as deacons and senior pastors.

Baptist Briefs: Glorieta cuts full-time staff

As a cost-cutting measure, Glorieta Conference Center near Santa Fe, N.M., will operate only two facilities from October through mid-May—New Mexico Hall and Hall of State. That means a reduction of full-time staff by roughly one-half—from 44 to 21—by Oct. 1.

Baptist ethnic missions pioneer Oscar Romo dies at age 79

Oscar Romo, a pioneer in starting ethnic Southern Baptist churches, died Jan. 16 from complications related to Parkinson’s disease.

CBF leader writes President Obama with 'heartfelt requests'

ObamaCooperative Baptist Fellowship Executive Coordinator Daniel Vestal sent an Inauguration Day letter congratulating Barack Obama and urging the newly sworn president to lead America in building a more civil and just society.

Hobby Lobby executive describes company’s legacy of faith

Steve Green, president of Hobby Lobby, says his chain of more than 400 stores was built on a legacy of faith that guides company-wide decisions. Green and his wife, Jackie, and their six children are members of Council Road Baptist Church in Bethany, Okla.

Baptists, Muslims say dialogue a step in right direction

dialogueSeveral dozen Baptists and Muslims gathered Jan. 9-11 to repair a relationship better known for harsh anti-Islamic rhetoric by high-profile Baptist preachers than by dialogue or cooperation. Stan Hastey, a Baptist member of the task force that planned the event, called it a "seminal but certainly promising" opportunity for improving a Baptist-Muslim dialogue marred by demonization of Islam in the post-9/11 United States.

Baptist Briefs: Former Attorney General Bell dies

Former Attorney General Bell dies. Griffin Bell, U.S. attorney general during President Carter’s administration and a longtime benefactor of Mercer University, died Jan. 5.

Robert Handy, Baptist historian, seminary professor, dies

Robert Handy, who studied under legendary Christian scholars like Paul Tillich before becoming a prominent Baptist historian in his own right, died at a retirement community in West Caldwell, N.J., Jan. 8. He was 90.

Scholars disagree on Anabaptist, Baptist connection

While much writing about Baptist history in the 20th century focused on what distinguishes Baptists from other Christians, a group of contemporary scholars believes the Baptist movement now needs to reconnect to its ecumenical roots.

Who founded the Baptist movement– John Smyth or John the Baptist?

Baptists who celebrate the 400th birthday of their denomination in 2009 miss the mark by about 1600 years, Landmark Baptists insist.

Baptists celebrate past with an eye to the future

In 400 years, the Baptist movement has grown to 200,000 churches with more than 50 million members in countries around the world. But the largest Baptist group in the United States—the Southern Baptist Convention—has reported declining membership.

Baptist influence on history of U.S., world a mixed bag, historians say

Baptists’ signal contribution to American and world history and political thought, historians almost unanimously agree, is their uncompromising emphasis on religious liberty.

Historians debate reasons for rise of Landmarkism in 19th century

All Landmark Baptists believe in church succession, at least to some degree, but not every Baptist holding that position is—or was—a Landmarker, according to Alan Lefever, director of the Texas Baptist Historical Collection.
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