LifeWay Christian Resources is exploring the sale of some or all of its 14.5-acre property in downtown Nashville, LifeWay President Thom Rainer said in a letter to the organization’s staff. LifeWay is working with a consulting firm to study the advantages and disadvantages of a sale, Rainer said. About 1,100 of LifeWay’s employees work in the downtown corporate offices. The organization also oversees 186 stores and 4,300 employees in 29 states. Acknowledging LifeWay has been located in Nashville more than 120 years, Rainer cited demand for property in the downtown area and fewer employees now working at its corporate offices as reasons for studying a possible sale.
McAfee founding dean plans to step down. Alan Culpepper, founding dean of Mercer University’s McAfee School of Theology, is stepping down at the end of the current academic year after nearly two decades. After a sabbatical, Culpepper, 68, plans to teach full time on the McAfee faculty. A widely respected New Testament scholar, Culpepper accepted appointment as McAfee’s dean in 1995. He hired the first three faculty members before the school opened in 1996 on Mercer’s Cecil B. Day Campus in Atlanta. Before that, he taught four years at Baylor University and 17 years at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky. After growing up a missionary kid in Chile and Argentina, Culpepper earned his bachelor’s degree at Baylor, his master of divinity at Southern Seminary and his Ph.D. at Duke University.
California seminary requests name change. Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary signed a purchase agreement for a new primary campus site in Southern California east of Los Angeles near the Ontario International Airport. Jeff Iorg, the seminary’s president, announced the seminary will ask the Southern Baptist Convention to approve a new name for the school—Gateway Seminary of the Southern Baptist Convention. “The new name connects to our heritage, frees us from geographic designations, allows for developing a more global identity and acknowledges our Baptist distinctive,” Iorg said. The seminary sold its 126-acre campus in the San Francisco Bay area for $85 million.
Campbellsville University and Kentucky Baptist leaders discuss partnership. A month after airing public criticism of each other, representatives of Campbellsville University and the Kentucky Baptist Convention are talking again about continuing to work together following the school’s move to a self-perpetuating board of trustees. Leaders of both groups are exploring a new partnership agreement that would allow the university and Kentucky Baptists to work together on shared ministry and mission ventures not tied to denominational funding. In pulling out of their 1986 covenant agreement with Kentucky Baptists, Campbellsville trustees voluntarily surrendered about $1 million a year in funding from the state convention, about 2 percent of the university’s $57 million budget. In return, the old agreement gave the KBC “the right and responsibility in the selection and orientation” of the school’s 44-member board of trustees.