Page 1



Cooperative baptist fellowship |

April/May 2007

Celebration of religious liberty to highlight 2007 General Assembly of Christ,” the 2007 Cooperative Baptist Fellowship General Assembly will convene

June 28-29 in Washington, D.C., to celebrate, learn and fellowship with like-minded Baptists. The first Assembly to be held in Washington, D.C., this year’s event also marks the first time the Assembly will gather with another Baptist body — American Baptist Churches USA (ABCUSA). “Every Assembly is unique and inspiring, but I believe this one is a kind of ‘cutting edge’ gathering that will stretch and strengthen this Fellowship,” said CBF Coordinator Daniel Vestal.

The Assembly’s hallmark event is Friday evening’s combined worship service with

ABCUSA, which will hold its biennial meeting June 29-July 2. Progressive National Baptist Convention and the Lott Carey Foreign Mission Convention will also be involved in the worship service, which will recog-

nize joint efforts in hurricane relief, sending missionaries and starting churches. Other worship sessions will include presentations from Vestal, Baptist World Alliance president David Coffey, Fellowship moderator Emmanuel McCall, musical artist-in-resident Kate Campbell, and Rob Nash in his first address to the Assembly as CBF Global Missions coordinator. More than 50 workshops and approximately 20 auxiliary events offer additional opportunities for learning and fellowship, including annual gatherings of CBF-related Photo courtesy Washington, D.C., Convention & Tourism Corporation


nder the theme “Free to be the presence

organizations and partner schools. “I always find joy and energy from gathering each year in our General Assembly,” Vestal said. “My vision of what it means to be a Christian is always expanded and my experience of being a Baptist is enriched. I find that I am challenged,

informed and encouraged every time we gather as a CBF family.” By Carla Wynn, CBF Communications For more information on the Assembly see pages 6-8 or go to

CBF resources missional churches with ‘It’s Time’ grants



this issue...

• Page 2

Winston-Salem congregation used funds from its $6,500 grant to conduct a survey of residents and determine how the church

Brian Leon photo

n a focus group of residents in downtown Winston-Salem, N.C., participants described the city by listing historic buildings and high-profile events. “It was very telling that churches were not mentioned,” said David Hughes, pastor of First Baptist Church. “That was a wake-up call for us. If we want to become more vital to the people who live, work and play in downtown WinstonSalem, we’re going to have to be more communicative through methods such as e-mail and the Internet. We’re going to have to be far more intentional and creative in the way we reach out to our community.” First Baptist is one of 13 Cooperative Baptist Fellowship partner churches that has been awarded an “It’s Time” Missional Ministry Grant. The

In Winston-Salem, N.C., First Baptist Church is taking steps to reach out to the downtown community located at its doorstep.

might reach out to its downtown community. Church leaders learned that the church’s gym — the

— Daniel

Vestal: The Baptist Witness

only one downtown — and the daycare center are two of the greatest points of potential contact with the public. This information, along with other findings from the survey, will be used as a basis for a two-to-three year strategic plan which will serve as the road map for First Baptist as it attempts to be a missional force in downtown Winston-Salem. The “It’s Time” Missional Ministry Grants were developed by the Fellowship to resource local congregations as they complete the “It’s Time: A Journey Toward Missional Faithfulness” study and seek to determine how God is calling them to ministry. The Fellowship was awarded a $1.5 million grant from Christ Is Our Salvation Foundation, and half the funds

• Pages 6-7

— General

Assembly poster for your church

support the “It’s Time” grants. “The ‘It’s Time’ grants are natural results of going deeper into the missional journey,” said Bo Prosser, the Fellowship’s coordinator for congregational life. “After a congregation immerses itself in study, prayer, and spiritual conversations, the urge to get involved locally becomes more and more of a calling. The congregations who have done the study at its deepest levels are starting on life changing paths of mission and ministry. God is doing extraordinary things through these churches.” In Dalton, Ga., First Baptist Church created Back to the Book, a program that provided basic school supplies to thousands of children. First Baptist Church of Aiken, S.C., used grant funds to provide scholarships to at-risk preschoolers.

• Page 10

— Chaplain

provides care in corporate setting

Northeast Baptist Church in Atlanta, Ga., developed ministries for senior adults and single parents. And at Central Baptist Church Bearden in Knoxville, Tenn., the congregation is using grant funds to turn a vacant church building into a missional training center. First Baptist Church of Bluegrass, Iowa, is the most recent church to be awarded an “It’s Time” grant. The grant will help support the Hope Enrichment Center, an outreach ministry of First Baptist, which provides mental health services to the community through faith-based counseling.

By Patricia Heys, CBF Communications For more on the Fellowship’s Missional Ministry Grants, go to pages 4-5.

• Page 11

— Volunteer

Spotlight: Helping kids in China



Inside CBF

April/May 2007



CBF leaders participate in national Christian event

Leaders from the Fellowship met with leaders from 35 churches and organizations at the annual meeting of Christian Churches Together (CCT) in Pasadena, Calif. The 2007 meeting focused on evangelism and poverty. “CCT is the broadest ecumenical experiment ever attempted in this country,” said Fellowship Executive Coordinator Daniel Vestal. “It represents a desire for Christian unity that doesn’t compromise the integrity of any of the participating bodies, but creates a way for us as Christians to draw closer to one another in Christ and explore ways for us to share a common witness to the nation.”

Carter, Clinton meet with Baptist leaders

approved two changes to the bylaws. The first change involves the recognition of the newly-created CBF Midwest region, and the second amends the process for appointing members of the Council on Endorsement for chaplains and pastoral counselors. The budget and bylaw change must be voted on by the General Assembly in June.

Web-based service to assist with job placement CBF has launched Leader ConnectCBF, a Web-based, résumé-matching service that will help churches find prospective ministers and ministers find places of service. On the Web site, candidates can complete a profile and submit a résumé, and churches can submit position descriptions. Leader Connect-CBF will match qualified candidates with open positions, but CBF staff will continue to review all information submitted. To learn more about Leader Connect, go to www.

Billy Howard photo

Leaders of 40 Baptist organizations, including CBF, convened in January and announced plans for a Celebration of a New Baptist Covenant Jan. 30–Feb. 1, 2008, in Atlanta. Joining in the meeting were former U.S. Presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton. “This has been what may turn out to be one of the most historic events, at least in the history of Baptists in this country, and perhaps Christianity,” Carter said. “We Jimmy Carter speaks to Baptist Leaders in Atlanta. believe it will bear fruits.” Plans for the celebration, which is expected to draw more than 20,000 Baptists, grew out of the North American April 13-14 Baptist Covenant, a document signed North Central Region CBF 2007 Spring by Baptist leaders at The Carter Center General Assembly in 2005. Placement.icm.

CBF of Oklahoma acquires new space Through a gift from one of its supporters, CBF of Oklahoma is purchasing a building on the campus of the University of Oklahoma. This building will be home to CBFO, as well as His Nets and Mainstream Baptist of Oklahoma. The building will continue to function as an outreach center for students, meeting place for a new church start and other related activities.

Chaplains endorsed by CBF The following chaplains and pastoral counselors were endorsed at the February meeting of the CBF Council on Endorsement: Dale Cross, Atlanta, Ga.; Carl Hart, Conyers, Ga.; Rosemary Barfield, Louisville, Ky.; Renate Kruklis, Tucker, Ga.; Amanda Ducksworth, Atlanta, Ga.; Larry Lawhon, Winchester, Va.; Cal McIver, Sacramento, Calif.; Rommel Moye, West Palm Beach, Fla.; Gary Sparks, Tyler, Texas; Michael Ferguson, Calypso, N.C.; Justin Murphy, Shelby, N.C.; John Halbrook, New York, N.Y.; Caby Byrne, Memphis, Tenn.; Gretchen Watson, Frankfort, Ky.

Upcoming Events

Coordinating Council approves $16.48 million budget The CBF Coordinating Council approved the recommended $16.48 million budget for 2007-2008 at its February meeting. The Council also

Vol. 17, No. 2 Coordinator • Daniel Vestal Coordinator, Fellowship Advancement • Ben McDade Editor • Lance Wallace managing Editor • Patricia Heys Associate Editor • Carla Wynn Phone • (770) 220-1600 Fax • (770) 220-1685 E-Mail • Web Site •

fellowship! is published 6 times a year in Sept./ Oct., Special I (Oct.), Nov./Dec., Feb./Mar., Apr./May, Special II (July) by The Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, Inc., 3001 Mercer University Dr., Atlanta, GA 303414115. Periodicals postage paid at Atlanta, GA, and additional mailing offices. USPS #015-625 POSTMASTER: Send address changes to “fellowship!” Newsletter, Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, P.O. Box 450329, Atlanta, GA 31145-0329

Speedway Baptist Church, Indianapolis, Ind. Info:

April 16 “Growing Generous Churches, Growing Generous Christians” Religious Life Center, Mercer University, Macon, Ga. Info: conferences/index.htm. April 20-21 CBF of Arkansas 2007 Spring Conference Pulaski Heights Baptist Church, Little Rock, Ark. Info: Alabama CBF 2007 General Assembly Birmingham, Ala. Info: Kentucky Baptist Fellowship 2007 General Assembly Winchester, Ky. Info: April 21 Tennessee CBF 2007 General Assembly Signal Mountain Baptist Church, Signal Mtn, Tenn. Info: April 27-28 CBF of Missouri 2007 General Assembly First Baptist Church, Lee’s Summit, Mo. Info:

April 27-28 CBF of SC 2007 General Assembly First Baptist Church, Clemson, S.C. Info: May 4-5 Baptist Fellowship of the Northeast 2007 General Assembly Sabattus, Maine Info: NE.icm May 10-11 Emerging Church Conference Yates Baptist Church, Durham, N.C. Info: May 21 - 25 Festival of Homiletics, Transformational Preaching Nashville, Tenn. Info: JunE 28-29 2007 CBF General Assembly Washington, D.C. Info: generalassembly.icm July 29 - Aug 3 CBF Boot Camp for Church Starts Truett Seminary at Baylor University, Waco, Texas Info:

coordinator Words from the By CBF Executive Coordinator Daniel Vestal

The Baptist Witness Baptists are a minority within the Body of Christ, but we are a significant minority. For 400 years we have fulfilled an important role of witness, dissent and ministry. Ours is a noble tradition shaped by people of faith in Jesus Christ. Our evangelical fervor has concentrated on helping people to Christ. However, we have often acted as if we were the only authentic Christians. We have often lived in isolation from other believers with little interest in ecumenical efforts. Our real passion was growing our own church and denomination. One of the encouraging signs among missional Baptists is a desire to be authentic disciples of Christ, above all else. I see a genuine yearning for Christian spirituality, community and mission. However, we should not minimize the commitment to the convictions that make us Baptist. Now more than ever, we need to be unapologetic about our identity. We hold convictions, although not exclusively of freedom, autonomy and the voluntary principle. It was easier for Baptists to advocate for religious freedom when we were a minority in this country. Now that we are part of the religious establishment, it is more difficult to be as fierce in our advocacy. I am disturbed when I listen to the struggles of Muslims in the U.S. Where are the Baptist voices championing the rights of Muslims? Where are the Baptists befriending this religious minority? And why are Baptists silent in the midst of a loud drum beat from the religious right calling for prayer in public schools, the display of the Ten Commandments on government property and school vouchers for Christian education? Why are so many Baptist congregations buying into the phenomenon where the pastor is more like a CEO than a shepherd and the church is more like a corporation than a fellowship? What happened to the believer’s church or congregational polity? So I do not want to relinquish the centrality of our Christian commitment or our convictions as Baptists. I realize that in Glory there will not be any denominational distinctions between us, but we are not in Glory yet. We are on earth. So for now, I am not willing to give up my identity as a Christian or as a Baptist.

C o o p e r at i v e B a p t i st F e l l o wsh i p

Inside CBF


April/May 2007


Fellowship People

Church S potlight

First Baptist Church, Austin, Texas


• • • • • •

Dennis Fowler In 2004, Dennis Fowler participated in a poverty simulation exercise in Waco, Texas, where he spent a weekend living on the streets. When he returned home to Kansas City, Mo., he was determined to make a difference in his own community. Fowler, along with other members of Holmeswood Baptist Church, started the Adopt-a-Block program. Almost every Saturday, six to 10 church members

By Courtney Hodges, CBF Communications

walk a few blocks from the church to Holmes Gardens, a low-income community of 48 duplexes.

Dennis Fowler

“We’re not Bible beaters when we visit the residents,” Fowler said. “In fact, it’s usually the residents that bring up the issue of God and their faith. We just try to develop relationships and identify needs.” And when needs arise, the church helps residents find jobs or pays the occasional utility bill. Holmeswood has also reached out to its neighbors through a neighborhood clean-up and block party. • • • • • •

Tracie Gray At Willow Meadows Baptist Church in Houston, Texas, Tracie Gray serves as the worship and the arts pastor. She facilitates the creative arts ministries of the church, including music, drama, visual arts and poetry. “It has been said that music is an expression of the soul,” Gray said. “Willow Meadows believes that the

Carla Wynn photo

s one of the Fellowship’s 10 teaching congregations, FBC Austin participates in the Initiative for Ministerial Excellence ministry residency program, which provides seminary graduates with the opportunity to serve in CBF partner churches for two years. Ann Pittman, a graduate of Truett Seminary, has served as FBC Austin’s ministry resident since 2005. Ministering in the eclectic capital of Texas, Pittman works as the full-time minister to university students but also takes on a variety of ministerial responsibilities, including the creation of a contemplative worship service to meet the creative and artistic needs of church members and the Austin community. “Ann has birthed an energetic, growing young adult ministry that we had little success starting prior to her time. She has energized a college program that had fallen on hard times,” said Roger Paynter,

pastor of the 160-year-old downtown church. “She has been a breath of fresh air to our staff, our leadership and our entire church. She has advocated for a younger perspective time and again, has taught us much about the emerging church and has learned from us that even old, downtown churches can be surprisingly open and feisty in return.”

creation of art is also an expression of the soul. When a believer expresses him or herself through artistic Ann Pittman helped host CBF’s annual Current retreat at First Baptist Church Austin.

means, it is worthy to be shared in the community of faith. Allowing space for creative expression in worship

Tracie Gray

hopefully gives more people the opportunity to encounter the mystery of God.” Gray’s love of the arts began when she started playing the piano at age five. Today, Gray encourages church members to use art in creative ways — such as

meet Victoria Whatley Victoria Whatley is an associate at the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship’s Church Benefits Board (CBB). The CBB offers retirement, death, disability and medical benefits to ministers, missionaries and lay employees of CBF partner churches and related organizations. Whatley helps clients understand the services of the CBB, provides financial management to clients and maintains the CBB Web site. Hometown: Villavicencio, Colombia Education: County College of Morris in Randolph, N.J., and AT&T School of Business Experience: Whatley worked at AT&T and Global Crossing operations in finance and marketing for 15 years. Interesting Fact: In 1992-93, she attended the Tour DuPont with her father Mario Garces, who coached Colombia’s national cycling team. She had the opportunity to meet Tour de France champions Greg LeMond and Lance Armstrong. “The Church Benefits Board is integral part to the ministry of CBF,” said Whatley. “At CBB we provide the best quality service to all our members, answering their concerns on medical, disability, life term insurance and retirement plans as they think about the end of their working years or by helping them to review their investment possibilities. We work very hard to make sure all our member’s applications are processed in an efficient and timely manner and all issues are resolved to our member’s satisfaction.” Contact Whatley at or (770) 220-1638 or (800) 352 8741.

participating in the Houston Art Car Parade, which features art on cars, bicycles, motorcycles and roller skates. • • • • • •

Beth Fogg In January 2008, approximately 20,000 Baptists from 40 organizations are expected to gather in Atlanta for the Celebration of a New Baptist Covenant, an event led by former President Jimmy Carter. Beth Fogg, a member of Second Baptist Church, Richmond, Va., represents the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship on the event’s planning committee. Fogg has previously served as a member of the CBF Coordinating Council, president of the Baptist General Association of Virginia and moderator of the Richmond

Beth Fogg

Baptist Association. “I have a passion for inclusiveness with the Baptist family,” Fogg said. “That’s why I’m excited about this gathering — it’s a visible and tangible step toward inclusiveness with the broader Baptist family. That’s one reason that I participate in CBF — because I feel we need to recognize all the pieces of our family whether we agree with them or not.” • • • • • •

Leslie and Matt Rosencrans Shortly after getting married, Truett Seminary graduates Leslie and Matt Rosencrans both began serving at Seventh

A Look Back

and James Baptist Church in Waco, Texas.


alongside each other at CBF partner

12 years ago

Cecil Sherman, the Fellowship’s first coordinator, retired after leading CBF for four years.


8 years ago

Wake Forest University Divinity School, a CBF partner school, was started in Winston-Salem, N.C.


4 years ago

CBF became a member of the Baptist World Alliance.

w w w. t h e f e l l o w s h i p. i n f o

The Rosencranses are part of a growing phenomenon of married couples working churches around the country. “Sharing ministry is absolutely wonderful and absolutely challenging at the same

Matt and Leslie Rosencrans

time,” said the Rosencranses, who have sought the advice of other couples who serve together. For now the benefits of working together outweigh the challenges, and the Rosencranses said they are blessed to work in a church where people take time to care for them. Both Leslie, who works as the congregational life minister, and Matt, who works as the youth and college minister, are doing exactly the kind of ministry they’ve dreamed about.



Missional Ministry Grants

April/May 2007

What is a

global context?” Instead of focusing on denominational templates and traditional programming, each church discerns God’s will. Church members play an active role in activities such as missions, pastoral care and education, and the church refocuses itself on participating in God’s mission. For more information and resources on the missional church movement, visit

Photo courtesy of FBC Knoxville

Photo courtesy of Sean Bancroft

issional is an adjective that describes the way in which churches do all activities, rather than identifying one particular activity. To be missional is to align all of the ministry, function and activities of the church around the mission of God in the world. A church that seeks to be missional asks, “What is God wanting us to be, become and do to continue the ministry of Christ within our present community and

Katie Gugliotta, a member of FBC Knoxville, leads kids in a craft project at the church’s Christmas brunch, which provided more than 800 people with a meal, music and new shoes and essential clothing.

First Baptist Church, Knoxville, Tenn.

Photo courtesy of Park Avenue


missional church?

Artist Zach Jewell prepares a display at Common Ground.

Jeremiah Myers helps renovate Lydia’s House.

Common Ground Baptist Church, San Antonio, Texas

Park Avenue Baptist Church, Atlanta, Ga.

For Common Ground, being a

Park Avenue, a church that

missional church means reaching

“restarted” three years ago after

ministry to first-generation Latinos

out to a community often overlooked

years of decline, is using its $25,000

expanded from English classes to a

by local churches — San Antonio’s

grant from the Fellowship to bolster

Latino Vacation Bible School, to a

young artists. With $10,000 from

Lydia’s House, a ministry through

revival, to a Spanish-speaking Sunday

the CBF Missional Ministry grant,

which the church hosts youth mission

school and finally, to a Latino church

the church promotes and hosts Last

teams serving throughout Atlanta.


Saturday, a celebration of the creative

Last summer, the church hosted 500

arts that features local artists and

teenagers during seven weeks of

spiritual home for Latino Christians,

musicians. The monthly event includes

mission camps. The grant has enabled

FBC Knoxville used its $15,000 grant

an art gallery, readings, music and

Park Avenue to convert one floor of its

to help fund these ministries and start


educational building into comfortable

At FBC Knoxville, the church’s

With the mission of providing a

a new church. Bi-vocational pastor

“The grant will help us participate

Victor Perez and his wife are leading

in the artistic community and engage

the Latino church.

the culture, and if we do that, we hope

housing for visiting mission teams and CBF Global Missions field personnel. “We didn’t have a lot of money or

to earn the right to have a conversation

people, but we did have a lot of space,

and the needs of the Latino people

with them about faith,” said pastor

so that’s where we really began to focus

came together and have produced new

Barry Bridges.

our efforts,” said pastor Tony Lankford.

“[The Perez’s] faith, God’s timing,

believers and transformed lives,” said

“‘It’s Time’ helped us see outside the

FBC Knoxville pastor Bill Shiell. “They

bounds of the church, and because of

have taught us how to do evangelism

the grant, we will be able to not only

in a healthy, meaningful way and how

impact the church, but the city of

to serve ‘the stranger and alien in your

Atlanta and the world.”

midst.’ CBF’s ‘It’s Time’ grant made everything possible, and we could not have done it without the financial resources and prayers of the people.”

C o o p e r at i v e B a p t i st F e l l o wsh i p

Missional Ministry Grants


April/May 2007


Apply for a Missional Ministry Grant Step 1 Step 3 Step 2 Discuss and develop intentional missional activities that extend your church’s missional journey beyond its own community.

Submit a proposal for a Missional Ministry Grant through the Fellowship’s Web site. To submit a proposal, go to www.thefellowship. info/ItsTime/TheMissionalChurch/grant.icm.

Photo courtesy of T Thomas

Photo courtesy of FBC Frankfort

Photo courtesy of Kirkwood Baptist

Photo courtesy of Fredericksburg Baptist

Participate in “It’s Time: A Journey Toward Missional Faithfulness.” The eight-week study focuses on Christians and churches living purposeful lives as the presence of Christ in the world. The study includes sermons, small-group studies and personal devotional material.

To order “It’s Time” go to, TheCBFStore.

Youth from different parts of the city participate in the FAST program.

A Kirkwood Baptist Church member helped with construction in Serbia.

Youth at FBC Frankfort held a food drive to fill the pantry.

T Thomas met with elders in Ghana to distribute mosquito nets.

Fredericksburg Baptist Church, Fredericksburg, Va.

Kirkwood Baptist Church, St. Louis, Mo.

First Baptist Church, Frankfort, Ky.

NorthHaven Baptist Church, Norman, Okla.

In a city recently divided by violent

Twelve Kirkwood Baptist members

Participating in “It’s Time”

Newly founded NorthHaven

school rivalries, Fredericksburg Baptist

spent a week this fall helping with

confirmed First Baptist’s belief that

Baptist Church is determined to

has searched for ways to unite young

construction projects, visiting

being a missional church is a full-

begin a missional journey from the

people. Through a new program called

churches and hosting children’s events

time commitment for every member.

start. The congregation will send

Faith and Sports Together (FAST),

in Vrsac, Serbia. The mission trip,

Using a $5,000 “It’s Time” grant and

approximately 5,200 mosquito nets to

made possible by a $25,000 “It’s Time”

sponsored through a $15,000 “It’s

donations, the church has developed a

Ghana in June — the same month its

grant, the church uses sports as an

Time” grant, is part of an effort to

multi-faceted approach to ministry in

church facility is scheduled to open.

agent for positive change.

connect with the estimated 60,000

its community and nearby counties.

At the Bragg Hill Center, located in a low-income, high-crime area five miles from the church,

Serbians living in the St. Louis, Mo., area. “There’s this contagious enthusiasm

The church supports the Emma

“We want to show that we’re not just here to minister to ourselves,”

Quire Mission Center, which fed

said church member T Thomas, who

2,600 persons last year through its

is also the state’s CBF coordinator.

Fredericksburg Baptist facilitates a

for the people who went on the trip,

food pantry program and housed 27

“We’re here to minister to our

variety of recreational activities for

and they’re sharing it with the rest

groups doing mission work in the area.

community. And our community is a

everyone from preschoolers to senior

of us,” said pastor Scott Stearman.

First Baptist also hosts clothes closet

global community.”

adults. This fall, more than 500 people

“It’s served as a kind of spark for the

ministries and the Mission Frankfort

from all over the city participated


Clinic, which helps uninsured

profit agency founded by Thomas,

people with medical, dental and

the church will send members to

in the FAST program, including

Kirkwood Baptist has established a

Partnering with His Nets, a non-

approximately 100 refugees. Many

food pantry for Serbian residents and

pharmaceutical needs. In 2006, the

Ghana to distribute the nets. Thomas

of the refugees have now enrolled

a weekly service held in their language.

clinic served more than 600 patients

said the nets, which cost $6 each, are

in Fredericksburg Baptist’s English

The congregation is also working with

and gave away more than $150,000 of

a simple but vital step in protecting

classes — one of the many ways FAST

a church planter to establish a Serbian-


families from malaria and other

has allowed the church to connect

language church in the Kirkwood area.

“Worship and missions are not

insect-related diseases. The effort is

with and minister to people beyond

about ourselves, but others, and

sponsored through a $15,000 “It’s


our desire is to serve persons in our

Time” grant and other donations.

“It’s just opened doors right and left,” said pastor Larry Haun. “We can’t get out of the way of the doors opening.”

w w w. t h e f e l l o w s h i p. i n f o

community who do not know Christ,” said pastor David Hinson.

2007 General Assembly

Cooperative Baptist Fellowship June 28-29

June 29, combined evening worship with American Baptist Churches USA

Photos courtesy Washington, D.C., Convention & Tourism Corporation

Washington, D.C., Convention Center


Auxiliary Events

CBF HIV/AIDS Network and the Missional Church Bono and Billy Graham: Ministering to all without losing me The New Baptist Covenant Explained: The Carter Initiative The New Global Mission: Local Congregations and Mission in the 21st Century Prosperity Gospel: Revisiting Stewardship or Selling Indulgences?

Bountiful Feast: Spiritual Formation Dinner The Minister and Politics: How to Be Prophetic Without Being Partisan Freedom from Hunger and Poverty Companions in Christ Training Go to for a complete list of workshops and auxiliary events.

This Year’s Featured Assembly Presenters

Baptist World Alliance President David Coffey

Artist in Residence Kate Campbell

CBF Moderator Emmanuel McCall

Worship Leader Susan Deal

CBF Global Missions Coordinator Rob Nash

CBF Coordinator Daniel Vestal

See the sites in our nation’s capital

There is no charge to attend the General Assembly.

Register and reserve your hotel room at Cooperative Baptist Fellowship (800) 352-8741



General Assembly

April/May 2007

Auxiliary Events If “cost” is not listed beside an event, the event is free. Registration may still be required.

General Assembly 2007 Schedule June 27 June 28 9:00 a.m. 10:30 a.m. 12:15 p.m. 2:00 p.m. 3:45 p.m. 5:15 p.m. 7:00 p.m.

June 29 9:00 a.m.

Auxiliary Events

3:30 p.m. 5:00 p.m. 7:00 p.m.

Workshops Lunch & Auxiliary Events General Session III Workshops Dinner & Auxiliary Events Combined Worship with ABCUSA

June 30

Auxiliary Events

12:15 p.m.

Workshops General Session I Lunch & Auxiliary Events Workshops State/Regional Meetings Dinner & Auxiliary Events General Session II

2:00 p.m.

Dear Friends, American Baptists are awaiting with great anticipation our joint meeting in Washington, D.C., this summer. We share so much with Fellowship Baptists in our commitment to Christ, our dependence upon scripture, our love of our Baptist heritage of freedom and our dedication to mission. Our joint meeting will be a wonderful time to celebrate our growing missional connections, highlighted by our joint efforts in response to Hurricane Katrina. Our joy will be increased as delegations from the Progressive National Baptist Convention and the Lott Carey Baptist Foreign Mission Convention also join us. As we gather, our aim is to lift high the cross of Christ and to celebrate the common witness we share in anticipation of the greater things God has yet to do through us. We believe “the future is as bright as the promises of God.” Since this will also be the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Northern Baptist Convention at Calvary Baptist Church in Washington, D.C., we want to extend a warm welcome to as many of you who can stay over to be with us on Saturday, June 30, as we celebrate our Centennial. We will be blessed by your presence. As your brother in Christ, I find it personally satisfying that we can come together for such an historic gathering in Washington, D.C. I extend my heartfelt invitation to you to be a part of it. Yours in Christ, A. Roy Medley General Secretary American Baptist Churches USA

June 27, 2007

June 29, 2007

8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

7:00 a.m.

Companions in Christ Cost: $90 May 15; $100 after May 15 Register: eventsone.asp

Baptist World Alliance Breakfast Cost: $20 Register: (703) 790-8980, ext. 153,

10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

7:00 a.m.

BTSR event on Re-Shaping Worship Cost: $70 Register:

CBF Foundation Fellowship Heritage Society Breakfast Register: (770) 619-1200,

1:00 - 4:00 p.m.

The Minister and Politics: How to Be Prophetic Without Being Partisan Conference featuring Tony Campolo, Melissa Rogers, Jim Wallis and Greg Boyd Contact:

8:00 – 11:30 a.m.

5:30 – 8 p.m.

9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Bountiful Feast Spiritual Formation Dinner Cost: $35 Deadline: June 1 Register: (770) 220-1648 or

Ministers on the Move: Meet CBF Reference & Referral staff Contact: (770) 220-1600,

June 28, 2007

MMBB and CBB Members Luncheon Cost: Complimentary for CBB members Register: (770) 220-1621,

8:00 – 10:15 a.m.

Freedom from Hunger and Poverty Congress members, Capitol Hill staff, religious leaders are set to address antipoverty advocacy. Contact: (205) 989-8160, 12:15 – 2:00 p.m.

Campbell University Divinity School Luncheon Cost: $20 per person. Deadline: June 18 Contact: (800) 334-4111 ext. 1847, 2:00 – 3:30 p.m.

Whitsitt Society: Ministry to Victims of Global Sex Trade Contact: (205) 726-2633, 5:15 – 6:45 p.m.

ABP and First Freedoms Project Joint Banquet Cost: TBA Contact: (800) 340-6626, ext. 5; 5:15 – 7:00 p.m.

Mercer University McAfee School of Theology Dinner Cost: TBA Contact: (678) 547-6420,

Chaplaincy & Pastoral Counseling Joint Training Event (ABCUSA and CBF) Register: (770) 220-1645;


12:15 – 1:45 p.m.

Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty Cost: TBA Register: (202) 544-4226, 12:15 – 1:45 pm

George W. Truett Theological Seminary Luncheon Cost: TBA Contact: (979) 234-2571, 12:15 – 1:50 p.m.

Children’s Ministry Network Luncheon Cost: TBA Register: (919) 787-3740, 11:45 – 1:45 p.m.

Chaplains and Pastoral Counselors Luncheon Cost: TBA Contact: (770) 220-1617, 5:00 – 6:45 p.m.

Wake Forest University School of Divinity Cost: TBA Contact: (336) 758-4837,

9:00 – 11:00 p.m.

Baylor University School of Social Work Centennial Celebration Contact: (254) 710-1199,

Hotel Information for General Assembly

Volunteer in Washington

For online Assembly pre-registration and hotel information and reservations, go to or call the CBF Resource Center at (800) 352-8741.

Individuals and churches interested in volunteering at General Assembly should contact David Rodgers at A variety of volunteer opportunities are available.

C o o p e r at i v e B a p t i st F e l l o wsh i p



April/May 2007


CBF churches help to transform lives in Miami through long-term partnerships


ach Sunday in Miami approximately 75 homeless men and women gather for worship in the chapel at Central Baptist Church.

Before the service, attendees shower and change from worn clothes to fresh garments. Jason Pittman preaches while people continue to groom, brushing tangled hair and drying freshly cleaned faces. After the service more than 200 homeless men and women gather for a meal provided by Central Baptist.

“The experience created this incredible bond between our folks and these inner city folks in Miami,” said Spivey. “It’s no longer just a single mom in Miami, but it’s about relationship and names. Our mission’s partnership became this powerful experience of relationship.” “Working in Angel Pittman works with children at one of the camps at Touching Miami the inner city is with Love. an effort that you is developing relationships with churches don’t tread in lightly,” Jason said. “It’s an that want to walk alongside us in this effort that’s a long-term commitment. We journey.” really want folks to come and partner with us in that process, but that takes By Courtney Hodges, CBF Communications more than one trip. What we want to see TML photo

Jason, along with his wife Angel, serve single mothers and inner-city children as CBF Global Missions field personnel and youth in the Overtown community and directors of Touching Miami with of Miami. Love (TML) ministry. The Baptist Church of Beaufort “The folks that we work with and have established an intentional, covenantal the privilege of being in relationship with relationship with TML four years ago, are the inner city poor,” said Jason. “They which involves prayer, financial support are folks that have been forgotten, have and volunteers. been looked over and have struggled for “A lot of our folks have had powerful many years.” moments of spiritual transformation as we The church represents a partnership have worked with TML,” said The Baptist between TML and Central Baptist, which Church of Beaufort’s associate pastor Eric has ministered to the Miami homeless Spivey. “Whether it is community for 40 years. through the homeless In addition to the Sunday chapel ministry or working service, TML offers a clothing exchange with the children in LEARN – In 1994, Butch and Nell Green were appointed to serve as the first CBF Global Missions field and movie nights for the homeless. TML day camps, as we have personnel with TML. Angel and Jason Pittman joined the TML staff in August 2005. Keri Gage, a CBF AsYouGo also hosts an annual neighborhood festival, partnered together affiliate, serves as TML’s assistant director. social service referrals, parenting classes people in our church Learn more about the Pittmans and other field personnel in CBF’s missions education resources. To order, and day and summer camps for inner city have grown and call (888) 801-4223 or go to children and youth. moved into missionary “We get the opportunity to love on lifestyles.” SERVE – TML needs volunteers to serve as teachers, van drivers, guest preachers, musicians, baby sitters and tax advisers. To learn about volunteer opportunities visit For opportunities people that usually aren’t considered The Baptist Church on how you can partner or volunteer with other CBF field personnel around the world, contact Karen Gilbert at loveable,” said Angel. “In the past many of Beaufort’s missionary or (800) 352-8741. of the homeless we work with have been house hosted single neglected and pushed out of churches. moms from Miami. Pray – Pray that more churches will partner with TML. Pray for the volunteers and staff as they minister to We offer a place every Sunday morning The Miami mothers the Overtown community. that folks, in whatever way they come, are were offered child Give – The CBF Offering for Global Missions is the primary funding mechanism for CBF Global Missions welcome to worship.” care, tours of Beaufort work. Support the ministry of field personnel around the world by giving to the CBF Offering for Global Missions. “Probably what I enjoy the most is and were pampered To give, go to relationships with homeless guys,” said with manicures and Jason. “I like to be there for them, no pedicures. matter where they are, what they’re doing, to just be real to them, especially guys that are dealing with addiction. And I am willing to be there when they are ready for change, to walk alongside them, and when they do choose to work on these things to be there for them.” TML relies heavily on partnerships with churches, as well as gifts to CBF. Partner churches like Central Baptist, The Baptist Church of Beaufort in Beaufort, S.C., and Hendricks Avenue Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Fla., enable TML to be the presence of Christ Among the services TML offers to homeless people is a meal on Sundays after worship. to addicts, homeless, TML photo

Touching Miami with Love

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April/May 2007

Corporate setting offers chaplains unique opportunities to be presence of Christ


yson Foods Inc., in Glen Allen, Va., invests in its team each day to achieve the highest level of quality and production possible. In the

process, the company sets an example for others to follow.

serves with a focus of genuine care in life’s celebrations, crises and everyday experiences.” One of Tyson’s chaplains recently encountered a situation with a team member who gave birth to a still-born child. When chaplain Larry Petton received word, he immediately went to the hospital to pray with the young couple, who did not have a local pastor of their own. Chaplain Petton was asked to conduct the child’s funeral. Tyson Foods, which has employed chaplains since 1999, hires chaplains to

Tyson Foods employs 126 chaplains believes an effective corporate chaplain who provide services to more than 85,000 greatly impacts the life of a company, as team members at 252 locations in the well as the lives of those the company United States, Mexico and Canada. employs. Cooperative Baptist Fellowship “Research has shown that when a endorsed chaplain Alan Tyson, director corporation has a chaplain who is a of chaplain services at Tyson Foods finds presence in the system, there is less conflict that the corporate setting offers a unique among employees, less sick time and more method of being the presence of Christ. productivity,” Pickle said. “A chaplain (Tyson is in no relation to the company’s founders.) “One of the unique aspects of workplace chaplaincy is the incredible opportunity to get to know Total number of chaplains and minister to people and pastoral counselors that have no pastor and endorsed by CBF seldom darken the doors of a church,” Tyson said. “It Corporate chaplains is an opportunity to help endorsed Christians overcome the Hospital chaplains Sunday to Monday gap.” endorsed Tyson, who entered corporate chaplaincy in 1993 Military chaplains with Hudson Foods Inc. in endorsed Rogers, Ark., also served as Correction facility a chaplain with the United chaplains endorsed States Army and worked at a Christian counseling center. Hospice chaplains George Pickle, the endorsed Fellowship’s associate Alan Tyson, right, talks with Tyson team member Patty Richardson. coordinator for chaplaincy,

minister to all employees, regardless of faith or status within the company. Tyson said that it is important for corporate chaplains to have some knowledge of the business world, enabling the chaplains to underscore to the employees the value they bring to the company. LEARN – For more information on Fellowship endorsement or to learn how you can be a part of supporting chaplains, contact Pickle at (800) 352-8741 or

By contributing writer Ashley Grizzle, Atlanta, Ga.

556 7 259 99 14 64

Photo courtesy of Alan Tyson

By the Numbers: Chaplains




APril/MAy 2007

Ship baptiSt fellow

| www.thefello

God-given mission and fulfill their as they discover s and churches Serving Christian

Celebrate Freedom

Order fellowship!

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Washington, D.C.,

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To order multiple copies of fellowship! to be sent to your church, e-mail or call (770) 220-1639. will gather fellowship baptists for D.C., in June in washington, assembly. the 2007 General

Pull-out poster on pages 6-8.

ts spark ‘It’s Time’gran

es Pages 4-5 creative ministri

Chaplain S potlight


hile traveling in Iraq near the Syrian border, CBF-endorsed chaplain and Navy Lieut. Alan Rogers was asked to baptize a Marine Corps corporal in the Euphrates River. “He courageously made a public proclamation of his faith in front of his squad as they crouched in the bushes on the riverbank, providing security for us,” Rogers said. “When he emerged from the water, I said, ‘God bless you my

brother.’ He replied, ‘God bless you too, Chaps. Now let’s get out of here before we get shot!’” Stationed in Al Anbar Province, Iraq, Rogers’ duties include planning and implementing religious ministry functions. Rogers leads worship and memorial services, routinely going into the battlefield. He accompanies Marines and soldiers on patrols, in convoys and shares conversations and meals. “In this context, it’s perhaps the most religiously pluralistic ministry setting anywhere,” Rogers said. “I am the ‘Chaps’

not only for the Baptist, Protestant or Christian Marine or Sailor, but equally serve those of many faith Alan Rogers, left, leads a worship service in Iraq. groups who are afforded the same religious freedoms they serve here to brightest and most dedicated guardians defend. In my opinion, it is a microcosm of freedom.” of the best of the religious liberty of America, and I am blessed to serve these By contributing writer Bob Perkins Jr., who are truly among America’s best, Atlanta, Ga. Photo courtesy of Alan Rogers

Alan Rogers

C o o p e r at i v e B a p t i st F e l l o wsh i p



April/May 2007


Pastors find renewal at Fellowship retreats


ver the past year, pastor Kevin Roberts experienced a near fatal bicycle accident and the unexpected death of his mother. Long

accustomed to caring for sick and grieving people, he suddenly found himself in need of care. While Roberts, pastor at Kathwood Baptist Church in Columbia, S.C, has found solace and support in family and friends, he also found support through another group — participants in a recent Fellowship-sponsored spiritual formation retreat for pastors. Through the retreat — held at the Ignatius House, a Jesuit retreat center in Atlanta — the pastors explored spiritual practices, including several periods

of intentional silence and prayer. The participants also took part in worship services, small-group conversations, healing service and periods of relaxation and fellowship. For Roberts, the retreat helped him address the challenge of being a pastor while still healing physically and emotionally. “Connecting the dots between my mom’s death and my 11-day coma is the jungle

that I still have to hack through every day,” he said. “While most of my physical pain is manageable now, the pain in my soul is still real. The retreat provided me a safe place to be a pastor in need of pastoral care from all people, other pastors.” Roberts said he learned much about his faith and ministry during the retreat. “I learned that faith is more than a popular church word, but rather it is a place to enter,” he said. “I also learned that this job is challenging for everyone, not just me. And without faith, and listening in the silence, it’s almost impossible.” The retreat was led by Rick Bennett and Bo Prosser of the Fellowship and Gary Furr, pastor of Vestavia Hills Baptist Church in Birmingham, Ala.

“I am thankful for CBF, who has given ministers permission to be less concerned about task management and more focused on traditions of contemplation and introspection,” he said. “This retreat was deep calling to deep, and thankfully, I was able to hear. And now, I want more.” Another retreat for pastors is slated for Sept. 24-26, along with retreats for church staff members on May 2-4; Jan. 14-16, 2008; and April 21-23, 2008. LEARN – For more information on the Fellowship’s spiritual formation retreats, visit sfevents1.icm.

By contributing writer Melanie Kieve, Alabaster, Ala.

Current: Let Justice Roll More than 100 young leaders from the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship gathered a few blocks from the Texas state capital to discuss issues of social justice. Current, the Fellowship’s network for young leaders, hosted its eighth annual retreat at First Baptist Church, Austin, Texas. The retreat’s theme was “Let Justice Roll,” and workshops and worship focused on social justice.

A variety of workshops were offered each day tailored toward the ways churches, ministers and religious leaders can become involved in aspects of social justice in their communities. Attendees also had opportunities for fellowship, networking and exploring Austin.

Photos by Carla Wynn

Volunteer S potlight


hen early interventionist Suzann Fenton made her fourth trip to China in 2006, she planned to spend most of her time assessing and encouraging teachers at Angel House, a rehabilitation center for children with cerebral palsy. But once again, Fenton found herself taking part in a miracle moment with a child. Three-year-old Lin needed help

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mastering her gross and fine motor skills, and her teachers had begun working with her on techniques to grasp and maneuver a spoon. As Fenton was observing Lin’s therapy, she noticed that the spoon Lin was trying to use was too big and the bowl was too high. With a smaller spoon and shallow bowl in place, Fenton prepared to practice with Lin. “The next thing I knew, Lin could do the process by herself, putting the spoon to her mouth,” said Fenton, a member of Berea Baptist Church, Berea, Ky. “She did it for 30 minutes. You don’t normally see something

that dramatic happen that quickly — I’ve maybe seen that happen 10-15 times in my 19-year career. I got real emotional, real teary-eyed. When a child accomplishes a major outcome, it’s so exciting.” Fenton has been a valuable asset CBF volunteer Suzann Fenton works with a child at to Angel House, helping to create Angel House in China. the early intervention program. She became connected with the center By contributing writer Laurie Entrekin, through Brenda Lisenby, one of CBF’s Atlanta, Ga. representatives in China, who works with Angel House and facilitates opportunities For information on volunteer opportunities, for CBF volunteers like Fenton. contact Jay Paul photo

Suzann Fenton

CBF Global Missions photo

C o o p e r at i v e B a p t i st F e l l o wsh i p

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It’s time to renew your orders for Affect as well as children and youth resources Form, Spark and Ignite. Call (800) 801-4223 or go to

Re-order Affect

Learn more about the Earls! Featured in the May edition of Affect, the Earls’ story continues, with a focus on “Striving towards Understanding.” The CBF missions education resource for adults, Affect tells the stories of CBF Global Missions personnel in a full-color, four-page monthly publication with leader’s guide. Learn more from or (888) 801-4223.

Mission Magazine with More


rville and Sheila Earl, CBF Currently, the Earls reside in Skopje, Global Missions field personnel, have Macedonia. Arville works to reconcile ethnic served with the Fellowship since 1994 among groups among Albanians, Macedonians, the Diaspora Albanians. Turks and the Romany Gypsies. Through Background: Arville and Shelia Earl met fellowship, Arville facilitates communication at Northside Baptist Church in Longview, about divisive issues, helping people Texas. Prior to beginning their service as understand one another and seek CBF Global Missions field reconciliation. personnel, the Earls served The focus of Shelia’s in Burkina Faso, West ministry is the “Future of Africa for 12 years the Family” kindergarten. Ministry: In 2000, the She partners with a local Earls worked with Muslim, resident and Kathy Smith, Catholic, Orthodox and one of CBF’s Global MisProtestant leaders in the sion field personnel, to run formation of The Stockthe school, which offers a holm Accords, a document free education to children that addresses the need to in need and classes for end ethnic cleansing and their parents. bring about reconciliation “In the beginning we noArville and Sheila Earl in the Balkan countries. ticed that the parents, espe“I believe that the cially the women, had little scripture teaches us that reconciliation is a social contact with each other and the outside major factor in understanding what it means world,” said Shelia. “We are in the fourth year to be related to God,” said Arville. “Because of the kindergarten, and women are proactive we become reconciled to God we also need about meeting together. They have learned to to be reconciled to each other — one can’t trust us, and we think that’s the basis for reconbe separated from the other. Reconciliation ciliation. Trust is the most important element, doesn’t happen on a large scale — it happens and it seems that they are more able to trust person to person and in small groups, which God again when they trust us and one another.” is how we direct our ministry rather than By Courtney Hodges, CBF Communications trying to reconcile the whole nation.”


Arville and Sheila Earl

Field Personnel S potlight

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(800) 352-8741

P.O. Box 450329 • Atlanta, Georgia 31145-0329

Cooperative Baptist Fellowship


Pull-out poster on pages 6-8.

Fellowship Baptists will gather in Washington, D.C., in June for the 2007 General Assembly.

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Serving Christians and churches as they discover and fulfill their God-given mission

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‘It’s Time’grants spark creative ministries Pages 4-5

April/May 2007


April/May 2007 fellowship!  
April/May 2007 fellowship!