NASHVILLE (BP) -- Arkansas pastor Ronnie Floyd will be nominated for president of the Southern Baptist Convention at the SBC annual meeting this June, seminary president R. Albert Mohler Jr. announced today (Feb. 20).
Floyd has "unparalleled experience as a leader among us, an unquestioned commitment to the Great Commission, and he has demonstrated an unstinting urgency to unite Southern Baptists around our shared beliefs, mission, and programs," Mohler, president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky., wrote in an open letter to Southern Baptists stating his intention to nominate Floyd at the SBC annual meeting in June.
During the 27 years Floyd has led Cross Church in northwest Arkansas, it has become "one of the most evangelistic, visible and innovative congregations in our convention," Mohler wrote. The church encompasses campuses in Springdale, Rogers and Fayetteville.
Highlighting Floyd's support for Southern Baptists' Cooperative Program channel for funding missions and ministries internationally, nationally and in each state, Mohler wrote:
"Over the last several years, Ronnie Floyd has led his church to become one of the convention's leading contributors toward the Cooperative Program. Last year, Cross Church contributed over $700,000 to the Cooperative Program. What makes that giving even more remarkable is that Cross Church increased its giving during a time of economic stress in the nation. Ronnie Floyd led the Great Commission Resurgence Task Force for our denomination [2009-10], and when that task force called for Southern Baptists to demonstrate a bold commitment to increasing giving through the Cooperative Program, Ronnie Floyd took that vision home to his church, and the church has responded with great generosity and a vision for missions at home and around the world."
In addition to the GCR Task Force, whose wide-ranging report included a call for international missions to receive 51 percent of all Cooperative Program gifts, Mohler noted that Floyd is a former chairman of the SBC Executive Committee and was a member of the SBC's Program and Structure Task Force during the mid-1990s. That task force produced The Covenant for a New Century restructuring that streamlined the number of SBC entities to nine from the former 12 and set forth updated ministry assignments for each SBC entity.
Mohler noted: "... when Southern Baptists have asked Ronnie Floyd to serve, he has always answered that call with visionary leadership and an eagerness to serve the denomination he so clearly loves."
Floyd's nomination is the first to be announced for the June 10-11 annual meeting in Baltimore. The new SBC president will succeed New Orleans pastor Fred Luter of Franklin Avenue Baptist Church, who became the first-ever African American to lead the SBC when he was elected in 2012.
"Fred Luter has led us so well as he has unified and inspired us," Mohler wrote. "Our next president needs to unify and inspire us for our next steps together."
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