2014 SBC ANNUAL MEETING
BALTIMORE (BP)—The Cooperative Program exhibit at the SBC annual meeting in Baltimore will feature a diversity of speakers reflecting the multifaceted ministries the CP funds, said Ashley Clayton, SBC vice president for the Cooperative Program and stewardship development.
"Missions for Life," WMU's tag line, will be the backdrop for learning about missions involvement opportunities for preschoolers, children, youth and adults at their exhibit. A special focus for Woman's Missionary Union in Baltimore is the conclusion of a yearlong celebration of its 125th anniversary. Churches are being encouraged to start new organizations through the 1-2-5 Challenge (begin one new organization, with two new leaders and five new members). Adjoining the WMU booth will be New Hope Publishers and WorldCrafts; all three divisions will conduct daily giveaways from their booths.
New Hope Publishers is partnering with WMU to tell the story of radical commitment to God's mission and will feature the new 2014-15 WMU emphasis book by national WMU President Debby Akerman, "Secrets to Surrender: Living Wholeheartedly." New Hope also is featuring the work of several SBC leaders including Taylor Field of Graffiti Ministries in New York City. Taylor will sign his books at the LifeWay store in the Exhibit Hall.
WorldCrafts, a fair-trade division of WMU, develops sustainable businesses among impoverished people around the world. A member of the Fair Trade Federation, WorldCrafts partners with dozens of artisan groups to import and sell hundreds of handcrafted items from more than 25 countries. Many of the artisan groups WorldCrafts partners with are working to free women from human exploitation and sex trafficking.
BAPTIST GLOBAL RESPONSE
"Immersed in their stories" will be the focus of the Baptist Global Response exhibit at this year's annual meeting. Visitors to the booth will get involved in the stories of five people who have been helped by Southern Baptist human needs work through BGR. The stories will focus on projects related to disaster relief/food distribution, rescue of young girls from trafficking, micro enterprise for refugees, livestock, and clean water.
"BGR is all about connecting people in need with people who care. BGR helps bring hope both physically and spiritually to those who are hurting, homeless and hopeless," said Jeff Palmer, BGR executive director. "BGR has almost 400 projects in over 50 countries each year that help people with the basics of life such as food, water and shelter. Come and discover ways you can get involved in these stories and hundreds of others just like them."
The exhibit's theme coordinates with BGR's current annual report and prayer guide, both of which focus on stories of real people helped by Southern Baptist human needs work. Both are available at www.gobgr.org.
SOUTHERN BAPTIST FOUNDATION
Planning for eternity will be the focus of the Southern Baptist Foundation's booth showcasing resources and services to facilitate giving, glorifying God and advancing His Kingdom. The foundation assists assist believers in quality estate planning as an act of stewardship and generosity. The foundation also provides prudent, socially screened investment services to churches and entities.
SOUTHERN BAPTIST HISTORICAL LIBRARY AND ARCHIVES
Governed by the Council of Seminary Presidents, the SBHLA is the largest and most accessible collection of Baptist material in the world. The SBHLA exhibit will feature historic photographs of Baptist life, events, churches, ministries and missions. In addition to information on the library and archives, the booth also will have brochures on church archives and information on a new website, baptistheritage.com.
Seminary Extension has been training volunteers, leaders, teachers and pastors for Southern Baptist churches since 1951. Following its original mandate from the Southern Baptist Convention, Seminary Extension continues to offer opportunities for theological education and ministry training through independent study as well as group studies sponsored by churches, associations and state conventions. Individuals interested in this kind of training where they live and serve are invited to stop by Seminary Extension's booth in the Exhibit Hall for information. The director Randal Williams and student services associate Carmen Ferreira will field questions about promoting Seminary Extension in your area. They also look forward to visiting with alumni, current and former instructors.
GLOBAL HUNGER RELIEF
A new campaign in the battle against hunger across North America and overseas will launch in the Exhibit Hall in Baltimore. The Global Hunger Relief (GHR) booth will be staffed in part by Southern Baptist missionaries who work hands-on with hunger relief efforts. The booth will focus particularly on relief efforts in Appalachia and among Syrian refugees. Also included in the GHR promotion will be two new music videos from Drew Cline, former lead singer for NewSong and current worship pastor of Fellowship Bible Church in Little Rock, Ark.
More than 1 billion people around the world are hungry more often than not, and about 24,000 people—over half of them young children—die every day from various conditions that could have been alleviated by basic nutrition. Global Hunger Relief seeks to challenge a new generation of believers to personally take Jesus' love to starving souls in both word and deed. GHR is a collaborative effort of the World Hunger Fund partners: Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, NAMB, IMB, Baptist Global Response, WMU, LifeWay Christian Resources and the SBC Executive Committee.
GOLDEN GATE BAPTIST THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY
This year, Golden Gate will highlight its fully accredited and fully online master of divinity degree as well as the pending sale and relocation of its campus in Mill Valley, Calif. Themed "Biblical, Missional, Global," Golden Gate's booth will tell the benefits of Gospel-centered education offered at the seminary's five urban campuses in northern and southern California, Arizona, the Rocky Mountains and the Pacific Northwest.
MIDWESTERN BAPTIST THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY
A display of selected books from the Charles Spurgeon Library will be featured at Midwestern's booth. Visitors can receive a free copy of "The Church Planting Survival Guide," a new resource on church planting from the seminary. And they can enter to win an iPad Mini loaded with books by Spurgeon. Numerous other materials will be available, including the latest copy of the Midwestern Magazine focusing on the theme of the relationship between the seminary and the local church. Both faculty and staff will be available to meet with alumni, friends and prospective students during the convention.
NEW ORLEANS BAPTIST THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY
NOBTS will highlight its main campus programs, extension centers and fully online master's degrees. Faculty members will discuss degree programs and current campus news with alumni and potential students. In keeping with tradition, NOBTS will give away small bottles of Louisiana hot sauce.
SOUTHEASTERN BAPTIST THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY
Visitors to Southeastern's exhibit will have the opportunity to interact with SEBTS leaders, faculty and alumni about innovative seminary and college degree programs and strategic initiatives that aim to fulfill the Great Commission. Admissions staff will be present to provide information and answer questions as well as distribute the most recent issue of Southeastern's magazine honoring Daniel Akin's 10 years as SEBTS president. Convention attendees also will have the opportunity to win books by SEBTS faculty members in the areas of biblical studies, theology, philosophy, cultural engagement and missions.
SOUTHERN BAPTIST THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY
Alumni of Southern Seminary's Billy Graham School of Missions, Evangelism and Ministry are invited to the seminary's exhibit to receive a gift in celebration of the school's 20th anniversary. Details about the anniversary celebration plans for the fall also will be available. Throughout the annual meeting, the Southern Seminary exhibit will have a variety of giveaways providing resources for pastors. Along with promotions and interaction opportunities with seminary personalities, the seminary also will distribute the latest issue of Southern Seminary Magazine. Themed around church revitalization, the magazine features articles by President R. Albert Mohler Jr., North American Mission Board President Kevin Ezell, Billy Graham School dean Adam Greenway and former Billy Graham School dean Thom Rainer, now president of the LifeWay Christian Resources. Convention attendees can connect with alumni, professors, friends and prospective students at the exhibit's seating area as well as purchase tickets for the annual alumni luncheon on June 11. For more information, go to www.sbts.edu/alumni-and-friends/sbc-luncheon.
SOUTHWESTERN BAPTIST THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY
Southwestern's exhibit will reflect the seminary's ongoing passion for preaching the Word and reaching the world. The booth will feature several seminary-produced videos highlighting successful students and Southwestern's global impact. Free books and resources will be distributed, and SWBTS representatives and faculty will be available to discuss the seminary's programs and answer questions. Information also will be available about Southwestern's "LAUNCH" evangelism event at 2 p.m. Wednesday at the Baltimore Convention Center (www.swbts.edu/launch).
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