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Wed Jun 13, 2012, 12:43 PM

Southern Baptists set to elect 1st black president

Read more here: http://www.bradenton.com/2012/06

Published: June 13, 2012 Updated 6 hours ago




By TRAVIS LOLLER — Associated Press

NASHVILLE, TENN. — Four months ago, two African-American pastors stood in a hallway of the Southern Baptist Convention's Nashville headquarters looking at a row of white faces.

The portraits of the 56 convention presidents since the denomination's 1845 founding are in large picture frames holding several portraits each. The final frame holds empty slots.

"They got a space for Fred, right there," one of the men said. "Got a space picked out for him."

"Fred" is the Rev. Fred Luter Jr., the man poised to become the first African American president of the nation's largest Protestant denomination when convention delegates vote next week in New Orleans.

It's a big step for a denomination that was formed out of a pre-Civil War split with northern Baptists over slavery and for much of the last century had a reputation for supporting segregation.


Read more here: http://www.bradenton.com/2012/06/13/4075534/southern-baptists-set-to-elect.html#storylink=cpy

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Response to cbayer (Original post)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 12:53 PM

1. ... By 1986, Luter heard that a Southern Baptist church in New Orleans was looking for a pastor.

"That's that white church over on Franklin Avenue," Luter recalls thinking. "Blacks don't go there."

He was wrong. Whites had fled the neighborhood for the suburbs, and blacks had replaced them on the streets and in the pews. The church was down to a few dozen members.

Luter was unaware of the convention's dark history, how Southern Baptists had split from northern counterparts in 1845 in defense of slavery. As National Baptist and other black denominations expanded, the Southern Baptist Convention refused to integrate and supported Jim Crow laws.

Luter was both ordained and installed as pastor at Franklin Avenue Baptist Church on the same day in October 1986. His wife led the women's ministry. They did not advertise the church as Southern Baptist. Often members didn't discover its affiliation until after they joined, and by then, he said, "it really didn't bother them because this church was a part of their lives" ...

Black pastor reaches across the Southern Baptist divide
The Rev. Fred Luter Jr. has long been a prominent African American voice among a largely white denomination with a segregationist history. Now he is poised to become its first black president.
June 01, 2012|By Molly Hennessy-Fiske, Los Angeles Times
http://articles.latimes.com/2012/jun/01/nation/la-na-southern-baptist-20120601

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Response to cbayer (Original post)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 01:02 PM

2. ... One of my earliest memories is of a substitute Sunday school teacher

in my Southern Baptist church chastening me for putting a coin in my mouth. “That’s filthy,” she said. “Why, you don’t know if a colored man might have held that.” It might just be my imagination playing tricks on me, but it seems as though she immediately followed this up with, “Alright children, let’s sing ‘Jesus Loves the Little Children, All the Children of the World.’” ...

On the question of civil rights in the American Christian context, there is little question that, with few exceptions, the “progressives” were right, often heroically right, and the “conservatives” were wrong, often satanically wrong. In the narrative of the dismantling of Jim Crow, conservatives were often the villains and progressives were most often on the side of the angels, indeed on the side of Jesus ...

But the civil rights movement was, at core, also an ecclesial movement. King was, after all, “Rev. King” and many of those marching with him, singing before him, listening to him, were Christian clergy and laity. To the churches, especially the churches of the South, the civil rights pioneers sent a similar message to the one they sent to the governmental powers. You have to choose: be a Christian (as defined by the Scripture and the small “c” catholic apostolic tradition) or be a white supremacist; you can’t be both. They were right here too.

How can white supremacy be true, they would argue, if humanity is made from “one blood” in the creation of Adam? How can one segregate evangelistic crusades if the cross of Christ atones for all people, both white and black? If God personally regenerates repentant sinners, both white and black, how can we see people in terms of “race” rather than in terms of the person? If we send missionaries across the seas to evangelize Africa, how is it not hypocrisy not to admit African-Americans into church membership? ...

Why Racial Justice Is a Gospel Issue
by Russell D Moore
— Tuesday, June 12th, 2012 —
www.russellmoore.com/2012/06/12/black-and-white-and-red-all-over-why-racial-justice-is-a-gospel-issue/

This is pretty conservative stuff, but SBC is a pretty conservative group

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Response to struggle4progress (Reply #2)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 01:08 PM

3. The SBC appears to be making some significant shifts.

A week or two ago, they issued a statement condemning the hate speech coming from the pulpit of a church that called itself Baptist.

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Response to cbayer (Reply #3)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 01:17 PM

4. Southern Baptists reprimand top official over Trayvon Martin remarks

June 1st, 2012
02:06 PM ET
By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com

(CNN) – ... The trustee committee of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission announced two reprimands on Friday for Richard Land, who leads public policy efforts for the Southern Baptists, according to the official press arm.

The first reprimand was for remarks Land - one of the country's most powerful evangelical leaders - made about the Martin case. The second was because Land lifted some remarks from another source on his radio show without using attribution ...

“When there is violence it’s going to be Jesse Jackson’s fault,” Land said on his show, according to the Religion News Service. “It’s going to be Al Sharpton’s fault. It’s going to be Louis Farrakhan’s fault, and to a certain degree it’s going to be President Obama’s fault” ...

The Religion News Service reported that many of Land’s remarks about the Martin case were lifted from a March column in the Washington Times ...

http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2012/06/01/southern-baptists-reprimand-top-official-over-trayvon-martin-remarks/

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Response to cbayer (Reply #3)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 01:33 PM

9. Southern Baptist pastor defends Obama’s equal marriage endorsement

by Stephen Gray
11 June 2012, 11:49am

... a Southern Baptist pastor in Dallas, Texas has criticised negative reactions to President Obama’s personal endorsement of marriage rights for gay couples.

Senior Pastor Frederick Haynes III of the Friendship-West Baptist mega-church launched a six-minute speech from the pulpit praising Barack Obama’s personal commitment to marriage equality and calling on congregants to ask what causes them to oppose gay equality and the president’s announcement.

Pastor Haynes says: “Do you know the words of the Declaration of Independence? ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men, all people are created equal’.

“Notice it does not say ‘all straight men are created equal’. It does not say ‘all men unless you are gay or lesbian you are created equal’. He swore upon oath to uphold, protect and defend the Constitution, not the Bible. He is not the Pastor of the United States, he is the President of the United States ...

http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2012/06/11/video-southern-baptist-pastor-defends-obamas-equal-marriage-endorsement/

&feature=player_embedded

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Response to cbayer (Reply #3)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 05:20 PM

13. According to the Independent Baptist church I grew up in

Southern Baptists were always way too liberal.


But I gotta admit I never thought I'd see the SBC elect a black leader.

And I'm kind of sad that I am leery of their motives. I'd like to take it at face value that they looked at the candidates and this guy was their best but I remember too many things from my youth that make me suspicious of anything Baptists do now.

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Response to OriginalGeek (Reply #13)

Tue Jun 19, 2012, 07:16 PM

16. I saw it coming. What you will never see is a woman

being elected. You can bet this new president will NEVER ordain a woman to any office. And you can bet that the new president of the SBC is a homophobe, too.

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Response to rateyes (Reply #16)

Tue Jun 19, 2012, 09:48 PM

17. I don't doubt a word of that.

That would certainly toe the party line.

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Response to cbayer (Original post)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 01:18 PM

5. Given the history, this is historic.

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Response to rug (Reply #5)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 01:26 PM

6. Southern Baptist split over name change

Jun 11, 2012
by Peter Grady –

While a task force in the Southern Baptist Convention has recommended some churches be allowed to change their name to “Great Commission Baptists” to benefit churches outside of the south, many pastors are none too keen on the change ...

Last year SBC president Bryan Wright formed a task force to discuss the possibility of changing the name. Wright said one of the reasons for forming the task force was that he felt people were getting hung up on the word “Southern.”

“There are not a lot of folks in New York City interested in going to a Southern Baptist church,” Bryant said. “Or in Cheyenne, Wyoming, or Boise, Idaho.”

The denomination began in 1845 when Baptists in the south organized the Southern Baptist Convention to separate themselves from Northern Baptists over the issue of slavery ...

http://www.greeleygazette.com/press/?p=19844

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Response to rug (Reply #5)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 01:28 PM

7. Evangelical radio ad urges Christians to support immigration reform

By Liz Goodwin
June 13, 2012

... a coalition of evangelicals leaders are funding ads on Christian radio in the battleground states of Florida and Colorado that urge listeners to support comprehensive immigration reform ...

Though Land, Liberty University Law School Dean Matthew Staver, and other conservative evangelical leaders have been pushing for immigration reform for several years, a new voice in the movement is that of Jim Daly, the leader of the Colorado-based radio ministry Focus on the Family. Daly's radio broadcast reaches millions of listeners, and he signaled when he took over the organization from founder James Dobson two years ago that he wanted to broaden the group's political focus beyond issues like opposition to abortion and gay marriage. Daly said in a statement that he is joining the group because "immigration reform is more than an 'issue' to families — it profoundly affects their stability, structure and quality of life."

White evangelicals have made up half of Republican voters in the first 14 primary contests this cycle. But it remains to be seen if the high-profile evangelical leaders' support for immigration reform will rub off on the flock. A poll by the Public Religion Research Institute in 2010 found that almost half of white evangelicals favor deporting illegal immigrants ...

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/OTUS/evangelical-radio-ad-urges-christians-support-immigration-reform/story?id=16558361

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Response to rug (Reply #5)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 01:30 PM

8. SBC membership drops below 16 million

Tuesday, June 12, 2012
Membership in Southern Baptist churches declined for the fifth straight year in 2011, falling under 16 million for the first time since 2000, according to annual statistics released June 12 ...
By Bob Allen ...
http://www.abpnews.com/ministry/organizations/item/7520-sbc-membership-drops-below-16-million

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Response to cbayer (Original post)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 03:20 PM

10. It's just good marketing. nt

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Response to rrneck (Reply #10)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 03:22 PM

11. Wow. Way to dismiss what this man has accomplished.

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Response to cbayer (Reply #11)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 03:58 PM

12. Thank you.

He may have accomplished a great deal at one time, but he's selling out now. Or, more to the point - cashing in. And he will do more damage in an hour than he could have remedied in a lifetime of work getting there.

All the SBC wants is money. I know - I'm from Nashville. I know people inside the organization. They're no better than Haliburton and anyone who gets to steer that ship won't change course, I don't care where they started.

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Response to rrneck (Reply #12)

Thu Jun 14, 2012, 08:59 PM

14. Do you think knowledge and reason

ever trump feel-goodiness on this board for some?

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Response to skepticscott (Reply #14)

Thu Jun 14, 2012, 09:22 PM

15. It doesnt hurt to try and think the best of people

but most religions, and the SBC in particular, exploit that impulse to the hilt. And to be fair, it feels good to me to skewer those blood sucking fuckers at every opportunity.

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