ORLANDO, Fla. (BP)--Bryant Wright, pastor of the Atlanta-area Johnson Ferry Baptist Church, was elected president of the Southern Baptist Convention in a June 15 runoff election, leading a slate of officers that includes two new vice presidents and two re-elected secretaries.
Messengers elected Tennessee evangelist Ron Herrod as first vice president and Arkansas pastor Eric Moffett as second vice president.
By acclamation, messengers elected John Yeats, director of communications for the Louisiana Baptist Convention, as SBC recording secretary -- a position he has held since 1997 -- and Jim Wells, director of missions for the Tri-County Baptist Association in Nixa, Mo., as registration secretary for the eighth consecutive year.
Wright defeated Florida pastor Ted Traylor in a runoff for the presidency. With 7,667 messengers voting, Wright received 4,225 votes, or 55.11 percent. Traylor, pastor of Olive Baptist Church in Pensacola, Fla., received 3,371 votes, for 43.9 percent. Nearly 11,000 messengers were registered at the time of the runoff.
While nominating Wright, David Uth, pastor of First Baptist Church in Orlando, said Wright is a pastor whose commitment to the Great Commission is evident: "While we've been talking about Great Commission stuff, Bryant's been quietly leading his church to do it," Uth said. "He wasn't waiting on a resurgence; he wasn't waiting on a vote of a convention. He heard his Lord speak, and he did it."
Started by Wright 28 years ago in Marietta, Ga., Johnson Ferry baptized 478 people last year, has started seven churches in Cobb County, Ga., co-sponsored five other church plants, and in four of the past six years has given more than any other church in the SBC to the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for International Missions. "Ask one of our missionaries if that's doing the Great Commission," Uth said.
More than 1,500 members of the church participated in 70 mission trips to 27 countries last year, recording more than 2,900 decisions for Christ, Uth reported. Johnson Ferry gave more than $2.7 million to missions last year. Uth said Wright would "be quick to say that is the Lord's blessing" on the church that has caused such results. Read More