Baptist Press Archive

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

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  • Suicide: Churches awaken to persistent crisis

    by David Roach, posted Tuesday, September 11, 2018 (5 months ago)

    HUSTONVILLE, Ky. (BP) -- Pastor Andrew McGinnis still remembers his "solemn drive" home on June 25, 1995.

    Then 4 years old, McGinnis had been attending a family reunion in Tennessee with his mother and two older brothers while his father Dan, pastor of Double Springs Baptist Church in Waynesburg, Ky., carried out his normal weekend duties at the church. But Dan McGinnis never arrived at church that Sunday morning. Members found him dead in the parsonage -- a victim of suicide. Evidence suggested ministerial stress and undiagnosed mental illness may have been contributing factors.

    Confused and angry, McGinnis told himself as a child, "I won't be a pastor because I don't want to end up like my dad." But 23 years later, McGinnis has answered God's call to ministry and is in his third year as pastor of Hustonville (Ky.) Baptist Church. Read More

  • Baptists prepare for Hurricane Florence response

    by Brandon Elrod, posted Tuesday, September 11, 2018 (5 months ago)

    Screen capture from
    CARY, N.C. (BP) -- Southern Baptist disaster relief volunteers are on alert as Hurricane Florence, a Category 4 storm currently in the Atlantic Ocean, is reportedly expected to make landfall on the Carolina coast late Thursday or Friday morning.

    The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration expects the storm to arrive as a "dangerous major hurricane." A meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Columbia, S.C., Dan Miller, told The State, "Somebody is going to suffer devastating damage if this storm continues as it is currently forecast."

    Current projections have the storm making direct landfall on the coast of North Carolina. And North Carolina Baptists on Mission (NCBM), the ministry in Cary, N.C., that handles disaster relief for the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina, is preparing for the worst. Read More

  • Special needs termed 'unreached people group'

    by Diana Chandler, posted Tuesday, September 11, 2018 (5 months ago)

    Photo courtesy of Sandra Peoples
    ALVIN, Texas (BP) -- Any church with at least one member with a medical, mental or psychological disorder such as autism or ADHD essentially has a God-given special needs ministry, pastor Lee Peoples told Baptist Press.

    Intentionally meeting the practical and spiritual needs of just one special needs member can mean the difference in reaching whom the pastor characterizes as "an unreached people group within our nation."

    "People with special needs, disabilities, are often -- in churches -- some of the most underserved groups," said Peoples, pastor of Heights Baptist Church (SBC) in Alvin, Texas, and the father of 10-year-old James who has autism. Read More

  • 'Flawed,' 'hot mess' precedent defeats Fla. cross

    by Diana Chandler, posted Tuesday, September 11, 2018 (5 months ago)

    Becket Fund for Religious Liberty photo
    PENSACOLA, Fla. (BP) -- If the federal court had its way, a 34-foot cross would remain at its Pensacola, Fla., post. But "flawed precedent" that judges called a "hot mess" forced them to rule otherwise, the judges wrote in their opinion.

    Judges said their hands were tied by the 1983 ruling in the nearly identical case of ACLU v. Rabun County, when the Eleventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ordered a cross be removed from Black Rock Mountain State Park in Georgia.

    "Given the parallels between the two cases -- and crosses -- we think it clear that Rabun ... controls our analysis and requires that we affirm the district court's decision," the three-judge panel in the current Eleventh Circuit Court wrote in its Sept. 7 decision. Read More

  • 9/11: When 3,000 folks woke up on a bright Sept. day

    by Gabriel C. Stovall, posted Tuesday, September 11, 2018 (5 months ago)

    COVINGTON, Ga. (BP) -- The thing that activates my pen today, on the 17th anniversary of 9/11, is something that actually rendered me speechless when I first heard about it -- the abruptness of death intruding in what seemed to be an ordinary day

    After a pretty emotional weekend at The Covington News -- the metro Atlanta newspaper where I serve as sports editor -- covering the shooting of Covington Police Department officer Matt Cooper, complete with the magnanimous outpouring of community support for the wounded officer and his family, I heard of the sudden deaths of two high school students. Read More