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FROM THE COLLEGES: Call to Ministry Network launched by Anderson, CBU, OBU & Union; Mobile begins global leadership instituteIn today's From the Colleges: Call to Ministry Network launched by Anderson University, California Baptist University, Oklahoma Baptist University and Union University; University of Mobile begins global leadership institute. Read More
Marijuana's 'human toll' anticipated in Calif.ONTARIO, Calif. (BP) -- As legal recreational marijuana sales began in California Jan. 1, Gateway Seminary President Jeff Iorg bemoaned the increased "human toll" the drug is likely to have on America's most populous state.
"Whatever economic gains the legalization of marijuana will supposedly produce will be offset by the human toll on damaged relationships, loss of productivity in the workforce and the cost of expanded social programs to deal with the fallout of this bad social experiment," Iorg, leader of Southern Baptists' Ontario, Calif.-based seminary, told Baptist Press in written comments. "It's another step in the wrong ... Read More
Wildfire skirts CA church, pastor shares scary momentsVENTURA, Calif. (BP) -- When the massive Thomas wildfire rushed the boundaries of Springs of Life Baptist Church in Ventura, Calif., Dec. 5, pastor Doug Jones was onsite with firefighters and others working to save the church, nearby homes and livestock.
Jones described the "terrifying" scene to Baptist Press today (Dec. 8). His church serves as a staging area for perhaps 60 Unified Command firefighters who manned 12 fire engines near the church in the quaint mountain community of Casitas Springs in Ventura. Read More
So. Calif. churches in wildfire path; DR on standbyVENTURA, Calif. (BP) -- With five wildfires burning in California, the latest in Los Angeles, Southern Baptist disaster relief volunteers are on standby and several church facilities are unreachable, ministry leaders there told Baptist Press.
The Thomas fire in Ventura, the largest, is threatening churches in the Gold Coast Baptist Association that are included in mandatory evacuation zones, Director of Missions Vern Hancock said. Springs of Life Church in the Casitas Springs community of Ventura was in imminent danger, but Hancock had been unable to contact its pastor Douglas Jones by BP's deadline today (Dec. 6). Read More
Calif. Baptists highlight 'The Power of One'RIVERSIDE (BP) -- Messengers to the 2017 California Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting welcomed a new executive director, re-elected the convention president and approved a 2018 budget during their 77th session that highlighted "The Power of One," based on John 17:22.
Held at Magnolia Church in Riverside Oct. 24-25, the Tuesday evening session featured Bill Agee, elected as CSBC executive director in May, who presented his vision for the convention as well as details about a restructure. Read More
Calif. OKs third gender, protects religious libertySACRAMENTO, Calif. (BP) -- Pro-family advocates are lamenting California Gov. Jerry Brown's approval Oct. 15 of a bill expanding rights for individuals identifying as transgender but celebrating his veto the same day of a measure that threatened religious liberty.
Brown, a Democrat, signed Senate Bill 179, which adds a third gender option on official state identification documents for those who reject the designation of male or female and opt instead to be considered "nonbinary." Among his vetoes, meanwhile, was Assembly Bill 569, which would have made it illegal for religious organizations to prohibit their employees from having abortions or engaging in sex outside marriage. Read More
CA fires: DR begins, former Gateway campus a shelterSANTA ROSA, Calif. (BP) -- As firefighters gained ground against the Northern California blaze Gov. Jerry Brown called perhaps "the greatest tragedy" the state "has ever faced," Southern Baptist disaster relief crews began feeding, cleanup and chaplaincy work today (Oct. 17).
Meanwhile, the former main campus of Gateway Seminary in Mill Valley, Calif., was being used to shelter both evacuees and out-of-town fire crews, and a pastor in Calistoga, Calif., credited prayer with saving his town. Read More
Calif. wildfires rage, churches 'jumping into action'SANTA ROSA, Calif. (BP) -- Amid Northern California wildfires that have killed at least 13 people and burned more than 1,500 buildings since Oct. 8, Southern Baptist churches have begun ministering and California Southern Baptist Convention disaster relief crews are poised for relief work.
The death toll is expected to rise, according to media reports, and more than 100 people have been reported missing. As of Monday night (Oct. 10), several of the 17 fires had not been contained. Read More
FROM THE COLLEGES: Williams to rename as a university; OBU women's soccer competes in Asia & England; ...In today's From the Colleges: Williams Baptist College; Oklahoma Baptist University; California Baptist University; Louisiana College.
Williams Baptist College to be renamed as a university; Oklahoma Baptist University Lady Bison soccer team competes in west Asia and Europe; California Baptist University students provide health care in East Africa, China and Philippines; Louisiana College faculty's book study integrates faith and learning. Read More
Pro-life campus group focus of lawsuitSAN MARCOS, Calif. (BP) -- Despite granting nearly $300,000 to LGBT groups to host speakers and put on events, California State University- San Marcos apparently denied money to the Students for Life group on campus -- and now the school faces a lawsuit.
The pro-life organization requested $500, the capped amount granted to student groups from a cache of mandatory student fees, to host a speaker on the topic of "Abortion and Human Equality." The school allegedly denied the request, and Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) filed a lawsuit on behalf of the group and its ... Read More