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Annie Armstrong Easter Offering tops $61 millionNEW YORK (BP) -- Kevin Ezell, president of the North American Mission Board (NAMB), announced to trustees during their meeting that the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering for North American Missions broke the $60 million mark for the first time ever in 2018, with Southern Baptists giving $61.1 million.
"We are so thankful to not only break $60 million but to break $61 million at the same time," Ezell told trustees. "We are indebted to you and to your pastors and what an incredible thing that is."
Ezell, delivered the announcement to trustees at a dinner during their Oct. 1-2 meeting in New York City. Church planting missionaries, some NAMB staff and special guests were also in attendance. Ezell walked through previous record-setting years, recounting the victories Southern Baptists have shared through the years. Read More
NAMB, Revitalize Network add focus outside the SouthALPHARETTA, Ga. (BP) -- The North American Mission Board, in partnering with the new Revitalize Network initiated by Thom Rainer, will provide resources, tools and coaching to churches in need of revitalization outside the South.
"One of the biggest things we hear expressed from established churches outside the South is the need for revitalization resources," NAMB President Kevin Ezell said. "Thom's new network will offer a great solution for that. This will revolutionize the access these churches have to revitalization tools." Read More
Baptist promoted to Air Force Deputy Chief of ChaplainsWASHINGTON (BP) -- The U.S. Senate confirmed the promotion of U.S. Air Force Chaplain Colonel Ronald M. Harvell to the rank of Brigadier General on Aug. 20. With the promotion, Harvell, a Southern Baptist, becomes the Air Force's 26th Deputy Chief of Chaplains.
He has been serving as the Air Mobility Command Chaplain based at Scott Air Force Base in Illinois. Harvell will now transition to the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., for his new pastoral leadership responsibilities.
"My wife and I are grateful to be able to continue to serve Air Force people," Harvell said. "We are excited about helping airmen and their families to be more spiritually fit. We're glad that God is allowing us to have this opportunity." Read More
Johnny Hunt to lead NAMB evangelism, leadership groupALPHARETTA, Ga. (BP) -- Johnny Hunt, longtime pastor of First Baptist Church Woodstock, Ga., and past president of the Southern Baptist Convention, will join the North American Mission Board as senior vice president of evangelism and leadership. Hunt and NAMB announced the news Sunday (Aug. 26).
"I want to lead Southern Baptist churches to put evangelism back on the front burner again," Hunt said. "Jesus came to seek and save the lost, we know what He is doing. We must join Him."
Hunt shared in worship services at his church Sunday morning that he will walk with the church through the transition and begin serving full time with NAMB at the beginning of 2019. NAMB trustees will vote on Hunt’s role at their upcoming meeting Oct. 2. Read More
Hurricane Harvey work not over at one-year markHOUSTON (BP) -- Since Hurricane Harvey's Category 4 winds began battering the Texas coast a year ago, Southern Baptists have served more than 75,000 volunteer days to help the region recover.
And they aren't done yet.
Southern Baptists will continue to engage impacted areas for at least the next two years and likely beyond, said David Melber, president of Send Relief at the North American Mission Board (NAMB).
"There are so many ongoing needs," Melber said. "Just because it was a year ago doesn't mean life is back to normal. There are still so many people without homes. We'll be there to help for as long as it takes." Read More
Backpack ministry helps plant 'foundational worldview'CLARKSTON, Ga. (BP) -- While growing up in Clarkston, Ga., Sam Abebe could count on getting his backpack full of school supplies every year from Clarkston International Bible Church (CIBC) through its annual back-to-school event. Today, years later, Abebe serves as CIBC's student pastor.
"Those seeds planted my foundational worldview of who I believed God to be," Abebe said. "When I was 18, because of that foundation, I knew that Jesus died on the cross for me." Read More
Military chaplain plays historic role; comforts familiesOSAN AIR BASE, South Korea (BP) -- Before dawn on July 27, Southern Baptist United States Army Chaplain (Colonel) Samuel S. Lee, stepped onto a U.S. Air Force C-17 aircraft at Osan Air Base to lead prayer for crew members who were about to take off on a historic flight across the border to North Korea.
"I woke up at 3:30 a.m. and prayed for them before they departed," Lee said. "The mood was both excitement and solemn."
A few hours later, that same plane returned to the base with 55 small wooden coffins draped in the flag of the United Nations containing the remains of U.S. soldiers. Again, Lee boarded the plane to pray. Read More
Army base sees 1,459 salvations since MarchFORT LEONARD WOOD, Mo. -- U. S. Army Chaplain (Capt.) Jose Rondon believes "there is nothing more exhilarating in life than seeing people come to Christ." This year Rondon has experienced that exhilaration with more than 1,400 professions of faith -- something one could describe as a spiritual awakening -- at Fort Leonard Wood, his place of ministry.
Rondon summarizes his part in the effort with one word: intentionality.
It's about being intentional with words and with how he treats his fellow soldiers. ... Read More
NAMB launches evangelism group, names executive directorALPHARETTA, Ga. (BP) -- The North American Mission Board (NAMB) is launching an evangelism and leadership group that will promote evangelism among Southern Baptist churches, provide evangelistic resources and equip pastors to help their congregations become more evangelistically active. Jim Law, who currently serves as executive pastor at First Baptist Church Woodstock, Ga., will serve as executive director of the new group.
"Everything we do at NAMB is focused on sharing the hope of the Gospel," said NAMB president Kevin Ezell. "This group will serve every church and every pastor that wants to become more mobilized and more evangelistically effective." Read More
New planters, resources energize Puerto Rico ministrySAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (BP) -- Two weeks after Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico, Félix Cabrera and his wife Denisse arrived to visit the island where he was born and deliver aid in the storm's aftermath. Cabrera thought he was just there to help in a time of need, but God was working on something more.
"God convinced us that He wanted us to return to the island to help in this new church planting movement," Cabrera said.
"I confess that the feeling is bittersweet," Cabrera, pastor of Iglesia Bautista ... Read More