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Students join hurricane relief efforts in N.C.NEW BERN, N.C. (BP) -- When an East Carolina University cross country team found they had an off weekend from running, they decided to go and help survivors of Hurricane Florence. They joined a college-wide effort to help Southern Baptist Disaster Relief (SBDR) volunteers serve in the hard-hit New Bern, N.C., area.
Last Saturday (Oct. 6), 23 team members carpooled using their own vehicles and made the 45-minute drive from their college campus in Greenville, N.C. They assisted with a tear-out of a home that had taken on more than two feet of floodwater after the Neuse River overflowed its banks. After receiving an SBDR orientation along with additional training from the college, the students followed an SBDR team that had begun the tear-out the day before. Read More
Hurricane Michael: Baptists putting pieces togetherPANAMA CITY, Fla.(BP) -- Freight trains overturned on the railroad tracks in Panama City, Fla. Power lines downed for miles around the Southeast. Hundreds of thousands of trees decapitated by the buzz saw named Hurricane Michael.
Despite the carnage, many churches in Panama City and beyond held Sunday (Oct. 14) morning services just four days after Michael made landfall. Mike Claunch, pastor of St. Andrew Baptist Church, reminded his congregation, "Michael came as a surprise to us, but it wasn't a surprise to God." Read More
For churches, Michael 'like being hit by a bomb'PANAMA CITY, Fla. (BP) -- Hurricane Michael damaged at least 50 Southern Baptist church buildings in Florida and Georgia, according to initial estimates, with some virtually destroyed.
But that hasn't stopped the congregations from doing the work of ministry.
"Some of the deacons are doing some reconnaissance for us, trying to find out some of the needs" in the community in order to initiate ministries, said Dwight Woods, pastor of Family of God Baptist Church in Panama City, Fla., despite ... Read More
Hurricane Michael: Baptists preparing responseALPHARETTA, Ga. (BP) -- Southern Baptists are poised to respond after Hurricane Michael made landfall with sustained wind speeds just two miles per hour short of a Category 5 storm Wednesday (Oct. 10).
The storm took a direct shot to the Florida Panhandle near Mexico Beach, Fla. And it was the third strongest in recorded United States history, the strongest to hit the Continental U.S. in 14 years and the strongest ever to hit the Panhandle. Panama City, Fla., Mexico Beach and several towns in between have been decimated as they endured the brunt of Michael's punch. Linda Albrecht, a Mexico Beach Councilwoman, told CNN.com, "It feels like a nightmare." More than ... Read More
In NYC, trustees deepen their church planting visionNEW YORK CITY (BP) -- As the No. 7 New York City subway line rises from underground in Queens, N.Y., passengers then find themselves riding above one of the most diverse neighborhoods in the world.
In the school system alone, 176 languages are spoken among an estimated 800 languages spoken in Queens.
A group of NAMB trustees and staff exited the subway to meet church planting missionaries Adam Bishop, Silvanus Bhandari and Joseph Biswas on the aptly-named Diversity Plaza in ... Read More
TRUSTEES: Record AAEO, new VPs top NAMB agendaNEW YORK (BP) -- North American Mission Board (NAMB) trustees meeting Oct. 1-2 in New York City were the first to hear that Southern Baptists gave an all-time record high to the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering for North American Missions in 2018. Kevin Ezell, NAMB's president, announced the record $61.1 million offering to the group Monday evening (Oct. 1).
"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." See Baptist Press report on the record Annie Offering. Read More
S.C. church serves community in Florence aftermathDILLON, S.C. (BP) -- Southern Baptist Disaster Relief volunteers came to bring help, healing and hope to Hurricane Florence survivors in Dillon, S.C. And they were met with overwhelming support and appreciation from the community and their host, First Baptist Church of Dillon.
Dillon County, with a population of about 30,000, has suffered three major disasters from storms in the last four years. Flood waters in 2015 devastated much of the state from Columbia to the coastal areas. Hurricane Matthew hit in 2016 and Hurricane Florence followed in September this year with its heavy, unceasing rains, which caused much flooding that damaged homes and businesses, some for the second time since 2015. Read More
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