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Evangelism Conf. Jan. 21-22 features Luter

SHERWOOD – Fred Luter, the first African-American to be elected president of the Southern Baptist Convention, is among a host of national and Arkansas speakers to be featured Jan. 21-22 during the 2013 State Conference on Evangelism and Church Growth.

The theme of the event is Reaching Across Arkansas and will be held at First Baptist Church, 701 Country Club Road, Sherwood.

“We are blessed with a tremendous lineup of speakers and worship leaders this year,” said Sonny Tucker, the newly elected executive director of the Arkansas Baptist State Convention (ABSC).

Tucker said the conference “first and foremost is to fan the fires for evangelism, revival, prayer, soul winning and church growth/health.” 

“(Another) goal of this conference is to encourage the pastors, staff and lay leaders who attend. God has placed an unbelievably gifted and committed group of people in our state to lead our churches and associations,” Tucker added. “My prayer is that you go back to your ministry task inspired and renewed. I operate from a deep belief that because God called you He plans to use you to accomplish great things for Him.”

In addition to Luter, keynote speakers are David Burton, Junior Hill, Ed Newton, Robert Smith, Sammy Tippit, Bill Tolar and Emil Turner.  

  • Luter, pastor of Franklin Avenue Baptist Church, New Orleans, was elected as the first African-American president of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) during its 155th session held in New Orleans in June 2012. Luter grew Franklin Avenue from 65 people in a white-flight neighborhood to a congregation of more than 8,000 prior to the devastation of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. He emphasizes “FRANgelism” (Friends Relatives Associates Neighbors) as a strategy for reaching thousands in the city.
  • Burton is the evangelism team leader for the Florida Baptist Convention. He has the responsibility of overseeing personal evangelism, collegiate ministries and prayer/spiritual awakening.
  • Hill has been a Southern Baptist evangelist since 1967. He has authored 11 books and has preached more than 1,500 revivals and crusades, including a number of revivals in Arkansas.
  • Newton is a vocational evangelist based in Memphis, Tenn. In addition to itinerant preaching, he serves as the staff evangelist at Faith Baptist Church, Bartlett. Newton was the featured speaker at 2012 Super Summer in Arkansas.
  • Smith is a conference teacher and speaker who serves as professor of Christian preaching at Beeson Divinity School in Birmingham, Ala. He previously served in a similar capacity at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky.
  • Tippit is an international evangelist and author who has preached to hundreds of thousands in more than 80 countries in the last 40 years. He has also done extensive work in men’s and family ministries.
  • Tolar is a retired distinguished professor of biblical backgrounds at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, where he taught for 38 years. He has trained thousands of ministers and laymen, spoken in 53 countries and on five continents and served as interim pastor in 50-plus churches.
  • Turner served as executive director of the Arkansas Baptist State Convention from 1996 to 2012, during which the state increased its number of baptisms and church plants. He has served as pastor in Louisiana and Arkansas churches.

StottsWorship will be led by Jeff Stotts and the worship team from Central Baptist Church, Jonesboro. Stotts has been the lead worship pastor for Central Baptist since 2005.  He has served churches in Arkansas and Oklahoma. 

Exhibits of ABSC and related ministries will be set up at the church, and a LifeWay Christian Bookstore will be on hand. Childcare is not provided.

For more information, contact Karen West at 800-838-2272, ext. 5128, or by email at kwest@absc.org.

View the conference program in PDF format here.


Monday Afternoon - 1-4:30 p.m.

Bill Tolar
Ed Newton
Robert Smith

Monday Evening - 6:30-9 p.m.

David Burton
Junior Hill

Tuesday Morning - 8:45-Noon

Sammy Tippit
Emil Turner
Fred Luter

Related Meetings:

Prayer Network Leadership Meeting – 10-11:45 a.m., Monday, First Baptist Church, Sherwood. Lunch provided by the ABSC Prayer Ministry. RSVP to Gwen McCallister at gmccallister@absc.org or call 800-838-2272, ext 5103.

Associational Missionaries and Directors of Evangelism Lunch – 11:15 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., Monday, Golden Corral, 5001 Warden Road, North Little Rock.

Ministers Wives Fellowship  3 p. m., Monday, First Baptist Church, Sherwood.  

ASPN Arkansas Student Pastors’ Network – 4:45 p.m., Monday. Speaker: Ed Newton. David’s Burgers, 3510 Landers Rd, North Little Rock.

Vocational Evangelists Dinner and Fellowship. 4:45 p.m., Monday. Full-time and part-time evangelists and spouses, Golden Corral, 5001 Warden Road, North Little Rock.


  • Best Western, 7533 Warden Road, North Little Rock, $82.99 plus tax 501-835-7556
  • Country Inn & Suites, 110 E Pershing Blvd, North Little Rock, $59 plus tax, 501-758-2002
  • Fairfield Inn, 4120 Health Care Drive, North Little Rock, $99.99 plus tax, 501-945-9777
  • Hampton Inn, 4801 W Commercial Drive, North Little Rock, $119 plus tax 501-753-8660
  • Hilton Garden Inn, 4100 Glover Lane, North Little Rock, $129 plus tax, 501-945-7444
  • Holiday Inn, 120 W Pershing, North Little Rock, $95.99 plus tax, 501-758-1851
  • Holiday Inn Express, 4306 McCain Blvd, North Little Rock, $111 plus tax, 501-945-4800
  • Super 8, 3925 McCain Park, North Little Rock, $65 plus tax 501-791-3200
  • La Quinta Inn, 4311 Warden Road, North Little Rock, $69.99 plus tax, 501-945-0808

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