Father of the Year contest

MAY 28 IS THE DEADLINE for entries to the Arkansas Baptist News' (ABN) annual A Tribute to Godly Fathers contest.

The issue prior to Father’s Day announces the winner. The winning tribute will be chosen based on qualities of the father, godliness of the man being honored and inspiration and readability of the essay submitted.

Click to read more ...


Christian writers conference May 17 at Summit Church in North Little Rock

The Little Rock American Christian Writers will hold their 4th Annual Writers Conference on Saturday, May 17, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at The Summit Church, 6600 Crystal Hill Road, North Little Rock.

Following are a list of speakers and topics:

- Darcy Pattison (, author, blogger, and writing teacher will speak on “Blogs, Social Media, and Writing for Kids.”   

- Shannon Taylor Vannatter (, stay-at-home mom/pastor’s wife and award-winning fiction author will lead a workshop entitled, “Cut the Fluff: How to Write a Great .” Vannatter’s husband, Grant Vannatter, is the pastor of Grace Baptist Church, Heber Springs.

- Deborah Howard ( RN, nonfiction writer, lecturer, and editor will teach a workshop on “Query Letters.”

There is a cost to the conference. For more information visit


Improvements to bunkhouses add to comfort at Camp Siloam

SILOAM SPRINGS – Recent improvements at Camp Siloam, including air conditioning in bunkhouses and the dining hall and new beds and mattresses, will make for a more comfortable experience for campers and counselors this summer, said Jason Wilkie, the camp’s executive director. 

“Keeping campers fresh for worship services at Camp Siloam has been the driving concept behind the improvements to sleeping quarters at camp,” said Wilkie, adding, “It’s pretty hard to hear the gospel when you can’t stay awake in the worship service. This philosophy has driven our renovations to the accommodations at camp.  If a camper can get a good night’s sleep, they have a better chance of being attentive when we present the gospel.”

Camp Siloam has been able to make the improvements in the bunkhouses through generous donations from Union Valley Baptist Church, Beebe, over the last five years, said Wilkie.

“We are so grateful to the people of Union Valley Baptist Church. They have experienced how God changes lives at this place, and they have made a huge kingdom investment by helping improve Siloam.” 

The unpainted cinderblock bunkhouses with World War II era bunk beds are a thing of the past, he said, adding “that bunkhouses now have a fresh cabinlike feel.  They are warmed with fresh natural-colored paint, pine trimmed windows and doors, new pine bunk beds and quality foam hypoallergenic mattresses.”

Wilkie said the camp is working hard to improve its summer program. 

“And I think we’ve succeeded,” he said. “Campers love the atmosphere at camp.  However, in a survey of campers and counselors in 2013, we learned that the bunk beds were the one thing campers would change about Siloam; by the grace of God, we were able to deliver on that request.”

The renovations have already paid dividends for Camp Siloam. 

Wilkie said summer camp attendance is up for the fourth consecutive year and guest group use of the camp is also on the rise. Currently, there are only five weekends available for retreats between now and the end of the year. 

“Camp Siloam was once the place to be for summer camp. We want to see Siloam have that reputation again. There’s still a ways to go, but with continuous improvements in program and facilities, we feel like it is achievable,” he added.

For more information about the 2014 summer camp program, visit


Putman named Distinguished Baptist Minister at WBC commencement  

Glen Putman (right) pastor of Walnut Street Baptist Church in Jonesboro, has been named the recipient of the Williams Baptist College 2014 Distinguished Baptist Minister Award. With Putman is Tom Jones, Williams president.Grace Stolz
Williams Baptist College

WALNUT RIDGE – Glen Putman, pastor of Walnut Street Baptist Church in Jonesboro, has been named the recipient of the Williams Baptist College 2014 Distinguished Baptist Minister Award. The recognition was presented to Putman at commencement exercises Saturday, May 3.

Putman has spent his adult life pastoring churches. In his 41 years of ministry, he has led a total of 10 congregations in five states, with the last 13 years being spent at Walnut Street Baptist Church.

He earned his bachelor’s degree in biblical studies from Blue Mountain College in Mississippi.  He went on to obtain his Master of Divinity degree from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, where his son, Rhyne Putman, also a Williams graduate, is a systematic theology professor. Putman also has a Doctor of Education degree from Mississippi State University.

He and his wife, Diane, have been married for 38 years.

Putman was presented the Distinguished Baptist Minister honor by Tom Jones, Williams' president. Putman delivered the commencement address to the 111 graduating students and a packed house in the school’s Southerland-Mabee Center.

Also honored at the day’s exercises where the Golden Eagles, Williams alumni from 50 or more years ago.  Sixteen honorees were present at the ceremony.



$1 million in state, federal assistance approved for Arkansas tornado survivors  

LITTLE ROCK – Federal disaster assistance approved for Arkansans has topped $1 million following President Obama’s disaster declaration for Faulkner County April 29. The first Mobile Registration Intake Center (MRIC) opened in Vilonia later that same day.

Shortly after the center opened, the first survivor of the disaster registered for individual assistance – a $1,230 grant from rental assistance was approved at noon on April 30.

“We’re very pleased with the efforts at all levels of recovery, from individuals to government agencies,” said David Maxwell, state coordinating officer for the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management (ADEM). “Getting Arkansans’ needs met so they can begin rebuilding their lives is our main concern.”

FEMA housing inspectors continued to assess homeowners’ property damages. The first inspection was completed less than 26 hours after the declaration.

“FEMA is fully committed to this mission,” said Timothy J. Scranton, federal coordinating officer. “Make no mistake – we are here for the long haul.” 

Homeowners, renters and businesses owner may register online at or via smartphone at Applicants may also call 1-800-621-3362. The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week until further notice.