Ark. Baptists take part in the Ride '15

ARKANSAS BAPTIST State Convention staff, pastors and agency employees from across the state joined together for the Ride ’15, a two-day motorcycle fellowship road trip that covered nearly 500 miles of central and south Arkansas Aug. 27-28.

View a photo gallery of the event at:

Check out this GoPro video of the Ride '15 by Ron Riemar, worship pastor at Dallas Avenue Baptist Church in Mena:


Arkansas Baptist School System announces name change

LITTLE ROCK - The Baptist Preparatory School is the new name of Arkansas Baptist School System, the Christian, college preparatory school that was founded by First Baptist Little Rock 35 years ago.  

"The new name more accurately describes the college preparatory nature of the curricular program and teaching style, as well as Baptist Prep's commitment to biblical training and preparing students for spiritual and social leadership roles," said Clayton Vaden, chairman of the board of trustees.  

The board of trustees voted unanimously for the new name at its August meeting. Vaden announced the new name to faculty and staff Sept. 2, and students learned the news from administrators this Sept. 3.

"We have long considered changing the name of the school," said Baptist Prep Headmaster Arthur Bennett. "When the previous name was selected, the vision was for a number of Baptist schools throughout the state. Over the years, that vision has been refined to create one K3 though 12th grade school committed to graduating students who are well prepared academically, socially and spiritually."

The school's Center for University Studies allows students to graduate from high school having already earned college credit, and almost 100 percent of graduates pursue higher education. Equipping students to become future leaders, Baptist Prep incorporates advanced Bible courses, weekly Chapel programs, a biblically integrated curriculum and a global missions program.

Additionally, the name change differentiates the school from other similarly named organizations and educational institutions, Bennett said, while reflecting on the school's 35-year history of academic excellence and fulfillment of its mission, which is to "assist families with the Christ-centered and biblically directed education of their children."

The new URL for the school's website is  New branding to accompany the new name will be introduced this fall.


William Richard (Rick) Kelley, 63, dies

William Richard (Rick) Kelley, 63, of Jacksonville, died Aug. 22. He received his master’s degree in science education from Louisiana Tech University in Ruston, La. He served in the U.S. Air Force. He was retired from the Arkansas Department of Health. He was an active member of First Baptist Church in Jacksonville. He is preceded in death by his father. He is survived by his wife of 38 years, Jan Kelley, a former employee of the Arkansas Baptist State Convention. He is also survived by a son, his mother and a sister. A memorial service was held Aug. 26 at First Baptist Church, Jacksonville. 



Barbara Kizziar, 76, dies

Barbara Kaye Kizziar, 76, died Aug. 12 in Paris. She was a retired teacher who served 40 years in Arkansas public schools.  She served in many roles in the life of First Baptist Church, Ratcliff, including the music ministry where she began serving at the age of 12. She is survived by a niece and a nephew; a grandniece; and six grandnephews. Funeral services were held Aug. 14 at First Baptist Church.


KASMA students, mentors reflect on summer of ministry

ONE STUDENT took his first mission trip. Another led seven children to Christ. Others identified or narrowed God's call on their lives. Everyone had a life-changing summer.

About 60 people took part this summer in Kaleo Arkansas Summer Ministry Associates (KASMA). These included students, KASMA teams members and lead pastors.

This year, participants served in ministries such as children’s and youth ministries, worship, pastoral ministry, communications and church planting. They were also connected with mentors to help guide and grow them throughout the summer.

Here are some of their reflections from their summer of ministry:

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