Houston voters celebrate 'bathroom ordinance' defeat

HOUSTON -- Houston voters convincingly defeated a controversial equal rights ordinance that critics said threatened religious liberties and put into jeopardy the safety and dignity of men and women in private places like bathrooms. Proposition 1, also referred to as the "bathroom ordinance," failed by a margin of 61 percent to 39 percent.

"I think it's significant," Ed Young, pastor of Houston's Second Baptist Church, told the TEXAN when asked about the margin of victory. "I think there are enough people in the city who still have and will vote godly principles. A lot of people did some soul searching and said this is enough."

Young joined others at the Houston Area Pastors Council "watch party," where everyone seemed cautiously optimistic the organization's work would pay off.

After 18 months of legal battles including a court trial, two Texas Supreme Court decisions, appeals and a move by the mayor's office to subpoena pastors' sermons, council members felt they had done what they could do. The rest was in God's hands.

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Racism Satan's tool, Floyd tells Baptists

JACKSON, Miss. (BP) – Racism is from Satan and his demonic forces, and the only hope for its defeat is the church of Jesus Christ united across societal divisions, Southern Baptist Convention President Ronnie Floyd told a culturally diverse group of Baptists in Mississippi Nov. 4.

"I believe that the issue of racism is from Satan and the demonic forces of hell," Floyd told hundreds gathered at Mission Mississippi's racial reconciliation celebration at the Jackson Convention Center. "Racism is completely opposite from the message of Jesus Christ; it is completely opposite of the message of love, it is completely opposite of the message of dignity, value and the sanctity of human life. It is completely opposite of the message of reconciliation."

Floyd spoke to Southern Baptists, National Baptists and others at the event aimed at exhorting and energizing pastors and the church to demonstrate the love of God in ending racism in Mississippi and the nation.

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ABSC officer nominations announced

LITTLE ROCK – Officer nominees of the Arkansas Baptist State Convention (ABSC) and ABSC Pastors’ Conference expected at the upcoming annual meeting Nov. 3-4 have been announced by the convention.

ABSC officer nominations

ABSC nominations expected are: Gary Hollingsworth, pastor of Immanuel Baptist Church, Little Rock, will be nominated president by Wes George, pastor of First Baptist Church, Rogers. Sam Roberts, pastor of First Baptist Church, Stuttgart, will be nominated first vice president by Robby Sherman, pastor of First Baptist Church, England. Steven Bell, pastor of Otter Creek Community Church, Little Rock, will be nominated second vice president by Ken Shaddox, pastor of Park Hill Baptist Church, North Little Rock.

ABSC Pastors’ Conference

Pastors’ Conference nominations are: Manley Beasley Jr., pastor of Hot Springs Baptist Church, Hot Springs, will be nominated president by John McCallum, pastor of First Baptist Church, Hot Springs. Ricky Lee, pastor of First Baptist Church, Sherwood, will be nominated vice president by Tom McCone, music minister of First Baptist Church, Greenwood. Donny Hargett, pastor of Calvary Trail Cowboy Church, Louann, will be nominated secretary/treasurer by Wade Totty, pastor, Cullendale First Baptist Church, Camden.


'There's no turning back,' Platt says in live stream

  “You don’t see the IMB anywhere (in the Bible). But you do see local churches,” International Mission Board President David Platt said during an hour long online presentation. “You can do this. You can do global missions. Here’s how we can help.”RICHMOND, Va. – There’s no turning back on reducing personnel by 600 to 800 people at the International Mission Board, the Richmond-based missionary agency of the Southern Baptist Convention, the organization’s president said Tuesday, Oct. 27.

The reduction comes as leadership seeks to shift the 170-year-old mission board away from vocational missionaries paid by IMB to equipping SBC churches to send self-sustaining missionaries.

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Platt to discuss IMB's future in live Web event Oct. 27 at 2 p.m.

RICHMOND, Va. (BP) – International Mission Board (IMB) President David Platt invites pastors, church leaders and members to be part of an IMB-hosted live stream event Oct. 27, 2 p.m. to discuss the organization's present challenges and future vision.

The hour-long online video forum will provide a way to dialogue as participants ask Platt questions via Twitter and Facebook. Beginning Tuesday morning, Oct. 27, live stream viewers can submit questions on IMB's Facebook page or through Twitter by using #IMBLiveStream.

"We must get to a healthy place in the present in order to be in a healthy position for the future," Platt said. "We want to move forward with innovative vision, wise stewardship and high accountability to the churches we serve, the peoples we reach and the God we worship."

Register for the Web event at For questions or comments about the IMB live stream, email