Tommy Miller to be nominated president of the 2015 ABSC Pastors’ Conference

TMillerOMMY MILLER, pastor of Union Valley Baptist Church in Beebe, is expected to be nominated president of the Arkansas Baptist State Convention (ABSC) Pastors’ Conference Oct. 27 in Texarkana. 

Matt Pryor, pastor of First Baptist Church, Manila, made the announcement Oct. 7, saying that he plans to nominate Miller to the post.

“I will be nominating my friend and fellow pastor, Tommy Miller, for president of the 2015 Pastors' Conference,” said Pryor in a statement to the Arkansas Baptist News. “God has been using Tommy to lead Union Valley Baptist Church in Beebe for many years. Tommy is an excellent pastor and will prove to be a wonderful leader for next year's pastor's conference. I pray you will support him. Thank you.”

The pastors' conference meets immediately prior to the annual meeting of the Arkansas Baptist State Convention, Oct. 28-29, at Trinity Baptist Church, 3115 Trinity Blvd., Texarkana. If elected, Miller will serve as president of the 2015 ABSC Pastors' Conference Nov. 2 at Hot Springs Baptist Church in Hot Springs.

Miller has been pastor of Union Valley since 1987.


Arkansas Baptist State Convention Annual Meeting Oct. 28-29 in Texarkana

Trinity Baptist Church, Texarkana, will be the host church for the 2014 Arkansas Baptist State Convention Annual Meeting Oct. 28-29.TEXARKANA – The 161st annual meeting of the Arkansas Baptist State Convention (ABSC) is set for Oct. 28-29 at Trinity Baptist Church, 3115 Trinity Blvd., Texarkana. 

Every One Matters is the theme of the annual meeting. Throughout the meeting, ABSC ministry teams will share stories of how they have seen lives impacted through their work. In addition, new church plants will be highlighted in each session.

Business of the convention will be conducted, including receiving entity reports, election of convention officers and a vote on the 2015 ABSC Cooperative Program (CP) budget of $22 million.

Additionally, the ABSC Nominating Committee will bring recommendations of people to serve on ABSC boards, committees and agencies. Miscellaneous business sessions are set for 2:20 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 28 and 9:05 a.m.,
Wednesday, Oct. 29. 

As reported Aug. 21 in the Arkansas Baptist News, the ABSC Executive Board unanimously approved a $22 million CP budget proposal for 2015 at its Aug. 12 meeting. The budget reflects the third year of the ABSC’s 2013-17 budget formula approved by messengers at the 2011 annual meeting.

The formula increases the percentage of funds (total receipts) forwarded to the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC), with budget surpluses being divided with the SBC. The percentage increase for SBC causes is two-tenths of 1 percent each year during the five-year budget formula period. Additionally, the formula directs the convention to conduct a statewide emphasis every five years, encouraging churches to increase their Cooperative Program percentage.

Archie Mason, senior pastor of Central Baptist Church, Jonesboro, will preside over the meeting in his first year as convention president. Mason is eligible to be elected for a second year.

No other candidates for the office of president or other convention offices had been announced as of press time.

Speakers during the meeting will be Mason; Ben Mandrell, a church planter for the North American Mission Board in Denver; Frank Page, president and chief executive officer of the SBC Executive Committee; Ronnie Floyd, SBC president and senior pastor of Cross Church in northwest Arkansas; Dale Thompson, pastor of First Baptist Church, Fort Smith, and J.D. “Sonny” Tucker, ABSC executive director.

Prior to the annual meeting, a number of meetings will take place. On Sunday, Oct. 26, a Hispanic worship service will be held at Trinity Baptist. On Monday, Oct. 27, the Pastors’ Conference, Credentials Committee Orientation, Ministers’ Wives Network, Hispanic Baptist Fellowship, International Parents Fellowship, Associational Missionaries Fellowship, Innovative Church Planters and Delta Connection will meet at various times of the day. A chaplains breakfast will be held at 7 a.m.
at the church on Tuesday, Oct. 28.

For a complete listing of related meetings and other annual meeting information, see additional stories in this edition.


Pastors’ Conference Oct. 28

Be Encouraged! based on Isaiah 52:7 is the theme of the 2014 Arkansas Pastors’ Conference set for 10 a.m., Monday, Oct. 27 at Trinity Baptist.

2014 Pastors’ Conference speakers are David Wilson, senior pastor of Southcrest Baptist Church, Lubbock, Texas; Ed Newton, staff evangelist at First Baptist Church of Central Florida; Mandrell; Junior Hill, Southern Baptist evangelist, and Jerry Vines, retired pastor of First Baptist Church, Jacksonville, Fla.

Additionally, Josh Wilson, a contemporary Christian musician will perform, along with Clay Crosse, Christian artist and music pastor at First Baptist Church, Bentonville, and Kari Jobe, contemporary Christian singer and associate worship pastor at Gateway Church, Southlake, Texas.

Officers of the Pastors’ Conference are Phillip Smith, pastor of First Baptist Church, Bentonville, president; Michael Franklin, pastor of Rye Hill Baptist Church, Fort Smith, vice president, and Marty Sikes, pastor of Bono Baptist Church, Greenbrier, treasurer.

For extensive coverage of the annual meeting, related events and stories, visit arkansasbaptist.org/absc2014. 

Meeting alerts and updates will be posted during the meeting on the Arkansas Baptist News Twitter account at twitter.com/arkbaptnews and Facebook page at facebook.com/arkbaptnews. More information is available at www.absc.org.


Jones, longtime BSU director, dies at 91

JonesFAYETTEVILLE – Jamie Jones, 91, longtime Baptist Student Union (now Baptist Collegiate Ministry) director at the University of Arkansas, and a Christian icon in the Fayetteville community, died Sept. 9.

Jones, a member of First Baptist Church, Fayetteville, is survived by his wife, Beverly, and many other family members.

Funeral services will take place at 2 p.m., Friday, Sept. 12 at First Baptist Church, Fayetteville. Visitation will follow the service at the church. Arrangements are being made by Moore's Chapel Funeral Home in Fayetteville.

The Arkansas Baptist News will publish a full obituary when it is available.


Truett Cathy, Chick-fil-A founder, dies

ATLANTA (BP) – S. Truett Cathy, founder and chairman emeritus of Chick-fil-A, died today (Sept. 8) at 1:35 a.m., according to an announcement from the Atlanta-based restaurant chain. Cathy was 93.

CathyBaptist Press will post a broadened obituary later today. This story includes information from company-released obituary of Cathy, a Southern Baptist churchman known for his commitment to Chick-fil-A restaurants being closed on Sundays.

Cathy, who died peacefully at home surrounded by loved ones, was born March 14, 1921, in Eatonton, Ga., moving to Atlanta with his family at age 4.

In 1946, Cathy relied on a keen business sense, a strong work ethic and a deep Christian faith to build a tiny diner in the Atlanta suburb of Hapeville. He developed it into Chick-fil-A, which today has the highest same-store sales and is the nation's largest quick-service chicken restaurant chain based on annual system-wide sales. It was at the original restaurant that Cathy created the sandwich that became the company's signature item.

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Church at Brook Hills’ pastor David Platt elected new IMB president

ALABAMA BAPTIST David Platt has been elected the new president of the International Mission Board (IMB). The vote took place this morning by the IMB board of trustees meeting in Richmond, Va.

Platt, pastor of The Church at Brook Hills since 2006, has gained international prominence for his commitment to missions and disciple making. He is a well-known author, speaker and Bible teacher.

PlattPlatt will follow retiring IMB president Tom Elliff, who has served in the role since 2011. Elliff announced his plans to retire in February and asked the board to find his successor quickly but carefully.

A 15-member search committee was named and chaired by David Uth, senior pastor of First Baptist Church, Orlando, Fla. Among the committee members was Jay Wolf, pastor of First Baptist Church, Montgomery.

The church released a statement Aug. 27 — “As The Church at Brook Hills, everything we do is ultimately for the sake of God’s glory among all nations. While we are saddened that David Platt will no longer be our senior pastor, we wholeheartedly support his decision to serve as president of the IMB. We know of no one with greater passion and zeal for seeing Christ preached where He has not yet been named. 

“For many years, the IMB has been one of our primary partners in sending members of our faith family to make disciples around the world, and we look forward to this relationship continuing under David’s leadership there.  We are deeply grateful for the season God has allowed David to shepherd The Church at Brook Hills.  We now gladly pray for the Platt family as they transition to a new assignment and begin the work of mobilizing thousands of churches to accomplish the Great Commission. 

“By God’s grace, Brook Hills will continue to be a vibrant disciple-making church.  We trust God’s sovereign plans for our faith family and are confident He will continue to lead us in the months and years ahead.”

Platt says on the church website, "I believe that God has uniquely created every one of His people to impact the world. Some may count it as idealistic, but I believe it is thoroughly biblical, rooted in Psalm 67:1–2, yet covering Scripture from beginning to end. God is in the business of blessing His people so that His ways and His salvation might be made known among all people."

Platt holds a bachelor of arts and bachelor of arts in journalism from the University of Georgia and a master of divinity, master of theology and doctor of philosophy from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. He previously served at New Orleans Seminary as dean of chapel and assistant professor of expository preaching and apologetics, and as staff evangelist at Edgewater Baptist Church, New Orleans. He is the author of “Radical — Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream,” “Radical Together — Unleashing the People of God for the Purpose of God” and “Follow Me: A Call to Die, A Call to Live.” He also founded Radical, a resource ministry,dedicated to serving the church by making disciples of all nations.

Platt and his wife, Heather, are Atlanta natives and have four children. They lived in New Orleans until they were displaced by flooding following Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

Story courtesy of The Alabama Baptist.

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