Baptist Life

BLUE RIDGE, Ga. — Dr. Jack Terrell Ruis, former pastor, associational mission strategist and ministry resource consultant for the Georgia Baptist Mission Board, passed away on Saturday in Fannin County.

ROBERTSTOWN, Ga. — One north Georgia church has found that fishing poles are the perfect tools for reeling in new believers. Center Baptist Church in Robertstown recorded 37 salvation decisions at a Saturday morning trout tournament that drew more than 400 people to the Chattahoochee River.

“Fear the Lord,” O.S. Hawkins, newly elected chancellor of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and Texas Baptist College, challenged the 346 doctoral, master, undergraduate, and certificate graduates during the Fort Worth institution’s spring commencement exercises on Friday.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Midwestern Seminary and Spurgeon College celebrated hundreds of new graduates this spring as the school held its 73rd commencement exercises on Friday, May 5. Additionally, the seminary recognized John Mark Yeats for his ministry in Kansas City, presented a posthumous degree to Caylee Michelle Dugger, and honored Dr. Blake Hearson as professor of the year.

BARNESVILLE, Ga. — First Baptist Church Barnesville dedicated its new Students and Young Adults Building on Sunday, with prayers by Pastor Jason Teal and the congregation.

MONROE, Ga. — When it comes to supporting Christian causes, women are “a generous force.” That’s what the Barna Research Group reported in an article released on Wednesday. Barna’s online survey of more than 2,000 U.S. adults found women are “quite open-minded” when it comes to the kinds of causes they’re willing to support.

MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Erin Bounds was a 16-year-old at a Lifeway (then Baptist Sunday School Board) Centrifuge camp when she realized she was at a crossroads. “I had accepted Christ when I was a child but was faced with the reality of what that really meant,” Bounds recalled. “Do I want to be who God wants me to be or a regular teenager that just went to church. I decided to be completely sold out to Christ and let the Lord be Lord of my life.”

RICHMOND, Va. — Twenty Asian American leaders representing seven ethnicities gathered at the International Mission Board in Richmond, Va., this week to explore opportunities to reach the nations. This is the first time Asian leaders from across the Southern Baptist Convention have met collectively with IMB leaders to learn, encourage each other and commit to new levels of cooperation to advance the gospel.

The Baptist Young People’s Union was “the foundation of all other Baptist Programs of the 20th century with the exception of the Sunday School and the WMU.” This was the view of Waldo Woodcock, who was for many years the Church Training Director of the Georgia Baptist Convention. The work of the BYPU was a major factor driving the growth of missions and other SBC ministries in the 20th century.

SUWANEE, Ga. — Georgia Baptist churches reported a nearly 17% increase in baptisms last year with the overall total reaching 15,071, up from 12,897 the previous year. “The increase truly is encouraging,” said W. Thomas Hammond Jr., executive director of the Georgia Baptist Mission Board. “We’re overjoyed to see that our churches have come out of the pandemic energized and enthusiastically sharing the gospel.”

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