MARIETTA — Falling temperatures, heavy rain, and traffic-snarled highways and interstates were not enough to keep 608 worshippers from attending Sunday night’s inspirational rally prior to the opening session of the Georgia Baptist Convention annual meeting.
Roswell Street Baptist Church is serving as the host church for the two-day event which opens at 6 p.m. Monday, Nov. 9. Theme is Awaken 2015 with Cartersville pastor Don Hattaway presiding as president.
The first evening’s session will follow the Executive Committee meeting at 10:30 a.m. and the afternoon Pastor’s Conference from 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. IMB President David Platt will be one of several guest speakers.
The evening opening session will feature special music guests Keith and Kristyn Getty of Nashville. The Irish duo are returning for a second year to lead music in the first session.
Guest speakers for the 194th annual meeting will include SBC President Ronnie Floyd, pastor of Cross Church of Springdale, AR; GBC President Don Hattaway of Tabernacle Baptist, Cartersville; First Baptist Church of Dallas, TX, Pastor Robert Jeffress; Claude King of LifeWay Christian Resources of Nashville; Glenn Sheppard, president of International Prayer Ministries of Lee’s Summit, MO; Barry Snapp, pastor of Victory Baptist Church of Rockmart; Brad Waters, pastor of First Baptist Church of Hazlehurst; and GBC Executive Director J. Robert White.
Emphasis on spiritual renewal
The theme will continue Hattaway’s emphasis on prayer for spiritual renewal and revival. The hashtag for commenting online is #Awaken2015.
A popular feature from last year’s meeting, called Coffee Shop Talk, will again allow informal time with program personalities throughout the event. Messengers are encouraged to meet the personality of their choosing around a table and dialogue in a small-group setting.
Monday’s opening session will be preceded with a Coffee Shop Talk with IMB missionary Edmund Brannen.
Two pastors are expected to be nominated as GBC president to follow out-going President Hattaway. Thomas Hammond, who serves as pastor of First Baptist Church of Alpharetta, and Jerry Speer, pastor of Northside Baptist Church of Columbus, will allow their names to be placed in nomination.
Backpacks to be collected
Messengers will bring backpacks to the meeting to be delivered to ministry sites throughout Appalachia.
Last year Georgia Baptists provided a record 22,501 backpacks – 700 more than 2013 – with very little advance promotion and no set goal. This year, state missionary Frank Nuckolls said a goal of 25,000 will help even more children receive spiritual as well as material blessings in the impoverished region.
For more information and a schedule visit www.christianindex.org and look for the annual meeting schedule under the “news” drop down menu.
Download the GBC app for a more complete schedule and posting of reports that will be viewed by messengers.