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Groups prepare to meet at SBC Dallas

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Estefan Sarabia (center), a member of Tierra Fertil Christian Church in Yuma, Ariz., leads two youth in prayer during the 2017 National Hispanic Fellowship meeting in Phoenix. ADAM COVINGTON/BP

DALLAS — Each year numerous groups gather at the Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting to conduct business and serve as a reunion.

Hispanic unity gaining momentum 

In Dallas, Hispanic Baptists will have several opportunities for fellowship, networking, discussion. and prayer:

  • AVANCE, the highlight Hispanic Baptist event in recent years, will convene in Rooms A309-310, Level 3, of the convention center from 7:30-9 p.m. Monday, June 11, as a time of "fellowship, networking, and prayer."
  • The Church2Church fellowship (De Iglesia a Iglesia), formed last year during the SBC annual meeting in Phoenix, will meet from 10 a.m.-noon Sunday, June 10, at Primera Iglesia Bautista Nueva Vida in Dallas.
  • The National Hispanic Fellowship of Southern Baptist Churches (Confraternidad Nacional de Iglesias Hispanas Bautistas del Sur), the oldest Hispanic organization in the SBC, will meet from 1-5 p.m. Monday, June 11, in Rooms A306-307, Level 3, of the convention center.
  • The Hispanic Baptist Pastors Alliance (Alianza Hispana de Pastores Bautistas), launched in 2015, will meet from 8-10 a.m. Tuesday, June 12, in Rooms A309-310, Level 3, of the convention center.

NAAF seeks to build bridges in racially charged U.S.

Relationships beneficial to the Kingdom continue to flow from the National African American Fellowship nearly 25 years after its 1994 founding, NAAF president Byron Day said.

NAAF, a fellowship of about 4,000 churches, will forgo its traditional Sunday service to worship with the SBC Pastors' Conference from 6-9 p.m. June 10 in support of H.B. Charles, the conference's first African American president and pastor of Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church in Jacksonville, FL. NAAF is pursuing plans to send representatives to Sunday morning worship at two Dallas-area churches and recommend those churches as worship sites for out-of-town annual meeting guests.

Day completes his presidential term in June and will deliver his presidential sermon at NAAF's annual banquet, 6:30 p.m. June 11 at the Omni Dallas Hotel.

Those on NAAF’s 2018-19 leadership include Robert Wilson, historian and pastor of Light of the Word Baptist Church in Atlanta, as well as Calvin McMullen, pastor of Community Life Baptist Church in Milledgeville, who will serve as parliamentarian.

Asian Americans to honor SBC execs for ethnic inclusion

The National Asian American (NAA) Fellowship will honor Roger S. (Sing) Oldham, EC vice president for convention communications and relations, and Ken Weathersby, EC vice president for convention advancement, for speeding progress in ethnic diversity during its annual meeting June 11 in Dallas.

"Without them ... we would not have an ethnic fellowship like we have," Paul Kim, Asian American relations consultant of the SBC Executive Committee (EC), said.

The NAA will meet at 7 p.m. in Rooms A122-A123 on the first level of the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center and will include members of the 2nd Generation Asian American Fellowship which grew out of the NAA to involve Asian Americans born in the U.S. and not necessarily fluent in their parents' native tongues.

Many Asian American Fellowships hold separate annual meetings in addition to gatherings at the SBC annual meeting. One of them, the Cambodian Fellowship, will meet June 27-30 at Blessing Field retreat center in Macon, Ga., with the theme "Set Apart," based on 1 Peter 2:9.

Korean Council to consider pastor retirement funding

Discussions about helping pastors get started with a retirement plan and mentoring younger pastors are on the agenda of the Council of Korean Southern Baptist Churches in America's annual meeting in Dallas.

The Korean Council's June 11-13 sessions, which take place during the week of the Southern Baptist Convention's annual meeting and related gatherings, will be hosted by Semihan Church in Carrollton, where Byeong Rack Choi is pastor.

The Korean Council is a fellowship of about 850 Southern Baptist churches that increasingly are adding English-language services and ministries in addition to those in the Korean language.

Filipinos to expand ministry offerings

Considering an executive director job description and hearing proposals for new ministry initiatives will be among highlights of the Filipino Southern Baptist Fellowship of North America's annual meeting Tuesday, June 12 at 8:30 a.m. at Dallas Metroplex International Church.

One ministry proposal involves providing training for pastors and churches on topics like conflict resolution and best practices for pastor search committees.

Native Americans to discuss Gospel contextualization

A presentation of the Gospel message to demonstrate a contextual way of ministering to unreached and under-reached Native people will be part of the Fellowship of Native American Christians' annual meeting at 10 a.m. Monday, June 11, will be in Room A115-117, Level 1, at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center.

In addition to the contextual-themed presentation and worship led by Warren "Junior" Pratt and his family, known as the Tribe of Judah Native Dance Ministry, FoNAC's annual meeting will include reports from the executive director and groups in attendance who minister in a Native peoples' context as well as descriptions of an upcoming training conference and a new ministry outreach tool specifically for Native Americans.

Messianics to finalize restructuring plan

The Southern Baptist Messianic Fellowship will finalize an organizational restructuring plan, hear reports of Jewish evangelism, and potentially discuss electing an executive director when the group gathers Sunday, June 10, at noon for a lunch meeting at TGI Fridays, 1713 North Market St. in Dallas.

The restructuring plan entails delegating more responsibility to SBMF officers and ministry leaders to facilitate support of SBMF personnel in the U.S., Canada, Israel, Russia, South America and elsewhere, said SBMF President Ric Worshill. While some SBMF members serving in Jewish evangelism ministries are International Mission Board or North American Mission Board missionaries, many are self-supported and depend on resources and encouragement from the fellowship.

With additional reporting by Art Toalston and David Roach of Baptist Press.

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