DALLAS - Amidst ice and freezing temperatures, the Executive Board of the Baptist General Convention of Texas convened February 22-24 for their spring meeting.
During Tuesday's combined business session, President Kathy Hillman encouraged the board members to be equipped to move forward as Texas Baptists. Using a compass, map and GPS, Hillman noted Biblical examples of preparation. "The right people must have the right tools, at the right time, for the right situations," she said.
Dennis Russell, from the First Baptist Church of Amarillo, was elected as the new Vice Chairperson for the board, filling the vacancy left by Ernest Dagohoy, who recently joined the Texas Baptists staff as an Area Representative.
Jill Larsen, treasurer, reported investments stand at $123.9 million, a $9.2 million increase from the previous year. Larsen also reported total giving to the Cooperative Program at $45.6 million, including $31.6 million for Texas CP, $11.4 million for the Southern Baptist Convention, $1.6 million for Texas initiatives and $1.0 million for Cooperative Baptist Fellowship.
The Institutional Relations Committee provided a recommendation to approve the Resolution on Transgender Issues as a support to our institutions. The resolution was unanimously approved. Click here to read the full story.
Dr. Steve Vernon, associate executive director, and President Hillman announced a new essay and sermon contest for the 2015 Annual Meeting. The essay contest, aimed at high school sophomores, juniors and seniors, will offer scholarships to the top three entries. Topics include "What makes a Baptist a Baptist?" and "The Baptist recipe." The sermon contest, aimed at current college, university and seminary students who are members of coordinating Texas Baptist churches, will be judged on the topic "Distinctly Baptist." Click here for more information.
Greg Wallace, chair of the Evangelism Committee, encouraged board members to involve their churches in a new Texas Baptist initiative called Pray 4 Every Home. By registering on the website, individuals are given 100 names of nearby neighbors to pray for. "No matter what type of evangelism you do, it must start with prayer," Wallace said.
Craig Christina, chair of the Church Starting Committee, shared 66 new churches were approved for continued program support funding. Four hundred twenty-three baptists were reported in 2014 from new churches across the state.
In other business, several individuals were elected to fill vacancies on committees and boards including: