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May 2009 Issue

Even the historic, 135-year-old Churchill Downs — home of the Kentucky Derby — will be among the ministry venues as Southern Baptists engage in Crossover Louisville '09.

Now in its twenty-first year, Crossover is an evangelistic thrust to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ the week before the Southern Baptist Convention's annual meeting in each year's host city.

Crossover Louisville '09 will kick off with Intentional Community Evangelism (ICE) on Sunday, June 14, and will culminate the June 19-20 weekend prior to the June 23-24 SBC annual meeting at the Kentucky Exposition Center. Crossover will be jointly sponsored by the SBC's North American Mission Board, the Kentucky Baptist Convention, and the Long Run Baptist Association in Louisville.

"Our objective is to share Jesus and have a lasting impact on metro Louisville," said Charles Barnes, longtime Baptist lay lead...

Thousands of Baptists Impacting One City for Christ

Crossover weekend is June 19-20, 2009, but additional Crossover activities will be taking place for several weeks. Listed below are general descriptions of Crossover activities taking place throughout Louisville.

Personal and Street Evangelism

Participants will share their faith throughout downtown Louisville and its surrounding communities. Teams will survey and witness door-to-door through assigned neighborhoods, with priority given to areas where new church starts are planned.

Intentional Community Evangelism (ICE) Team

A specially trained team will share their faith throughout the inner city area on June 15-19. Local team members will be matched with experienced ICE Team members who will be coming to Louisville for the week.

Block Parties

With the end...

This year at the Southern Baptist Convention on June 23-24, held at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville, Kentucky, Southern Baptists will be challenged to make a commitment to a Great Commission Resurgence. The theme will be Love Loud — Actions Speak Louder Than Words, based on Matthew 5:16. The challenge will be to Love Loud in the area of a Great Commission Resurgence. Dr. Danny Akin will speak to this theme. We will be challenged to Love Loud in Embracing A Kingdom Mindset, led by Rev. Vance Pitman. We will be challenged to Love Loud in Evangelism, winning people to faith in Christ, which has always been the heartbeat of Southern Baptists, through a message from Dr. Jeff Crook. We will be challenged to Love Loud in Engaging the Culture and we will hear a message, as we entertain bringing the next generation with us, by Dr. David Platt.

We need for our denomination to demonstrate to our communities, our country, and to...

The Holy Spirit is the third Person of the Trinity who actualizes in believers what God the Father promised for His children in God the Son.

Annual Meeting Theme:
LoveLoud: Actions Speak Louder Than Words

In the same way, let your light shine before men, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven. - Matthew 5:16 (HCSB)

Tuesday Morning, June 23

8:00 Concert of Praise - Scott C. White, senior minister of music and worship, Woodstock worship choir, band, and orchestra, First Baptist Church, Woodstock, GA

8:10 Congregational Praise and Worship - Scott Allred, Convention music director, minister of music, Hunter Street Baptist Church, Hoover, AL, Woodstock worship choir, band, and orchestra

8:15 Call to Order - Johnny Hunt, president, Southern Baptist Convention, pastor, First Baptist Church, Woodstock, GA

Registration Report and Constitution of the Convention - James H. (Jim) Wells, SBC regist...

Pastors' Conference
June 21-22, 2009
Kentucky Exposition Center

What If?
One Mind • One Love • One Spirit • One Purpose

Sunday Evening, June 21
What If? One Mind

5:30 Pre-session concert

6:00 Worship through Music

6:15 Welcome, Theme Explanation, Introductions

6:30 Worship through Music

6:35 Message - Dr. J.D. Greear, Summit Church, Durham, North Carolina

7:10 Prayer Emphasis for Pastors

7:20 Worship through Music

7:30 Message - Dr. Mac Brunson, First Baptist Church, Jacksonville, Florida

8:05 Worship t...

Helping Retired Ministers and Their Widows Achieve Peace and Security

Norma Friend needs to cover the basic necessities of life: groceries, medicine, utilities, and other bills.

Idell Austin actually went to bed hungry because money was in short supply.

The Rev. Archie Chapman needs help meeting insurance and the phone and water bills.

Norma, Idell, and Archie are just three of more than 2,500 ministers and their widows who receive assistance from Mission:Dignity, the relief ministry of GuideStone Financial Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention.

"It is a true privilege for GuideStone to care for these dear soldiers of the cross," GuideStone President O.S. Hawkins said. "These ministers and their widows have insufficient retirement incomes; most pastored small, rural churches at the crossroads that provided only a modest salary and little, if any, retirement contributions.

"It is through the generous support of Southern Baptist churches and individuals that these faithful servants can ...

African American SBC Churches

As a growing minority within the Southern Baptist Convention, African American Southern Baptists are needed to play pivotal roles in reaching the world with the Gospel, says David Cornelius, African American missional church strategist for the International Mission Board.

Congregations such as North Buffalo Community Church in New York and Antioch Baptist Church in Fairfax Station, Virginia, are taking lead roles in supporting missions through a series of mission trips and prayer initiatives.

There are about 3,800 African American Southern Baptist congregations in the United States and nearly fifty African Americans serving as IMB missionaries.

Sharing Good News

North Buffalo Community Church in New York has organized several trips to West Africa, Middle America, and the Caribbean to work with Southern Baptist personnel as part of becoming an Acts 1:8 church &mdas...

No one knows when the legend began. But generations of Sayang* have waited for its promise to be fulfilled.

For more than five centuries they have eked out their existence on a remote South Pacific island — virtually cut off from the outside world. Here, the Sayang have survived as farmers, growing crops on rocky soil nearly too poor to farm. Rain has been the only source of fresh water. They've had no electricity or phone service, not even a doctor.

Twice government troops have tried to force the village of ten thousand to relocate — once at gunpoint. But the Sayang refuse to leave because they are bound by the legend's promise — the arrival of a foreigner bearing a precious gift.

In 1967 a German tourist stumbled upon their village.* He was the first foreign visitor in the history of Yang Jauh.* He left behind his signature and photograph but nothing more. Then in 1986 a Japanese scientist came. She, too, left only her signature and p...

When considering motorcycles, the first thing I would say is, "Boy, you have to have a lot of faith, be prayed up, and love Jesus before you even get on a motorcycle!" (I say that so that my wife can read that statement.) I do really love motorcycles and would love to ride off into the sunset on one. During my pastorate, I felt I should not ride because I had to be careful that kids might use me as an excuse — "Come on, Mom, even Bro. Bobby rides a motorcycle!" What on earth would I do if one of them had an accident because of my example? But that's just me.

Check out the following testimony from Charlie Cox, the vice president for programs with the Florida Baptist Children's Homes, and you'll see how the Lord is using Christian bikers to reach people with the Gospel.

Hi, I'm Charlie and my wife is Wanda, and this is just a couple of testimonies from Sturgis, South Dakota. We are from Florida and you'd think ...

This article is different from my normal format. I am enclosing my daughter's recent Facebook posting — her oldest son, Drew, had been seriously injured playing football. It was the first time she had been in an ambulance since her younger son, Jake, died.

There are two lessons here. First, I know some of you pastors wonder about your kids and the effects from the stress of being a PK. Kasey is my middle daughter and she went through her time of rebellion. There were times when I took her car away, cancelled her insurance, and put our house on lockdown. Some days, I didn't think we would make it. My friend Michael Catt's favorite church story is about Kasey. When Kasey was three, she told the church day care workers that if they didn't get under the table and play with her she would have her daddy fire them. I think by reading this you will realize that her strong will has given over to His will. The pain of rebellion has turned into the pleasure of obedience.<...

Oprah Doctor: "Stem Cell Debate is Dead"

Supporters of alternatives to embryonic stem cell research found a surprising ally recently when medical doctor Mehmet Oz, during an appearance on the Oprah television program, played down embryonic research and trumpeted an ethical method.

"The stem cell debate is dead, and I'll tell you why," he told Oprah, guest Michael J. Fox, and a nationwide audience.

"Dr. Oz," the director of the cardiovascular institute at Columbia University Medical Center, told Oprah and Fox that embryonic stem cell research is fraught with practical problems. Although he didn't name the procedure, he said he favored — and he described in detail...