GRADY COTHEN, FORMER PRES. OF 2 SBC ENTITIES, DIES

By David Roach, Baptist Press and
Marilyn Stewart, New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary

Grady Cothen, who died May 19, served as president of the Baptist Sunday School Board from 1974-84.
-SBHLA photo

RIDGELAND, Miss. (BP) — Grady Cothen — the former chief executive of a state convention, a Southern Baptist university and two Southern Baptist Convention entities — died May 19 at The Orchard retirement home in Ridgeland, Miss. He was 96.

Among his service to Southern Baptists, Cothen was executive secretary of the Southern Baptist General Convention of California (1961-66), president of Oklahoma Baptist University (1966-70), president of New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary (1970-74) and president of the Baptist Sunday School Board (1974-1984). The California convention has since been renamed the California Southern Baptist Convention, and the Sunday School Board has become LifeWay Christian Resources.

“Few Southern Baptist leaders have made so deep a mark in so many different places as did Grady Cothen,” New Orleans Seminary President Chuck Kelley said in a news release. “He came to New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary when it was in a crisis. He brought stability and a foundation upon which our future was built. We thank God for giving our convention such an excellent leader.” [Read more…]

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AMERICANS LIKE BIBLE BUT DON’T READ IT

By Bob Smietana
Lifeway Research

NASHVILLE — Americans have a positive view of the Bible. And many say the Christian Scriptures are filled with moral lessons for today.

However, more than half of Americans have read little or none of the Bible.

Less than a quarter of those who have ever read a Bible have a systematic plan for reading the Christian Scriptures each day. And a third of Americans never pick it up on their own, according to a new study from Nashville-based LifeWay Research. [Read more…]

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VICTIM: TREAT DOMESTIC ABUSE WITH CARE

LifeWay Research

depressed-woman-cryingNASHVILLE — Investigating claims of domestic violence can backfire for churches, said radio host and speaker Autumn Miles, who partnered with LifeWay Research on a study about churches and domestic violence.

Miles, a past victim of domestic abuse, said it’s difficult for victims to come forward and ask a church for help. And when they do, they often need immediate assistance. They can’t wait for a church to do an investigation before deciding to help. [Read more…]

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DISCIPLE-MAKING TASK FORCE CONTINUES

By Diana Chandler
Baptist Press

Robby Gallaty

Robby Gallaty

NASHVILLE — A group tasked with encouraging and teaching disciple-making among Southern Baptist churches will extend its work an additional year, task force chairman Robby Gallaty told Baptist Press.

Gallaty, hosting a task force meeting here March 9, said the group will not issue a report at the 2017 Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting in Phoenix. The task force will instead seek an additional year to evaluate discipleship and strategize. They plan to give their report at the 2018 SBC annual meeting in Dallas. [Read more…]

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MARCH MILDNESS?: AMERICANS SHARE VIEWS ON SPORTS

By Aaron Earls
LifeWay Christian Resources

NASHVILLE (BP) — Thanks to wild buzzer beaters and unbelievable upsets, the NCAA men’s basketball tournament has become known as March Madness. For most Americans, however, their attitude toward sports is more mild than mad.

170315sports1A study released from LifeWay Research today (March 14) found 52 percent of Americans describe their philosophy of sports by saying, “It’s not whether you win or lose — it’s how you play the game.”

“Most Americans want players to play the game ‘the right way’ and not potentially endanger others simply for the sake of winning,” said Scott McConnell, executive director of LifeWay Research. “For example, with growing worries about concussions in football, safety concerns have caused many to reconsider their attitude toward sports.” [Read more…]

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WHO DO AMERICANS LOOK TO?

Baptist Press

170110conversationNASHVILLE — America has its problems and needs to talk. But according to a new study, few Americans agree on who can best lead a conversation about the nation’s woes.

Less than a quarter (23 percent) would turn to the office of the U.S. president. About one in 10 would turn to the nation’s preachers (11 percent) or to college professors (10 percent), a survey by LifeWay Research shows.

“Almost no one would ask a musician or pro athlete,” said Scott McConnell, executive director of LifeWay Research, “even though they often try to start public conversations. [Read more…]

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MOST CHURCHES TO OPEN CHRISTMAS & NEW YEAR’S DAY

By Bob Smietana
Lifeway News Office

161222lifeway-churchNASHVILLE — More than half of Americans plan to go to church at Christmastime. And most Protestant pastors will keep the doors open for them.

Nearly nine out of 10 Protestant senior pastors say their churches plan to hold services on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day, as both fall on a Sunday, according to research from Nashville-based LifeWay Christian Research.

More than 7 in 10 Protestant senior pastors say their churches plan to hold Christmas Eve services. And more than a few will be open on New Year’s Eve. [Read more…]

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STUDY: MOST AMERICANS SAY ASSISTED SUICIDE MORALLY OK

By Bob Smietana
Facts & Trends, LifeWay

Female doctor showing a glass of water and a blue pillNASHVILLE (BP) — The American Medical Association has described physician-assisted suicide as a serious risk to society and “fundamentally incompatible with a physician’s role as healer.” But Millions of Americans disagree, according to a new study released Tuesday (Dec. 6) by LifeWay Research.

Two-thirds say it is morally acceptable for terminally ill patients to ask their doctors for help in ending their lives, according to a new survey from Nashville-based LifeWay Research. A similar number says doctors should be able to help terminally ill patients die.

Americans want more say over how they die, noted Scott McConnell, executive director of LifeWay Research. That’s especially true if facing a painful, terminal illness, he said. [Read more…]

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SUMMIT’S OVER; HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

By Lonnie Wilkey
Editor, Baptist and Reflector

thanksgiving-turkey-mealThe 2016 Summit in Sevierville is over and by all accounts it was one of the best ever.

The number of registered messengers was low by East Tennessee standards — 1,211, but attendance at some sessions neared or topped 2,000 people. The decision to add a worship service to Summit on Sunday night proved to be a “home run.” Tennessee pastor and Southern Baptist Convention President Steve Gaines delivered a powerful message. Combined with a testimony from University of Tennessee football great Todd Kelly Sr., and music by the Tennessee Men’s Chorale, those who attended left the sessions with their “cups full.” [Read more…]

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LIFEWAY PULLS BOOKS OVER LGBT VIEWS

Baptist Press

Jen Hatmaker -Twitter photo

Jen Hatmaker
-Twitter photo

NASHVILLE — LifeWay Christian Resources has discontinued resources featuring bestselling Bible study author Jen Hatmaker just days after she voiced approval of gay marriage and the gay lifestyle.

“In a recent interview, [Hatmaker] voiced significant changes in her theology of human sexuality and the meaning and definition of marriage — changes which contradict LifeWay’s doctrinal guidelines,” LifeWay spokesman Marty King told Baptist Press Oct. 27. “As a result, LifeWay has discontinued selling her resources,” he added.

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