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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‘DISCIPLESHIP CULTURE’ NEEDED IN SBC

By Josie Rabbitt
Baptist Press

161104task-forceALPHARETTA, Ga. — LifeWay Christian Resources’ and the North American Mission Board’s recently-appointed task force on disciple-making met Oct. 17 at NAMB’s building here. The group of 11 Southern Baptist pastors gathered to discuss their task of communicating that “any church of any background can be disciple-making,” according to chairman Robby Gallaty, pastor of Long Hollow Baptist Church in Hendersonville.

Gallaty began the meeting by asking what the “win” for the discipleship task force would be. Members unanimously agreed that success would be helping churches create a process to celebrate making disciples. [Read more…]

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TENNESSEE CHURCHES CITED IN RANKING

By Josie Rabbitt
Baptist Press

Bellevue Baptist Church

Bellevue Baptist Church

NASHVILLE — Twenty Southern Baptist congregations are among the 2016 top 100 fastest growing and largest participating churches in the U.S., with NewSpring Church in Anderson, S.C., ranking highest in both categories among Southern Baptists.

In the lists compiled annually in collaboration between Outreach Magazine and LifeWay Christian Resources, NewSpring Church ranks third on the largest participating churches list and eighth among the fastest growing churches named in Outreach’s October issue.

NewSpring, under the leadership of interim senior pastor Clayton King, reported an average attendance of 33,761 and a 21 percent growth of 5,925, according to the list. [Read more…]

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WANT AN ADDED TREAT THIS HALLOWEEN? TRY CHURCH, SAY AMERICA’S PASTORS

By Bob Smietana
Lifeway Research

161026halloweenNASHVILLE, Tenn. — This Halloween, millions of Americans will carve pumpkins, dress up in costumes, decorate their yards, and gobble down the candy they get while trick-or-treating.

America’s preachers also hope they’ll consider coming to church, according to a new phone survey of 1,000 Protestant senior pastors from Nashville-based LifeWay Research.

Two-thirds of Protestant pastors say they encourage church members to ask their neighbors to a church-related event like a fall fair or trunk-or-treat. [Read more…]

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