UPDATED 9/23/19; originally posted 9/12/19.
By Lonnie Wilkey
David Green, president of the Tennessee Baptist Convention, shared an update and a challenge for Tennessee Baptists to attend and to pray for the upcoming Summit at First Baptist Church, Concord, in Knoxville. “This year’s Summit will be a time of worship, celebration and inspiration,” he noted.
“The Tennessee Baptist Convention is a family and we should spend as much time together as possible, especially in corporate worship. I thank God for His favor on Tennessee Baptists.”
Green, pastor of First Baptist Church, Greeneville, said that serving as president “is a true blessing and something I will never take for granted.”
Randy C. Davis, president and executive director of the TBMB, updated board members on various aspects of ministry. In the spring, Davis announced the formation of a Sexual Abuse Prevention and Response Task Force to be headed by Bill Choate of the TBMB staff.
Davis reported the task force has been busy reviewing materials that have been used and developing best practices in response to a crisis at a local church. Though recent events have brought more scrutiny on sexual abuse in recent months, Davis noted the TBMB “has been addressing these issues for 20 years and will continue to do so with excellence.”
He also updated the board on the proposed Tennessee Baptist Training Institute which will provide training and resources for pastors. “In the future, the most critical need we have is to call out the called and to equip those God has called into ministry.”
Davis said a website to assist in training pastors is under development. “We hope to roll out what the Ministry Training Institute will look like next spring,” he said.
TBMB directors also heard reports from each of the TBMB committees and the leaders of four Tennessee Baptist institutions — Bill Gruenewald, Tennessee Baptist Foundation; Matt Mercer, Harrison-Chilhowee Baptist Academy; Dub Oliver, Union University; and Charles Fowler, Carson-Newman University.
Ronnie Floyd, new president of the SBC Executive Committee, was the guest speaker during the the board of directors’ annual dinner held the night before the meeting.
Floyd spoke to Tennessee Baptist leaders about the importance of transforming the culture, and outlined the steps that needed to be taken in order for the transformation to take place. Coverage of Floyd’s message can be found here.