Patriotic author headlines MBC’s God & count-themed annual meeting
By Don Hinkle
March 2, 2004
JEFFERSON CITY – One of the leading experts on America’s Judeo-Christian heritage will be a keynote speaker when messengers to the 2004 Missouri Baptist Convention’s (MBC) gather at First Baptist, Raytown, for their annual meeting Oct. 25-27.
David Barton is founder and president of Wallbuilders, a national pro-family organization which distributes historic, legal and statistical information that points citizens to America’s strength – its constitutional, moral, and religious foundation. Wallbuilders is a name taken from the book of Nehemiah and alludes to the prophets’ leadership in leading the rebuilding of the walls around Jerusalem.
A popular lecturer and author on the role Christianity played in America’s founding, Barton is perhaps best known for his books Original Intent: The Courts, the Constitution & Religion, where he demonstrates how the U.S. Supreme Court has reinterpreted the Constitution, diluting the biblical foundations upon which it was based. It also offers powerful evidence of Christianity’s influence on the “Founding Fathers" through their own words. His biography on one of the “Founders," Benjamin Rush: Signer of the Declaration of Independence," is another one of his books that illustrate – through Rush’s own words – the impact Christianity had in America’s founding.
Barton’s address on Wednesday morning Oct. 27, will coincide with a patriotic spectacular featuring music by a collection of vocalists along with the choir and orchestra from Southwest Baptist University under the direction of Gary Gerber.
“The special patriotic emphasis is designed to prepare our hearts to pray as Election Day (Nov. 2) draws near," said Bill Shiflett, MBC musical director.
Joining Barton as a featured speaker for the convention will be Rick White, pastor of The People’s Church, a 5,200-member Southern Baptist Convention church in Franklin, Tennessee. White, who has pastored the church since 1982, has focused the congregation on global missions and will address messengers on that subject. White has also served as trustee chairman at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, Ky., and was instrumental in moving the seminary from the throes of liberalism to a solidly conservative theological position.
Also scheduled to speak is Paul Negrut, president of the Romanian Baptist Union and a leader in the missions’ partnership between Romania and the MBC.
The convention sermon will be preached by another highly respected pastor of a global missions-oriented church, John Marshall of Second Baptist Church, Springfield. Other speakers will include MBC President David Tolliver, pastor, Pisgah Baptist Church, Excelsior Springs, and MBC Executive Director David Clippard.
The convention will feature a variety of musical styles, Shiflett said.
The afternoon and evening sessions on Tuesday, Oct. 26, will feature The Signature Sound Quartet, a Southern Gospel group featuring Ernie Haase, a former tenor with the famous Cathedrals Quartet. The choir and orchestra of First Baptist Church, Raytown, will provide special music that evening as well.
Monday evening’s (Oct. 25) special music will feature the music ministry of Pisgah Baptist Church.
The congregational worship throughout the convention will be led by a worship band and vocal team comprised of Missouri Baptist worship leaders from around the state. A "Spirit and Truth" worship choir representing full-time, bivocational and volunteer ministers of music will also share during the convention.
The Missouri Baptist Pastors’ Conference will precede the MBC’s annual meeting, Oct. 24-25. Keynote speaker is Bobby Welch, pastor, First Baptist Church, Daytona Beach, Fla., and a nominee for the office of president of the SBC.