Baptist rally to highlight BGCT funding proposalOct. 3, 2000
Ex-BU, convention leaders to speak
By BLAIR MARTIN
A rally will be held at 7 tonight at the First Baptist Church of Waco to discuss the recommendation of the Executive Board of the Baptist General Convention of Texas to redirect funds away from several Southern Baptist Convention entities and toward Texas Baptist-supported seminaries, including George W. Truett Theological Seminary.
Former Baylor President Dr. Herbert H. Reynolds and Baylor alumnus and former president of the BGCT Dr. Joel Gregory will speak at the 'Focus on Jesus' rally, supported by the Texas Baptists Committed group.
Reynolds said tonight's rally will inform people about the importance of the executive board's recommendation to redirect funds from the 'fundamentalism' of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC).
The proposal will give an estimated $4 million to Truett, Logsdon School of Theology of Hardin-Simmons University and Hispanic Baptist Theological School in San Antonio.
This marks the second of 15 rallies planned throughout Texas before the annual meeting of the BGCT later this month.
Since its establishment, TBC said it has remained 'an organized effort to resist any takeover of the BGCT by those who do not adhere to our historic Baptist roots.'
Reynolds said the SBC's fundamentalist approach of 'putting scripture above Christ' is the main motive for the TBC's support of the proposition for the redirection of funds.
'We are trying to keep fundamentalism out of Texas Baptist life,' Reynolds said. 'We feel like that is not good for the state and want to preserve the individual freedom to interpret the Bible through traditional Baptist means.'
One example of the disagreement between the two organizations, Reynolds said, was the SBC's position on female ministers in the Baptist community.
'They don't think that women should have that kind of role in the church, where I think they should not be restricted on the basis of gender,' Reynolds said.
Gregory said tonight's sermon, 'Christ the Cornerstone,' is relevant to the occasion.
'The sermon is about how the Lord is the only foundation, and how that relates to our interpretation of the biblical message,' he said.
Gregory, who said he was once an outspoken critic of Baylor and its leaders, claiming the university was 'too liberal,' said he has now had a change of heart.
'I once had a very different viewpoint about Baylor's [Baptist] approach, but after seeing Baylor grow and thrive under such tremendous leadership as Reynolds and now Sloan, I feel it is both Christ-like and manly to admit and say that my views have changed,' Gregory said.
Reynolds said that although Gregory had expressed difference in the past, he now understands our concern and is willing to associate himself with this endeavor.
'Joel has expressed great regret in regard with Baylor and the direction we have been going,' Reynolds said. 'But now after seeing both sides of the aisle, I am confident that he will be more than able to articulate and convey the importance of this recommendation.'
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