Conference To Focus On Strengthening Families

May 11, 2000

WACO, Texas -- Church leaders and lay members, administrators and professional staff members of faith-based agencies and students will examine ways congregations can strengthen families and communities during the second annual "Hand in Hand: Family, Church and Community" conference. Sponsored by Baylor's Center for Family and Community Ministries, the George W. Truett Theological Seminary and Buckner Baptist Benevolences, the conference will run May 18-19 in various rooms in the Bill Daniel Student Center.

"This conference is for anyone who is concerned about how congregations can build strong communities of support," said Dr. Diana Garland, professor of social work and director of the Center for Family and Community Ministries.

Dick Hardel, executive director of the Youth and Family Institute at Augsburg College in Minneapolis, Minn., and Dr. Anne Davis, director of operations for the Advocacy Center for Crime Victims and Children in Waco, will serve as keynote speakers. Hardel will speak at 1:15 p.m. May 18 and 9 a.m. May 19, while Davis will lecture at 9:45 a.m. May 18.

Additionally, participants can attend four workshop sessions on a variety of topics, including marriage counseling, ministry to Hispanic families, family caregiving, conflict in families and congregations, and immigrants and refugees, among others.

Conference organizers have added a spiritual component to this year's conference. All keynote sessions will feature music and Bible study, which Dr. Garland said will infuse the conference with a spirit of worship and celebration as well as academic learning.

D.E. Adams, a folk singer whose radio credits include performances on "A Prairie Home Companion," will provide the music, and Dr. David Garland, professor of Christian Scripture at Truett Seminary, will guide the Bible study. A special worship service led by Dr. Carolyn Gordon, director of ministries in higher education for the District of Columbia Baptist Convention and communications professor at Bowie State University, will begin at 7:30 p.m. May 18.

For more information, contact the Center for Family and Community Ministries at extension 1199 or visit the Center's web site at www.baylor.edu/~CFCM .

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