I like the concept and execution of the 2017 SBC Pastor’s Conference and plan to be present for some of it, probably the Monday sessions.
My question is this: Is the 2017 PC the best expression of what the Southern Baptist Convention is supposed to look like? Not in a racial or demographic look but in the following ways:
It has been called a “collaborative” effort and is therefore a cooperative effort.
Dave Miller may have been elected president but he has been clear from the outset that the conference is the work of a number of people besides himself. If Southern Baptists are about cooperation then this is the best evidence of such that I have seen for years. In addition to the individuals who are involved the 2017 PC has been embraced by some SBC entities and given assistance. That’s the way it is supposed to work: grassroots movement of SBCers and local church people assisted by our entities and their employees.
It doesn’t depend on the celebrity system.
Like it or not the SBC runs on a celebrity system. I rather don’t like it but recognize the reality of the same. The 2017 PC employs top tier SBC celebs in a secondary role. It may be a forlorn hope but it would be a stellar achievement if the assembled messengers would some year elect a non-megachurch, non-SBC celebrity as president. I assume Steve Gaines will accept the traditional second year election as president, so 2018 would be the first opportunity. There is no good reason this is not possible and many good reasons why it would be healthy for the SBC.
The speaker selection was innovative and expresses the best of the current SBC.
Lots of variety and diversity, and, ordinary Southern Baptists were involved in the process. How utterly Southern Baptist is that?
It doesn’t depend on generating big money.
The PC leaders say the financing is secure. I’m not privy to the financial data for any past Pastor’s Conferences or this one but am I incorrect in recalling heavy appeals for sponsors and the like? Maybe the numbers are big but financing has been smooth. Educate me.
In an SBC where we have done about the same at the national level and the annual meeting for decades, it is refreshing to see something new and different.
This is healthy.
Lord willing…see you there.
I’m not involved in any way in the 2017 PC other than an outside observer. The brethren have done a great job.