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Can You Take the "Southern" Out of Southern Baptist?

However rooted the SBC is in the South, its heritage and influence have always been broader, and that is best illustrated today in the SBC's International Mission Board, which has almost 5000 missionaries serving around the world, and which reported 360,000 baptisms in its international churches in 2010. Along with believer's baptism, missions work and evangelism have always been key priorities of the SBC, and that has made it impossible for Southern Baptists to remain exclusively southern.

The leadership of the SBC has a chance, then, to rename the convention to reflect its mission rather than its 1845 regional identity. Some will argue against the name change as a repudiation of the SBC's history, but it is actually the name changers who appreciate the broader trajectory of Baptist history.

9/27/2011 4:00:00 AM