Royston seeks more Baptisms
November 16 2001 by Jimmy Allen , BR Assistant Editor

Royston seeks more Baptisms | Friday, Nov 16, 2001

Friday, Nov 16, 2001

Royston seeks more Baptisms

By Jimmy Allen BR Assistant Editor WINSTON-SALEM - N.C. Baptist churches will baptize 43,000 people in 2006 if the vision of Baptist State Convention's (BSC) top staff person is fulfilled. That goal is 15,000 more than the number of people baptized this year, according to Jim Royston, the BSC's executive director-treasurer.

Royston described his vision during an address at the BSC annual meeting Nov. 13 at Lawrence Joel Memorial Coliseum. To have 43,000 people profess belief would take each N.C. Baptist church baptizing one additional person each year, he said.

Royston's vision includes more than baptisms. He also has a plan for the budget to increase from $35 million this past year to $50 million in 2006, an increase of 43 percent.

He expressed his vision despite an economy that has slowed, causing one association to cut its budget 22 percent, Royston said. The BSC budget is $1.2 million behind this year, which Royston believes is a difference N.C. Baptists will make up.

"It is a challenging year. These are challenging times," Royston said.

Volunteer missions Royston said he attended the Pentagon memorial service last month for victims of the Sept. 11 terrorist attack. People came up to him to thank N.C. Baptists for their work in providing meals to the emergency relief workers.

"Our volunteers are more effective than ever, more numerous than ever," he said. "They are the very best in Baptist life."

First Baptist Church, Matthews, saw a video of relief work at the Pentagon and decided to promote and receive a special N.C. Missions Offering. The church set aside an entire Sunday offering of $37,000.

N.C. Baptist Men, which organizes relief teams, gets its entire budget from the N.C. Missions Offering.

Politics Thirty years ago, a candidate for a BSC office wouldn't be known until someone sensed a leading to make a nomination during the annual meeting, Royston said. He said he prays that will happen again. This year, the first announcement of a candidate occurred in April.

"I dare to dream of a day when some of you invest the same kind of energy in winning people to Christ as in winning the coveted positions of influence," he said. "We can agree on one Lord, one faith, one baptism but little else it seems. Does that strike you as wrong?"

Of the six candidates for three positions, Royston said he considers five of them as friends. The other he had only briefly met.

"I would trust my life with any of them," he said.

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11/16/2001 12:00:00 AM by Jimmy Allen , BR Assistant Editor | with 0 comments
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