Piedmont Association will accept1963 or 2000 BF&M
November 27 2002 by Steve DeVane , BR Managing Editor

Piedmont Association will accept 1963 or 2000 BF&M | Wednesday, Nov 27, 2002

Wednesday, Nov 27, 2002

Piedmont Association will accept 1963 or 2000 BF&M

By Steve DeVane BR Managing Editor

The Piedmont Baptist Association defeated a measure that would have required new churches to affirm the "latest" version of the Baptist Faith and Message (BF&M) at is annual meeting Nov. 7.

Associational leaders say the proposal was not related to the ongoing national controversy between conservative and moderate Baptists.

The motion, which needed a two-thirds majority for passage, failed when it received 89 votes, or about 60 percent, of the 149 votes cast.

Terry Larsen, the association's moderator, said discussion of the issue was friendly.

"It never got out of hand at all," he said.

Larsen, the pastor of Calvary Baptist Church in McLeansville, said he doesn't sense much of conservative-moderate controversy in the association.

"We've always been a conservative association," he said.

Barry Nealy, the interim director of missions for the association, said those who proposed adding the term "latest" to the BF&M requirement for new churches were "just trying to be definitive."

Last year, the association voted to remove "1963" from the requirement, Nealy said. That allowed churches that want to join the association to sign off on either the 1963 or 2000 version of the BF&M.

"We didn't want to put a date or a reference to a specific edition," he said.

Revisions made to the BF&M in 2000 have been a point of debate between conservatives and moderates.

Supporters of the changes say the new edition is more biblical and more closely represents Southern Baptist beliefs.

Opponents of the revisions say they infringe on the autonomy of the local church and make the statement more of a creed than a confession of faith.

In other action at the Piedmont Association meeting, the committee searching for a new director of missions said it is not ready to recommend a replacement for Dennis Blackmon, who left in February 2000.

Larsen said the association's Executive Committee is scheduled to meet Dec. 12 to discuss hiring a consultant from the North American Mission Board. Such a move could lead to the hiring of an "intentional interim" for the association, he said.

"Whether or not that's going to take place, I don't know," he said.

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11/27/2002 12:00:00 AM by Steve DeVane , BR Managing Editor | with 0 comments
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