February 2010

Tebow Super Bowl ad generating much buzz

[img_assist|nid=5966|title=Pam Tebow speaks to her son Tim during Senior Day ceremonies at the University of Florida. They will appear in a Super Bowl ad.|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=100|height=84]

By Michael Foust, Baptist Press

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (BP) – Focus on the Family’s Super Bowl ad featuring Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow and his mother Pam won’t air until Feb. 7, but it’s already created plenty of buzz and even controversy.

The subject of the ad won’t be known until it is aired – the Colorado organization is only saying the theme will be “celebrate family, celebrate life” – but several pro-choice groups are assuming it will focus on the issue of abortion and are urging CBS to pull the ad.
On the flip side, fans of the former Florida Gator quarterback as well as Christians who align with the conservative beliefs of Focus on the Family are excited about the ad, even if they, too, are in the dark as to the specific topic.


Evangelism Conference draws tight focus

[img_assist|nid=5969|title=With uplifted arms, worshippers at the 2010 Evangelism Conference sing praises to God during opening session|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=100|height=66]

By Karen L. Willoughby, Managing Editor

BATON ROUGE – Soaring music, impassioned preaching, and warm fellowship all were part of the Evangelism Conference 2010, orchestrated Jan. 25-26 at Istrouma Baptist Church by the Evangelism and Church Growth division of the Louisiana Baptist Convention.


Louisiana Baptists respond to Haiti's earthquake needs

By Karen L. Willoughby, Managing Editor

[img_assist|nid=5972|title=Louisiana Baptists are responding to Haitians with their pocketbooks, prayers and relief efforts in a big way.|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=100|height=67]STATEWIDE – As of presstime, more than $58,000 in checks has been received by the Louisiana Baptist Convention for Haiti relief.

This doesn’t count the money given with a credit card on the LBC website, or the offerings taken up at the Evangelism Conference, or the money sent directly to the North American Mission Board, International Mission Board or Baptist Global Response – the international arm of Southern Baptists’ Disaster Relief ministry.


Debate over Tebow ad shows an obvious double-standard

[img_assist|nid=5974|title=Kelly Boggs, Editor Louisiana Baptist Message|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=78|height=100]By Kelly Boggs, Editor Louisiana Baptist Message

The game between the New Orleans Saints and the Indianapolis Colts is surely the most anticipated aspect of Super Bowl XLIV.

However, there is another element of Super Sunday that draws a significant amount of attention – commercials.Because the television audience for the Super Bowl is so huge (last year 148 million people tuned into to watch at least some portion of the game), ad space is not only coveted but is also expensive.


How big of a deal is it for you to miss church?

By Jim Law, Senior Pastor First Baptist Church Gonzales

[img_assist|nid=5978|title=Jim Law, Senior Pastor First Baptist Church Gonzales|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=94|height=100]Is missing church sinful? If you have the flu, many would be grateful you stayed home. 

But I don’t think illness is the reason that absenteeism among Southern Baptists is so widespread.

Neither do I think that absenteeism can be explained by providential hindrances. According to a 2007 Lifeway Research study, Southern Baptists have some 16 million on the denominational role, however only 6.1 million show up for church on any given Sunday.

When you look at the numbers, it would take a lot of “oxen in the ditch” to explain a 10 million person discrepancy. 


In reaching the world, it's not either/or

By Rob Zinn, Pastor Immanuel Baptist Church Highland, California

[img_assist|nid=5981|title=Rob Zinn Pastor Immanuel Baptist Church Highland, California|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=64|height=100]We are a people who have been called by God to go into the world with the Gospel.

We are a people with a command to make disciples, baptize them and teach them.

Jesus said in Acts 1:8 that “you will receive power ... and you will be My witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” That is a big task, and unlike some today who want to go to only one or the other, we must understand it’s not either/or. It’s both/and.How do we accomplish such a large task?


The Great Commission comes full circle with Japanese team in New Orleans

By Marilyn Stewart, Regional Reporter

[img_assist|nid=5990|title=Judi Folds, wife of Tokyo Baptist Pastor Dennis Folds, leads a Bible study at Bethel Colony for recovering addicts.|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=100|height=56]NEW ORLEANS – Dennis and Judi Folds left Louisiana 30 years ago to follow the Great Commission and take the Gospel to a distant land. A team of Japanese Baptists – the fruit of the Folds’ ministry in Tokyo – recently came to New Orleans on the same mission.

The 12-member team from Tokyo Baptist Church partnered with five members from First Baptist Church, Minden, and one from First Baptist, Homer, to share the Gospel in the Gentilly neighborhood of New Orleans. As a result, three area residents came to faith in Christ.

“[The Tokyo team] has been a blessing to work with,” said Bill Crider, First Minden’s minister to senior adults/missions. “And the people here have been very receptive.”
Tokyo Baptist Church, founded by Cooperative Program-supported missionaries and American military personnel stationed there in 1959, averages 1,400 in five weekend services, with 50 nationalities in attendance. Services take place in English.


Jazz first brought missions leader to the Crescent City

By Marilyn Stewart, Regional Reporter

NEW ORLEANS – A banjo player, Fusako Takada’s love of Jazz took her from Japan to New Orleans a dozen years ago. Though Takada didn’t know it at the time, her quest for music set her on a path to faith and new life in Christ.

While in New Orleans in 1998, Takada was introduced to the story of Jesus through the gospel music of the African-American community. Back home, Takada joined a gospel choir led by an American in Tokyo.


Metairie church plant set to 'rock' its community

By Marilyn Stewart, Regional Reporter

[img_assist|nid=5993|title=Jim Louviere, shown with wife Michele, planted a church in Metairie that presents the message in the language of today s culture|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=100|height=75]NEW ORLEANS – If having a good time was the same as being happy, this metro area should be filled with contented people, or so notes the website of Crescent City Rock, a church plant in Metairie with five baptisms since its start in November.

To those searching for more, the church offers the hope that “Life rocks when built on The Rock.”


Louisiana College's School of Nursing holds a "Spirituality in Health Care" Symposium

By Quinn Lavespere, Special to the Message

[img_assist|nid=5994|title=LC Professor and International Coordinator of Nursing David Sharp spoke on Approaching Spirituality in client care.|desc=|link=none|align=left|width=100|height=67]The Louisiana College School of Nursing held a symposium on “Spirituality In Health Care” on Thursday, Jan. 21, in the Granberry Conference Center.

LC Professor of Nursing and Dean of School of Nursing and Allied Health, Kimberly Sharp, said that the main goal of the symposium was to teach nursing students and others working in health care about spirituality and how to address the spiritual needs of clients.Sharp said that a full digest of the symposium’s events will be made available through a weblink on the LC nursing website after the symposium is over.