By Brian Blackwell, Message Staff Writer
COVINGTON – Ed Newton, pastor of the Community Bible Church, San Antonio, Texas, will emphasize reaching the lost of the next generation during Student Night, Jan. 28, at the 2019 Louisiana Baptist Evangelism Conference.
The pre-session will begin at 5:30 p.m. in “The Rock” youth building of First Baptist, Covington, and feature a pizza party, games and music by an area youth choir. The main session will follow immediately afterward with music presented by the First Covington choir and a message by Newton.
Keith Manuel, evangelism and church growth director for Louisiana Baptists, said Student Night will build on the challenge “to share Christ with others” presented in November during the 2018 Youth Evangelism Celebration in Alexandria.
“We are investing in a nationwide youth speaker for churches to come and be part of a large evangelistic event that is absolutely free,” Manuel said. “While we are targeting students, this night is for everyone as we seek a great harvest of the lost.”
Newton spoke at Student Night as part of ECON 2017, held at Temple Baptist Church, Ruston, when dozens of students came forward at the invitation.
By the time the service ended 34 spiritual decisions had been recorded: 10 individuals repented for salvation, 13 repented to restore fellowship with Christ, 9 others made other commitments and 2 more declared a call to vocational ministry.
Newton, who also will be the main speaker at the 2019 YEC in Alexandria, has served as pastor of the 27,000-member, multi-site Community Bible Church since January 2016.
No stranger to student evangelism, Newton has served as a youth pastor, faculty member at Student Leadership University in Orlando, Fla., and executive director of the LIFT TOUR, an extension of Student Leadership University in partnership with LifeWay Students.
For those unable to attend Student Night, the event will be livestreamed beginning at 7 p.m. Churches can log onto louisiananbaptists.org/livestream and follow instructions from there for access. Last year, numerous churches hosted rallies via livestream.
“ECON is an equipping time not just for pastors but for everyone,” Manuel said. “We move it around to a different site each year so as many Louisiana Baptists as possible have a chance to get top notch training so they can reach their neighbors, co-workers, family and friends with the Gospel.”