Illinois Baptist 05 09 2016 E Edition Page A-2

The SBC is you and me NATE ADAMS A-2 Illinois Baptist Snapshots from the world of Illinois Baptists the cooperative program Giving by IBSA churches as of 04/29/16 $1,911,698 Budget Goal: $2,059,615 Received to date in 2015: $1,998,977 2016 Goal: $6.3 Million y history attending the annual Southern Baptist Convention is not as long or as deep as many. Oc- casionally I meet someone who will tell me, This is my 40th SBC, or I havent missed a convention in 25 years. Though my father was a pastor and then director ofmissions,Ididn'tattendmyfirstSBCuntil1992. That year the convention came to Indianapolis, as close as it had been in many years to the Chicago suburbs where we lived. A friend from church suggested going, because its rarely so close. Indeed, the SBC would not come within 500 miles of Chicago for another 10 years. So we went and took my dad along with us. LittledidIknowthatonlyfiveyearslaterI wouldbeflyingtoonlymysecondSBCinDal- las, to be voted on as a vice president with the newly formed North American Mission Board. I havent missed an annual SBC meeting since then. This year, Lord willing, will be 20 in a row. I share this personal history to say that I really do understand why the average person may not regularly attend the annual SBC. Unless theres a controversy or crisis of some kind, the SBC is often left primarily to profes- sionals who have travel budgets, and pastors who may direct part of their family vacation time there. Perhaps thats why attendance at the SBC has only topped 10,000 three times in the last 15 years. Peak attendance during theconservativeresurgenceofthemid-1980'swas over40,000. But now, let me challenge you to attend the June 14-15 SBC in St. Louis this year. As my friend said, it will be years before its this close to Illinois churches again. If you havent been before, or cant go often, this is the year. Moreimportantly,thisyear'selectionsandotheractionswillbesignifi- cant.ItwasannouncedjustlastweekthatIllinois'ownDougMunton, pastor of First Baptist, OFallon, will be nominated as First Vice President. Im really excited about that. I hope hundreds and hundreds of Illinois Baptists will be there to support this outstanding Illinois pastor for this national role. The election for president this year alsopresentsasignificantchoice between pastors with notable differ- ences, not just in ministry experience, but in the areas of doctrinal convic- tion and missions cooperation. Illinois messengers will want to study these in advance of the convention, and arrive prepared to support the nominee who best represents not only their own churches practices and convictions, but also the direction that they feel is best for our Great Commission coop- eration as Baptist churches in the future. Normally Illinois ranks about 15th of 42 state conventions in the number of messengers it sends to the national SBC. But the last time the convention wasinSt.Louis(2002),Illinoisranked5th,with611messengersfrom193 churches.Andin1987,theprevioustimetheSBCwasinSt.Louis,Illinois churchessent1,373messengers.Yetlastyearonly139messengersfromIl- linois churches attended the SBC in nearby Columbus. To encourage messengers to turn out in record numbers this year, IBSA will be hosting a reception for Illinois Baptists at the St. Louis convention center, on the Monday night following the Pastors Conference and just prior to the conventions start on Tuesday morning. Whetherthisyearisyour40thSBC,oryourveryfirst,Ihopeyouwill make the SBC in nearby St. Louis a priority this year. What happens at the SBC is really up to folks like you and me. Nate Adams is executive director of the Illinois Baptist State Association. Respond at If you haven't been to the con- vention before, or can't go often, this is the year. For questions about subscriptions, articles, or upcoming events, contact the Illinois Baptist at (217) 391-3110 or . The Illinois Baptist is seeking news from IBSA churches. E-mail us at to tell us about special events and new ministry staff. POSTMASTER: The Illinois Baptist is owned and published every three weeks by the Illinois Baptist State Association, 3085 Stevenson Drive, Springfield, Illinois 62703-4440. Subscriptions are free to Illinois Baptists. Subscribe online at . CONVENTIONAL WISDOM When you tell a 22-year-old to turn offthe phone, don't ruin the movie, they hear, 'Please cut offyour left arm above the elbow'.That's not how they live their life, said AMC Theaters CEO Adam Aron. But the public disagreed, and AMC backed offa plan to allow texting in some movie theatres. The bigger news is how highly church scored. Sacred spaces: it's not OK to use a cell phone... Texting is teens' main communication Above e-mail, phone, or meeting in person, teens text. The Illinois Baptist staff Editor - Eric Reed Graphic Designer - Kris Kell Contributing Editor - Lisa Sergent Editorial Contributor - Meredith Flynn Administrative Assistant - Andrea Hammond - Pew Research M 4+9+2+5 55% Text friends every day 20% 13% 17% Every few days Less often Never In church or worship service At the movie theater or quiet places During a meeting Family dinner Restaurant Waiting in line 96% 95% 94% 88% 62% On public transportation 26% 25% 23% Walking down the street

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