David Uth, president of the Southern Baptist Convention Pastors’ Conference 2020, has embarked on a 40-day season of prayer and fasting amid dissension over his decision to include speakers and guests who are not Southern Baptist in the upcoming program, including female teaching pastor and spoken word artist Hosanna Wong.
Uth’s reaction comes in the wake of a decision by the SBC’s executive committee stipulating that the SBCPC makes changes to the program by Feb. 24 in response to the dissent. These changes would also have to be made before it is granted space at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, where the SBC’s annual meeting will be held June 7-8.
In a statement published last Thursday, Uth, who leads First Baptist Church of Orlando, explained that when he learned about the decision made by the SBC’s executive committee, he reached out to the leaders and they agreed that he would have until March 30 to deliver his response instead.
“In separate phone calls I informed J.D. Greear, president of the SBC, Ronnie Floyd, Executive Committee CEO, and Mike Stone, Executive Committee chairman, that I will not have an answer to their inquiry by the deadline of February 24. I am not comfortable deciding something of this magnitude so quickly. Instead, I’m asking our church family to pray with me through this decision,” Uth said in his statement.
“I am asking our people here at First Baptist Orlando, who know me, love me and walk with me, to join me and our pastors on a 40-day season of prayer and fasting. Together we are asking God to guide us through the decisions regarding the SBCPC 2020 so that we will respond in a way that will bring Him the greatest joy and the greatest glory.”
Some SBC pastors have reportedly threatened to boycott the conference over Wong’s inclusion in the lineup. Wong is a network associate teaching pastor at the Chula Vista campus of the multisite EastLake Church in San Diego, California. Southern Baptists do not endorse female pastors.
Southern Baptists have also raised concern over David Hughes, pastor of Church by the Glades, a Southern Baptist congregation in Coral Springs, Florida; Jim Cymbala, pastor of the evangelical nondenominational Brooklyn Tabernacle in Brooklyn, New York; and Wayne Cordeiro, founding pastor of New Hope Christian Fellowship, based in Honolulu, Hawaii.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Leonardo Blair