2020 Florida Baptist State Convention annual meeting cancelled

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JACKSONVILLE –The 2020 Florida Baptist State Convention annual meeting scheduled Nov. 9-10 for Lakeland will be cancelled due to the challenges of safely gathering people during the COVID-19 pandemic, said Tommy Green, Florida Baptist Convention executive director-treasurer, in a video posted on Facebook.

The Florida Baptist State Convention is an annual meeting held in November that draws Florida Baptists from across the state together for worship, fellowship and to transact Convention business.

Calling the cancellation “the most prudent plan,” Green said the dilemma state convention leaders face this year is identical to the ones that Florida Baptist churches face every week as they decide whether they should meet as a congregation.  He noted churches across the state are in different phases of regathering.

Elected FBSC officers, under the leadership of President Erik Cummings, decided to cancel the meeting by unanimous vote during an Aug. 27 teleconference call.  Cummings, pastor of New Life Baptist Church of Carol City in Miami, made the proposal to cancel the meeting.  State convention officers voting in affirmation were Mike Wiggins, pastor of Pine Terrace Baptist Church in Milton, first vice president; Vanessa Rodriguez-Cardona of Winter Garden, second vice-president; and Randy Huckabee, pastor of First Baptist Church in Dade City, recording secretary.

Also, giving their approval were Phillip Herrington, pastor of First Baptist Church in Live Oak, chair of the FBSC Committee on Nominations, and Dan Glenn, pastor of Stetson Baptist Church in DeLand, chair of the FBSC Committee on Order of Business.

Green said the State Board of Missions, which serves as the Convention ad interim, will transact necessary business when it meets this month to position the Convention for the upcoming year, including the official cancellation of the meeting, making future meeting adjustments and adoption of a 2021 Florida Baptist Cooperative Program budget.

Green said a proposal will be considered to extend the service of all elected leaders serving on FBSC boards and governing bodies for another year until messengers return during the 2021 annual meeting.

The State Board of Missions is scheduled to meet Sept. 17-18 at the Baptist Building in Jacksonville.

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