GRACEVILLE–The Baptist College of Florida family was actively involved when Florida Baptists gathered during the Florida Baptist Pastor’s Conference and the annual meeting of the Florida Baptist State Convention at Lakes Church in Lakeland, Nov. 7-9.
“The theme for this year’s convention meeting was ‘Blessed Be the Tie: A Family Gathering’ and it was truly a family gathering,” said Sandra Richards, director of BCF’s student life and marketing.
As messengers, exhibitors and visitors attending the 2021 annual meeting entered the church, they were greeted by the enthusiastic, smiling faces of BCF students serving in the registration area as they verified credentials and registered messengers and visitors.
BCF alumni also led in key roles during the two days.
James Ross, a 2006 graduate, preached the historic Convention Sermon on Tuesday morning. Ross, lead pastor of The Church on Bayshore in Niceville, challenged church leaders to “lose their lives for the sake of the gospel” even as many church leaders in America are “losing their passion for ministry.”
In a sermon focused on Mark 8:34-37 and Philippians 1:27-30, Ross urged Florida Baptists to be faithful to the Great Commission even when facing discouragement and frustration.
BCF was also well represented during the Pastor’s Conference as Stephen Wolgamott directed praise and worship during the meeting’s two days. The 2006 BCF graduate is worship pastor of First Baptist Church in Leesburg, a role he has served in since 2008.
United in worship and unified during the business session of the convention, several BCF graduates held leadership roles presenting nominations for offices and agencies, as well as reporting actions taken by the Convention.
During a Monday dinner held for those in attendance, the BCF Jazz Band led in worship.
On Tuesday, video reports from the FBSC Cooperating Ministries featured BCF President Thomas A. Kinchen. He illustrated how The Baptist College of Florida is focused on sending out the next greatest generation of Christian leaders and shared his heart and vision for reaching the world by equipping and preparing students for the challenges of sharing the Good News.
Throughout the three-day gathering, Stephen Thomas, a member of the BCF admissions team and site administrator for the Lakeland campus, staffed an exhibit booth where visitors received information on regionally accredited and affordable degrees available on the Graceville campus, the Lakeland campus, and completely online.
As many members of the BCF family and friends stopped by the booth rekindling friendships, signing the alumni book, and gathering information on upcoming campus projects and new ventures, the exhibit became “nothing less than a family reunion,” said Richards.
“It was truly an exciting convention as BCF graduates were leading in worship, preaching, and presenting degree opportunities for future leaders,” said Kinchen.
“Championing the cooperative spirit of “Right Beside You” under the strong leadership of Executive Director-Treasurer Tommy Green, the entire convention was encouraging and uplifting,” said Kinchen. “Within this cooperative spirit, BCF remains focused on training students in “Changing the World Through the Unchanging Word®.” Thank you, Florida Baptists for being right beside us.”
For more information on how the faculty, staff, students, and alumni of The Baptist College of Florida are committed to changing the world, please call 800-328-2660 ext. 460 or visit the website at www.baptistcollege.edu.