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Military, hospital and other settings often leave chaplains feeling isolated from other ministers, and even other believers, for extended periods of time. (Creative Commons photo)
Military, hospital and other settings often leave chaplains feeling isolated from other ministers, and even other believers, for extended periods of time. (Creative Commons photo)

Missouri minister launching network for busy, isolated chaplains

James Layman, a retired hospital and military chaplain, was moved to act after noticing how many chaplains struggle on their own.

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Pastor’s killer ruled not guilty due to insanity

After years of dispute over whether he is competent stand trial, an Illinois judge has found a man who killed a Baptist preacher in a 2009 church shooting to be criminally insane.

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By all accounts the Cuban-born Ruben Ortiz has the energy and personality to match the passion he has for church and relationship building.
By all accounts the Cuban-born Ruben Ortiz has the energy and personality to match the passion he has for church and relationship building.

Networking two continents: For Ruben Ortiz, it means bridge-building

For Ruben Ortiz, “reaching as many people as possible” means connecting with Hispanic Baptists across North and South America.

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N.C. lawmakers lift ban on Sunday hunting

“Sunday is for rest — rest not just for man but also animals,” Christian Action League head Mark Creech said of compromise legislation to allow firearm hunting on Sunday but not during the morning worship hour.

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James Dunn, robust advocate for religious liberty, dies July 4

As executive director of the Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty for two decades, Dunn was outspoken in his support of religious liberty and separation of church and state.

This article was updated on Sunday, July 5, to include iinformation about the memorial service.

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Authorities are investigating a number of fires at African-American churches to determine if they were intentionally set. (Creative Commons photo by Erik Olson)
Authorities are investigating a number of fires at African-American churches to determine if they were intentionally set. (Creative Commons photo by Erik Olson)

Black church fires evoke both fear and faith in Baptist communities

Baptist leaders say the recent spate of African-Amerian church fires in the South have been disturbing — even when not ruled arson — because of the recent AME church shooting in South Carolina. 

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Tectonic shift: Pam Durso on 30 years of progress for Baptist women ministers

Opportunities for Baptist women ministers have expanded in the past three decades and for much of that time, Pam Durso, executive director of Baptist Women in Ministry, has been at the forefront of the movement. Baptist News Global asked her to reflect on changes in the past — and those to come.

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Baptist minister Laura Barclay, right, watches as Benjamin Moore is hugged after his wedding to Tadd Roberts. The wedding, at which Barclay officiated, was held on June 26, just hours after the Supreme Court legalized gay marriage nationally. (Photo by Jackie Whitaker)
Baptist minister Laura Barclay, right, watches as Benjamin Moore is hugged after his wedding to Tadd Roberts. The wedding, at which Barclay officiated, was held on June 26, just hours after the Supreme Court legalized gay marriage nationally. (Photo by Jackie Whitaker)

Been there, done that: Some Baptist ministers have already officiated at same-sex marriages

While conservatives are getting most of the attention for their opposition to same-sex marriage, some moderate and progressive Baptist pastors are stepping forward not only in support of the practice but also in conducting ceremonies.

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BJC says same-sex marriage ruling unlikely to affect tax-exemption

Several news outlets have published stories questioning whether conservative religious colleges will lose their tax-exempt status for refusing to admit same-sex couples, in light of the Supreme Court’s ruling in favor of gay marriage. While perhaps legally possible, the Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty says it is politically unlikely that will happen anytime soon.

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Don McGregor, editor, ABP founder, dead at 91

As a Baptist state paper editor who championed a free denominational press, Mississippi layman Don McGregor was instrumental in the formation in 1990 of what today is known as Baptist News Global.

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In some ways, science-religion discussions haven’t come far since the Scopes trial on evolution, but young people are largely uninterested in that approach to the topic. (Creative Commons photo by Kevin Dooley)
In some ways, science-religion discussions haven’t come far since the Scopes trial on evolution, but young people are largely uninterested in that approach to the topic. (Creative Commons photo by Kevin Dooley)

Millennials not OK with conventional science vs. religion debates, experts say

The generation’s openness to science doesn’t necessarily mean they have no room for faith. Scholars say the key is to not present the topic in an either-or manner. 

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Oklahoma Supreme Court orders removal of Ten Commandments from Capitol lawn

Bruce Prescott, an ordained Baptist minister who along with other Oklahomans filed a lawsuit seeking removal of a Ten Commandments monument on public property, said he is not opposed to displaying the Ten Commandments on private property or at religious institutions, but it is improper on the grounds of the State Capitol where people of various faiths and no faiths go to exercise their rights as citizens.

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Kentucky Baptist Fellowship names coordinator

Rhonda Abbott Blevins, former associate coordinator for missions for the Kentucky affiliate of the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, returns as chief executive Aug. 1.

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Merianna Harrelson preaches at Emmanuel Baptist Fellowship in Lexington, S.C. (Photo courtesy of Merianna Harrelson)
Merianna Harrelson preaches at Emmanuel Baptist Fellowship in Lexington, S.C. (Photo courtesy of Merianna Harrelson)

On their own: The challenges, blessings of being sole pastors of small churches

Financial difficulties and feelings of isolation are overshadowed by the loyalty and humility found in small churches by the pastors that lead them — often alone.

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