Deaths of pastor, wife, ruled murder/suicide

Two Baptist churches in North Carolina are baffled by the deaths of a well-liked couple that police say resulted from a murder and a suicide.

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Fellowship is a spiritual need the elderly who live at home or in nursing homes rarely see met. (Creative Commons photo by Kara Newhouse)
Fellowship is a spiritual need the elderly who live at home or in nursing homes rarely see met. (Creative Commons photo by Kara Newhouse)

Georgia church heeds calling to serve elderly through worship

After selling its building to developers, the congregation at Scott Boulevard Baptist Church in Decatur has created an endowment to meet the spiritual needs of isolated senior citizens — a ministry area experts say is one of the most under-served in the nation. 

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Churches and ministries reap benefits from commercial real estate sales. (Creative Commons photo by John Murden)
Churches and ministries reap benefits from commercial real estate sales. (Creative Commons photo by John Murden)

When the price is right, churches are selling property to advance ministry

Churches being wooed by developers are seeing opportunities to expand ministries and facilities with lucrative real estate deals. 

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A sculpture by artist Karen Swenholt, whose work will be exhibited in the sculpture garden of a Virginia congregation. (KarenSwenholt.com photo)
A sculpture by artist Karen Swenholt, whose work will be exhibited in the sculpture garden of a Virginia congregation. (KarenSwenholt.com photo)

In this case, missional means a contemplative sculpture garden

The Church at Convergence in Alexandria, Va., hopes the sculpture garden it is creating will expand its influence in the community and help in the economic revival of the city's West End.

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Pastors and church health consultants say congregations that work with outside ministries and nonprofits have a greater impact on their communities. (Jeff Brumley/ABPnews/Herald)
Pastors and church health consultants say congregations that work with outside ministries and nonprofits have a greater impact on their communities. (Jeff Brumley/ABPnews/Herald)

Churches widen impact, relevance by working with outside groups

Partnering with existing ministries and community groups is helping churches fulfill their missions in their local communities. 

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‘Third-way’ Baptist church faces possible expulsion

A local association of Southern Baptist churches in southern California is poised to vote on removing a congregation for allegedly violating tenets of the faith in how it relates to gays.

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Worship at The Well at Springfield in Jacksonville, Fla. Member Mike Belle said he joined the Baptist congregation because of its focus on authentic relationships, not for its worship style. (Jeff Brumley ABPnews/Herald)
Worship at The Well at Springfield in Jacksonville, Fla. Member Mike Belle said he joined the Baptist congregation because of its focus on authentic relationships, not for its worship style. (Jeff Brumley ABPnews/Herald)

Millennials warn churches against catering to their generation

A writer and others say stereotyping Millennials as eager for contemporary worship overlooks differences among individuals and the human capacity to change.

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Sex abuse victim sues Alabama Baptist church

A week after the arrest of a trusted financial secretary on charges of theft, an Alabama Baptist church is being slapped with a lawsuit claiming negligent hiring and supervision of a convicted child molester.

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Jeff Stinson, shown during a 2003 deployment to Iraq with the U.S. Air Force, says churches provide essential sense of family to military personnel. (Photo provided by Jeff Stinson).
Jeff Stinson, shown during a 2003 deployment to Iraq with the U.S. Air Force, says churches provide essential sense of family to military personnel. (Photo provided by Jeff Stinson).

Air Force personnel cuts highlight importance of church in military life

Stress of deployments and even downsizing can be lessened for military members actively involved in their congregations. 

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Bringing life back into a congregation can mean making difficult changes to worship style, culture and identity, experts acknowledge. However, they disagree on how many churches are willing to take those steps. (Jeff Brumley/ABPnews/Herald)
Bringing life back into a congregation can mean making difficult changes to worship style, culture and identity, experts acknowledge. However, they disagree on how many churches are willing to take those steps. (Jeff Brumley/ABPnews/Herald)

Experts seek balance between optimism and pessimism in future of congregations

Church revitalization is increasing, but is there enough interest to spark change?

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