Baptisms look like heaven at SBTC annual meeting

FORT WORTH—Messengers and guests at the annual meeting of the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention witnessed a baptismal service of First Baptist Church of Euless via live video feed from the rotunda of the MacGorman Chapel at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Nov. 11. The baptisms, conducted by First Euless pastor John Meador, looked a bit like heaven and immediately followed the SBTC’s Look Like Heaven report.

SBTC president Jimmy Pritchard introduced the baptismal service to those in the chapel auditorium, noting how the baptism of believers pleases the Lord and reminding the audience of the SBTC’s involvement in providing funds for the chapel’s baptismal pool.

Around 50 gathered in the rotunda as Meador began by defining a “gospel-centered church” as one in which the people are actively engaged in sharing the good news of Christ. Meador stated that since First Euless implemented the Can We Talk? evangelism program 14 months ago, the church has mobilized 600 people to share the gospel and seen hundreds come to faith.

Expressing excitement about his church’s involvement with equipping other churches to do the same, Meador proclaimed, “I believe God is getting ready to raise up a massive number of people to share the gospel in communities where people have never heard [it] before.”

“We’re excited to be partnering with the SBTC in all that,” Meador noted, commencing with the baptisms.

“I am Snowflower Dong. Jesus is my Lord, and I am not ashamed,” exclaimed a young Chinese woman, the first to be baptized.

Meador explained that Dong, the daughter of a Chinese pastor, had previously accepted Christ and desired to follow the Lord in believer’s baptism by immersion. Applause reverberated throughout the rotunda and auditorium as Dong emerged smiling from the baptismal waters.

Meador then introduced Holly Coleman, a young woman who had prayed to receive Jesus Christ after hearing a Can We Talk? presentation a month before. Shortly after, Coleman attended a meeting at First Euless, assuming it to be a class on baptism.

“About an hour into that class, she realized we weren’t talking about baptism, we were equipping her to share the gospel,” Meador said. “She decided to stay, and she joined an evangelism team and has already been out sharing the gospel.”

“That’s the way it ought to happen with everybody,” Meador remarked before baptizing Coleman, who also joyfully proclaimed her faith in Jesus to resounding applause.

Meador concluded the service with an exhortation to pastors and churches to equip their people to share the gospel in their communities.

“Every one of us ought to lead the way,” Meador said.

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