Mesquite pastor re-elected SBTC president

SAN ANTONIO—Terry M. Turner, pastor of Mesquite Friendship Baptist Church near Dallas, was re-elected on Tuesday for a second term as president of the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention during the group’s 15th meeting in San Antonio. Turner was unopposed.

Garland pastor Russell Rogers nominated the Oklahoma native, noting his longtime friendship with Turner that began when Rogers was a young preacher and Mesquite Friendship was a fledgling work begun under Turner’s leadership. Today, the church has grown to more than 1,700 members.

In visiting the church, Rogers said he had been struck by how much the people at Mesquite Friendship love him, “and I quickly realized he loves them.” In Turner, SBTC churches would have “another gentleman we can love and who truly has a heart for God and a heart for us,” Rogers added.

Also during Tuesday’s session at Castle Hills First Baptist Church, Geoff Kolander, a deacon and Sunday School teacher at Hyde Park Baptist Church and an Austin attorney, was elected by acclamation as SBTC first vice president after being nominated by retired judge H. Paul Pressler, a layman at Houston’s First Baptist Church.

James Nickell, pastor of First Baptist Church of Quitman, was elected recording secretary by acclamation.

Messengers approved a 2013 Cooperative Program budget of $26.3 million and passed eight resolutions on topics ranging from “a clear and complete” gospel message to religious liberty violations in the federal healthcare act to sanctity of life, biblical marriage, the nation of Israel and other social concerns. Texan Richard D. Land, who will retire in October 2013 as president of the Nashville, Tenn.-based Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, was also honored through a resolution for his years of service.

TEXAN Correspondent
Jerry Pierce
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