Nevada Baptists Highlight 40-Year Legacy of Doing God’s Work

Nevada Baptists celebrated their 40th anniversary with a theme of “Legacy” that included memories of the past and vision for the future.

Organized in October 1978 after nearly 30 years of Southern Baptist churches being started and informally cobbling together for fellowship, what is known today as the Nevada Baptist Convention began with 65 churches and missions and a $135,000 annual budget that included 10 percent — $13,500 — to missions through the Cooperative Program.

Today, the Nevada convention encompasses 215 churches and plants and a 2019 budget of $2,248,220, which includes 50 percent of the anticipated $1,176,020 Cooperative Program giving from Nevada churches — or $588,000 — allocated to CP national and international missions and ministry.

Records also indicate at least 52,136 individuals have been baptized during the last 40 years.

“During the process of preparing for this 40th anniversary of the Nevada Baptist Convention, it became more and more apparent that we are not the beginning nor the end of the legacy God intends for Nevada,” White told messengers during the opening session of the NBC’s Oct. 16-17 annual meeting at South Reno Baptist Church, where Joe Taylor has been pastor for 25 years.

“Looking back should remind us of not only where we came from, but the call God has placed on our lives,” White said.

Kevin White, executive director of the Nevada Baptist Convention, introduces a panel of longtime pastors and young church planters during the mid-October annual meeting in Reno.

The annual meeting followed a 40th anniversary celebration Monday evening, Oct. 15, at the Atlantis, a hotel/casino in Reno, attended by about 200 people from several states. They gathered to reminisce as well as to celebrate “what God hath wrought” since the first Southern Baptist church in Nevada — in Hawthorne, southeast of Carson City — in 1948 became part of the SBC.

Reminiscing by former executive directors and state convention staff Monday evening led to the next day’s annual meeting that seemed to many — including David Meacham, who was the NBC’s executive director from 1992 to 2001 — as more a revival than business.

The NBC Worship Collective, a group of worship leaders from across Nevada, led 128 messengers from 51 churches in sometimes rousing, sometimes awe-inspiring, sometimes reflective worship during the four-session annual meeting.

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Source: Baptist Press