Southern Baptist Convention opens in Kentucky

Published 10:07 pm Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The Southern Baptist Convention’s president says the denomination’s vision for the future should include more giving to worldwide missions and an increased effort to attract minorities.

The Rev. Johnny Hunt, a pastor from Georgia, addressed thousands of attendees Tuesday shortly after the opening of the two-day convention in Louisville.

Hunt acknowledged during the 45-minute speech that membership in the nation’s largest Protestant denomination is shrinking. He says Southern Baptists are aging and the denomination could lose half of its 16 million members by 2050.

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He urged members to engage “our brothers in ethnicity.” The convention is expected to vote on a resolution to honor the election of Barack Obama as the nation’s first black president.