Baptist conference slated

By Tonya Fennell: Freedom Newspapers

First Baptist Church pastor Joel Horne views the 95th Annual Baptist Convention of New Mexico being held in Clovis as an opportunity for him to renew and refresh his beliefs.

Horne said the convention, which is rotated to cities around the state, also affords him the opportunity to visit with other New Mexican pastors.

“This (convention) is a coming together of Baptist churches for the purpose of learning what’s happening, new things and encouragement,” Horne said.

First Baptist Church student pastor Steve Cloud is also looking forward to the two-day convention which begins today at Central Baptist Church.

“It’s not very often that different cultures and different ethnicities come together,” Cloud said. “We (Baptists) have the same core beliefs, but we are also different.”

More than 1,000 people pre-registered to attend the event, according to Joseph Bunce, executive director of the Baptist Convention of New Mexico.

Cloud said he is looking forward to hearing the various sermons planned throughout the convention.

“It’s neat to hear different views on scriptures,” Cloud said. “I gain a lot of ideas.”

A former Clovis resident, Bunce is delivering a sermon Wednesday from the Gospel of Matthew.

Session themes include military, language and agriculture.

Along with the inspiration preaching and business meetings planned, a special musical performance by award-winning Christian artist Jaci Velasquez is scheduled at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday night. Velasquez will also perform a youth concert on Wednesday night at Marshall Junior High.
Although the Wednesday night performance is geared toward teenagers, Cloud said adults are welcome to attend.

Cloud said the group also plans to reach out to the community by knocking on doors.

“It is really good when we can extend into the community,” he said, “and talk about the Lord.”

What: 95th Annual Baptist Convention of New Mexico
When: Tuesday and Wednesday
Where: Central Baptist Church
Sessions: 1:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, 8:30 a.m. and 6:30 Wednesday.
Concert: Jaci Velasquez, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.