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March 2016


More Than Money


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news about the denomination

The following news items apply to (or affect) the Free Will Baptist denomination scattered across the nation and around the world.To read more about Free Will Baptists and the various departments that make up the national organization, visit

Read a brief history of Free Will Baptists in the United States.


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2015 Leadership Conference Promotes Church Revitalization

Antioch, TN—One hundred sixty-six pastors and church leaders from 21 states, Canada, and France gathered December 7-8, at Nashville Airport Marriott Hotel for the 2015 Free Will Baptist Leadership Conference. The conference explored the theme Rekindle and the important subject of church revitalization.


Dr. Harry Reeder (pictured below), senior pastor of Briarwood Presbyterian Church, Birmingham, Alabama, was the keynote speaker. Author of From Embers to a Flame: How God Can Revitalize Your Church, Reeder is founder of Embers to a Flame conferences dedicated to church renewal. He presented five keynote messages during the conference: The Biblical Mandate for Church Revitalization, The Biblical Paradigm for Church Revitalization, Leadership and Church Revitalization, Obstacles to Church Revitalization, and Getting Started in Church Revitalization.





“Church vitality or revitalization is nothing more than following God’s prescription for church health,” Reeder noted. “Church health naturally leads to conversions and improved personal discipleship, for our good and God’s glory. If a body is healthy, it will grow appropriately. So our focus is on the spiritual vitality of the church, knowing that a healthy church will grow.”

The meeting featured more than keynote sessions, with plenty of time for renewing friendships during banquet-styled meals and free time. The Tuesday luncheon featured security specialist Sam Hodges, who addressed the important topic of church security. During Tuesday afternoon free time, many conference-goers attended a retirement reception for Ray Lewis, outgoing director of the Board of Retirement.

Services featured music provided by Welch College, and a number of national boards met in conjunction with the conference.

“This conference provided a great opportunity for pastors and leaders to be refreshed and renewed and also walk away with practical steps they can take to revitalize their churches,” said Ryan Lewis, conference director. “We were pleased to have Dr. Reeder as keynote speaker, and to learn from someone who has dedicated his entire life to revitalizing churches.”

For information about the 2016 Leadership Conference, visit


Power for Parenting: D6 France Review

Nantes, France—Every Christian parent and pastor in France lives with the fear of what will happen to their children when they enter their final year before university. If their faith has withstood the pervasive encroachment of 11 years of schooling with a godless worldview, the philosophy course in the 12th year is a frontal assault on their faith. Many young people abandon their faith and walk away; some never return.

Parents depend on the church to anchor their children in the faith, but weekly 30-45 minute Sunday School classes don’t stand a chance against daily attacks at school. Even a vibrant youth group in the church is not a sufficient bulwark against the onslaught.




Because they want to reclaim their children for God, more than 300 parents, pastors, and church workers from across French-speaking Europe gathered September 2015, for the first D6 Conference in France. They examined God’s solution to this problem—parents: parents who obey God by teaching their children, model a godly life, and place God at the center of the family. They heard speakers and attended workshops that gave them a strong biblical base for instilling God’s truth within the family, along with practical tools to help them accomplish it. 

Those who attended came away convinced that D6 teaching and training is indispensable in our churches. We’re already making plans to hold a mini-D6 conference in the Nantes region in 2016.


New Convention Housing Process to Continue in 2016

Antioch, Tennessee—After overwhelmingly positive response to the new convention reservations process in 2015, the changes will continue through the 2016 convention. Convention housing will open for online reservations only Monday, May 9, at 9:00 am CDT, with links to online reservations available at

Phone reservations can be made beginning Tuesday morning, May 10, at 9:00 CDT. Due to limitations imposed by some hotels on the number of reservations made by individuals, groups booking eight or more rooms can contact convention manager Ryan Lewis (877-767-7659) for information about group reservations.

The cancellation policy will also remain in effect for 2016, meaning that a non-refundable cancellation fee of the first night’s room and tax will be charged for any canceled reservation. Rooms can be transferred between individuals, and available rooms can be posted at

Convention hotel information is available in this magazine, as well as online at




©2016 ONE Magazine, National Association of Free Will Baptists