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Posted by on Aug 25, 2011 in Uncategorized

A Baptist News Round-Up: Obesity, NCAA, Planned Parenthood & Obama

This is cross-posted from Baptists Today where I write a weekly wrap-up column.  Check out my past BT columns here.

Australian Baptists & Same-Sex Marriage

Australian Baptists recently voiced their opposition to same-sex marriage, urging the Prime Minister and other politicians to oppose efforts to redefine marriage to include same-sex couples.  A spokesperson for Australian Baptist Ministries stated that Australian Baptists do support, according to the article, “the rights of all couples to justice with respect to property and like entitlements.”  Support for these rights, however, “does not justify major changes to our convictions about marriage or to marriage legislation.”

Baptists and Obesity

The New York Times has profiled a Baptist church in the Mississippi Delta that has “waged war against obesity and bad health.”  The Times reports that the National Baptist Convention, the largest African-American Baptist denomination, is launching a health campaign and aims to have a “health ambassador” in each of its 10,000 affiliated churches by September 2012.

Baptists and the NCAA

Houston Baptist University has been approved for full membership in NCAA Division I.  HBU sports competed at NCAA Division I level from 1973-1989 and then dropped down to NAIA.  According to Baptist Press, other Baptist-affiliated institutions are in the process of a move to NCAA include Union University, Shorter College and California Baptist University.  All three schools are candidates for NCAA Division II.

Black Baptists Defend President Obama

The Progressive National Baptist Convention has called for the ouster of politicians who have disrespected President Obama with offensive rhetoric.  A resolution passed by PNBC reads, “Conventional wisdom suggests if comments like these were targeted to past holders of this nation’s highest office of another/preferred hue, serious repercussive actions would have immediately followed those making said comments.”

Southern Baptists and Planned Parenthood

The Rev. Vincent Lachina made news last week when he testified against an anti-abortion rights constitutional amendment in Mississippi.  Lachina – who was wearing a clerical collar – began his remarks by saying, “I am an ordained Southern Baptist minister with 47 years of service to the family of God.  I wish to state quite clearly that I am both an evangelical Christian and I am committed to a woman’s right to her own reproductive choices.”  Rev. Lachina told the crowd that he grew up in Jackson, Mississippi and had a “Mississippi heritage.”

After testifying, Rev. Lachina was “busted” by an audience member who outed the reverend as a resident of Seattle, Washington and a chaplain for Planned Parenthood.  While Lachina apparently was employed by the SBC’s Sunday School Board in the past, he has long been affiliated with the United Church of Christ and American Baptist Churches USA, according to the news report.

All I can say is, what was the Rev. thinking wearing the clerical collar?

Additional Reading:

  • Timothy Dalrymple of the evangelical website Patheos recently interviewed former Mercer University president Kirby Godsey about his latest book God is Not a Christian.
  • The Alliance Defense Fund has sent a letter signed by chaplains to Congressional leaders urging the protection of religious liberty in light of the implementation of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” repeal.


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