Alert #1: Getting Ready for the Soulforce Action at the Southern Baptist Convention’s Annual Meeting June 13-16, 2004

April 21, 2004

Dear Soulforce volunteer to the Southern Baptist Convention Annual Meeting in Indianapolis,

We are so glad that you have registered and plan to attend the Soulforce action at the Southern Baptist Convention Annual Meeting in Indianapolis, IN June 13-16th. This is the first of several "Alerts" we will be sending your way as we continue to plan for our journey to Indianapolis. Click here for housing information. If you have not made your reservations yet, we encourage you to do so.

This will be the fifth year Soulforce will be present at the Southern Baptist Convention Annual Meeting. We have been relentless in our efforts to take truth to our Southern Baptist sisters and brothers. If you are not familiar with the resolutions and rhetoric of Southern Baptists against God’s gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender children, we suggest that you familiarize yourself with our case against the SB teachings by clicking here and reading the summary.

Additionally, keep in mind that the Southern Baptists have been actively working to support an anti-gay, anti-family “marriage” amendment to the US Constitution, and speaking out at everyone opportunity against equal marriage rights for same-gender couples.

In 2002 after the Southern Baptist Convention Annual Meeting, a Task Force on Ministry to Homosexuals was formed by Life Way Christian Resources and The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention in response to a motion at the 2001 annual SBC meeting. The task force’s report was delivered at the SBC 2003 meeting in Phoenix, Arizona. The essence of their report is that homosexuals are sick and sinful and in need of ministry to help escape the lifestyle. They unveiled "The Way Out Ministry – finding freedom from homosexuality." http://www.lifeway.com/thewayout

Soulforce’s response to the Task Force was to form our own task force of ten people who each adopted a Southern Baptist Task Force member and have worked diligently all year long to attempt to dialogue with these persons. Each Soulforce task force volunteer has written letters, sent "Soulforce Remember Cards," "God Bless Our Family Cards," and purchased and sent copies of "Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth."

http://www.bpfna.org/rightly.html

Several volunteers have sent over sixty pieces of correspondence to their Southern Baptist Task Force adoptee. There has been little response. Now it is time to begin making our plans for direct action in Indianapolis.

I hope as you prepare for our journey that you will first and foremost, prepare yourselves spiritually. If you take the time to read the above links and research and study the background material on Southern Baptist anti-gay rhetoric, you will be reading a great deal of spiritually violent material. We suggest that you find spiritual nourishment before and after these readings.

One of the best things you can do for yourself is to study and review the Soulforce 4 Step Journey found at https://soulforceactionarchives.org/main/step1.shtmland remember that you are a beautiful child of God and loved by our Creator just the way you are. We also encourage you to familiarize yourself and review Mel’s booklet What the Bible Says and Does Not Say About Homosexuality.

Whatever faith tradition you embrace, we simply encourage you to be spiritually fed as you prepare for this journey.

As our plans continue to unfold, we will continue to send out alerts and keep you updated. In the meantime, if you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact us and continue to keep checking the website at www.soulforce.org for updates. Again, we are glad that you are joining us and look forward to doing justice work together in Indianapolis.

Remember, "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter." Martin Luther King Jr.

In love and peace,

Karen Weldin
Soulforce Director of Operations

Jamie McDaniel
Southern Baptist Co-Chair

For hotel information and registration, go to
www.soulforce.org/denomination/sbc/sbc2004/

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