while her parents, BWA leaders, look on
with some of the vice president-elects
as BWA General Secretary for 2010-2015
The BWA Annual Gathering concluded on Saturday, August 1, after some significant actions by the General Council (GC), the highest decision making body of the BWA outside of the Baptist World Congress.
The GC on Friday, July 31, elected John Upton of Virginia in the United States, as the president-elect of the organization. Upton, who is executive director of the Baptist General Association of Virginia and of the Virginia Baptist Mission Board, will be the nominee for BWA president at the next Baptist World Congress, to be held in Honolulu, Hawaii, July 28 to August 1, 2010.
Twelve vice president-elects were chosen, one of whom, Daniel Carro from Argentina, is the first vice president-elect. It will be the first time that the BWA will be electing a first vice president.
The BWA 400 Legacy Fund was also launched to raise a reserve fund that would help to secure the financial future of the BWA. Individuals, churches and organizations would be invited to make contributions in multiples of 4, 40, 400, or 4,000 in their own currency to the fund.
BWA General Secretary Neville Callam also called for the creation of two commissions – one dealing with Baptist-Muslim conversations, the other to address intra-Baptist relationships.
A number of important constitutional changes were made by the BWA.
On Saturday, August 1, the GC accepted the recommendation of the Personnel Committee that BWA General Secretary Neville Callam be reelected for the quinquennium 2010-2015.
The Appointment of Raimundo César Barreto Jr. of Brazil as director of the Division of Freedom and Justice was also approved. He is to begin serving on March 1, 2010. Other important personnel appointments were also made.
Leena Lavanya Kumari of India received the Denton and Janice Lotz Human Rights Award. The award was recognition of Lavanya’s philanthropic work, human rights advocacy, and church planting endeavors in Narasaraopet and surrounding towns and villages in Andhra Pradesh.
The restructuring of the divisions of Study and Research and Evangelism and Education was also approved. Both divisions have been replaced by the Division of Mission, Evangelism and Theological Reflection.
More than 350 delegates from more than 50 countries attended the six days of meetings.