Baptist World Alliance

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Baptist World Alliance
Baptist World Alliance Logo.png
Classification Evangelicalism
Orientation Baptist
General Secretary and CEOElijah M. Brown, since 2018
PresidentTomás Mackey, since 2020
Region126 countries
Headquarters Falls Church, Virginia, U.S.
OriginJuly 1905
London, United Kingdom
Congregations169,000
Members47,000,000
Official website baptistworld.org

The Baptist World Alliance (BWA) is the Christian Worldwide Communion of Baptist churches. The organization counts 47,000,000 people in 2021 with 241 member bodies in 126 countries and territories. It is the largest organization of Baptist churches in the world. Its headquarters are in Falls Church, Washington metropolitan area, Virginia, United States. It is led by General Secretary and CEO Elijah M. Brown and by President Tomás Mackey.

Contents

History

Believer's baptism of adult by immersion at Northolt Park Baptist Church, in Greater London, Baptist Union of Great Britain. Baptism at Northolt Park Baptist Church (cropped).jpg
Believer's baptism of adult by immersion at Northolt Park Baptist Church, in Greater London, Baptist Union of Great Britain.
Show on the life of Jesus at Igreja da Cidade, affiliated to the Brazilian Baptist Convention, in Sao Jose dos Campos, Brazil, 2017 Auto de Pascoa - IgrejaDaCidade (crop).jpg
Show on the life of Jesus at Igreja da Cidade, affiliated to the Brazilian Baptist Convention, in São José dos Campos, Brazil, 2017
Chumukedima Ao Baptist Church building in Chumukedima, Dimapur, affiliated with the Nagaland Baptist Church Council (India). Chumukedima Ao Baptist Church.jpg
Chumukedima Ao Baptist Church building in Chumukedima, Dimapur, affiliated with the Nagaland Baptist Church Council (India).

The roots of the Baptist World Alliance can be traced back to the seventeenth century when Baptist leader Thomas Grantham proposed the concept of a congregation of all Christians in the world that are "baptised according to the appointment of Christ." [1] Similar proposals were put forward later such as the call of John Rippon in 1790 for a world meeting of Baptists "to consult the ecclesiastical good to the whole." [1]

It was, however, only in 1904 when such congregation became a reality. John Newton Prestridge, editor of The Baptist Argus , at Louisville, Kentucky called for a world gathering of Baptists. John Howard Shakespeare, editor of The Baptist Times and Freeman, London, endorsed the proposal. [2] [3] [4] In October 1904, the Baptist Union of Great Britain passed a resolution to invite a Congress to meet with them in 1905. At the Congress, a committee was formed, which proposed a Constitution for a World Alliance. The Baptist World Alliance was founded in London, during this first Baptist World Congress in July 1905. [5] [6] [7] [8]

Membership was opened to "any general Union, Convention or Association of Baptist Churches", and it was decided that the Alliance would "meet in general assembly ordinarily once in five years, unless otherwise determined by the Executive Committee". Three leading personalities involved in the organisation included Prestridge, Shakespeare and Alexander Maclaren (who served as provisional President).

The gathering was referred to as an "alliance" and not a council in order to establish the nature of the dialogue as a meeting. This means that the body wields no authority over participating churches or national Baptist unions, serving only as a forum for collaboration. [9]

In 2020, the Argentinian Tomás Mackey succeeded South African Paul Msiza and became president of the Alliance. [10]

Statistics

According to a denomination census released in 2021, it has 241 Baptist denominations members in 126 countries, 169,000 churches and 47,000,000 baptized members. [11]

Beliefs

The Alliance has a Baptist confession of faith. [12]

Objectives

The alliance's stated goals are to: "(1) To Unite Baptists Worldwide; (2) To Lead in World Evangelization; (3) To Respond to People in Need; and (4) To Defend Human Rights." [13]

Organisational structure

The Alliance is divided into six regional or geographical fellowships: North American Baptist Fellowship, Asia Pacific Baptist Federation (formerly Asian Baptist Federation), All-Africa Baptist Fellowship, Caribbean Baptist Fellowship, Union of Baptists in Latin America, and European Baptist Federation. [14] Each regional fellowship is served by an Executive Secretary.

List of presidents

NameTermCountry
John Clifford 1905–1911UK
Robert Stuart MacArthur 1911–1923USA
Edgar Young Mullins 1923–1928USA
John MacNeill 1928–1934Canada
George Washington Truett 1934–1939USA
James Henry Rushbrooke 1939–1947UK
Charles Oscar Johnson 1947–1950USA
Fred Townley Lord 1950–1955UK
Theodore Floyd Adams 1955–1960USA
Joao Filson Soren 1960–1965Brasil
William Tolbert 1965–1970Liberia
Carney Hargroves 1970–1975USA
David Wong  [ de ]1975–1980Hong Kong
Duke Kimbrough McCall 1980–1985USA
Noel Vose 1985–1990Australia
Knud Wümpelmann  [ de ]1990–1995Denmark
Nilson do Amaral Fanini 1995–2000Brasil
Billy Kim 2000–2005South Korea
David Coffey 2005–2010UK
John Upton 2010–2015USA (Virginia)
Paul Mzisa 2015-South Africa

Baptist World Congress

Baptist World Congresses have been held every few years since 1905. [8] [15] [16] [17]

No.YearCityCountry
1.1905 London Flag of the United Kingdom.svg  GBR
2.1911 Philadelphia Flag of the United States.svg  USA
3.1923 Stockholm Flag of Sweden.svg  SWE
4.1928 Toronto Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg  CAN
5.1934 Berlin Flag of Germany.svg  DEU
6.1939 Atlanta Flag of the United States.svg  USA
7.1947 Copenhagen Flag of Denmark.svg  DNK
8.1950 Cleveland Flag of the United States.svg  USA
9.1955 London Flag of the United Kingdom.svg  GBR
10.1960 Rio de Janeiro Flag of Brazil.svg  BRA
11.1965 Miami Beach Flag of the United States.svg  USA
12.1970 Tokyo Flag of Japan.svg  JPN
13.1975 Stockholm Flag of Sweden.svg  SWE
14.1980 Toronto Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg  CAN
15.1985 Los Angeles Flag of the United States.svg  USA
16.1990 Seoul Flag of South Korea.svg  KOR
17.1995 Buenos Aires Flag of Argentina.svg  ARG
18.2000 Melbourne Flag of Australia (converted).svg  AUS
19.2005 Birmingham Flag of the United Kingdom.svg  GBR
19.2010 Honolulu Flag of the United States.svg  USA
19.2015 Durban Flag of South Africa.svg  ZAF
19.2021 (Upcoming) Rio De Janeiro Flag of Brazil.svg  BRA

Ecumenical relations

The Baptist World Alliance maintains ecumenical relations with the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. One series of International Conversations between the BWA and the Catholic Church took place from between 1984 and 1988 moderated by the Reverend Dr David T. Shannon, sometime President of Andover Newton Theological School, and the Most Reverend Bede Heather, Bishop of Parramatta. [18] While this dialogue produced the report called Summons to Witness to Christ in Today's World, the second phase did not push through because of opposition from within the Baptist World Alliance itself. [19] Negotiations continued, however, so that a series of consultations transpired from 2000 to 2003. During this period the Baptists and Catholics discussed important doctrines that divide these denominations. [19] These second series of conversations resulted in formal meetings between 2006 and 2010. The current Co-Moderators are Paul Fiddes, Professor of Systematic Theology in the University of Oxford and formerly Principal of Regent's Park College, Oxford, and Arthur J. Serratelli, Bishop of Paterson. [20]

Controversies

In 2004, the Southern Baptist Convention of the United States had accused then-BWA President Kim of adopting a liberal theology, because of his support for the exercise of pastoral ministry of women, its anti-Americanism, and because a member denomination, the American Baptist Churches USA, had accepted an organization that had two churches favorable to marriage between people of the same sex, and thereafter left the organization. [21] Alliance Secretary General Denton Lotz replied that the Alliance was not liberal, but evangelical conservative, that the American Baptist Churches USA in his constitution did not support homosexuality and that any accusations of anti-Americanism had resulted from his visits to Fidel Castro in Cuba for the import of Bibles and the expansion of the freedom of belief. [22] [23] In 2005, two state denomination members of the Southern Baptist Convention, the Baptist General Association of Virginia and the Baptist General Convention of Texas, applied for membership in the Alliance and were admitted. [24]

See also

Related Research Articles

American Baptist Churches USA

The American Baptist Churches USA (ABCUSA) is a mainline Baptist Christian denomination within the United States. The denomination maintains headquarters in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania. The organization is usually considered mainline, although varying theological and mission emphases may be found among its congregations, including modernist, charismatic and evangelical orientations. It traces its history to the First Baptist Church in America (1638) and the Baptist congregational associations which organized the Triennial Convention in 1814. From 1907 to 1950, it was known as the Northern Baptist Convention, and from 1950 to 1972 as the American Baptist Convention.

Converge, formerly the Baptist General Conference (BGC) and Converge Worldwide, is a Baptist Christian denomination in United States. It is affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance. The headquarters is in Orlando. The current president of Converge is Scott Ridout.

The Baptist Convention of Western Cuba is a Baptist Christian denomination in Cuba. It is affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance. The headquarters is in Havana.

The Myanmar Baptist Convention is a Baptist Christian denomination in Myanmar. It is affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance and the World Council of Churches. The headquarters is in Yangon.

Convention of Philippine Baptist Churches

The Convention of Philippine Baptist Churches is a Baptist Christian denomination churches union, affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance, in Philippines. Headquartered in Jaro, Iloilo City, Philippines, it was founded in 1900 as the first and oldest organized Baptist churches union in the Philippine islands when the Philippines was opened to Protestant missions after the succession of the Philippines by Spain to the United States in 1898.

The Korea Baptist Convention is a Baptist Christian denomination in South Korea. It is affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance. The headquarters is in Seoul.

The Union of Evangelical Baptists of Spain is a Baptist Christian denomination in Spain. It is affiliated with the Federation of Evangelical Religious Entities of Spain and the Baptist World Alliance. The headquarters is in Madrid.

The Baptist Convention of Eastern Cuba is a Baptist Christian denomination in Cuba. It is affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance. The headquarters is in Santiago de Cuba.

Garo Baptist Convention

Garo Baptist Convention is a Baptist Christian denomination of India and Bangladesh. It is named after the ethnic group of the name Garo. Most members of this church are in Meghalaya. In Bangladesh the central office of the GBC is located in Birisiri under the suburban area Susong Durgapur of Netrokona District, it was established in the year of 1890.

Malaysia Baptist Convention

The Malaysia Baptist Convention is a Baptist Christian denomination in Malaysia. It is affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance. The headquarters is in Petaling Jaya.

The Baptist Convention of Angola is a Baptist Christian denomination in Angola. It is affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance. The headquarters is in Luanda.

The Baptist Convention of Tanzania is a Baptist Christian denomination, affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance, in Tanzania. The headquarters is in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

The Togo Baptist Convention is a Baptist Christian denomination in Togo. It is affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance. The headquarters is in Lomé.

The Baptist Convention of Kenya is a Baptist Christian denomination in Kenya. It is affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance. The headquarters is in Nairobi.

The Baptist Convention of Malawi is a Baptist Christian denomination in Malawi. It is affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance. The headquarters is in Lilongwe.

The Baptist Union of Uganda is a Baptist Christian denomination in Uganda. It is affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance. The headquarters is in Kampala.

The Baptist Convention of Mozambique is a Baptist Christian denomination in Mozambique. It is affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance. The headquarters is in Maputo.

The Convention of Baptist Churches in Guatemala is a Baptist Christian denomination in Guatemala. It is affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance. The headquarters is in Guatemala City.

The Baptist Convention of Panama is a Baptist Christian denomination in Panama. It is affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance. The headquarters is in Burunga.

The Baptist Evangelical Convention of Paraguay is a Baptist Christian denomination in Paraguay. It is affiliated with the Baptist World Alliance. The headquarters is in Asuncion.

References

  1. 1 2 Williams, Michael; Shurden, Walter (2008). Turning Points in Baptist History: A Festschrift in Honor of Harry Leon McBeth. Macon, GA: Mercer University Press. p. 223. ISBN   978-0881461350.
  2. Lord, Townley F. (2007). Baptist World Fellowship: A Short History Of The Baptist World Alliance. Kessinger Publishing. ISBN   978-0-548-44182-4.
  3. Wardin, Albert W. (ed.) (1995). Baptists Around the World: A Comprehensive Handbook. Broadman & Holman. ISBN   0-8054-1076-7.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  4. Leornard, Bill J. (1994). Dictionary of Baptists in America. InterVarsity Press. ISBN   0-8308-1447-7.
  5. Robert E. Johnson, A Global Introduction to Baptist Churches, Cambridge University Press, UK, 2010, p. 238
  6. William H. Brackney, Historical Dictionary of the Baptists, Scarecrow Press, USA, 2009, p. 59
  7. J. Gordon Melton, Martin Baumann, Religions of the World: A Comprehensive Encyclopedia of Beliefs and Practices, ABC-CLIO, USA, 2010, p. 297
  8. 1 2 Pierard, Richard V. (1 October 2010). "The Baptist World Congress of 1905 and the Emergence of Black American Baptists on the International Scene". Baptist Quarterly. 43 (8): 494–505. doi:10.1179/bqu.2010.43.8.004. ISSN   0005-576X. S2CID   162270005.
  9. Johnson, Robert (2010). A Global Introduction to Baptist Churches . Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. p.  238. ISBN   978-0-52187781-7.
  10. Baptist World Alliance, Tomás Mackey Installed as Next BWA President, baptistworld.org, USA, July 23, 2020
  11. Baptist World Alliance, Members, baptistworld.org, USA, retrieved August 22, 2020
  12. Baptist World Alliance, Beliefs, baptistworld.org, USA, July 2005
  13. "About BWA". Baptist World Alliance. Archived from the original on 4 August 2009. Retrieved 11 August 2009.
  14. Baptist World Alliance, Regional Fellowships, baptistworld.org, USA, retrieved December 5, 2020
  15. McKinney, Blake (March 2018). ""One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism" in the Land of ein Volk, ein Reich, ein Führer: The Fifth Baptist World Congress (Berlin, 1934)". Church History. 87 (1): 122–148. doi:10.1017/S0009640718000823. ISSN   0009-6407.
  16. Deweese, Charles W. (1 January 2008). "E. Y. Mullins and Baptist World Congresses". Baptist History and Heritage. 43 (1): 4. ISSN   0005-5719.
  17. "Gathering Global Baptists for More than 100 Years". Baptist World Alliance Website. Retrieved 10 October 2020.
  18. Angelo Maffeis, Ecumenical Dialogue, Liturgical Press, USA, 2005, p. 44-45
  19. 1 2 Cassidy, Edward (2005). Ecumenism and Interreligious Dialogue: Unitatis Redintegratio, Nostra Aetate . New York: Paulist Press. pp.  68. ISBN   0809143380.
  20. "Baptist—Roman Catholic International Conversations". Centro Pro Unione . Retrieved 11 August 2009.
  21. Don Hinkle, SBC severs ties with BWA as theological concerns remain, baptistpress.com, USA, June 15, 2004
  22. Ted Olsen, Southern Baptists No Longer In, Nor Of, World Alliance, christianitytoday.com, USA, June 1, 2004
  23. Alan Cooperman, Southern Baptists Vote To Leave World Alliance, washingtonpost.com, USA, June 16, 2004
  24. Robert Dilday, Marv Knox, Part of the family: Virginia is elected new BWA member, baptistnews.com, USA, August 7, 2005