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State Evangelism Conference to include Brooklyn Tabernacle’s Cymbala, former Gaither member Penrodcomment (0)

February 20, 2014

By Neisha Fuson

State Evangelism Conference to include Brooklyn Tabernacle’s Cymbala, former Gaither member Penrod

Coming up on its 67th year, the State Evangelism Conference is a place to find inspiration, according to Sammy Gilbreath, director of the office of evangelism for the Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions (SBOM).

Gilbreath said there are two sides to the SBOM evangelism office — instruction and inspiration. Throughout the year Gilbreath and his staff instruct and train Alabama Baptists in how to share their faith or how to put an evangelism strategy in place, he explained. 

“The other very valuable side is inspiration where we encourage people,” Gilbreath said. “It’s one thing to know how to do evangelism, it’s another thing to do it.”

And that’s just what the State Evangelism Conference is meant to do — encourage pastors and church staff with good preaching and good music, Gilbreath said, so they return to their home church ready to lead.

Held at Eastmont Baptist Church, Montgomery, the conference is scheduled for Feb. 24–25, with the first session beginning Monday at 6 p.m. A banquet dinner with Steve and Donna Gaines will be held Monday at 4:30 p.m. Steve Gaines is pastor of Bellevue Baptist Church, Cordova, Tenn., and a former Alabama Baptist pastor. Tuesday morning’s session begins at 9 a.m. 

The 2014 conference lineup includes speakers Jim Futral, executive director-treasurer for the Mississippi Baptist Convention; Steve Gaines; Frank Cox, pastor of North Metro Baptist Church, Lawrenceville, Ga.; Alan Floyd, pastor of Cottage Hill Baptist Church, Mobile; Bob Pitman, evangelist from Muscle Shoals; Brett Pitman, pastor of Highland Park Baptist Church, Muscle Shoals; Vance Pitman, pastor of Hope Church, Las Vegas, Nev.; and Jim Cymbala, pastor of The Brooklyn Tabernacle, Brooklyn, N.Y.

Music will be provided by Frank Jones, VOICES of Mobile and Guy Penrod, gospel music singer and former Gaither Vocal Band member. 

Cox, who has spoken at several other Alabama Baptist conferences in the past including three other State Evangelism Conferences, said he is looking forward to helping motivate and inspire Alabama Baptists and be motivated himself.

“I look forward to seeing God do some great things that day,” he said.

Gilbreath said he continues to receive emails after each year’s conference saying how the preaching, time of worship and fellowship made a difference in participants’ lives. One such email confessed the heart of a pastor who was ready to resign and leave his ministry. In his email the man said the conference helped put joy back in his life and he felt restored.

“[The State Evangelism Conference] made a total difference in his life and he’s still preaching and teaching today,” Gilbreath said. “We pray this conference will be a time of restoration and encouragement for those who are just hurting.” 

For more information about the conference or the schedule, visit www.alsbom.org/upcoming-events/state-evangelism-conference/. 

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