Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
Southern Baptists sticking with name — sort of
First Published Feb 22 2012 04:26 pm • Last Updated Feb 22 2012 04:26 pm

When Southern Baptists gather for their annual meeting this June, they will not be asked to create a new official name after top leaders decided it was not worth pursuing.

Instead they will be asked to approve a recommendation that Baptists end the name change discussion but have the option of using the unofficial moniker "Great Commission Baptists."

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

The recommendation was adopted Tuesday by the Southern Baptist Convention’s Executive Committee after a task force deemed a name change impractical.

"I feel very thankful there was such a positive spirit in receiving this recommendation," said SBC President Bryant Wright in an interview after the committee’s decision. "It’s just another way that we can be more effective in carrying the good news of Jesus Christ to North America and the world."

Wright’s task force determined that the legal costs and logistical wrangling that would be necessary to change signs and stationery and deal with trusts and wills made a change unworkable. Plus, Wright noted, the voluntary nature of Southern Baptists means that even if a name change had been approved, "they don’t have to follow it."

The optional use of "Great Commission Baptists" provides an answer to those troubled by the "Southern" in the denomination’s official name, as well as its link to the SBC’s Civil War-era defense of slavery.

The unofficial title refers to Jesus’ command that his followers spread his message worldwide. "It gives a freedom to a church planter in Boston," Wright said. "If he prefers to just go by ‘Great Commission Baptist,’ we are giving him that freedom to do that."

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment

About Reader Comments

Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.