BAPTIST WORLD ALLIANCE LAUNCHES EXPANDED HORIZONS PROGRAM

NEWS RELEASE
October 25, 2018
For more information, contact Shannon Cowett at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
 
BAPTIST WORLD ALLIANCE LAUNCHES EXPANDED HORIZONS PROGRAM - proven online training for children and youth church workers
 
Falls Church, VA - The Baptist World Alliance (BWA) is expanding the HORIZONS Youth and Children's Worker Program to its worldwide network. HORIZONS is a program with a decade of proven success, with more than 500 people already having completed the course. Now, the BWA will bring it to all the world's Baptists.
 
HORIZONS is a free online training program that guides students through 24 modules in a self-paced program covering youth and children leadership topics. Each module takes about an hour to complete.
 
It was created out of a need felt by European Baptist Federation (EBF) leadership to discover the needs of youth workers. Throughout the years, with the support of Canadian Baptist Ministries, HORIZONS has strengthened the ministry of EBF across Europe, the Middle East, and Central Asia.
 
"We are very excited to help this program expand its already impressive reach," said BWA General Secretary Elijah M. Brown. "With more than 50% of the world's Christians under age 30, this is one of our most important efforts, ever."
 
Youth ministry leaders can take this program in 12 languages - English, French, Spanish, Arabic, Russian, Bulgarian, Romanian, Norwegian, German, Serbian, Hungarian, and Portuguese. Online mentors who help interact and guide registered students are already available in 45 countries. To date, more than 12,000 modules have been completed.
 
Jeff Carter, who designed and implemented this program following his 2003 commission by EBF to conduct an intensive research study of the 54 nations within EBF, now comes to lead its expansion through the BWA. "The success of HORIZONS is really the impact of advocacy and encouragement of our locally trained mentors," Carter said. "These are experienced youth workers who provide the local context for material covered in the course."
 
Carter will serve at BWA as Director of HORIZONS and Congress Mobilization in partnership with Canadian Baptist Ministries, where he previously ministered as Youth Ministry Training Coordinator and Advisor for the EBF. He will also be working with the BWA to encourage widespread participation in the upcoming BWA Congress in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, July 22-26, 2020.
 
Originally from Nova Scotia, Carter held a post as a faculty lecturer at the International Baptist Theological Seminary where he developed youth leadership courses for the master's and certificate programs.
 
Though this program is being offered for free, each module costs approximately US$20 with 250 students already enrolled. Churches and individuals can sponsor student participation for
US$480 for the entire course. To help support this important initiative, visit
www.bwanet.org/online-giving.
 
"We want every youth and children's worker to have access to this training," said General Secretary Brown, "and in places where seminary education is not available, this is going to make a critical difference for reaching the next generations."
 
To listen to Jeff Carter discuss HORIZONS in a podcast hosted by BWA's Division on Mission, Evangelism, and Justice, visit www.bwanet.org/programs/mej.
 
To learn more or to enroll in HORIZONS, please visit www.bwahorizons.org.
 
 
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About Baptist World Alliance:
"Networking the Baptist family to impact the world for Christ."
239 Member Organizations in 125 countries and territories with 169,000 churches and 49 million baptized believers
 
Media Contacts:
Shannon Cowett
Baptist World Alliance
+1 (703) 790-8980
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About HORIZONS: 
Jeff Carter
BWAHorizons
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BWA named '2018 Top-Rated Nonprofit' by GreatNonprofits

For Immediate Release:

September 26, 2018

BAPTIST WORLD ALLIANCE NAMED “2018 TOP-RATED NONPROFIT” by GreatNonprofits

Award based on Outstanding Online Reviews

Falls Church, VA – The Baptist World Alliance announced today it has been named a “2018 Top-Rated Nonprofit” by GreatNonprofits, the leading provider of user reviews of charities and nonprofits.

BWA unites the world’s Baptists in ministries of compassion, justice, theological education, unity and fellowship, mission and evangelism resulting in thousands of empowered churches working together across national and cultural divides more than a hundred countries around the world.

“We are honored to be named a 2018 Top-Rated Nonprofit,” says Dr. Elijah M. Brown, General Secretary of the BWA.  “We are proud of our accomplishments this year, including launching Horizons, an expanded effort to train youth and children’s church workers throughout our network.”

The Top-Rated Nonprofit Award is the based on the rating and number of reviews that Baptist World Alliance received from volunteers, donors and aid recipients.

“The Baptist World Alliance” is a great example of a nonprofit making a real difference in their community,” said Perla Ni, CEO of GreatNonprofits, “Their award is well-deserved recognition not only of their work, but the tremendous support they receive, as shown by the many outstanding reviews they have received from people who have direct experience working with the BWA.”

“My involvement with Baptist World Alliance goes back almost thirty years,” says, Karen Bullock, a volunteer and commission leader, “in which time I have never been disappointed with its mission, its administration, its integrity, or its financial responsibility.” BWA subjects itself annually to an independent audit and publishes each final report to aid potential supporters in feeling confident of the organization’s commitment to its fiduciary responsibility.

GreatNonprofits is the leading website where people share stories about their personal experiences on more than 1.6 million charities and nonprofits. The GreatNonprofits Top-Rated Awards are the only awards for nonprofits determined by those who have direct experience with the charities – as donors, volunteers and recipients of aid.  

The Baptist World Alliance website has more information on its ministries at www.bwanet.org and a complete list of 2018 Top Rated Nonprofits can be found at: https://greatnonprofits.org/awards/browse/Campaign:Year2018/Issue:All/Page:1

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About Baptist World Alliance
“Networking the Baptist family to impact the world for Christ.”

239 Member Organizations in 125 countries and territories. 169,000 churches and 49 million baptized believers.

About GreatNonprofits
GreatNonprofits is the leading site for donors and volunteers to find stories and ratings of nonprofits. Stories on the site influence 30 million donation decisions a year. Visit www.greatnonprofits.org for more information.

Media Contacts
Shannon Cowett

703-790-8980

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Perla Ni

Great Nonprofits

650-249-3792

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

BWA Responds to Arrest of Baptist Leader in Venezuela

Baptist World Alliance Responds to Baptist Leader’s Arrest in Venezuela
BWA Reaches Out to Government Authorities and Pledges Support to
Local Ministries
 
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
 
(FALLS CHURCH, VIRGINIA - February 6, 2019) In response to the recent arrest of Baptist leader Gregory José Pérez, the Baptist World Alliance (BWA) is mobilizing efforts to connect with government authorities to encourage his release as well as providing financial resources to local ministries that are responding to needs of Venezuelans, both within the country and displaced refugees in neighboring nations.
 
Mr. Pérez was arrested on January 23, 2019, in the city of San Felipe, Yaracuy State, alongside more than 30 others, including numerous children ranging in age from 12 to 14. He currently serves in a volunteer capacity as the Executive Director of the National Baptist Youth Union of Venezuela, a ministry of the National Baptist Convention of Venezuela.   
 
At the time of his arrest, Mr. Pérez was working in a communications center but was asked to vacate the premises due to protests nearby. He then entered the home of friends in the vicinity and was subsequently arrested when police conducted a search of the neighborhood, despite no evidence linking him to the protests. 
 
“Brother Pérez has dedicated his life to serving others, most especially the children and youth of Venezuela. Baptists across the region testify to the positive contributions heoffers on a daily basis, from his service as an engineer to his work with young people,” says Rev. Dr. Elijah Brown, BWA General Secretary. “Yet since his arrest, Brother Pérez has been held in detention, publicly humiliated, charged with a lengthy set of allegations, and treated as a terrorist. He and has family have suffered. This constitutes an excessive and disproportionate restriction on his right to freedom.” 
 
On behalf of millions of Baptists around the world and in partnership with the National Baptist Convention of Venezuela and the Union of Baptists in Latin America, Rev. Brown and Rev. Parrish Jacome have composed and distributed a letter to government authorities within Venezuela, urging that human and legal rights be honored, including the removal of all charges against Mr. Pérez and against the others arbitrarily arrested alongside him. The BWA is also working to mobilize a greater response by reaching out to connections within the United Nations and United States Congressional Offices. 
 
The care and concern of the BWA extends beyond the needs of Mr. Pérez to all the people of Venezuela. “At this particular moment in the life of Venezuela, the BWA and Baptists around the world stand in prayer for the peace and wellbeing of the country,” says Rev. Brown.
 
To that end, in addition to justice efforts on behalf of Mr. Pérez, BWAid has offered $5,000 emergency grants to six Baptists conventions and organizations working alongside the people of Venezuela. This includes ministries that are providing support within the country, offering programs that provide basic care and employment for displaced Venezuelans, and empowering church leaders who are continuing to live a vibrant witness today.
 
The BWA is issuing a call to action for all Baptists worldwide to:
 
  1. Pray for the full release and exoneration of Gregory José Pérez, those arrested with him, and for Venezuela as a whole.
  2. Join with the BWA in direct advocacy by using the linked BWA letter as a foundation for writing your own letter to the appropriate government authorities in Venezuela. You can write directly or send your letter to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., and we will ensure your letter of support is sent to relevant offices across Venezuela.
  3. Share this call to prayer and action on social media using the hashtag, #LiberenaGregory
  4. Give to the BWA to support endeavors in Venezuela now and in the future.
 
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Pictured:
Gregory José Pérez
Executive Director of the National Baptist Youth Union of Venezuela
 
Addendum A:
 
Addendum B:
 
The Baptist World Alliance, founded in 1905, is a fellowship of 239 conventions and unions in 125 countries and territories comprising 47 million baptized believers in 169,000 churches. For more than 100 years, the Baptist World Alliance has networked the Baptist family to impact the world for Christ with a commitment to strengthen worship, fellowship and unity; lead in mission and evangelism; respond to people in need through aid, relief, and community development; defend religious freedom, human rights, and justice; and advance theological reflection and leadership development.
 
Media Contact:
J. Merritt Johnston
Director of Communications & Media
Phone: (214) 577-9187
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  

Baptist-Catholic International Dialogue

Baptist-Catholic International Dialogue Joint Commission Convenes in Rome
Baptist World Alliance and the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity 
Gather for Next Phase of Theological Conversations
 
 
(ROME, ITALY - December 21, 2018) Twenty participants from around the world gathered on December 10-14, 2018, for the second meeting in the third phase of the Baptist-Catholic International Dialogue, a series of strategic ecumenical conversations between the Baptist World Alliance (BWA) and the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. 
 
This year’s assembly was hosted by Roman Catholic leadership at the Domus Internationalis Paulus VI in Rome, Italy. Last year’s delegation was hosted by Baptist leadership at Truett Theological Seminary on the campus of Baylor University in Waco, Texas, USA. 
 
The December gathering centered on the theme, “Context of Common Witness,” with discussions reflecting on the global cultural context in which common Christian witness is being conducted around the world. This sub-theme helps to illuminate the overall theme of the third phase of dialogue, “The Dynamic of the Gospel and the Witness of the Church.” 
 
On Wednesday, December 12, the delegation met with Pope Francis at the Vatican. While speaking with Rev. Dr. Frank Rees, Baptist Co-Chair of the dialogue as well as chair of the BWA Commission on Baptist Doctrine and Christian Unity, Pope Francis requested that Baptists be in prayer for him. He affirmed the vision behind the Baptist-Catholic Dialogue and expressed the importance of unity among Christians. 
 
On Thursday, December 13, the participants visited Chisea Evangelica Battista Di Trastevere, a local Baptist church that is deeply committed to ecumenical engagement and sharing in the gospel with Catholics, Protestants and Evangelicals. The delegation was welcomed by both the pastor and congregation and enjoyed learning about the church’s ministry to people from around the world, including individuals from Africa and Latin America who are living in Rome, as well as serving the homeless living in the streets. 
 
“Our time together was quite powerful as we explored our common witness to Christ and saw it put to action in Tratsevere where the Baptist Church and Catholic Church share a common wall as well as shared ministry in their neighborhood,” said Rev. Dr. Trisha Miller Manarin, BWA Coordinator of Mission, Evangelism, and Justice.  
 
This year’s gathering represents a long-standing and growing commitment between Baptists and Catholics, with previous dialogues occurring from 1984-1988 and from 2006-2010.  
 
“I am grateful for the strong BWA team who led the most recent Baptist-Catholic dialogue,” said Rev. Dr. Elijah Brown, BWA General Secretary. “Their expertise is invaluable, and a focus on how we can collectively take the gospel to the world is as pressing today as ever.” 
 
Baptist Commission Members participating in this round of conversations included Co-Chair Rev. Dr. Frank Rees, Associate Professor and Chair of the Academic Board at the University of Divinity in Australia; Rev. Paul S. Fiddes (UK), Dr. Derek Hatch (USA), Dr. Glenroy Lalor (Jamaica), Dr. Tomás Mackey (Argentina), Dr. Elizabeth Newman (USA), and Dr. Lina Toth (Lithuania/UK). Rev. Dr. Anna Maffei (Italy) and Rev. Jeremy Bell (Canada) participated as observers, Rev. Dr. Trisha Miller Manarin served as the BWA Staff Representative, and Rev. Dr. Steven R. Harmon served on behalf of the BWA as secretary for the Co-Chair.
 
The Catholic delegation consisted of Co-Chair Bishop Arthur Serratelli, Bishop of Paterson, New Jersey, USA; Dr. Peter Casarella (USA), Rev. Dr. Stephen Fernandes (India), Rev. Dr. William Henn O.F.M. Cap. (Italy), Rev. Dr. Hector Scerri (Malta), Sr. Dr. Marie-Hélène Robert N.D.A. (France), Rev. Dr. Jorge A. Scampini O.P. (Argentina), and Sr. Dr. Susan Wood S.C.L. (USA). Rev. Dr. Gabriel Mmassi (Africa/Italy) was a guest presenter at the meeting, and Rev. Avelino Gonzalez-Ferrer of the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity served as secretary for the Co-Chair.
 
The Baptist-Catholic group will meet annually through 2021, with the next round of conversations to be hosted by the Baptist Union of Poland at the Baptist Theological Seminary in Warsaw on December 9-13, 2019.
 
L-R: Pope Francis, Rev. Dr. Frank Rees (Baptist Co-Chair), Bishop Arthur Serratelli (Catholic Co-Chair) 
Members of the Baptist World Alliance and the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity gathered in Rome this month for theological discussions hosted by the Baptist-Catholic International Dialogue Joint Commission. Photo Provided by the Vatican Photography Service
 
To review the commission communique, click here.
 
The Baptist World Alliance, founded in 1905, is a fellowship of 239 conventions and unions in 125 countries and territories comprising 47 million baptized believers in 169,000 churches. For more than 100 years, the Baptist World Alliance has networked the Baptist family to impact the world for Christ with a commitment to lead in mission and evangelism; respond to people in need; defend human rights and justice; promote worship, fellowship and unity; and advance relevant theological reflection.
 
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Baptists responding to Lombok earthquakes

JAKARTA, Indonesia -- Earthquakes that shook the Indonesian island of Lombok over the past week have resulted in at least 430 deaths, and the government is estimating economic losses in excess of several hundred million dollars.

Asia Pacific Baptist Aid (APBAid) is working with Baptist churches in Indonesia that are joining with other nonprofits to assess the needs and provide support to those who are affected by the quakes. Transform Aid International of Australia is also coordinating Baptist groups responding to the situation.

Gifts to support the relief efforts may be given through Baptist World Aid (BWAid) at bwanet.org. (Please note “Disaster response” in the comment section of the form.)

Damage to homes, infrastructure, and other property is estimated to be at least $342 million USD. The magnitude 6.9 quake flattened thousands of homes. "The damage and losses are very large," a disaster agency spokesman told CBS News.

APBAid reports that the central government has deployed clean drinking water, ready-to-eat food, tents, and medical teams and medicine.

BWAid is a ministry of the Baptist World Alliance. It works with Baptist bodies throughout the world in connecting resources with relief and development needs.