Baptism: A Conversation

As our church evolves and grows, questions about baptism are common. Several years ago, our deacon body began an in-depth study of baptism, its role in our personal faith journeys, and its relationship to church membership. 

After a workshop with a guest speaker and a meaningful book study, the deacons agreed that everyone in our church could benefit from the same opportunity to explore baptism. Over the past year, a deacon task force has designed a dynamic and interactive experience for the fall that includes guest speakers, church-wide book study, story sharing, all-church Sunday morning Bible studies, sharing our baptism stories, and reflection sessions. 

MISSED ANY EVENTS? Click here to view videos of the Baptism Lunch, Wednesday Book Study or Sunday Bible Study.


The goal is for our church (individually and collectively) to answer three key questions as we study, converse, and explore: 

  1. What is the relationship between baptism and Christian faith? 
  2. What does 2BC believe about baptism, and why? 
  3. What is the relationship between baptism and church membership? 

You may be wondering… 

  • Is there an expected change regarding baptism and membership? Not necessarily. A policy change is not a goal of this process, though the relationship between baptism and church membership will likely generate some lively discussion. If there appears to be interest in making changes, that would come forward separately for church action. 
  • What is the intended outcome? The objective of this “conversation” is truly in the process of explor-ing the three questions through dialogue, sharing, exploration, and study. Based on the experience of the deacons, personal reaffirmation of our various baptism experiences was a tremendous outcome. 
  • Do the deacons have a particular position on baptism? No. The group benefited from the in-depth study described earlier and wanted to extend the experience to the whole church. 
  • If I’m comfortable with my baptism, is this for me? Yes! Studying spiritual practices is an important part of discipleship and participating in this conversation is sure to be worthwhile. 

Feel free to contact any members of the Deacon Baptism Task Force with questions. We are excited about all that the fall holds for our church! 

Deacon Baptism Task Force: Blane Baker, Chris Sizemore, Becky Gossett, Rolland Yoakum, Amy Duncan, Mark Hilton, Debbie Lane, and Greg Duncan (chair) 


EVENTS

The deacons have designed the baptism conversation with several components, each important on its own but stronger when combined with the others. We encourage you to participate in as many ways as possible. All sessions will be video recorded for those who are unable to attend. 

"LET'S START THE CONVERSATION"
All-church lunch Sunday, Sept. 18, after 11 a.m. worship. 
Mark Wingfield, Associate Pastor of Wilshire Baptist Church, Dallas, Tex., will introduce our three core questions (see previous page) and will provide background and context for our month of conversation and study. Childcare provided with reservations to the church office by Wednesday, Sept. 14. Parents will need to bring a sack lunch for their children. 

VIEW VIDEO

ALL-CHURCH BOOK STUDY
Wednesdays, 6:15 p m., Sept. 21-Oct. 5, 
Social Room 
Sherry McGlaughlin will guide a study of John Tyler’s book, Baptism: We’ve Got it Right & Wrong. Sherry is a former 2BC Education Minister and currently serves as Pastor of Blue Ridge Boulevard Christian Church. This is the book deacons studied two years ago, and we believe it provides excellent information to further the conversation. Buying the book is not required, but copies are available for purchase in the church office, online, or in bookstores. 

VIEW VIDEO

ALL-CHURCH BIBLE STUDY
Sundays, 9:45 am., Sept. 25-Oct. 9 
David May, Professor of New Testament at Central Baptist Seminary, will lead a Biblical study of baptism open to all on Sunday mornings in the Social Room during our regular Bible study time on Sept. 25 and Oct. 2. On Oct. 9, we will return to regular classes where our teachers will guide us through a final session using material created by Dr. May. We believe this will provide rich context for study and discussion. 

VIEW VIDEO

SHARE YOUR BAPTISM STORY
We want to hear from you! How was your baptism meaningful to you? What does it continue to mean to you today? Where, when, and how were you bap-tized? All of these components, and others, make up your baptism story. As we have worked together to create this emphasis, members of the task force have taken turns sharing our baptism stories. We have been surprised at the wide variety of experiences represented in our group! We would like to hear your stories as well and invite you to submit them in 500 words or less either via email to Blane Baker (bakerb@william.jewell.edu) or in person to the church office.

Click here to read some of the stories.

REFLECTION SESSIONS
Wednesday, Oct. 12; Sunday, Oct. 16 (9 a.m. & 12:15 p.m.) 
As the conversations wrap up, you are invited to reflect on your experience during one of our deacon-led sessions.