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Posts Tagged ‘Fred Luter’

Pastor Fred Luter set to become first African American president of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC)

Fred Luter
Today will be a historic day to remember as the Southern Baptist Convention is posed to elect its first African-American president, a pastor from Louisiana, Fred Luter.

Luter, who is running unopposed, is expected to be elected at today’s convention meeting in New Orleans.

Last year, Luter made history when the SBC elected him as first vice president, the denomination’s second-highest post. He was the first African American elected to that position. Just a decade earlier, Luter was the first African American to preach the convention sermon, which also occurred in New Orleans.

Luter gained respect in the SBC by attracting young black males to his church in New Orleans, and by sticking with his church after the city was leveled by Hurricane Katrina.

One thing is for certain, the new generation of Baptists looks quite different than the one before it.
The SBC was founded in 1845 after a split with northern Baptists over the issue of slavery. In 1995, the convention passed a resolution publically apologizing for its participation in slavery and Jim Crow laws.

“It’s going to be historical because there’s never been an African-American president in the Southern Baptist Convention, so it’s going to be a historical day,” WDSU News quoted Pastor Luter of Franklin Avenue Baptist Church in New Orleans as saying. “I am still the only announced candidate in this convention which is amazing to me.”
It was amazing, the 55-year-old black pastor explained, “to have a descendant of former slaves to be president of this convention… It’s making world news.”

Luter, meanwhile, is trying to keep expectations about his presidency low. “I don’t think it will change drastically but I do think there will be a change, where African-Americans who really never considered being part of the SBC will now look at it,” he said.

Congratulations Pastor Fred Luter!