The Baptist World Centenary Congress 2005 has come to a spectacular conclusion on Sunday 31st July. Over five days, more than 13,000 Baptists gathered in Birmingham to celebrate 100 years of the Baptist World Alliance.
The historic event saw top Baptist leaders come from all corners of the globe to rejoice and share in their love of Christ together. High-profile names such as Rick Warren (founder of Saddleback Church, USA, and author of bestselling book ¡¥The Purpose Driven Church¡¦), Tony Campolo (world-renowned evangelist), Steve Chalke (founder of Faithworks and Oasis Trust, and author of ¡¥The Lost Message of Jesus¡¦), and even Former US President Jimmy Carter attended the event.
The five-day congress saw Rev Billy Kim hand over the leadership of the Baptist World Alliance to British-born Rev David Coffey in a heart-warming service on Saturday morning.
Yesterday, Sunday 31st July praise turned into a festival-like atmosphere, as the choirs that had performed during the event joined together to make a super choir singing Handel's Hallelujah Chorus.
Rev Billy Kim, one of the most highly-regarded and popular BWA Presidents in recent history addressed the thousands of delegates, and he now hands over the leadership to Rev David Coffey, who also spoke to the huge crowd gathered in the National Indoor Arena Birmingham.
The theme of the conference has been ¡§Jesus Christ Living Water¡¦, and throughout the congress the Baptist leaders have urged all Baptists to renew the mission heart within themselves and to evangelise the world for Christ.
On Saturday, the General-Secretary of the Baptist World Alliance called for ¡§All Baptists to be Evangelists.¡¨ The call was met with cries of ¡¥amen¡¦ from the passionate crowd.
Rev Coffey said to Christian Today that ¡§everybody has to come to a personal faith in Jesus Christ, and the responsibility of every Christian is to share their faith.¡¨
The Baptist World Alliance will convene again in 2010, and the meeting is scheduled to take place in Hawaii.