The nation's largest convention of Christian communicators ends its annual gathering today after six days of learning, networking, and sharing.
From Friday, Feb. 17 through Wednesday, Feb. 22, the National Religious Broadcasters (NRB) – the world’s largest association of Christian evangelical broadcasters – held its 63rd convention at the Gaylord Texan Resort and Convention Center in Grapevine, Texas.
Over 6,200 people heard from speakers and singers the likes of Kay Arthur, Nancy Leigh DeMoss, Tony Evans, Jack Graham, Woodrow Kroll, Russ Lee, Nicole C. Mullen, Jennifer O’Neil, Selah, R.C. Sproul, and Ed Young Jr through the six-day convention and exposition, said to be one of the fastest growing in the nation.
From the over 40 educational sessions and boot camps to the popular innovation exchange and public policy super session, the expo and convention presented ways to reach the world for Christ through media. A global media alliance showcase promoted outreach opportunities, and a tech lab demonstrated practical media applications in real-world production settings.
According to NRB Chairman/CEO Ron Harris, who was elected to his position at last year’s gathering in Anaheim, Calif., the convention’s focus is to minister to the needs of Christian media professionals.
"The association of National Religious Broadcasters is here to facilitate Christian broadcasters to do what God’s called them to do," he said prior to this year’s convention.
During the gathering, the NRB also spotlighted certain ministries for their work in reaching the people. They named 21 recipients this year for categories from Best Radio Talk Show (Focus on the Family) to Best Television Teaching Program, which went to Harvest Ministries.
"We are thrilled the NRB has given us this award," said Greg Laurie, host of Harvest: Greg Laurie. "Our hope is that God will continue to use this program to touch people and bring them into His Kingdom."
New at the convention this year was Reach 2006, a conference that Harris said was designed to "educate" and "train" Christians in order to reach a "younger generation."
While NRB President/CEO Dr. Frank Wright emphasized the need of Christian media professionals to network with as many industry professionals as possible, and to take advantage of all the convention had to offer, he also touched on embracing "new technology" in the cause of the Gospel.
"With new generations steeped in a media–centric culture, it is time for the kind of strategic thinking that will better enable us to speak to them," Wright had said in a statement prior to the convention. He added that Reach 2006 and the creative strategies developed through it would be "one of the keys to effectively exalt Christ before a watching and listening world."
During the intense, three-day training at Reach 2006, close to 600 attendees explored issues from culture change and international broadcasting to developing media leaders for a post-modern culture.
"Jesus cautioned the religious leaders of His day to be aware of the ‘signs of the times,’ and that's why we're focused on the horizon," said Phil Cooke President/ Creative Director Cooke Pictures, Santa Monica, Calif. "We designed this to be a forum for questions, to talk about frustrations, share ideas, and to further each of our dreams."
With over 1,400 member organizations that represent millions, the NRB is the world’s largest association of Christian evangelical broadcasters. Its annual convention has been named one of the 50 Fastest Growing Expositions. More than 300 vendors sprawl across 150,000 square feet of exhibit space.