Oklahoma’s Missional Ministry Conference is focusing on communicating truth in a culture that typically denies the concept of absolute truth in favor of a truth that it can change and adapt to fit their changing circumstances.
Conference coordinator Bob Mayfield, Sunday School/Adult Discipleship specialist with the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma, believes the theme is emerging as a critical component to churches who want to have a gospel impact in their communities.
“When our Church and Family Equipping Team deliberated the theme last year, we looked at the issue of truth, Mayfield said. “After some discussion and prayer, we really felt that the topic of communicating truth to a culture that does not want to hear it was a major issue if we want to impact lostness in our state.”
Now, almost a year later and with the conference set to take place March 25-26 at the Embassy Suites Convention Center in Norman, a maelstrom has occurred in national news that reinforces the importance of the theme.
“Brit Hume’s recommendation to Tiger Woods in front of a national television audience to leave Buddhism and turn to Jesus Christ has sparked an incredible controversy. Hume’s comment has put the truth of Jesus Christ as the only way to experience forgiveness and eternal life in the national spotlight,” Mayfield said.
Keynote speakers at the conference include J.D. Greear and Alvin Reid. Greear is pastor of Summit Church, a rapidly growing Southern Baptist congregation in Raleigh-Durham, N.C. Greear is also a former international missionary and has a doctorate in Islamic studies. Reid is the professor of evangelism at Southeastern Seminary, and is a highly regarded Southern Baptist leader in evangelism and missions. Greear and Reid will be speaking two times each during the two-day event on the topics of “Conveying Truth in a World of Opinion,” “Missional Empowerment Through Small Communities” and “Converting Analog Ministry Into a Digital Gospel.” Ryan Smith of Stillwater, Eagle Heights is the conference’s worship leader.
In addition to the general sessions, the conference also has 16 breakout sessions for conferees to attend. Leaders in education, student, children and worship ministry have been enlisted to provide a well-rounded and practical view of how the local church can have greater impact on its community.
“One of the goals of the conference is to not only discuss the philosophy of why we need to convey truth to our culture, but also the practical aspect of how to communicate the Gospel,” Mayfield said.
New features are always on the agenda, and this year’s conference is no exception. General sessions will be streamed live over the Internet. Each breakout session will be video recorded and available to view and download the following week. In addition, Thursday evening is going to feature a “blink” worship service, a creative and dynamic format of worship that can be reproduced in the local church.
Early-bird registration for the Missional Ministry Conference is open through Feb. 15 for $85. Regular registration is $100 through March 18. Participants may register online at www.bgco.org/missionalministry.