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Surprise! The SBC Church With Women Pastors Voting to Leave Over Law Amendment is a Pro-LGBTQ Church

by | May 2, 2024 | Apostasy, LGBTQ Issues, News, Religion, Social-Issues, The Church

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Earlier today, The Dissenter reported that a major SBC church in Richmond, VA, was holding a vote later this month to leave the Southern Baptist Convention over the Law Amendment which forbids cooperating churches from having women pastors.

According to a special announcement on the Richmond’s First Baptist Church website, the special business meeting will be held on May 19, 2024:

The Board of Deacons recommends that Richmond’s First Baptist Church withdraw as a cooperating church in the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) in response to the SBC’s proposed constitutional amendment requiring pastors and elders of its cooperating churches to be men. The Board of Deacons invites the congregation to a church-wide conversation and vote on this decision. This special called business meeting will be held in Flamming Hall from 9:45-10:30 a.m. on May 19, 2024, in lieu of normally scheduled adult Sunday School classes. The Deacon Chair will provide members of the congregation with background information to enable an informed conversation on the decision. That information will be disseminated through the church’s Communications office starting on or around May 5.

As I wrote earlier, Richmond’s First Baptist Church’s decision to align more closely with the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship, a body known for its lax standards on doctrinal issues like women’s ordination, homosexuality, and abortion—three ideologies that always seem to accompany each other—is indicative of its trajectory: away from biblical orthodoxy towards a more relativistic approach to Scripture.

Well, so far, that statement has proven to be correct, as the it has now been brought to my attention that this is a pro-homosexual church that welcomes homosexuals into their congregation. According to a blog post on the senior pastor, Jim Somerville’s personal website, earlier this year, the deacons voted to approve a welcome statement on the website that is pro-LGBTQ.

He writes:

Last Tuesday night the deacons of Richmond’s First Baptist Church approved a welcome statement for our website that reads: “We affirm the biblical truth that all people are created in God’s image and therefore seek to welcome every person in the Spirit of Christ.” It seems like the kind of thing anybody could approve but it took a little while to get there.

One of our deacons wondered what we were really trying to say with such a message and I made it clear that I wanted to have something I could point to when members of the LGBTQ community asked me if they would be welcome at our church. At our November meeting I had taken an informal survey, asking the deacons how the church relates to that community currently. I asked, “Do we exclude, tolerate, welcome, or affirm?” There were nearly fifty deacons in attendance: a good representation of our congregation. This is what they said.

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While the “welcome statement” that Somerville mentions on the church website doesn’t appear to be live as of yet, we were able to find other pro-LGBTQ resources on the website, including a recommended book about leading a church to “publicly affirm its LGBTQ community members” and another blog post that calls on people to “to declare the value of black lives, to loudly defend LGBTQ people, to stand alongside your Muslim brothers and sisters, to denounce the degradation of the planet.”

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