Baptist Convention of Mississippi
The Baptist Argus, 1899
The Baptist Historical Society met at 8 a. m. on the fifth for their annual meeting. This meeting was presided over by the president, J. H. Whitfield. Brother L. S. Foster read the paper on "Early Baptist History in Mississippi." The same officers were re-elected for the ensuing year.
Thursday, July 6, 1899, the Convention of Mississippi was called to order by the president, Bro. A. A. Lomax, at 10 o'clock. Bro. R. A. Venable, conducted devotional exercises. After reading the fourth chapter of Ephesians and prayer by brethren S. N. Ellis, E. B. Miller, J. A. Hacket and E. C. Dargan, singing with great spirit several hymns and remarks by Bro. Venable the convention proceeded to the election of permanent officers. The election resulted in the choice of R. A. Venable, of Meridian, president; B. G. Lowrey, vice-president; E. E. Thornton, recording secretary; L. S. Foster, corresponding secretary; A. J. Miller, statistical secretary; S. L. Hearn, treasurer. In the afternoon Pastor McMillin welcomed the Convention in an appropriate speech to which B. G. Lowrey happily responded.
The report of the State Secretary showed a decline in contributions because of yellow fever and other hindrances. Seventy-two missionaries are working in the State. A comparison of the work this year with that of 26 years ago shows an increase of over 40,000 members and that the present contributions to missions are nearly five times as great.
Bro. J. M. Frost, of the Sunday-school Board, then addressed the body in behalf of his work.
The report on Ministerial Education was read by Geo. Whitfield. Addresses were made by E. C. Dargan, Geo. Whitfield and C. G. Elliott. At night the Convention sermon was preached by I. H. Andy, of Summit, whose subject was "The Christian God's Creation and Co-worker," from Ephesians 2:10.
On the morning of the second day, after devotional exercises by Q. A. Hailey the statistical report was read by A. J. Miller. S. M. Ellis read the report on Home Missions which was discussed by him and Brethren W. J. Derrick, R. A. Carahn, I. T. Tichenor and J. R. Johnson. Bro. E. C. Dargan presented the work of the Seminary and took a collection of $551.00 for the students fund.
In the afternoon a resolution was offered by B. G. Lowrey, discussed by A. A. Lomax and J. A. Hacket, and unanimously adopted which speaks in no uncertain sound concerning the present indifference of Christians to civil duties. It was in part as follows:“RESOLVED, That it is a transgression of Christian duty for any believer having the ballot to wilfully fail to use it, thereby neglecting to do his part toward safe-guarding our priceless heritage of a Christian civilization and religious freedom, and it is vicious to use the ballot to put in office men who encourage immorality by getting drunk or otherwise openly defying both the laws of God and man, and we condemn it utterly."The report on Foreign Missions was read by A. J. Miller, discussed by R. W. Hooker, who has been appointed as missionary to Mexico, E. Z. Simmons, of Canton, China, and Secretary Willingham. The subjects of Publication and Education were discussed, and the evening session was given to discussing Mississippi College at Clinton. The report of the trustees was read by W. T. Lowrey, who made a splendid address on the conditions and prospects of the college. The difficulties concerning the property have all been adjusted and the people of Clinton have agreed to relinquish all claims to it in consideration of which the Convention agreed to spend $10,000 as soon as practicable on improvements. Brethren C. H. Brough and R. A. Venable also made enthusiastic speeches, and B. G. Lowrey took a collection of $707.25 to build a cottage there immediately. Saturday morning the subject was State Missions, A. V. Rowe read the report which was discussed by P. I. Lipsle, Jos. Jacob, H. P. Hurt and others and a collection
of over $800 taken. A report on B. Y. P. U. was adopted without discussion, which recommended a state organization which will be effected [sic] at once. Up to the present a number of young people's societies have existed, but no State organization.
Care of aged ministers received due attention. In the afternoon a stirring report on Prohibition was read by J. A. Hacket and discussed by Brethren Lomax, Haywood and others. The temperance cause is bitterly opposed in several sections of the State; in one place an advocate of the cause was attacked by a whisky man and in another it was attempted to intimidate a pastor in court.
Saturday night the subject was work among the colored people. G. B. Butler read the report and speeches made by Brethren Venable, Lomax, Hackett, Rowe and others. Great interest in this work is felt by the Baptists of Mississippi. This session of the Convention was marked by the best of feeling, great interest in the various objects discussed and an earnest purpose to push forward. About 250 delegates were present.
The ladies held large and interesting meetings each afternoon. Their reports were encouraging and much good will result from their gathering.
[From The Baptist Argus, July 13, 1899, pp. 5 & 9; via Baylor U. Digital documents. Scanned and formatted by Jim Duvall.]
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