Baptists plan major evangelistic outreach for mountain region

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (KT) – Kentucky Baptists from across the state will convene in the Appalachian region in November for an evangelistic outreach that will coincide with the annual meeting of the state’s largest religious organization.

“This will be a big deal,” said Paul Chitwood, executive director of the 750,000-member Kentucky Baptist Convention. “We will also be encouraging local church revivals in the region. Our prayer is that this time next year, our Baptist churches in the mountains will have been encouraged and blessed by the efforts and that many will have come to know Christ.”

The Kentucky Baptist Convention, which holds massive annual meetings each year in various cities across the state, will meet at the Eastern Kentucky Expo Center in Pikeville.

The meeting is typically preceded by a pastor’s conference attended by ministers from across the state and beyond. That conference is held the day before the annual meeting, traditionally bringing church leaders together for two days of meetings.

A more ambitious schedule is in the works for the Pikeville gathering.

“Plans are being laid for an evangelistic crusade at the convention center,” Chitwood told members of the Kentucky Mission Board at a meeting on Monday afternoon. “We’ll invite 200 pastors from across the state to serve as decision counselors and incorporate local churches in the effort.”

Kentucky Baptist leaders want the annual meetings to leave the cities where they’re held stronger, economically and spiritually.

“These meetings will have a positive impact on the economy of eastern Kentucky with Baptists staying in hotels, eating in restaurants, shopping in stores, but more importantly, they’ll have a spiritual impact," said KBC President Charles Frazier, pastor of Zion's Cause Baptist Church in Benton. "The most important thing we will do in eastern Kentucky is come alongside churches there to help share the gospel.”

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