General Council

Compiled by Rev. Dr. Lee B. Spitzer, BWA Historian

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By Decade – All Council Resolutions

Resolution Opposing Violence and Abuse of Women and Girls

The Baptist World Alliance General Council, meeting in Zurich, Switzerland, July 2-6:
AFFIRMS that women and girls are created in the image of God and invested with inestimable worth and dignity as gifts from God, and are essential to the health and vitality of families, churches, communities, and national life;

Resolution on Ministry to Refugees

The Baptist World Alliance General Council, meeting in Vancouver, Canada, July 6-8, 2016:
ACKNOWLEDGES the profound challenges created in many parts of our world by the massive flow of refugees and displaced persons,

Resolution on Religious Liberty in the USA

The Baptist World Alliance General Council, meeting in Bangkok, Thailand, July 5-7, 2017:
AFFIRMS freedom of religion and belief as a core value borne out in Baptist history and opposes all forms of discrimination based on faith or religion;

Resolution on the Humanitarian Crisis in Venezuela

The Baptist World Alliance General Council, meeting in Bangkok, Thailand, July 5-7, 2017:
STATES its concerns at the climate of political and social instability and violence in Venezuela, which has led to deteriorating socio-economic conditions, including a shortage of food and medicines;

Resolution on Religious Freedom in Russia

The Baptist World Alliance General Council, meeting in Bangkok, Thailand, July 5-7, 2017:
REAFFIRMS our historic Baptist commitment to religious freedom as a gift of God to all people, regardless of denomination or religion; and that this same commitment is enshrined in the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights, Article 18, to which the Russian Federation is a signatory;

Situation in Ukraine

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Izmir, Turkey, July 9-11, 2014:

NOTES with concern that, in Crimea and Eastern Ukraine generally, the situation has led to increased religious persecution, especially against evangelical Christians;

Appendix II: Baptist World Alliance Resolutions Paper

1. The diverse worldwide Baptist family, represented through the Baptist World Alliance (BWA), is concerned about the contemporary religious, missional, social, cultural, political and economic issues that affect the global family.

2. One means of giving expression to the conclusions Baptists draw on issues of concern to them, and of bearing witness to this before the world, is through the preparation, adoption and sharing of resolutions proposed by member bodies, commissions, etc., for approval by the BWA General Council.

3. BWA’s approach to framing resolutions is informed by biblical teaching and predicated on Baptists’ trinitarian faith. The resolutions are shaped by the values and convictions generally affirmed by Baptists and are proposed by members of the Baptist family, or by the Resolutions Committee, which also considers, reviews and amends them where necessary for presentation to the General Council for consideration and possible adoption.

Resolution on Refugees in East Africa

The Baptist World Alliance General Council, meeting in Bangkok, Thailand, July 5-7, 2017:
NOTES with appreciation the resolution titled “Ministry to Refugees” adopted by the General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Vancouver, Canada, July 6-8, 2016;

Resolution on Freedom of Religion in the Lugansk Region in Eastern Ukraine

The Baptist World Alliance General Council, meeting in Zurich, Switzerland, July 2-6, 2018:
EXPRESSES concern that that the situation for religious communities is precarious in the eastern part of Ukraine – the Lugansk region. The region is part of a conflict area now widely understood to be under the control of Russia, which has recognized the area as “The Lugansk Peoples Republic (LPR).”

Resolution on Human Slavery and Trafficking

The Baptist World Alliance General Council, meeting in Bangkok, Thailand, July 5-7, 2017:

ACKNOWLEDGES that General Council has regularly reminded the global family of Baptists about the evil practice of modern slavery;

Resolution on Preserving the Primacy of Family in Immigration

The Baptist World Alliance General Council, meeting in Zurich, Switzerland, July 2-6, 2018:
RECOGNIZES that the human desire to preserve and protect one’s family from violence, disease, economic depravity, and other threatening conditions is universal and drives millions of people to leave their homelands seeking better lives for themselves and their family members;

Recognizing and Affirming the Calling of Women in the Church

CELEBRATES the Baptist International Conference on Theological Education that met in Nassau, Bahamas, July 5-7, 2019, with the theme of “TOGETHER: Re-Imagining, Re-Reading HERstory in the Church,” with significant discussions of women in the church;

Resolution on Haiti

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Ocho Rios, Jamaica, July 1-6, 2013:
ACKNOWLEDGES that the Republic of Haiti was the first, and for a long time, the only state in the world to recognize equality of rights for all human beings regardless of gender, economic condition or any other consideration;

Resolution on the Paris Agreement and Climate Change

The Baptist World Alliance General Council, meeting in Vancouver, Canada, July 6-8, 2016: CONTINUES TO BELIEVE AND AFFIRM:
• God is the creator, sustainer, and Lord of all, delights in creation, and is committed to its care and renewal;
• The biblical teaching that the earth is God’s creation and we, also as God’s creation, are to nurture and care for it;

Kachin Crisis

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Ocha Rios, Jamaica, July 1-6, 2013:
LAMENTS the atrocities occurring in Rakhine, Chin, Karen and Kachin states in Myanmar;

Resolution on Corruption

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Izmir, Turkey, July 9-11, 2014:
ACKNOWLEDGES that every human being is created in the image of God and thereby has an intrinsic
value to God and to the world (Genesis 1:26-27);

Christians at Risk of Persecution

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance (BWA), meeting in Izmir, Turkey, July 9-11, 2014:
RECOGNIZES the very real dangers faced by many Christians in various parts of the world who experience intolerance and persecution from governments and authorities of different political, religious and ideological persuasions;

Child Sexual Abuse in the Church

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Ocha Rios, Jamaica, July 1-6, 2013:
AFFIRMS the intrinsic and inestimable value of children and young people as gifts from God and as the promise of future generations;

Encouraging Discipleship in Turkey

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Izmir, Turkey, July 9-11, 2014: RECOGNIZES the courage and faithfulness of the disciples of Christ in the nation of Turkey;
ACKNOWLEDGES the government’s efforts towards mutual respect and tolerance among different religious groups, which help promote peace and harmony among all of its peoples;

Current Crisis on the Korean Peninsula

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Ocha Rios, Jamaica, July 1-6, 2013:
NOTES, with concern, the nuclear test carried out by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), the escalation of rhetoric involving the DPRK, Republic of Korea and the USA of America, and the fear that this can lead to armed conflict in the region;

Human Rights Based on the Work of Anabaptist Richard Overton

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Ocha Rios, Jamaica, July 1-6, 2013, in honor of the Human Rights Advocacy award winner for 2013, Glen Stassen:
RECALLS the contributions of English Anabaptist Richard Overton who encouraged Christians to discover human rights by recognizing the rule of God as revealed in Jesus;

Resolution on Displaced Persons

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Ocha Rios, Jamaica, July 1-6, 2013:
REMEMBERS that the Bible honors displaced persons, including the people of Israel who lived as exiles for forty years before entering Canaan (Exodus 13ff.), and who later experienced displacement, loss and trauma when exiled to Assyria and Babylon (e.g. 2 Kings 24:10-16), and the Lord Jesus Christ who, with his family, experienced life as a displaced person (Matthew 2:13-23);

Prayer for Justice and Mercy for Nations and Peoples in Conflict

We express concern for nations and peoples who are caught in a terrible circle of hatred, violence, injustice, and suffering, who live in fear in police states where terrorist acts and military incursions are regular events.
We further recognize that the oppression and depravities by one group leads to anger and violence by the other which is then escalated by the first.

Ministry of Reconciliation

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Prague, Czech Republic, July 20- 25, 2008;
Expresses deep sadness and regret over religious and ethnic conflicts that claim many lives and create deep scars in different parts of the world;

Children

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Seville, Spain, July 8-13 2002: AFFIRMS that Jesus Christ calls the church to proclaim the gospel to all nations (Matt. 28:18- 20);
COMMENDS our Division of Evangelism and Education for its leadership in promoting global evangelism;

Statement of Appreciation

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Mexico City, July 3-8, 2006:
Offers sincere thanks to the Mexico Baptist Convention for the invitation to hold this Annual Gathering in this wonderful city.

Zimbabwe

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Prague, Czech Republic, July 20- 25, 2008;
Rejoices in the work God is doing among his people in Zimbabwe and in particular through the Baptist churches in Zimbabwe;

The Middle East

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Seville, Spain, July 8-13, 2002:
DEPLORES the continuing violence in the Middle East;
LAMENTS the absence of peace for all the people of the Middle East;
NOTES that the absence of peace for the Middle East contributes to suffering throughout the world;

HIV/AIDS Crisis

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Mexico City, July 3-8, 2006:
Notes again the great urgency of the HIV/AIDS crisis and laments that 65 million people have been infected and more than 25 million people have died of HIV/AIDS in the past 25 years.

400th Anniversary of the Formation of the First Baptist Congregation

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Prague, Czech Republic, July 20-25, 2008;
Resolves to commemorate the 400th Anniversary of the first Baptist congregation, formed in Amsterdam in 1609, by meeting for its next Annual Gathering in the Netherlands in 2009;

Against Terrorism

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Seville, Spain, July 8-13 2002:
NOTES with profound sadness the continuing suffering and destruction caused by various kinds of terrorism;
EXTENDS its sympathy to all victims of terrorism and encourages initiatives to offer relief to such victims;

On Human Rights and Abuses in Myanmar

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Mexico City, July 3-8, 2006:
Recognizes historic Baptists links with Burma [Myanmar] dating back to the work of Adoniram Judson and his colleagues in the nineteenth century.

Evangelism and Contextualization of the Gospel

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Prague, Czech Republic, July 20- 25, 2008;
Gives thanks to God for the rich spiritual legacy of Reformers like Jan Hus and Petr Chelcicky whose witness still inspires Czech Baptist life which began one hundred and fifty years ago;

Congratulations to Former USA President, Jimmy Carter

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, July 7-12, 2003:
RECOGNIZES the importance of the work of Baptists throughout the world, individually and collectively, to bring peace and justice to all of the people of God;
ACKNOWLEDGES the tireless efforts of former President Jimmy Carter to bring about peace and justice in the world;

On Sudan

Expresses concern about the ongoing armed conflicts which have resulted in more than 2,000,000 deaths and over 1,000,000 displaced persons and numerous other human rights violations. These violations are evident in Darfur, but exist throughout Sudan. Encourages further networking among Sudanese Baptist churches who are isolated by the effects of war.

Baptist Youth Conference

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Prague, Czech Republic, July 20- 25, 2008;
Commends the Youth Department and other entities of the Baptist World Alliance for their roles in envisioning, organizing, and promoting the “Dive Deeper” Baptist Youth World Conference in Leipzig, Germany, July 30-August 3;

World Methodist Council

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, July 7-12, 2003:
CELEBRATES with the World Methodist Council the 300th anniversary of the birth of John Wesley, founder of Methodism;
THANKS God for God’s blessings upon, and use of, the Methodist Church for God’s Kingdom work during these three centuries;

Evangelism and Missions

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Mexico City, July 3-8, 2006:
Reaffirms at the beginning of a new century of Baptist World Alliance life and witness our commitment to proclaim and demonstrate, through word and deed, our faith in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord.

Living Water

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Ede, the Netherlands, July 27- August 1, 2009;
Gives thanks to God for the impact of the ‘Living Water’ conferences on evangelism and leadership development in regional and national Baptist bodies;

Appreciation

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Prague, Czech Republic, July 20- 25, 2008;
Offers sincere thanks to the Baptist Union of Czech Republic for the invitation to hold this Annual Gathering in Prague;

Upheaval in Africa

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, July 7-12, 2003:
COMMENDS the Christian churches and missions in Africa, especially the Baptist congregations, for their commitment to the Great Commission of Matthew 28, which has resulted in some of the most vibrant and fastest growing Christian communities in the world;

200th Anniversary of the Passing of the Act to Abolish the Slave Trade in the British Colonies

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance Annual Gathering, meeting in Accra, Ghana, July 2-7, 2007:
Resolves to commemorate in this historic setting the two hundredth anniversary of the beginning of the abolition of the slave trade.
Admits a long history of human enslavement that has broken families, robbed identities, stripped dignity and inflicted deep and inexpressible pain.

Evangelism and Contextualization of the Gospel

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Prague, Czech Republic, July 20- 25, 2008;
Gives thanks to God for the rich spiritual legacy of Reformers like Jan Hus and Petr Chelcicky whose witness still inspires Czech Baptist life which began one hundred and fifty years ago;

On Religious Liberty

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, July 7-12, 2003:
RECOGNIZES that every human being is of intrinsic worth, being created in the image of God and possessing the possibility of fellowship with the God of the universe;
AFFIRMS that one of the basic rights of each human being is the right to worship openly and freely according to the dictates of one’s own heart;

On Darfur

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance Annual Gathering, meeting in Accra, Ghana, July 2-7, 2007:
Maintains ongoing concern about the armed conflicts, contrived famines, destruction of communities, lack of transparent truth and accountability and other human rights violations in Sudan.

Global Mission

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Havana July 5-8 2000
REAFFIRMS the priority given by the Baptist World Alliance to mission and evangelism;
RECALLS the special evangelistic programmes developed by many Unions and Conventions organised for the end of the 1990’s, including the BWA programme of a special month of evangelism and its call to renew our evangelistic commitment at the beginning of a new era;

Refugees and Immigration

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Prague, Czech Republic, July 20- 25, 2008;
Recognizes the global growth of refugee migration and international relocation with more than 67 million current refugees and internally displaced people and more than 191 million international migrants;

Anniversary of William Carey’s Arrival in India

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Harare, Zimbabwe August 6-9, 1993,
GIVES THANKS TO GOD for the missionary vision of William Carey and rejoices in the celebration of the 200th anniversary of his arrival in India;

Persecution of Christians

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Uppsala, Sweden from 18-24 July 1994:
OFFERS sincere thanks to the Baptist Union of Sweden for the warmth of their welcome and the generosity of their hospitality;

Appreciation

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Dresden July 11-17, 1999
OFFERS sincere thanks to the Union of Evangelical Free Churches in Germany and the local congregations of Dresden and vicinity for their warm welcome and generous hospitality;
ACKNOWLEDGES the gracious welcome to the State of Saxony given by Herr Gunther Portune, state secretary in the ministry of culture;

Legacy of Martin Luther King Jr

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in. Harare, Zimbabwe August 6-9, 1993,
GIVES THANKS TO GOD for the life and witness of Martin Luther King Jr. in this 125th anniversary year of his tragic and untimely death;

Church Burning in the U.S.A.

NOTES with profound concern the continuing incidents of church burning, numbering in excess of 40 within the past 18 months in the United States of America, involving congregations with African– American membership; and

Prayer and Concern for the Eastern Part of Europe and the Soviet Union

THANKFUL to God for the positive changes that have taken place in Eastern Europe and the whole of the Soviet Union, including the increasing freedom experienced in many aspects of the life of these nations,
THANKFUL particularly for those places where greater freedom of religion has been evidenced and new opportunities for evangelization and theological education have been made possible,

Poverty and the Nations

EXPRESSES concern the effects of drought and patterns of international trade and aid have exacerbated conditions of famine, poverty and disease amongst the many poor and disadvantaged peoples of the nations of the South, not least in the continent of Africa.

Hong Kong

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Hong Kong, July 3-9,1996:
NOTES the approaching return of the territory of Hong Kong to Chinese control effective July 1, 1997; and
RECOGNIZES that some perceive this event as potentially traumatic, while others are more optimistic about a new experiment in plural socio-economic systems co-existing within a single nation; and

World Evangelization

REALIZING that over four billion people in our world do not know Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour and that one-fourth of the world’s population has never heard the Gospel,
ACKNOWLEDGING the commitment that member bodies of the BWA have made through the Seoul Covenant to world evangelization.

The Continuing AIDS Crisis

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Harare, Zimbabwe August 6-9, 1993,
NOTES with alarm that since its last resolution on AIDS in 1988 the number of those infected has reached epidemic proportions in many countries;

Appreciation

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Hong Kong, July 3-9, 1996:
OFFERS sincere thanks to the Baptist Convention of Hong Kong for the warmth of their welcome and the generosity of their hospitality;
ACKNOWLEDGES the gracious welcome to Hong Kong given by President Cecil Chan; and

Middle East Situation

THANKFUL TO Almighty God for the cessation of open war in Kuwait and Iraq,
MINDFUL of the tragic aftermath of such hostilities in terms not only of loss of life but also of the appalling social and economic conditions prevailing in the Gulf and the long-term threat to the environment caused by oil pollution in both sea and air,

The Sanctity of Human Life

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Harare, Zimbabwe August 6-9, 1993,
AFFIRMS that because all life is the gift of God and that every person is created in the image of God, human life is sacred;

Peace in the Middle East

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Vancouver Canada, July 3-9, 1997,
EXPRESSES concern that the Middle East peace process has only partially been implemented and that this threatens the stability of all the states in the region;

South Africa

RECALLING the prophetic stance taken by the Baptist World Alliance in its resolutions on South Africa at the World Congress in 1985 and at the General Council in 1986 and 1988,
REAFFIRMING its opposition to apartheid as a sin against the Gospel of God’s love for all people,

Bosnia

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Harare, Zimbabwe August 6-9, 1993,
CONDEMNS the deliberate use within the former Republic of Yugoslavia of “ethnic cleansing” and the systematic use of rape as a weapon of war and extends its heart-felt sympathy to the hundreds of thousands of victims;

Appreciation

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance in Vancouver, Canada, July 3-9, 1997,

ACKNOWLEDGES the gracious efforts of Bruce Milne, pastor of the First Baptist Church of Vancouver, who chaired the Local Arrangements Committee, and Bob Pearmain, assistant chair;

Appreciation to the Hosts and Officers

The Baptist World Alliance holding its annual meeting of the General Council and related groups in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, July 7-14, 1991, has brought together Baptists from around the world for worship, fellowship, mutual encouragement, study, and planning.

South Africa

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Harare, Zimbabwe August 6-9, 1993,
SENDS greetings to our sisters and brothers in the Baptist and wider Christian community in South Africa;
APPLAUDS the decision to hold multi-racial elections with universal adult suffrage in 1994;

Landmines

BWA General Council Resolution 1997.3 The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Vancouver, Canada, July 3-9, 1997, NOTES with horror that currently in excess of 100 million anti-personnel land mines are deployed in more than 70 countries, with a...

BMS Bicentenary

The founding of the society to promote overseas missions marked the point at which the missionary awakening stimulated by the evangelical revival of the eighteenth century first attained effective institutional expression alerting not only Baptist but the whole of evangelical Christendom to a world-wide vision;

Appreciation

COMMENDS with appreciation the Baptist Heads of Denominations and its secretary, the Rev. Noah Pashapa, for the invaluable and gracious assistance given to the BWA staff in planning and organizing this first-ever BWA gathering in Southern Africa;

Human Rights

BWA General Council Resolution 1997.1 The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Vancouver, Canada, July 3-9, 1997: RECOGNIZES with gratitude that 1998 will mark the 59th anniversary of the United Nations' Universal Declaration of Human Rights which...

Fifth Centennial of the Coming of Columbus and the Europeans to the Americas

THANKS the Union Bautista Latino Americana (UBLA) for the guidance they have provided the Council on what a Christian response should be to the Fifth Centennial of the coming of Columbus and the Europeans to the Americas, and the beginning of a different way of live and thought for the people of the hemisphere;

Rwanda and Burundi

COMMENDS with appreciation the Baptist Heads of Denominations and its secretary, the Rev. Noah Pashapa, for the invaluable and gracious assistance given to the BWA staff in planning and organizing this first-ever BWA gathering in Southern Africa;

Appreciation to C. E. Bryant

Recognizing the loyal and dedicated service of the Rev. Cyril E. Bryant, Lit.D., the BWA General Council expresses deep appreciation for
• twenty-five years of devoted ministry to the Baptist World Alliance.
• skillful editing of BAPTIST WORLD.
• comprehensive news coverage of happenings in the worldwide family of Baptists.
• creative feature writing, including his book, Operation Brother’s Brother.

Youth Ministry

he BWA General Council welcomes the report of the Youth Executive Committee on the value of the Asian Youth Leadership Training Conference in Singapore last week.
With them we thank God for the enthusiasm and commitment of the youth leaders who shared in this cross- cultural experience. We also acknowledge the support of those Unions and Conventions which made it possible for so many to attend.

The AIDS Crisis

As the General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meets in Nassau, the Bahamas, July 1988, the AIDS crisis continues to escalate on a global scale.
The 16,000 cases of the Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) reported in 1985 are now nearly 75,000 in 129 countries.

World Evangelism

From the beginning of our history Baptists have been a missionary people. We are grateful to God for the sacrifice and commitment of many missionaries. A new day is dawning in world evangelization. The former receiving churches are becoming sending churches. The task of world evangelization is now for every Baptist convention and union.

International Year of Shelter for the Homeless

The BWA General Council, meeting in Singapore, July 1986:
1. notes that the United Nations has designated 1987 as International Year of Shelter for the Homeless;
2. commends the study of appropriate materials on this subject which will be available from the United Nations and various Baptist bodies;
3. encourages our member bodies to take such actions, particularly through local churches, as will contribute to the lessening of this social problem.

Illicit Drugs, Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Addictive Chemical Substances

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in the Bahamas, July 1988:
Gives thanks to God for the comfort and well being brought to multitudes through the medical use of drugs;
Views with alarm the tragic growth of illicit drug trafficking, the subsequent victimizing of vast numbers of people, especially youth, through these addictive substances and the resulting explosion of drug-related crises;

Mrs. Victoria Tolbert

WHEREAS our sister in Christ, Victoria Tolbert, is incarcerated in Liberia following the death of her husband, William O. Tolbert, in a military coup, and
WHEREAS Mrs. Tolbert is a member of the Executive Committee of the Women’s Department of the Baptist World Alliance, and
WHEREAS Mrs. Tolbert was expected to participate in the women’s meetings of the Baptist World Congress in Toronto,

The Union Bautista Sud Americana

Thankful for the history of Baptist witness in South America and for those who have given leadership to the worldwide fellowship from this part of the world, we congratulate the churches, conventions, unions and assemblies on the foundation of the new regional fellowship, the Union Bautista Sud Americana.

Peace with Justice

Whereas humankind has now entered the fifth decade of life under the awesome threat of nuclear annihilation, and
Whereas the nations of the world will spend approximately the equivalent of one trillion US dollars this year on military forces and weapons, and

South Africa

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Nassau, the Bahamas, July 1988:
Reaffirms its resolution dealing with apartheid adopted at its meeting in Los Angeles in 1985, and
Urges the Baptist Union and the Baptist Convention of Southern Africa to challenge the evil of apartheid by their own example of reconciliation and full equality within their own churches and the extended Christian family as well as their society.

Nuclear Arms

We affirm our convictions expressed in the Resolution 1982.5 passed last year in Nairobi, Kenya. This resolution endorsed the statement made by the Baptist Union of Sweden of the same year and drew attention to the Moscow Declaration.

Baptist Identity

In an era of concern over Baptist identity, this Council endorses the request of the BWA Baptist Heritage Commission to urge Baptists worldwide to recover their rich heritage and to conduct their mission as part of Christ’s church with a deeper understanding of their history, and indicates the availability of the Commission as a resource body.

Peacemaking

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance has often addressed peace issues, most recently in 1985 and 1986. Again in 1988, as the Council meets in the Bahamas, we:
Reaffirm previous resolutions that have spoken to peace with disarmament and peace with justice, and
Welcome the completion of the treaty calling for the elimination of intermediate range nuclear equipped missiles for the United States of America and the USSR and encourage work toward understandings which will lead to the reduction of all levels of military forces.

The International Year of Disabled Persons

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance:
1. Gives full support to the General Assembly of the United Nations in its proclaiming 1981 as the International Year of Disabled Persons with the keynote theme, “full participation and equality,” whose aim is to encourage the rehabilitation of an estimated 450 million people who suffer from some form of physical or mental impairment.

Human Rights: A Statement of Concern

Baptist people numbering more than 34 million from all over the world have long stood for the right of all people to be free and independent and have worked to encourage governments everywhere to respect human rights. As Christians we believe that human rights are God-given and that violations of human rights are violations of the laws of God. We have expressed deep concern in previous years about human rights violations in all parts of the world, from blatant racial discrimination and restrictions on religious freedom to military and economic oppression.

Prisoners of Conscience

The BWA General Council, meeting in Singapore, July 1986:
1. notes the vast number of people, both men and women, who are in prison, whose only “crime” has been the conscientious expression of different political views of the proclamation of the Christian Gospel;

Toxic Waste

God created earth— air, land and sea. Because we are stewards of Planet Earth, we Christians, along with all people of good will, are disturbed by the pollution of land, air and sea. It is profoundly distressing that nations are reported to be dumping nuclear waste onto the soil of developing nations.

El Salvador

The Baptist World General Council, meeting in the Caribbean:
1. Has observed with profound concern and apprehension the continuing suffering and oppression of many in El Salvador;
2. Expresses its utmost sympathy with all those who are caught up in the present conflict.

Reconciliation

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Buenos Aires, Argentina,
a) recognizes with thanksgiving to God its experience of the reconciling love of Christ, expressed in the united fellowship of Baptist people from North, South, East and West;
b) reaffirms its belief that God in Christ is able to bring people truly together across national, political, economic, language and cultural barriers;

World Hunger

WHEREAS, estimates of the number of chronically hungry people range from 500 million to one billion, from one-eighth to one-fourth of the world’s population; and

Women

We celebrate the multiple gifts and sensitivities women bring to the service of Jesus Christ and the work of the Baptist family around the world.
Women make up approximately two-thirds of the membership of the church. In society at large, opportunities for the involvement of women are increasing in government, social, economic and educational areas.

Crisis in the Near and Middle East

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance wishes to state its concern and position regarding multiple but interrelated crises in the Near and Middle East in the following expressions:
1. We express our profound concern regarding the blatant disregard for human rights, civil liberties and national self-determination.

Process

The General Council recognizes the complexities of the issues faced by our world today. It is concerned that these be addressed adequately by the Alliance. The Executive of the Council is therefore requested to review major matters to be processed by the Resolutions Committee at its next meeting and to seek out competent persons who will be asked to submit proposed resolutions to be reviewed and where necessary revised by the Resolutions Committee for recommendation to the General Council.

Afghanistan

The BWA General Council, meeting in Singapore, July 1986:
1. is aware of the present situation in the country of Afghanistan and notes with concern the plight of some three million refugees;
2. also notes that the refugee situation has created serious problems for neighboring countries, particularly Pakistan;

World Hunger

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, realizing that many of the world’s peoples are threatened by starvation — by famine, war and natural disaster which have contributed to their desperate plight — we cannot help but recognize the gospel mandate for Christian people to meet such urgent human need.

Religious Freedom and Human Rights

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, believing in the inherent right of all people to freedom of religious faith, practice, and propagation, and recognizing the rights of governments to require that such freedom shall be exercised responsibly, wishes once again to express its deep concern over present attitudes in many countries with respect to religious believers, involving in some cases, strong legislation against them.

Sources of Energy

We, the General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, urge on all governments and all members of our churches the need for careful and responsible husbanding of such resources, having in mind the effects of these shortages on the economies, especially of Third World countries and the requirements of succeeding generations.

Appreciation

MOTION was made and seconded, and carried
32GC76 that the following resolution be adopted:
The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, meeting in Melbourne, Australia, resolves

Appreciation

The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance wishes to express its appreciation of:
1. The royal welcome of our British Baptist brothers and sisters, whose thoughtful kindness has further endeared them to us. We will take back to our homes their gift to remind us of these days while life shall last.

Appreciation

MOTION by W. A. Criswell was seconded, and carried 33GC76 that the following resolution be adopted:
The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance resolves to place on record, as the European Office of the Baptist World Alliance is transferred from London, England, to Hamburg, Germany, its sincere and warm appreciation of the significant contribution made to the Baptist World Alliance by the Baptist Union of Great Britain and Ireland from its inception and throughout its history,

Relief and Development Programs

MOTION by Roy Bell was seconded, and carried
34GC76 that the following resolution, and all pending amendments, be referred to the Executive Committee for consideration.
Since certain governments engage in programs of relief and development beyond their boundaries, and in so doing use their own and other governmental agencies, national voluntary agencies, but do not use international voluntary agencies; and

Food Aid as a Political Instrument

MOTION by W. A. Criswell was seconded, and carried 35GC76 that the following resolution be adopted:
The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance, believing that the feeding of the starving and the undernourished ought not to be limited to people whose governments are closely allied to donor governments, and recognizing that some governments have used, or have been under pressure to use relief,

Peace Conference

5 MOTION was made, seconded, amended, and carried 36GC76 that the following resolution be adopted:
The General Council, having learned of the preparations to hold a World Conference in 1977, involving representation from all the major religions of the world, entitled “World Conference of Religious Workers for Lasting Peace, Disarmament, and Just Relations Among Nations,”

Appreciation

BE IT RESOLVED that we show our appreciation to the Baptist people of Miami, especially the staff and congregation of the Central Baptist Church of Miami, and the Miami Baptist Association for their fine hospitality.

Appreciation

WHEREAS the General Secretary and staff of the BWA have served the meeting with outstanding efficiency and courtesy, thereby facilitating the speedy and effective work of this Council,

Charismatic Movement

WHEREAS the Commission on Doctrine and Inter-Church Cooperation has for a number of years devoted some of its attention to the charismatic movement, we request the Commission to provide the 1978 BWA General Council such summary statement and guidelines for our Baptist fellowship as they deem appropriate.

Human Rights

WHEREAS the Commission on Freedom, Justice, and Peace has for a number of years devoted some of its attention to the issues of human rights, we request the Commission to provide the 1978 BWA General Council such summary statement and guidelines as they deem appropriate.

Testing of Nuclear Weapons

WHEREAS the Baptist World Congress, held in Tokyo in 1970, called for International “agreements for the limitation of both offensive and defensive strategic weapons” and for “immediate agreements to suspend the further deployment of all offensive and defensive nuclear strategic weapons systems, subject to national verification or such other measures of observation and inspection as may be appropriate,”

Message to Baptist Churches Throughout the World

The Baptist World Alliance is a fellowship of almost 29 of the 33 million Baptists in the world. They represent many nations and widely differing cultures and ways of life and thought. It is neither within its power nor its function to direct, or rule on the internal affairs of the political or economic procedures of its constituent bodies or of their countries.

Theological Training and “The Seminary Fund”

Carl W. Tiller had been asked to prepare a report for the Council on efforts made in past years by Baptists of the world to provide theological training and to establish a theological seminary in the heart of Europe. His written report contained a history of a seminary fund for training in the Slavic languages, begun in 1908 by Baptists.

The Dispossessed

The Baptist World Alliance General Council expresses the deepest disquiet over the plight of the dispossessed and homeless peoples of the world.
We plead with all governments to avoid discriminatory policies against any of the peoples within their jurisdiction.

Man’s Stewardship and Survival on This Earth

The Twelfth Baptist World Congress, meeting in Tokyo, Japan, during July 12-18, 1970, notes with deep concern the continuing and increasing lack of economic self-sufficiency suffered by the majority of the inhabitants of the world, particularly those who are citizens of the developing countries.